The average spend on engagement rings has risen to £7,000 - these are the best to buy to suit any bride

Sarah Royce-Greensill
·12 min read
best engagement rings under 7,000
best engagement rings under 7,000

It seems that loved-up couples plan to invest the money they’ve saved over a year in lockdown into an everlasting symbol of commitment. According to new research by money.co.uk, the average spend on engagement rings in the UK has increased by 12% over the last year, to a shade over £7,000. The survey asked 2,000 married and unmarried respondents how much they did, or intend to, spend on an engagement ring, with the mean average rising from £6,300 in January 2020 to £7,056 in January 2021.

So what does £7,056 actually buy you? It varies greatly, depending on your appetite for new versus antique, diamonds versus other gemstones, and big-name brands versus independent designers. Here, we’ve rounded up the very best rings that your money can buy, no matter what your style.

Classic diamond rings

Tiffany & Co

Tiffany engagement ring
Tiffany engagement ring

£6,850, tiffany.co.uk

Dubbed the world’s most iconic engagement ring, Tiffany’s signature six-prong solitaire design was launched in 1886, changing the way diamond engagement rings looked forever. Designed to allow maximum light into the stone, thus maximising its sparkle, this classic solitaire is an elegant, timeless option. Tiffany’s website allows you to choose from yellow or rose gold or platinum, with brilliant-cut diamonds ranging in size from 0.22ct to 2.56ct, with various colour and clarity options. For £6,850, you can get a 0.77ct, I-colour, VS2 stone - and, of course, an iconic little blue box to present it in.

De Beers

De Beers engagement ring
De Beers engagement ring

£7,000, debeers.co.uk

Unsurprisingly for a house whose name is synonymous with diamonds, De Beers offers a vast array of styles. Thanks to a direct supply direct from the De Beers Group's mines, it stocks an array of sizes, shapes, colours and qualities - going beyond the D to G colours usually reserved for Bond Street houses to explore 'warm whites' further down the colour scale, each stone chosen for its beauty and character. The website allows you to choose diamond weights and qualities: its DB Classic designs include a 0.55ct round brilliant diamond set on a pavé-diamond band, for a total carat weight of 0.9, coming in at £7,000.

David Morris

david morris engagement ring
david morris engagement ring

£5,900, davidmorris.com

British house David Morris might be known for its budget-busting rare gemstones and six-figure high jewellery, but its bridal collection also caters for those with more modest budgets. Featuring a halo of diamonds that makes the 0.50ct brilliant-cut central stone look larger, and a slender diamond-set band, the Elizabeth ring is a delicate, feminine option that will never go out of style. Each piece is handcrafted using the same expert goldsmithing and stone setting as the house’s show-stopping designs.

Vashi

Vashi engagement ring
Vashi engagement ring

£6,721, vashi.com

Billing itself as a disruptor to the traditional engagement ring market, Vashi offers an almost endless array of options via its online customiser. Customers can choose from various engagement ring styles, from classic diamond solitaires and three-stone designs to coloured gemstones and more daring styles, with myriad diamond shapes and sizes available. Its classic tapered solitaire engagement ring is available with a 1.2ct emerald-cut diamond in rose, yellow or white gold for £6,721 - add £140 to have it crafted in platinum.

Unusual engagement rings

Bear Brooksbank

Bear Brooksbank engagement ring
Bear Brooksbank engagement ring

£6,800, bearbrooksbank.com

East London-based Bear Brooksbank creates bespoke engagement rings to suit all sorts of budgets - it’s safe to say that Cressida Bonas’s ruby and diamond target ring cost significantly above the average spend. The designer’s engagement ring series was created as a kind of ‘greatest hits’ of all her commissions, with each handmade design imbued with vintage-inspired details from her days working at an antique diamond specialist. The monochrome Bombe design is based on Bear’s own engagement ring and features a 1.13ct salt-and-pepper central diamond circled by black and white diamonds.

Ruth Tomlinson

Ruth Tomlinson engagement ring
Ruth Tomlinson engagement ring

£6,800, ruthtomlinson.com

Loved by alternative brides for her boho-luxe, organic designs, each one of Ruth Tomlinston’s handmade engagement rings is unique. Crafted in textured 14kt gold with her signature gold beading detail, she frequently uses coloured sapphires in combination with diamonds and there are plenty of options to suit more modest budgets. Mixing geometric baguette-cut champagne diamonds with a feminine, cushion-cut 1.8ct grey-blue sapphire, this cluster ring is a beautiful and unique option.

Jessie Thomas

Jessie Thomas engagement ring
Jessie Thomas engagement ring

£7,000, jessiethomasjewellery.com

Inspired by her master goldsmith father David Thomas’s designs from the 1960s - 1990s, Jessie Thomas uses the ancient lost-wax carving technique to imbue each of her pieces with a tactile, handcrafted character. Her textured-gold bombe ring can be crafted with any size of diamond, but the one-carat old-mine cut at the centre of this ring gets our vote. Perfect for the gold-loving bride who’s allergic to cookie-cutter solitaires.

