Anna Sheffield’s Crash Course in Buying the Coolest Engagement Ring
Image via @annasheffield.
Anna Sheffield has become the jeweler of record for outside-the-box boys and brides all over. Since we’re headed straight into the heart of engagement season, we asked for her expert intel on what rocks are hot, the things that make a setting really special, and whether or not it’s weird for gals to pick out their own rings (spoiler alert: never).
“One of my impetuses when I started making engagement rings was to incorporate yellow and rose gold. Even just a few years ago, it was really popular to have the platinum band with a single clear solitaire diamond—now you almost never see that colorway. It’s much more interesting to consider colored gold, or even mixed-metals, in the same ring.”
Anna Sheffield Hazeline Suite No. 13 in rose, white, and yellow gold.
“Thinking of rings as sets is becoming standard practice. In the past, a lot of people would buy a standard wedding band, but if you have a big or unusual ring, sometimes they won’t fit together smoothly.. I like to approach our collections as modular. The woman who wants a solitaire stone might want to pair it with something much more linear and modern. Considering those combinations up front is just another step in celebrating your personal style.”
Image via @annasheffield.
“My approach to designing engagement and weddings rings is always classic, with a twist. Sometimes you want to dress in a more fashion-forward way and sometimes you’re more buttoned-up, and you need this piece to be able to work for you without ever looking out-of-place. A lot of factors go into play to get that across. With our Bea ring, for example, it’s an emerald-cut stone, which is traditional, but I invert the triangular diamonds on the side—called trillions—so they face straight up like a pyramid instead of being smooth on top. I also leave the side prongs facing straight up instead of bending them over. The untrained eye would never notice those details specifically, but when you add them all up, it does register as something that’s a little more unusual.”
Anna Sheffield Bea Three Stone Ring in black diamond and rose gold.
IT TAKES TWO
“I see couples come in together a surprising amount. When I started this, I thought it would be a lot more just men. That’s becoming less standard, though. I think if you definitely know your woman’s taste well enough that you want to go pick out a piece of jewelry she’s going to wear every single day, go for it. But I think it’s a better decision to make together. It can be helpful, at the very least, if she can sign off on the basics—just a simple yes, no, maybe goes a long way. Like, maybe she hates square stones.”
“So much of what I’ve built my brand on is using differently colored stones—whether it’s black diamond or ruby or even shaping stones from solid gold. Sapphires have been doing really well lately, and I’ve been playing with something called rutilated quartz—it’s quartz with shards of titanium in it, which looks really unusual.”
Anna Sheffield Hazeline Solitaire Ring in rutilated quartz.
READ THE COMMENTS
“A lot of times a guy will come in and say, ‘She tagged me in this ring picture on Instagram.’ The comments on our own Instagram account are hilarious—you’ll see people tagging their boyfriends or whatever saying things like ‘This exact ring! The one in the middle.’ You could never have done that until recently.”
TELL A TALE
“People getting custom rings usually have a little bit more of a narrative they want to tell. I recently did a ring that was a classic heirloom stone, and the guy wanted to do something with it that was more modern. It was a lot of sketching and drawing. Then I drew something kind of tulip-shaped, and he was like, ‘The tulip is her favorite flower—you nailed it.’ And I was like ‘I am the diamond whisperer!’”