gold-and-platinumWhen it comes to engagement and wedding rings we regularly have customers asking about the difference between platinum and white gold. Although they look very similar the differences are contrasting. Platinum and white gold have their own properties which make them very unique. Here we have laid out a guide to make the decision between the two metals much easier.

 

 

 

White Goldwedding rings

White gold is an alloy of gold mixed with another metal. Jewellery for white gold consists of 18ct, 14ct, 9ct and 22ct. 18ct white gold is the most common use for engagement and wedding rings, made by mixing 75% gold with the other 25% with silver or palladium. Nickel was originally used as an alloy for white gold however it caused allergic reactions to some people therefore it is no longer used. Rhodium is a coating to make the metal appear more white as the natural colour of white gold is off white. The Rhodium is white and very hard, however it does wear eventually and slowly fades to off white or yellow Contemporary-white-gold-wedding-ring-sets-150x150which requires the re-coating of Rhodium every 12-18 months or so and it is not expensive to do so at Tayha Designs. Although white gold is durable and very suitable as an engagement and wedding ring metal it can gradually wear overtime with the band getting thinner due to constant wear and tear, losing metal mass. However constant maintenance is key and requires the ring to be brought to a Jeweller for repairs and build up the strength of the ring again. This normally occurs anywhere from 12 months to 5 or even 10 years.

White gold is highly reflective therefore it shines much brighter when new. However it does not last very long due to wear and tear of the Rhodium coating, therefore it is necessary to re-plate the Rhodium to maintain its shine.  White gold is a common metal and there are an abundance of the metal compared to the rarity of Platinum.

Platinumplatinum logo

Platinum is 95% pure, with the other 5% being another alloy such as Iridium, Cobalt or Ruthenium to increase its hardness. Platinum is one of the rarest metals in the world compared to gold, for example to picture the rarity of it, gold will fill an Olympic size pool whereas Platinum will just about cover the surface of the bottom of the pool. It is said that Platinum is 35 times rarer than gold. Platinum is long lasting and durable and does not require Rhodium plating like white gold as Platinum is naturally white and does not fade to yellow. Due to Platinum’s density it will feel much heavier than white gold, however most people said the weight feels reassuring on their finger and reduce their worries of wearing a ring everyday for different activities. The density also adds to the price, sometimes doubling the price of 18ct white gold of the same width, size and profile.

Princess-cut-wedding-ring-150x150Despite Platinum being a much stronger and durable metal it can scratch easily, however no metal is lost when that occurs. For example, when you dig a sand pit you can always push the sand back in again. The Platinum merely shifted from one place to another (otherwise known as Patina finish, appearing antique and worn). Once polished the platinum will once again look new again.

Another benefit of having Platinum is it is hypoallergenic (free of allergens) but since white gold no longer used nickel as one of the alloys there are no concerns of the metal causing any adverse effects.

 

Like white gold, Platinum has a brilliant shine when new, but it does not last very long. Platinum will gradually appear slightly dull and grey overtime and requires high polish.

 

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princess_cut_largePrincess cut is the second most popular diamond cut after round brilliant. Also known as a Square Modified Brilliant, the princess cut is more brilliant and sparkly than other square or square octagonal diamonds.

A relatively new diamond, the princess cut was first created in the early 1960s by London diamond cutter Aprad Nagy, then the cut was known as the “Profile Cut”, however the cut was much flatter and not what we currently see today. The cut’s potential was then realised by another diamond cutter from Johannesburg called Basil Watermeyer, who in the early 1970s developed the “Barion Cut”, which was square shaped or square-octagonal.The Barion Cut was eventually renamed as Princess cut.

The princess cut is favoured by those who wanted a contemporary diamond Princess cut halo designengagement ring but with the same brilliance and sparkle as the round.  Even though a four claw round brilliant diamond ring set in the corners gives an illusion of a princess from the distance, it doesn’t have the same edge and modern touch as the princess cut.  It is less expensive than the round brilliant because it allows very high yield from its rough state.

