Quick and Easy Buying Guide

Carat weight: 1 carat = 200 milligrams = 6.5 mm diameter. Doubling weight doesn't double diameter.

Diamond clarity: FL/IF/VVS/VS = super expensive, near perfect. SI = best value if you can check a photo for obvious inclusions (defects).


Color: D-G = colorless, expensive, only if you have money to burn. H-J = best value. Can go lower in gold metal settings than white metal.

Cut: Better cut ratings let more light into a diamond, making it sparkle more. Very important property, don't skimp here.

Set a budget and minimum cut (Premium). Go J color for gold and I/H for white metals. Go searching for SI1/SI2 clarity diamonds at James Allen. Pick a diamond with small/no inclusions. Choose a ring setting and buy it risk-free (60-day returns).

Verragio Designer Engagement Rings

Verragio is a designer of quality engagement rings and wedding rings. Their benchmark setting is the Lumino setting.

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The Lumino setting is part of the vast majority of Verragio rings and is known for maximising the amount of light that can get into the diamond.

According to their website, the Lumino setting lets in 75% more light than a traditional ring setting. At the same time, it securely holds the diamond. If you look at the setting in profile, you can see that supports only attached to the diamond over a very small portion of the diamond surface near the girdle.

Some ring designs offered by Verragio use the Lumino setting for all three stones in a multi-stone ring.

The Verragio website offers a range of educational articles on issues such as the Lumino setting, as well a stunning pictures of their jewellery. However, as Verragio is not a retailer, you'll have to search for them through authorised retailers. There are two levels of authorised retailer – normal retailers and premier boutique retailers. The premier boutique retailers have at least a quarter of a million dollars worth of inventory at any one time. You can use their online retailer search engine to find a location near you.