More choices mark the season’s bridal rings. Our panel of retailers pick their favorites.

 [dropcap cap=M]arrying a contemporary CREATIVE vision with details from the past captures the spirit of the bridal market this season. Never before have brides-to-be had so many choices in cuts and colors of gemstones, intricate shanks and matching sets. The overall feel is feminine and pretty, with designers offering styles that say just enough about them and more about your customer’s personality. That’s the case with the ring below, notes pitcher Laura Verses of Craig’s Fine Jewelry in Ridgefield, CT. “The gray tone of the diamond makes it timeless — perfect if you are looking for something that offers an artisan feeling that speaks to your personal style and that will endure the test of time and trends.”[/dropcap]


1.45-carat clear gray rose-cut diamond slice accented by melee diamonds in 14K white gold by ANNE SPORTUNMSRP $5,090
(800) 788-1247

[h3]JOHN APEL[/h3]

PRODUCT DETAILS Platinum hand-engraved Priscilla engagement semi-mount for a round center stone

LAURA VERSES’ PITCH “If you want something that has an heirloom feeling, that looks like it’s been passed down through generations and that displays value, beauty and old-world craftsmanship, then this is the ring for you. It’s feminine without being girly and has fine elements of millegrain, beadwork and a delicately detailed pretty shank. It’s also the perfect ring to work with a colored stone like a sapphire or a colored diamond.”

MSRP $3,000  (not including center stone)

(212) 997-1783  |




[h3]JUST JULES[/h3]

PRODUCT DETAILS 14K gold fancy diamond rings with white pavé full-cut brilliant diamonds

PAUL MINTON'S PITCH “These rings have a feminine yet artsy, earthy touch. They will appeal to your creative side, and there is something both modern and old-world about them. Due to the diamond cuts, colors and shapes, each of these is one-of-a-kind and you will not see your ring on anyone else’s finger. I would base the final choice on which shape ring, cut and color diamond suits your finger and complexion most.”

MSRP $2,000-$3,000

(480) 860-6211  |



PRODUCT DETAILS Woman’s band in platinum with 56 brilliant-cut F-G diamonds (1.40 TCW); men’s platinum band

GRETCHEN BRAUNSCHWEIGER'S PITCH “The groom’s band is the perfect width, simple in style and comfortable the way it is contoured. Once you get used to it, you won’t feel like you are wearing anything. The band for the bride is perfect if you prefer one ring rather than a set and if you desire something with a bit more design. Its width and openness also makes for a great design for second marriages. It’s elegant and a bit antique inspired but you can’t necessarily pinpoint exactly which period it’s from.”

MSRP $10,560, woman’s band;$5,190, men’s band

(888) 357-9477  |



PRODUCT DETAILS Platinum and diamond Eva engagement ring by Erica Courtney Gorgeous and Engaged

GRETCHEN BRAUNSCHWEIGER'S PITCH  “These rings will definitely take on the personality of the woman who is wearing them. Erica’s sense of design and detail are amazing, from the pavé work to the addition of the couple’s initials. This particular style can accommodate and look good with any size stone. Smaller center diamonds will have a larger look.”

MSRP $8,000
(323) 938-2373  |


PRODUCT DETAILS Prong-set princess cut diamond ring with a single row of micro-pavé diamonds on the shank.

PAUL MINTON'S PITCH “This ring is the perfect semi-mount for a number of diamond cuts. I like it with this modified princess cut if you are looking for a more delicate and accessible diamond size. The halo enhances the overall look, giving it a larger look that still evokes a graceful feel. Even though the diamond pictured in the photo is not large, the elements of the ring add sparkle and enough bling without having to blow your budget.”MSRP $2,140

$2,805 (not including center stone)
(888) 4RITANI  |



PRODUCT DETAILS Platinum double prong engagement ring featuring a delicate petal motif highlighting the center stone

PAUL MINTON'S PITCH  “If you want a ring that sets off the center diamond, this is a wonderful choice. Yet there are certainly enough touches to make it interesting: The split or claw prongs give this ring a more heirloom look, and the European-style shank keeps the center diamond facing straight up. I particularly like the pavé underneath; its personal to you to know that it’s there and a little secret that you and your husband can share.”

MSRP $2,355 (not including center stone)
(877) 873-4262  |  



[componentheading]The Pitchers[/componentheading]

INDESIGN selects three top jewelers to browse a preselected group  of items in a single sales category. Then they’re asked to pick their favorites  and also describe how they would “pitch” those items to customers. Here are this issue’s pitchers:

[h3]PAUL MINTON[/h3]

ON BRIDAL PROMOTION, Paul Minton says: “We have developed a reputation for bridal due to our ‘Pray for Rain’ campaign — in which we give back $5,000 if it rains on the couple’s wedding day. It’s part of our advertising budget every year. If the engagement ring is your first purchase with us, it begins a lifetime of jewelry sales, so our marketing strategies are worth the initial investment.”



TEAMING UP with other local businesses has helped bridal grow in Gretchen Braunschweiger’s store. “In our town, all of the local businesses have gotten involved to promote the bridal industry as a whole. We have wonderful caterers, hotels, florists bridal dress shops,” she says, “and we have combined efforts in advertising and events to promote the town as a one-stop shop for all wedding needs.”
Gretchen R. Braunschweiger


SAYS STORE BUYER and general manager, Laura Verses: “Although our business is not based primarily on bridal, we do have a diverse range and cater to women who want everything from the micro-pavé vintage look to the halo rings that give a larger stone presence to the newer colored gemstone looks, particularly blue and fancy-color sapphires.”


[span class=note]This story is from the July-August 2011 edition of INDESIGN[/span]

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