Princess Diana’s engagement ring is one of the most iconic and recognizable pieces of jewelry in the world. To this day, it remains an iconic reminder of the tragic fairytale romance between Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales. Although the engagement took place over four decades ago, the magnificent piece of jewelry still inspires brides-to-be and jewelry designers alike.
Details of the Princess Diana Engagement Ring
Princess Diana engagement ring is a stunning piece of jewelry with an oval-cut blue sapphire at its center, surrounded by fourteen diamonds in an 18-karat white gold band. The sapphire, sourced from Sri Lanka (Ceylon), weighs 12 carats and is known for its deep blue color and intense sparkle. The surrounding halo is made up of intricate solitaire diamonds, adding to the ring’s beauty.
This ring broke tradition and has become an important part of the British Royal Family’s legacy. Kate Middleton, the new Princess of Wales, is the current wearer of this iconic piece, and it remains a cherished part of the family’s history.
Cost of the Princess Diana Engagement Ring
At the time of the proposal in 1981, the engagement ring cost between $40,000 and $60,000. Benjamin Khordipour, a jewelry expert, believes that the original Princess Diana engagement ring is worth around $300,000 to $350,000 today. This estimate accounts for inflation and the rare sapphire and diamond combination, as well as the high quality of the stones used in the ring. The ring is a historic piece of jewelry that continues to fascinate people today.
History of the Proposal of the Princess Diana Engagement Ring
Prince Charles (now King Charles III) proposed to Lady Diana Spencer in February 1981 with the iconic blue sapphire engagement ring. The engagement was officially announced on February 24th. Later on, the wedding took place on July 29th of the same year at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London. Millions of people worldwide watched the ceremony in what was considered one of the most important royal events of the century.
The Rebel Ring
The gemstone choice for the ring wasn’t surprising. Royal ladies typically opt for sapphire engagement rings. Though this gemstone is a royal favorite, Diana’s piece ran counter to traditional royal protocol.
Royal couples often modify heirloom gems to make personalized engagement rings. For instance, when Prince Philip proposed in 1947, he added diamonds from his mother’s tiara to Queen Elizabeth’s ring. Years later, Harry used two precious stones from Princess Diana’s jewelry collection for Meghan Markle’s engagement band.
However, Prince Charles and Princess Diana bucked the trend by selecting an engagement ring from jeweler Garrard’s catalog. The Princess chose the ring and selected an unmodified stock item. This was a significant milestone. It allowed commoners who could afford such piece access to the same gems as the royal family. Living up to her popular nickname, “the People’s Princess” chose a ring available to all, which caused quite a stir in royal circles.
The Doomed Marriage
The marriage between Charles and Diana was not without its challenges, however. Despite the birth of two sons, William and Harry, the couple had a strained relationship. Their marriage was plagued by infidelity and other issues. Charles had a long-standing affair with Camilla Parker Bowles, who he later married in 2005. The rumor mill claims that Diana may have had affairs of her own.
Moreover, while Charles’ parents initially favored Diana over Camilla and strongly opposed his relationship with the latter, the relationship between the Queen and Diana deteriorated over time. Diana’s independent nature and unconventional lifestyle conflicted with traditional royal views.
For Charles, prioritizing royal duties over true love and personal choices cast a shadow over this seemingly fairytale romance story.
The couple separated in 1992 and finally divorced in 1996. Regardless, Princess Diana still wore her ring and received more criticism from the Royal Family. Some assumed she had turned the bauble into a symbol of her freedom.
After the divorce, Charles and Diana’s sons also had their share of issues. The media attention and public scrutiny have taken a toll on William and Harry. They have reportedly faced challenges due to the pressures of being constantly in the public eye.
The constant media scrutiny can be overwhelming, and it has been difficult for both of them. Despite these challenges, they have shown strength and perseverance, and they remain beloved figures to many people around the world.
The Fate of the Ring
Diana’s death in a car crash in 1997 shocked the world. Charles faced criticism for his handling of the situation, including his delay in returning to the U.K. from his vacation in Scotland.
This tumultuous and ultimately tragic story has significantly contributed to the engagement ring’s uniqueness and historical value. The non-traditional royal engagement ring has now become synonymous with the British monarchy.
Prince Harry inherited the famous jewelry after his mother died, and he later gave it to his brother. In 2010, Prince William proposed to Kate Middleton with this same ring. Some wonder if this may have caused a conflict between the brothers that still hasn’t been resolved.
Although Charles and Diana’s story was tragic, it’s still a fascinating tale of modern-day court intrigue and love. It has inspired many books, movies, and TV shows, including The Reign. The iconic piece of jewelry that started it all over four decades ago still fascinates the public.
Here are some rings similar to Princess Diana’s that you can buy for your fairytale engagement:
Sapphire Odessa Halo Diamond Ring from Brilliant Earth
A shower of pavé diamonds forms a stunning frame around the center gem on this gorgeous ring. More pavé diamond accents further embellished the band, creating a mesmerizing effect. The sapphire is standard, premium, and super-premium quality in the round or oval cut. The band is also customizable, choosing classic white gold, yellow gold, rose gold, or platinum. The price range of this customizable piece is between $2,480 and $7,540
Oval Natural Blue Sapphire Ring from James Allen
A 2.68-carat oval natural blue sapphire is the centerpiece of this stunning engagement ring. The sapphire is set in a round split platinum band with a diamond halo.