Although princess cut is durable, extra care must be taken due to the pointed corners. However, the corners are protected using prongs to cover them from chips and accidental knocks. If you prefer an alternative style of setting than a halo setting surrounded by round brilliant micro-pave diamonds looks stunning with a modern-vintage combination. The bezel princesssetting is also a potential option, where the metal completely surrounds the metal leaving no gaps, protecting the diamond in the center. It provides added protection and ideal for sporty types. Another alternative is the tension setting where the princess cut is held by a metal bar either side and appears to float when viewed from the side. However, tension setting is extremely vulnerable to knocks so extra care must be taken when choosing this unique design.

A solitaire princess cut diamond engagement ring look chic and striking on its own. If you wanted a more glamorous style you could choose a trilogy of diamonds with smaller princess cut either sides. Or you could go for channel, micro-pave, or claw set on the shoulders.

 

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2.08-carat-pear-shaped-diamond-e-color Otherwise known as the “teardrop” or “pendeloque” because of its shape,  the pear shaped diamond is a combination of the round brilliant and the marquise; one side of the stone is rounded, while the other side tapers to a fine point.

Although they’re not as popular as the rounds and princess cuts, the pear shape is hugely admired for its elegance and sophistication. There are wide variety of ways to set the diamonds as an engagement ring; the Pear shape is stunning as a solitaire against a thin or tapered plain metal band, or if you’re looking for something different then a halo diamond cluster surrounding the Pear is a popular choice, particularly to create an illusion of greater size. The cut looks fantastic in either white or yellow gold settings. The Pear Shape is visually slim and lengthens your fingers too.

Pear Shape gives off an exceptional sparkle, therefore the best ways to set the cut is to expose the diamond as much as possible, using prongs. This allows lots of light to reach and refract within the stone. The tip of the diamond is quite vulnerable so it is important that this area is protected by a V shaped prong or two prongs either side of the tip. You can have either three or six prongs for the pear shape. Some people prefer having a rub-over setting so the metal completely surrounds the diamond leaving no gaps.  pear

Traditionally, the Pear Shape is worn with the pointed tip facing towards your hand, usually to prevent from catching your clothes and objects. However, some brides-to-be choose to wear the ring with the point out, so you can view the tear drop shape everyday. Ultimately, there’s no wrong way to wear your pear-shaped diamond.

If you’re interested in an engagement ring that has extra drama and elegant flair, the Pear Shape is the cut for you.

 

 

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Marquise+cut+historyThe Marquise Cut is also known as the “Navette Cut” or “Boat Shape”. It first appeared in Paris in the mid 1700s, tracing the cut back to the French monarchy reign. The name was first derived from the Marchioness Madame de Pompadour, a mistress of King Louis XIV of France who commissioned his court jeweller to create a diamond cut that resembled the beautiful shape of her mouth.

The Marquise first came into popularity in the 1970s for its unique shape and although it is not the first choice for many prospective brides, it is certainly a matter of personal choice when choosing this particular cut and provide a unique alternative to traditional engagement rings.marquise

As an engagement ring, it creates a dramatic and flattering statement on your finger due to its long and narrow shape, forming an illusion of greater size compared to other cuts. You’ll find that the Marquise Cut do vary in shape; from elongated, narrow, more rounded or long oval.

Unlike other cuts, the Marquise should have higher colour and clarity when choosing your ideal diamond, with Good to Excellent symmetry to maximise the stone’s face up beauty and brilliance. The cut works well as a solitaire with two V-shape prongs held at the edges for protection or MarquiseCutpaired with smaller side stones such as a trillion or baguette cut. Compared to other cuts, extra care must be taken with a Marquise as long and narrow shapes are more vulnerable and likely to chip when accidentally knocked or when performing heavy duty activities.

The marquise is perfect as drops for earrings and necklaces due to its elongated shape.

 

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There is a lot of information to take in when buying a loose diamond and many choices to make. When working with customers and going through all the different aspects of diamonds at the end of the day we ask you to think about what is the most important thing for you. Is it size, shape or do you want a particular colour? Then from this point we can help you select the best quality diamond for your budget.
Here is a little information on a few of the aspects to consider when purchasing a loose or set diamond.
Shape / Cut: Round Brilliant Cut Diamonds are the most popular diamond shapes but there are so many beautiful cuts to consider. The shape of your diamond can become the main design feature of your engagement ring or custom designed piece. When it comes to the shape of the diamond we are able to show you as many as you like but we tend not to recommend any one shape in particular as they all have their own beautiful qualities and it truly is a person preference. This is a great starting point for designing your unique piece of jewellery.

