What’s better than a diamond? A diamond that’s brought some friends along. And just as a diamond can only be scratched by another diamond, one of the most popular methods of emphasizing a diamond center stone is with other diamonds.
Of course, it takes more than an extra handful of accent stones to really make your ring pop; it takes skill, understanding, and an eye for design. Interested in learning more about diamond accents (and how they can turn an already beautiful ring into something extraordinary)? Then read on!
What Is a Diamond Accent Ring?
Before we get into the details, let’s cover the basics. Diamond accents are smaller diamonds which are arranged strategically around a larger diamond in rings and various other jewelry designs. Given the smaller size of these diamonds (usually less than 0.25 carats) and their less sophisticated cut, they aren’t generally very valuable on their own. However, when chosen and positioned correctly, they work in harmony to significantly enhance the overall beauty of the piece — increasing its luminosity, sparkle, and elegance. Additionally, the right diamond accents increase not only the volume of a ring, but also compliment the cut of the feature stone.
Of course, not all diamond accents are the same; let’s take a look at the various diamond-accent types, and what each brings to the table.
The Different Types of Accent Diamonds
Although diamond accents could conceivably be any shape or style, they tend to come in one of four main shapes: Baguette, small round, trillion cut, and marquise.
Baguette accent diamonds
Baguette diamond accent stones are sometimes referred to as rectangular accents. Available as both straight baguettes (which are equal in width along the diamond’s length) and tapered baguettes (where one of the ends is narrower than the other, creating a trapezoid-like shape).
Straight baguettes tend to appear larger than they actually are, and thanks to their symmetry, they can be easily arranged in a row along the band, or used as side stones with one sitting on either side of a larger diamond. Straight baguette accents are traditionally used to highlight round brilliant cut, marquise cut, and asscher cut center stones.
Conversely, tapered accents are often arranged to follow the natural curve of the ring. These accent diamonds are mainly found either as side stones or in three-stone ring settings. These diamonds are popular additions to a range of center-stone cuts, such as emerald cuts, princess cuts,radiant cuts, and round brilliant cuts.
Round accent diamonds
Round diamond accent stones are considered some of the most versatile kinds of diamond accents, thanks to its ability to pair effectively with every diamond shape. As such, settings that incorporate small round diamonds can be tailored to the specific style and personality of the wearer. If you’re looking for flexibility, look no further.
Depending on round accent diamonds’ carat weight, they fall into one of three categories: stars (.02 carats or smaller), full cuts (0.02–0.07 carats), and melee (0.08–0.18 carats). Small round diamonds function beautifully as side stones, and are also well known for their use in popular halo settings.
Trillion cut accent diamonds
Trillion cut diamonds feature a triangular shape, subtly curved to match the slope of the ring. Trillion cuts offer a departure from the more common diamond shapes, and can bring a lot of individuality to a diamond accent ring, usually as side stones. And, much like baguettes, they tend to look larger than their carat weight would suggest.
Cut like radiant diamonds, these accent stones are specifically designed to give you the most sparkle for your money. Still, there’s a downside to the trillion cut’s extraordinary light show: They can actually outshine less brilliant center stones. As such, you should be careful to pair trillion accent diamonds with featured stones that can keep up with them. Radiant, round brilliant, and oval diamonds are all appropriate options.
Marquise accent diamonds
Finally, we come to marquise diamonds. These diamonds have curved sides that taper to a point, creating an oval shape. When paired with more angular center stones — such as the emerald cut — marquise accent stones create a striking contrast. And just so you don’t think that marquise stones only work with square diamonds, it’s worth noting that the marquise’ oval shape also compliments round diamonds exceptionally well.
Choosing the Right Accent Diamonds
Accent diamonds give you the freedom to tailor your ring to fit your predisposition, personality, and preferences — so don’t feel like you have to conform to anyone else’s ideas when it comes to choosing your accents. That said, we’d like to share a few general guidelines to help ensure that your diamond accent ring is everything you want it to be. Here are some key points to consider:
As with most diamonds, accent diamonds are graded according to how clear they are in regards to inclusions or blemishes. When choosing accent diamonds, don’t feel as though you need to stick with the highest possible clarity grade (like FL, IF, or VVS); given the small scale we’re discussing, accent diamonds that look clear to the naked eye (eye-clean) will shine just as brightly as those that are internally flawless — and they’ll cost you a lot less than the ones that can pass more microscopic clarity tests.
When it comes to accent diamonds, bigger isn’t necessarily better. To effectively showcase and accentuate, try to stick with accent diamonds that are no more than 15% the size of the main diamond. This will help establish a clear hierarchy within your ring’s design.
Unless you’re trying for something very specific, you’ll likely want your accent diamonds to appear colorless. But there’s colorless and then there’s colorless, and you’re probably safe sticking with accent stones that are as much as three color grades below your main stone. As long as the diamonds appear mostly colorless, they shouldn’t negatively affect the appearance of the center stone. Also, be sure that all of your accent diamonds are the same color grade — otherwise, your ring might appear to have lighter and darker spots throughout.
Finally, be willing to talk to your diamond expert about accent diamonds. They should be able to tell you more about the diamonds’ quality characteristics, as well as offer their own personal insights to help you in your decision-making process.
Shopping for Accent Diamonds
Accent diamonds can bring new levels of elegance and shine to an otherwise standard ring. They can also add interesting shape to angular center stones, such as Asscher and emerald cut engagement rings. But even if the individual diamonds are smaller and less expensive than diamond center stones, the price of adding several additional diamonds to your ring can really add up. If you’re interested in increasing your diamond count without overly increasing your spend, consider lab grown diamonds.
Lab grown diamonds are chemically and visually identical to mined diamonds, but cost 20–40% less per carat. That means that when you go with lab-created accents, you’ll be getting the same sparkle, clarity, and strength of mined diamonds, just without the steep price tag. Even more importantly, lab diamonds are ethical and environmentally friendly. Check out our selection of lab grown diamonds to see for yourself.
After all, what’s better than a diamond? Several diamonds to help it stand out. And what’s better than that? A clean diamond accent ring that you can be proud to wear, from Clean Origin.