Choosing the Best Setting for an Oval Diamond

Oval diamonds have a unique allure that evokes understated elegance. Their elongated shape creates a beautiful, complementary look to just about every finger shape, and they exude fire and brilliance. But how should an oval diamond be set for an engagement ring? With so many options, considering oval ring settings can get overwhelming. To help you develop your perfect ring, we’re covering all you need to know about oval diamond ring settings.

What to Consider with an Oval Cut Diamond

Certain aspects of an oval diamond’s 4Cs are going to play a more prominent role when it comes to your setting choices. Perhaps the most important is the bow-tie effect – an imperfection where there is a visible shadow stretching across the diamond’s center that resembles the look of a bow-tie.

It’s important to know that a setting can’t really diminish the appearance of a bow-tie. Certain settings may help increase the amount of light entering and returning in the diamond, which will help with brilliance and sparkle to obscure the bow-tie, but it will still be present.

Another important thing to consider with oval diamonds is that their elongated shape and shallow cut display more body color. When choosing the diamond you love, keep in mind that choices like metal color and whether you want to use other diamonds or gemstones in the setting can affect the perception of the color of the diamond.

Lastly, an oval diamond can be set two ways within the setting, directionally. Most often, the traditional orientation is a north-south placement so it sits vertically on your finger. But the diamond can also be set horizontally in an east-west setting for a more unconventional look. Setting the diamond this way can help cover more of the finger, which may be desirable for a larger ring size. It also has the ability to make the stone appear even larger than its elongated shape already does.

two bezel set oval engagement rings

Bezel set oval engagement ring

Comparing Oval Ring Setting Styles

Oval diamonds are an extremely versatile shape and look great in a variety of setting styles. Since they are often chosen as an alternative to the round brilliant cut diamond for those looking for something more unique, traditional setting styles really make the oval cut diamond shine. A solitaire setting with a shiny metal band or pavé-set band is a very popular choice. Another favorite style is a diamond halo surrounding the oval cut diamond paired with a simple metal band or a pavé-set band.

When thinking of an oval diamond, they exude elegance and their elongated shape presents a perfect opportunity to play with proportion. A great way to do this is to pair a halo setting with a split shank or tapered band to enhance the length of the oval diamond. Side stones of any size also look great on a vertically-oriented oval diamond ring. They help to widen the look of the ring and add to the brilliance of the center stone. Whether you’re looking for a vintage vibe, nature-inspired, or want a sleek modern look, an oval cut diamond can pair beautifully with them all.

There’s not much that we wouldn’t recommend for setting an oval cut diamond. They’re incredibly versatile and can really shine in prongs and bezel alike. While a 4 prong setting is more common with ovals, we have created rings with 6 prong settings such as our Laura, which emphasizes the vertical proportions of the ring, like a marquise.

oval diamond rings with different settings

Different types of oval rings

oval diamond rings - 4 prong and 6 prong

The same oval ring shown with four prongs and six prongs

Metal Choice & Band Width

Choice of metal is the first, and most obvious thing you’ll notice about a setting. When setting an oval diamond, the metal color has a very important role to play. If an oval diamond is lower on the color scale (think I and J color grades), the diamond will likely display a slight yellowish tint to the naked eye.

Choosing a warmer metal color, like yellow or rose gold, will help to mask the yellowish hue of the diamond making it appear lighter. On the other side of the scale, for near colorless stones (think E-G color grades), the icy white sheen of platinum and white gold accentuates the crisp whiteness of the diamond.

When thinking of the band, you have a lot of room to play with different widths when setting an oval diamond. Since it’s an elongated shape, a wider band won’t be overwhelming to the stone and it can actually provide some balance. Likewise, choosing a thinner band will make the oval diamond appear even larger.

A mixed metal 1.5mm yellow gold platinum setting, with a 2.5ct diamond

1.7ct oval diamond set in a 14k rose gold band, approximately 2.5mm wide

Wedding Bands for Oval Ring Settings

When pairing a wedding band with your oval cut engagement ring, there are a few things to keep top of mind. Firstly, the more elongated your oval shape, the more the wedding band will be obstructed from view. Secondly, some setting styles may not allow the wedding band to sit flush against the engagement ring if they have a lower profile.

You should start by asking yourself some questions about how you want them to look. Do you want the bands to match in metal color and accent diamond shape? How much do you want the engagement ring to stand out against the wedding band? Or, do you want them to be able to share the spotlight? Get a general idea about your answers and then jump in.

Oval diamond rings offer the perfect shape to go with a curved cluster wedding band. It typically would be designed to curve around the outside of the oval diamond once it’s set. Oval cuts pair very well with other cut shapes, so adding some dimension and intrigue with other diamond shapes is also a great way to accentuate the oval. You’ll just want to remember that if you’ve got a bezel-set oval diamond, it will be difficult to get a wedding band to sit flush.

In a few of our favorite wedding set designs, we’ve accentuated the nature-inspired twists in our Shanel + Lovelace pairing for both bands, and delicately contoured a cluster wedding band with extra sparkle for our Permelia + Antoinette set.

But there’s no reason to stop with a two-band look for an oval diamond ring; a stack of three rings is a beautiful look and won’t overwhelm the oval’s generous shape. Take our favorites, the Treblis Ring Set and the Isabella Ring Set. Both feature contoured bands and a variety of diamond shapes to make an endlessly pleasing spray of sparkle and shine.

When you’re faced with choosing an oval diamond ring setting, you’ve got a lot working in your favor, the most of which being one of the most versatile diamond cuts. Choose a setting that you love and you shouldn’t have any trouble making it work for an oval cut!

Have questions? We're happy to help.