 

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Colour: This can refer to two different things. Firstly and what you will mostly hear when talking about the 4 C’s is the colourlessness of the white. White diamonds are graded in an Alphabetical scale starting with D being the whitest (colourless) grade. Our recommendation is a G colour or above. In choosing a D-G colour diamond you know you are getting a stunningly white diamond that will look clean and bright.Diamond-Colour-Chart

The second reference to colour when speaking of diamonds is the actual colour of the stone. There is a colour diamond matching any personality or taste, whether you are a woman or a man. Unlike white diamonds, natural colour diamonds exist in over 300 colours all with different hues. Coloured diamonds are the “it” Diamond at the moment with Hollywood stars and Royals wearing natural coloured diamonds. Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, Victoria Beckham and Portia de Rossi all wear pink diamond rings, as well as the very hype Ecclestone daughters. Over the last few seasons major fashion houses such as Louis Vuitton, Dior and Alexander McQueen. And recently, Jessica Simpson and Cate have also chosen to feature coloured diamonds in a range of colours from Chocolate, Yellow even through to Black diamonds. Natural coloured diamonds are really beautiful and unique. If you are looking for something a little different this is definitely an avenue I would suggest exploring.coloureddiamonds

Clarity: The clarity of the diamond refers to how internally clean the diamond is or is not. As diamonds are a natural stone they do or can have (apart from a few very rare stones) natural flaws or imperfections. We like to recommend choosing a diamond that is eye clean. This meaning, with YOUR naked eye you cannot see the flaws. Our ideal diamond is VVS-VS range though we recommend an SI1 (slightly included 1) or above. Some people will be able to see the flaws in an SI1 when studying the stone but depending on the type of imperfection and the location of the imperfection it can be difficult and therefore we are able to find some beautiful stones in this range to suit a price point.

4_diaclarity

Cut: The way the diamond is cut no matter what shape, colour or clarity is one of the most important features to consider when buying your diamond. A well cut stone will sparkle no matter how long you have been wearing it or how it is set. A well cut diamond will always stand out and never look dull due to light reflection. When a diamond is cut to the right proportions light will enter the diamond and be reflected back out the top surfaces of the diamond giving a truely beautiful sparkle. This is one of the reasons we always advise to view diamonds before purchasing, you will notice the difference when comparing.

diamond-cutSize: Diamond sizes are measured in Carat’s which is actually a weight. To some people the overall size of the diamond a very important factor but again it really is a personal choice.carat-chart

I hope this helps with your diamond selection. The one last piece of advice is to always choose a diamond that has a certificate and is conflict free so that you know what you are buying. Different Diamond certifications companies do have different standards; our recommendation is a GIA certificate.


Halo engagement ringGlamorous, timeless and sophisticated, halo engagement rings are one of the world’s most popular style of engagement rings since the 1920s. Although the style has consistently evolved over the decades, its emotional, decadent and sentimental value has remained the same.

To have a better understanding of the term ‘halo’, it refers to small diamonds framing or creating a border around the centre stone. It is a classic choice and creates limitless possibilities in terms of shapes, styles, designs and personalisation. The vision is completely yours. Halo engagement ring

To delve briefly into history, the halo engagement ring dates as far back as the Georgian and Victorian eras. However, it first became popular during the Art Deco Movement in the 1920s, where elegant, decorative and aesthetically pleasing designs became a norm, predominately associated with Hollywood glamour and an era of opulence. You’ll find that with modern designs today there are traces of the Georgian, Victorian, Edwardian and Art Deco eras, an historical fusion that is hard to resist.

The core objective of a halo setting is to purely enhance the centre stone, Halo engagement ringbringing out that extra sparkle, brilliance and beauty of an engagement ring. The surrounding diamonds are generally small thus not to overwhelm or distract the centre stone. Whether the centre stone is a round, princess, pear shape, cushion or emerald, each of these will create a truly unique look. It doesn’t only have to be diamonds, precious gemstones in a halo setting also create that wonderful and classic look.

