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What Is A Diamond Engagement Ring With A Cathedral Setting?

What Is A Diamond Engagement Ring With A Cathedral Setting?

You may be considering having your wedding ceremony take place in a beautiful old church or even a cathedral, which is basically a bigger, grander church! So perhaps a diamond engagement ring touching on this theme could be the perfect ring for you? A cathedral setting is really a design element in a ring which allows for the centre diamond to be prominently mounted in a more elevated position. This is a style which has been around for a long time, like most cathedrals. Let’s talk more about what a cathedral setting is, and how you can use this design feature in your diamond engagement ring.


Although cathedral setting is sometimes understood as a type a of setting in which diamond engagement rings can be made, the more correct definition is that it is the manner in which the centre stone is placed on the band of your ring. The raised structure of a cathedral setting cradles the centre stone and gives it a more conspicuous profile.

Cathedral setting is more commonly a design element which is used in custom made diamond engagement rings, for people who really want their special stone to seriously stand out. The way in which this particular setting is achieved involves metalwork which looks similar to the soaring, wondrous arches found in the architecture of many cathedrals, especially those built in the ‘Gothic’ style, as explained nicely by US industry expert Rohan Agrawal:

“The setting is reminiscent of the arches in doorways and ceilings of
Gothic-style cathedrals, hence the name cathedral.”

It is thought that cathedral settings gained popularity in Europe not long after the original Gothic cathedrals began to dominate the skyline and life for many people there. This style of setting again became highly sought after in the early 20th century, and is still a favourite for people looking for that vintage look. But cathedral setting can definitely be very effectively employed in contemporary ring designs as well.


Like the grand old buildings after which they are named, cathedral settings have been around for centuries, ensuring their place on the list of timeless and enduring engagement ring styles. You can opt for a cathedral setting in a vintage or antique inspired design, or in a hip, up-to-the-minute creation. The key aspect is the accentuated centre stone. This method of mounting it really does make it the star of the show. The fashion in which the arches are formed can be done in many different techniques, from simple and traditional, to elegant and wistful, to cutting edge intriguing. For so many people, the main element of their diamond engagement ring is the centre stone, and a cathedral setting is a sure fire way to really show it off. The curvaceous lines of the cathedral setting arches are not only ancient and amazing design features which are admired by cultures world wide; they also draw in the viewer’s eye and give the precious stone so much more visual emphasis that it will often even appear larger than its actual carat size. Cathedral setting works for the majority of diamond shapes. It can be constructed using whichever precious metal you prefer. The stone can be secured in your choice of claw, bezel or illusion settings. Additional details and extra accent stones can be included in the metalwork. When it comes to the different styles in which to use cathedral setting, American jeweller Rohan Agrawal advises that, “Elongated shapes, such as oval, octagon and Marquise look especially nice in a split shank while symmetrical shapes, such as round, square and cushion benefit in the conventional style.” You can customise a cathedral setting in all sorts of ways, in order to make your diamond engagement ring absolutely unique and personal.


Why is such a setting known as cathedral style?

Because the centre stone is elevated on arches which remind us of the beautiful tall arches found in cathedrals.

Are there any negative issues involved with rings in this style?

This type of setting has more potential to gather debris in the metalwork of the arches, so you will need to take extra care to keep it clean. With the centre stone being raised up, there are more risks of knocking it when wearing your engagement ring, so you will need to be mindful of that.

What are the main pros with cathedral settings?

The stone sits right up; it will be extra noticeable and even tend to appear bigger than it is. This setting allows for lots of creativity and customisation with the overall design. It works really beautifully with stacking your wedding ring and also other rings if you choose to.

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At DX, we aim to keep the process simple when purchasing the perfect engagement ring. From diamond to setting, our guide will guide you in selecting the most special engagement ring to be cherished for life.