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Choosing a Setting

The setting is the part of the ring that actually holds the diamond. Settings are usually made out of platinum (even on a gold ring) because of platinum's strength and durability. The most popular way to set a diamond that is to be used in an engagement ring is to set it into Prongs or "Claws". However, there are a variety of ways that the side stones can be set. Here are the most popular ways of setting a diamond:

  • Prong Set - This is the recommended way to set an engagement ring diamond for a variety of reasons. The setting consists of four or six prongs that cradle the diamond, so it allows the maximum amount of light to enter a stone from all angles. This often helps the diamond look more brilliant and even appear larger. Some of the fancier shapes diamonds like the Heart or the Pear will have settings that consist of five prongs.
  • Bezel Set - With a Bezel setting, a rim of metal holds the girdle of the diamond and completely surrounds it. Bezels can have straight edges, scalloped edges, or can be molded into any shape to accommodate the stone. The backs can be opened or closed. This is also a common way to set diamonds into earrings, necklaces and bracelets. It is also a popular setting for active adults that want their diamond to sit low on their hand.
  • Channel Set - This setting style is most frequently used for wedding and anniversary bands. A Channel setting will set the stones right next to each other with no metal separating them. The outer ridge of metal is then worked over the edges of the stones. This protects the girdle of the diamonds and provides a smooth exterior surface.
  • Invisible Set - Invisible setting is a relatively new concept. Calibrated stones (mostly Princess Cut) with slits are placed into a frame with ridges to hold them in place. No metal appears between any stones.
  • Pav´┐Ż Set - The word actually comes from the French word meaning "to pave" because of its paved appearance. The round stones are patterned very closely together and the only metal visible is what is actually used to hold the stones in place. You will often hear the term "Bead Set" in regard to this style.