Styles & Significance of Cathedral Engagement Rings

Cathedral engagement rings fall into the category of one of the two most popular types of engagement ring band styles. When choosing an engagement ring, you’ll have to choose between the arching cathedral design or the floating style. A cathedral engagement ring setting is very unique and desirable to many people.

Cathedral settings are extremely elegant, classic, and popular. They are similar to the cathedral arches in the way that the setting uses arches made out of metal to support and hold the center diamond and or gemstone. This band slopes up to the same level as the girdle or edge of the center stone. A cathedral setting simply refers to the way that the band is sloped.

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Variations With Cathedral Engagement Rings

Cathedral engagement rings can have a wide variety of channel settings ranging from single, to triple micro pave, or email plain ones.

Many people believe that an engagement ring with a cathedral style band means that the center diamond or gemstone is set up high. This is not true at all, it just refers to the specific craftsmanship and precision of the ring. The bottom tip of the diamond (also known as the culet) can certainly be at the same level of the band for the cathedral setting. Therefore, you shouldn't be afraid of this setting if you are worried about the ring being too high for your finger because that’s not the case.

Whatever center gemstone or diamond that you choose, you can customize how it’s set. It can be set with prongs, bezel, tension, or a basket design. It can sit low, or high above the arches. It is entirely up to personal presence. The defining characteristic of cathedral engagement rings are not found in the way that the center stone is held, instead, it refers to how the mounting is built, relating to the shank and arches.


Benefits of Cathedral Engagement Rings

There are many benefits that come with choosing this type 0f ring setting. One very appealing aspect is their elegance. This is mainly due to the extra fine detail that can be incorporated into these engagement rings. So much detail can be found and added to the gallery and underside of the center diamond or gemstone.

Cathedral engagement rings provide more room to work with, allowing for leniency with extra pave diamonds or metal work. This gives these rings even more appeal and makes them very customizable.

The fact that cathedral engagement rings are a classic setting is also very appealing to many. Just by its stunning appearance, you can tell that it's a classic.

Another main benefit of cathedral engagement ring settings is that it provides a lot of protection for the center stone. This is especially true and comes in handy if the stone is sitting low, and the arches extend to the stone’s girdle. This added protection is extremely important for people who want to go with softer center gemstones, such as emerald. If you want to have a larger and heavier center stone, the cathedral setting will certainly protect and support that stone as well. The natural curving nature of cathedral engagement rings provide an overall well-structured and solid feel and look.

We can’t ignore the main benefit of this setting - its aesthetics. Cathedral engagement rings are absolutely gorgeous, and this setting goes very well with either a small or large budget. Whether you prefer diamonds or not, the ring will look gorgeous either way. With, or without diamonds on the shank, you can have yourself a very elegant and attractive engagement ring.


Cons of The Cathedral Engagement Ring Setting

The main con with this type of setting is that not everyone likes the additional design features that can be added. Some people prefer the center diamond to be the only focus on the ring. For people who prefer extreme simplicity, this type of ring can look “cluttered to them.” This isn't necessarily a con though, it’s just a personal preference.


Origin of the Cathedral Engagement Ring’s Name

The cathedral engagement ring wasn't just a name that someone came up with out of the blue. The origin of the name comes from the shape of the cathedral engagement ring. The shape mimics the beauty and grace of a traditional cathedral. The official definition of a cathedral is a Christian church that contains the seat of a Bishop. The Italian name for cathedrals is Duomo. Since cathedrals are known for being large and impressive buildings that have arches, it is the perfect name for this ring setting. In addition to that, the arches also frame and support the ceiling, just like the arches of the cathedral ring setting supports and provides protection to the center diamond or gemstone.

Variations of a Cathedral Engagement Ring Setting

Even though cathedral engagement rings are a classic ring choice, they come with many variations. Here are some different features that you can choose with cathedral settings:


  • A range of different arch degrees. They can range from extremely small arches to dramatic curves to frame a high setting, whatever the buyer prefers.
  • Arches can be either concave or convex.
  • Arch widths can differ in proportion to the size of the center stone.
  • You can choose between solid or split band arches
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