The ring costs $4,270. The blue sapphire is a breathtaking 1.90 carat valued at $640. This elegant and timeless piece is the perfect way to symbolize your love and commitment.
Lyra Ring from Taylor & Hart
The Lyra is a true masterpiece, boasting precision workmanship and attention to detail. This exquisite ring features an oval diamond center surrounded by a delicate floral diamond halo set in luxurious platinum. The halo comprises 14 round diamonds, each held in place by delicate eagle prongs.
The lattice basket supporting the central diamond adds a touch of intricate sophistication. The tapered cathedral shoulders and polished platinum band ensure the ring is both classic and timeless. The Lyra ring is an extraordinary $3,480 piece that will take your breath away.
Tamora Ring from Taylor & Hart
The Tamora is a true work of art that captures the natural beauty of the Tamora rose. This unique ring features an oval diamond center. It is surrounded by delicate clusters of marquise diamond petals, all held in place by eagle prongs. The diamonds sit in a two-tone metal setting, platinum forms the intricate lattice-work basket, with a slim 1.6mm platinum band.
The knife edge band adds a contemporary touch to this otherwise nature-inspired engagement ring. The stunning trilogy engagement ring perfectly balances modern and classic elements, making it unforgettable.
Asymmetrical Diamond Infinity Halo Ring from Blue Nile
Make your special moment even more magical with a captivating asymmetrical engagement ring. This customizable ring comes in 14k & 18k white, yellow, rose gold, and platinum options. This stunning ring also allows you to customize the center setting with any shape, making it uniquely yours.
It also features a sparkling halo and pavé-set split and twist detail. These tiny details add an extra touch of brilliance to the design. Whether looking for a classic or modern look, this versatile ring perfectly symbolizes your regal love and commitment. Celebrate your union in style with this astonishing jewelry piece.
Oval Sapphire and Diamond Halo Split Shank Ring from Blue Nile
Embrace timeless elegance with this exquisite sapphire gemstone ring, the epitome of sophistication and style. A halo of pavé-set diamonds surrounds the captivating center sapphire and beautifully enhances the gemstone’s brilliance.
Round diamonds adorn the split shank, adding an extra touch of sparkle to the ring. The 18k white gold frame lends the design a luxurious and classic look. This stunning ring perfectly symbolizes your enduring love and commitment. It will surely be treasured for years to come.
Lane Ring from Estate Diamond Jewelry
Indulge in luxury with this breathtaking sapphire ring, featuring a rare Kashmir sapphire. The jewel weighs 1.81 carats with a stunning blue solid saturation. The center stone is surrounded by two diamond halos, accentuating the sapphire’s beauty and brilliance. The $65,000 ring is expertly crafted in 18k white gold, adding a touch of elegance to the design.
This sapphire is of Kashmir origin, known for its exceptional color saturation, making it an extremely rare and coveted gemstone. The sapphire is AGL certified, ensuring its authenticity and quality. A copy of the certificate is available upon request. With measurements of approximately 13.50mm x 14.60mm, this ring will turn heads and make a statement.
Celina Ring from Estate Diamond Jewelry
This exquisite cluster ring boasts a stunning natural blue oval cut sapphire within a floral diamond halo. It weighs approximately 1.66 carats. Ten old European cut diamonds surround the center stone. Their total weight is approximately 1.00 carat, adding an extra royal sparkle to the design.
The shoulders of the ring are delicately accented with two small old European cut diamonds. Hand-crafted in platinum, the ring features a decorated under-gallery, showcasing its design’s exceptional attention to detail. In terms of numbers, his ring costs $8,200 and is 13.55mm x 12.80mm in size. It perfectly symbolizes your unique and refined sense of style. The Celina Ring is sure to captivate and dazzle.
Amherst Ring from Estate Diamond Jewelry
Experience the luxury of the Amherst Ring, a bold and striking piece with a stunning Asscher-cut sapphire as its centerpiece. The sapphire boasts deep blue saturation and weighs an impressive 1.16 carats. A halo of sparkling diamonds surrounds the main stone, enhancing its elegance.
A diamond embellishes the fleur-de-lis on each shoulder, adding an extra touch of sophistication and style. The triple-wire platinum shank and fine milgrain detail combine to create a truly exquisite design. This design is an ideal pick for the discerning and fashion-forward individual. The Amherst Ring is a statement piece to cherish forever. Who knows? It may even become a part of your own family’s tradition.
Greenish Blue Sapphire Ring from The Natural Sapphire Company
This exquisite 14K white gold ring features a stunning 0.56 carat round greenish blue sapphire from Madagascar. Moreover, it boasts excellent color intensity and clarity. With brilliant-cut facets and an eye-clean clarity grade, this gemstone will catch the light from every angle.
The vintage-inspired Edwardian-style filigree setting adds a touch of timeless elegance to this unique and beautiful ring. The sapphire is the perfect size for wearing every day or for special events. Its dimensions are 5.09 x 4.99 x 3.08 mm. It will interest anyone looking for something a little different.
Princess Diana engagement ring remains an iconic symbol of love and romance. Its timeless design will inspire brides-to-be for years to come. If you want a similar regal ring style, we have provided a list of ten options that range in price and design.
In terms of creating a unique and personalized ring, expert jewelry shoppers can give you the best advice and guidance. Any of these rings can provide the magic of the fairytale romance of your dreams. May yours have the happily ever after that you deserve.
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