Minimalist engagement rings

Repossi

Repossi engagement ring
Repossi engagement ring

£6,570, net-a-porter.com

After a complete reinvention at the hands of art and architecture-loving creative director Gaia Repossi, historic family-run jewellery house Repossi is now shorthand for contemporary, elegant minimalism. Prioritising the beauty of diamonds over elaborate flourishes, its asymmetric Serti Inversé design positions a 0.40ct pear-cut diamond at the side of the ring finger, clasped in an 18kt white or rose-gold loop.

Fernando Jorge

Fernando Jorge
Fernando Jorge

£6,950, fernandojorge.co.uk

Beloved by jewellery editors and style icons alike for his feminine, contemporary take on fine jewellery, Brazilian designer Fernando Jorge doesn’t ‘do’ bridal - except for bespoke commissions - but his Flicker design would make a beautifully pared-back engagement ring. In total, 0.84cts of pear-cut diamonds graduate in size around the finger, their outlines trimmed with a ‘flick’ of yellow gold, like expertly applied liquid eyeliner. It also comes in rubellites or emeralds for a vibrant shot of colour.

Ruberg

Ruberg engagement ring
Ruberg engagement ring

£6,384, ruberg.co.uk

Kamilla Ruberg’s Scandinavian roots translate into her refined, minimalist engagement ring designs. The jeweller can create pieces to suit all budgets, using a variety of diamonds and coloured stones. If you’re willing to look beyond bright white diamonds, you’ll often get more for your money: this Ava Classic style features a 1.15ct marquise-cut cognac diamond, minimally set in polished 18kt rose gold, for a subtle yet bewitching sparkle.

Antique and vintage-style engagement rings

Hancocks

Hancocks engagement ring
Hancocks engagement ring

£6,500, hancocks-london.com

Family-run Burlington Arcade antique jewellery specialist Hancocks offers an array of vintage rings, alongside its own line of antique-inspired designs that often feature old diamonds and gemstones set in handcrafted rings that pay homage to the era of the stone. This pretty floral-inspired platinum cluster ring features a 0.45ct round brilliant-cut surrounded by eight more diamonds - just under 1.5ct in total - with an elegant tapered shank.

Pragnell

Pragnell Art Deco engagement ring
Pragnell Art Deco engagement ring

£7,020, pragnell.co.uk

Art Deco engagement rings are always popular, and for good reason. Part of family jeweller Pragnell’s extensive antique collection, this one-of-a-kind ring features a 2ct antique cushion-cut sapphire surrounded by diamonds in a geometric plaque design which sits low on the finger, making it a surprisingly practical choice. An example of fine traditional craftsmanship, it’s proof that if you’re willing to consider a vintage ring you’ll often get more bang for your buck.

Susannah Lovis

Susannah Lovis antique engagement ring
Susannah Lovis antique engagement ring

£6,500, susannahlovis.com

Inspired by the ever-popular Art Deco period, this all-diamond ring features a 0.48ct, H colour, VS1 Old European cut diamond at its centre, framed by a double halo of brilliant-cut diamonds in a square design that makes the stone appear much larger. Crafted in platinum, the intricate millegrain setting reinforces the vintage feel: a truly timeless piece that antique jewellery fans will fall head over heels for.

Blue sapphire engagement rings

Fenton & Co

Fenton sapphire engagement ring
Fenton sapphire engagement ring

£5,800,fentonand.co

Blue sapphires come second to diamonds in the engagement ring popularity stakes, helped in no small part by the enduring influence of Princess Diana’s ring - now worn by the Duchess of Cambridge. Fenton offers customised engagement rings online, with a choice of ring style, metal, coloured gemstone, size and engraving, with stones described with measurements rather than carat weight. Its newly launched, vintage-inspired Star ring features a central stone surrounded by diamonds, with a 10x8mm blue sapphire central stone costing under £6,000.

Rachel Boston

Rachel Boston engagement ring
Rachel Boston engagement ring

£6,500, rachelboston.co.uk

Coloured-gemstone ‘halos’ are a popular way to add colour to an engagement ring while sticking to a traditional diamond centre stone. But there’s nothing boring or predictable about Rachel Boston’s Eva design, with its hexagonal shape, double halo of pavé diamonds and custom-cut blue sapphires, and mixed-metal setting. Crafted with Boston’s signature, sharp knife-edge band, this ring features a 0.50ct central diamond, but the designer can source stones to fit any budget - with emerald or ruby halos also an option.

Cassandra Goad

Cassandra Goad engagement ring
Cassandra Goad engagement ring

£6,495, cassandragoad.com

The square-cut diamonds at the corners of Chelsea-based jeweller Cassandra Goad’s octagonal Heloise ring add a point of geometric interest to this double-halo design. Available with a diamond, aquamarine or sapphire central stone, on a white or yellow-gold band, the use of negative space is a clever way to make a big impact for your budget. The designer has a variety of gemstone rings to suit colour-loving brides: if you’re set on a blue sapphire and can stretch your budget a little further, her three-stone Katie engagement ring (£7,455) is another gorgeous option.

