East West Jewelry Trend

When I get customers asking for engagement rings with uniqueness as a top priority, I always encourage them to consider a distinct yet elegant east west setting. While many jewelry pieces claim to have a modern, contemporary look, few pull it off as well as rings and pendants with stones set in this unusually beautiful horizontal orientation. 

Unlike traditional elongated stones which are set perpendicular to the band, or ‘north south’, here, the longest parts of the stones stretch the width of your finger. The look is especially flattering on clients with shorter or thicker fingers which could easily overwhelm more slender, vertically set stones.

Fashioned primarily from elongated fancy shape center stones such as oval, emerald, marquis, cushion and radiant cuts, my east west set rings take on an exceptionally unique look that never fail to get a second look. Customers are often very pleasantly surprised at how much a difference small 90 degree turn can make.

The extra protection you get from east west settings is just an added benefit I like to tell my customers about. Since the extended parts of the elongated stones are safely oriented to follow the natural shape of the band, they sit closer to your finger are less likely to snare outside objects or sustain damage. Thus, their practicality and unique beauty are also huge selling points.

Horizontal placements are also a brilliant way to give smaller stones a big look. When turned on their side, they take up more real estate on your hand and give the illusion of many additional carats without the need to actually spend for a larger stone.

Glamorous East-West Emerald Diamond Engagement Ring
Glamorous East-West Emerald Diamond Engagement Ring

But despite their recent surge in popularity, we’ve heard a lot of our customers say that finding quality east west set rings has proved difficult. Following Catherine Zeta-Jones' and Kate Beckinsale’s respective engagements, both of whom said ‘yes’ to sizeable east west marquise rings, most couples have chosen to investigate custom engagement rings by specialty jewelers as opposed to mainstream stores when searching for pieces that match the A-listers’ unique rings.

In previous eras when fewer diamond accents were the norm, east west settings were the most popular way to make a ring appear more elaborate. Today, settings can be as elaborate or simplistic as my bride’s want-- from the subtle added sparkle of a halo setting all the way up to a multi-stone encrusted, scalloped ring design. And the best part? As Glamour magazine so eloquently put it, our Sylvie east west styles are without a doubt, “rings you’ll still love in 50 years”.

However, no matter which setting you choose, the horizontal placement of an east west set stone is the most distinctive way to show off your flare for creativity, class and unique personal style.