antique-engagement-rings

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Where to buy an antique or vintage engagement ring - and the best styles to shop

These antique diamond rings are a piece of history!

Fiona Ward

Antique and vintage engagement rings are becoming increasingly popular thanks to their uniqueness and sense of nostalgia - but you have to know where to look if you want to find your perfect style.

There are wonderful antique jewellery stores all over the UK, as well as some treasure-stocked sellers online where you can find a piece of history to wear on your ring finger.

MORE: 9 best emerald engagement rings - and their special meaning

Equally, buying an antique or vintage engagement ring is a stylish way to make a sustainable choice.

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Penelope Cruz's engagement ring is a beautiful Edwardian sapphire

How old are antique and vintage engagement rings?

Typically, an antique piece is classed as 50 years or older. Generally, the most popular styles come from the Edwardian, Victorian and Art Deco periods - with each having their own signatures.

A vintage piece is generally considered to be 20 to 50 years old. Fancy some eighties bling?

RELATED: 23 of the best diamond engagement rings from Vera Wang, Tiffany and more

Celebrities who own an antique engagement ring

Penelope Cruz's stunning sapphire engagement ring is an Edwardian style, surrounded with pretty bezel diamonds.

Ellie Goulding, who married art dealer Caspar Jopling in a decadent ceremony in 2019, owns a stunning vintage engagement ring, too.

The antique piece of jewellery is over 100 years old, making it very different from the brand new diamonds we often see A-listers sporting.

READ: Most expensive royal engagement rings revealed in order of price

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Kate's engagement ring dates back to the 1980s

Of course, today's most famous vintage ring owner is arguably the Duchess of Cambridge, whose iconic sapphire and diamond piece dates back to 1981, when Prince Charles purchased it for Princess Diana from British jeweller Garrard. Its inspiration dates back to 1840, however.

Victorian engagement rings

In the Victorian era (generally considered to be from 1837 to 1901), ring styles varied a lot, though halos and clusters of diamonds are a distinctive setting from this time.

Queen Victoria's favourite colour, blue, was often featured, too.

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Victorian Ceylon sapphire & diamond ring, £3712.71, Rose Antique Jewellery at Etsy

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If you love Kate Middleton's famous ring, this is the one for you! It has been dated back to the 1890s, and features the same sapphire and diamond design.

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Antique diamond cluster ring, £1,450, FK Gems at Etsy

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We love this floral cluster design, which is actually similar in style to Millie Mackintosh's gorgeous engagement ring.

MORE: 12 best ruby engagement rings 

Edwardian engagement rings

Edwardian rings were generally quite ornate and featured beautiful decorative metalwork.

'Target' rings were also developed during this time, often set with colourful stones surrounding a diamond.

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Edwardian sapphire and diamond target ring, £1,900, Howards Antiques at Etsy

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This stunning target ring features sapphires and diamonds.

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Edwardian trilogy ring, £1,375, Kit Clayton at Etsy

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This ring features beautiful old cut diamonds, which have a nostalgic quality.

MORE: Why Kate Middleton changed her £123k Princess Diana engagement ring

Art Deco engagement rings

Art Deco-style rings are increasingly popular now, but imagine owning an original artefact!

Art Deco jewellery generally featured bold geometric shapes and sharp angles - think the roaring twenties. Pippa Middleton's engagement ring is Art Deco-inspired.

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Art Deco ruby & gold ring, £2,595, Fine Quality Jewellery at Etsy

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Set in white gold, this pretty ring features a star-like design and bold ruby accents.

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Art Deco diamond ring, £3,826, Verma Estate Jewels at Etsy

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We love the chunky look this gives on the finger, and that octagonal shape is so unique!

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Art Deco diamond ring, £2,677.72, Verma Estate Jewels at Etsy

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Another gorgeous, sizeable ring. This one is made up of lots of smaller diamonds to give the look of a larger stone.

MORE: Celebrity engagement rings over $1million! Kim Kardashian, Vanessa Bryant, Beyoncé and more

Vintage engagement rings

You can find a real bargain if you shop for a vintage engagement ring from the 60s, 70s or 80s. Many of the styles mimicked that of the antique designs, so you can get a similar look for less.

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1970s diamond cluster ring, £280, AHLQ at Etsy

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We love this pretty floral design and its textured gold band!

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Vintage diamond cluster ring, £625, Moore Perfect Pieces at Etsy

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This elegant cluster style is super flattering, and also gives that east-west shape that's so popular right now.

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Vintage diamond gypsy ring, £225, Eva Antiques at Etsy

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Gypsy rings are a popular choice for vintage lovers, and would make a unique engagement ring choice, too.

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