Other coloured gemstone engagement rings

Amrapali

Amrapali engagement ring
Amrapali engagement ring

£7,010, net-a-porter.com

Emeralds aren’t generally recommended for everyday wear due to being more brittle than diamonds or sapphires, and therefore easier to damage, but Amrapali’s intoxicating emerald and diamond design would make a stunning addition to an engagement ring wardrobe (it’s a thing in some circles). Featuring a 1.40ct emerald surrounded by a double halo of brilliant-cut and rose-cut diamonds set in warm yellow gold, it evokes the colour and splendour of the Indian house’s home.

Garrard

Garrard engagement ring
Garrard engagement ring

£6,500, garrard.com

Garrard’s 1735 collection, named for the year the house was founded, was inspired by arguably the most famous engagement ring in the world: Princess Diana’s Sri Lankan sapphire and diamond. But you don’t have to have a budget worthy of royalty: the house creates similar styles with various coloured gemstones, including more affordable aquamarine. The flattering light-blue shade looks especially pretty when surrounded by diamonds on a delicate pavé-diamond band.

Julia Lloyd George

Julia Lloyd George
Julia Lloyd George

£6,598, julialloydgeorge.com

Combining warm yellow gold with the electric greeny-blue hue of Paraiba tourmaline, this three-stone design is a bestseller for London-based jeweller Julia Lloyd George. Featuring an oval central stone flanked by two white diamonds, each gemstone is securely bezel-set, making it a sturdy and practical style as well as an eye-catching one. Hand-finished with textured, hammered gold, no two rings are exactly alike due to the unique nature of the central tourmaline.

Chunky engagement rings

Jacquie Aiche

Jacquie aiche engagement ring
Jacquie aiche engagement ring

£6,490, matchesfashion.com

Bold, chunky rings are very much on trend for modern engagements, with many couples forgoing the traditional separate wedding and engagement rings for a single piece that speaks volumes. Crafted in highly polished 14kt gold that cradles a 2.98ct oval emerald, Jacquie Aiche’s domed ring is all the adornment a modern bride needs.

Wwake

Wwake engagement ring
Wwake engagement ring

£6,200, tomfoolerylondon.co.uk

New York-based designer Wing Yau is committed to sustainable sourcing and production, making her one-of-a-kind Monolith ring the perfect choice for those seeking an alternative engagement ring with ethical credentials. Featuring a wide band crafted in Fairmined 14kt gold with an unusual, rounded pear-shape light blue sapphire that was recycled from old jewellery, this ring makes a serious style statement without compromising on sustainability.

Jemma Wynne

Jemma Wynne engagement ring
Jemma Wynne engagement ring

Approximately £6,183, jemmawynne.com

Antique-style gypsy rings are one of the biggest trends in engagement rings for 2021, and American brand Jemma Wynne creates some of the most covetable pieces on the market. Featuring a one-carat emerald-cut Zambian emerald set flush into a chunky band of polished gold, the diamond-set star pattern takes inspiration from Victorian rings, realised in the coolest, most contemporary way.

Blow the budget (slightly)

Hannah Martin

Hannah Martin engagement ring
Hannah Martin engagement ring

£8,100, hannahmartinlondon.com

Renowned for her rock’n’roll take on fine jewellery, London-based Hannah Martin is a name to know for brides who don’t do cutesy. Her For Lovers collection is full of cleverly conceived, expertly crafted rings that are both pared back and full of interesting design details.

The Bond features dual knife-edge 18kt gold bands, fused by a 0.8ct bezel-set brilliant-cut diamond. If your budget stretches even further, check out The Beat in gold (£10,000), with a pear-shaped diamond flanked by graduating curves of gold - what alternative engagement ring dreams are made of.

Jessica McCormack

Jessica McCormack engagement ring
Jessica McCormack engagement ring

£8,000, jessicamccormack.com

Mayfair-based jeweller Jessica McCormack creates rings to suit (almost) all budgets, from dainty 0.25ct diamonds for £2,600, to the six-figure bespoke creations worn by the likes of Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and Maria Sharapova. Set on slender bands of 18kt yellow gold, her signature button-back rings appear on all the cool girls’ engagement inspiration boards, and this elegant, 0.75ct oval diamond is worth stretching the budget slightly for.

Artemer

Artemer engagement ring
Artemer engagement ring

£7,400, tomfoolerylondon.com

If you think all engagement rings look the same, think again. With a crown of baguette-cut diamonds, this 18kt gold ring is typical of Tel Aviv-based design studio Artemer’s artistic approach to shapes and compositions. Every detail is considered - from the yellow-gold tips to the tapered baguette diamonds set at the shoulders, creating a wow factor that sets it apart. For an even more unique look, it can be stacked with any number of the brand’s geometric patterned bands.

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