A pop of colour: engagement rings that aren't diamonds

Although diamonds are often bought as engagement rings, theres a whole world of beautiful gemstones to choose from beyond the traditional solitaire diamond. Each precious stone has a special meaning too, creating an additional layer of significance for you and your partner.

Here are a few ideas for antique and vintage engagement rings that offer something truly unique.


The blue sapphire is the birthstone for the month of September. When used in an engagement ring sapphires are symbolic of sincerity and faithfulness. Sapphires also score 9/10 on the gemstone hardness scale, making them hard wearing and less likely to become scratched or chipped.


Palest blue aquamarine is the birthstone for March. In engagement rings aquamarine symbolises courage and protection on journeys.


Opal makes a lovely choice for an engagement ring, as every stone is completely different and unique. Opals range in colour, from milky white to fiery blue. In an engagement ring, opal signifies love, passion, and spontaneity. Opal is also Octobers birthstone.


Deep red rubies make a beautiful centrepiece in an engagement ring. Rubies are the birthstone for July. They are the most valuable of all the gemstones, and their worth increases with their depth of colour. Ruby signifies friendship, love, happiness, and the opening of the heart.


Emeralds are regarded as the rarest of the gemstones and signify rebirth and love when used in engagement rings. Emerald is the birthstone of May.


Looking for an unusual choice of engagement ring? The extremely rare gemstone, Alexandrite fits the bill.

When viewed in daylight, Alexandrite is a beautiful bluish, mossy green shade, but when viewed indoors under soft artificial light, the gem becomes a warm red colour. The gemstone becomes more valuable as the colour changes become more distinct. This magical gemstone is said to strengthen intuition, to inspire the imagination, and to aid in creativity. Together with pearl, Alexandrite is the birthstone for June.

If you want to choose something totally different and unusual for your engagement ring, rather than a plain diamond, why not peruse our outstanding selection of beautiful antique and vintage jewellery?