At Tayha Designs we have many customers who has walked through our doors with an idea in mind for their perfect halo engagement ring. The one to one consultation is important in bringing the ideas to life and we are pleased to say there were many happy customers who were thrilled with the final result. 225939_524032540944849_614721685_n

We have created many halo engagement rings in the past (some we are working on now) and we have carefully picked out our favourite 5 halo engagement rings we have made for our customers.

 

 

 

Antique design diamond halo ring

 

The specification of this handmade halo engagement ring is to have a trace of historical influence with a subtle modern edge. This antique style engagement ring holds a 1ct round brilliant diamond in the centre with 0.01cts small round diamonds surrounding the stone as well as the shoulders in a grain setting. The centre stone is bordered with a 18ct white gold rim to create a modern feel however the milgrain edging also adds a touch of a vintage appearance.

Emerald cut has a long history of being classed as a non-traditional engagement ring. Because of that, they do tend Emerald cut diamond ringto stand out more, especially if it has been thoughtfully and creatively designed. This emerald cut halo engagement ring is uniquely stunning and has a sophisticated personality. The emerald is surrounded by round brilliant cut diamonds held by bead settings to provide a perfect contrast between the clean step cut of the emerald and the extra brilliance and sparkle of the rounds. The ring is given an extra touch with two round dark blue sapphire placed either side of the centre stone to create a one of a kind piece. The shank is then completed with round brilliant diamonds in a millgrain setting.

 

halo engagament ringWe love how futuristic this bespoke halo engagement ring looks. It is set with 0.50ct round brilliant diamond bordered with Platinum, surrounded by an open halo grain setting with small diamonds; it appears as if the centre diamond is floating. The shank is uniquely individual and suits the customers style perfectly!

 

 

A modern take of a classic style. We use 0.50ct princess cut diamond framed by a slightly thicker 18ct white gold rim toPrincess cut halo design set apart from the 0.01cts round brilliant in a grain setting, yet again textured with milgrain detailing. The shank is set with round brilliant diamonds with clear cut millgrain details which is able to show through due to the wider shank. It is a beautifully traditional design re-imagined in a contemporary way.

 

 

Cushion cut halo 2ct diamond engagement ring

 

 

This stunning bespoke halo engagement ring has an extra wow factor with the centre stone being a 2ct cushion cut diamond.  This style embraces the earliest design of the halo engagement ring setting. The surrounding round brilliant diamonds frames the cushion cut in a claw setting with matching shoulders where you can truly see the shape of the small diamonds. A style that never fades.

Get in touch if you have more questions about halo engagement rings, the possibility is endless.

 

 

 

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518-_IGP0559hkWe have created wonderful, one of a kind and imaginative engagement and wedding rings for same sex couples over the years. The preference for custom made is at an all time high as couples endeavour to put their own personal touch on their ring designs.

There are various options and ideas for same sex engagement rings and wedding bands. Two ladies could go for the same engagement rings they both would like to wear. Or one would surprise the other with an engagement ring where they would both return to design a second engagement ring.Picture 031

As for guys, an engagement ring can also be a option depending on their personal preferences, it could have a bit of sparkle, unique textures or something a lot more reserved like a plain traditional band. Alternatively, some couples prefer the combination of both engagement and wedding ring that is stunning on its own.

menIt is not entirely necessary for the engagement and weddings rings to be completely identical to each other. There are options to go for rings that differs from one another or alternatively, a slight difference between the two. To make it symbolic and personal, the ring can feature the birthstone of the partner. Changes can be made by colour, metal, size, stones and design. The rings can be personalised, have meaningful symbols or messages. The choices are endless.030-_IGP4657aa

At Tayha Designs, we offer a full one to one consultation for same sex couples who want to create a bespoke engagement rings and wedding bands with a difference. Our experienced designers can help to assist in turning your ideas into reality.

 

 

 

Here are some of the rings we have designed;

 

Pink diamonds and rose gold

These understated yet stunning engagement rings are created for a wonderful couple who wanted an engagement ring that matches but with a slight difference. We used a combination of white gold, rose gold, pink and white diamonds and created them so the placement is different for each band. A clever way of matching an engagement ring but with a subtle twist.black diamond

 

 

 

Sleek, simple and traditional, this handmade 6mm men’s platinum wedding band has a matte finish centre and polished outer edges for a modern touch. The design is then finished off with a square cut black diamond stone in the centre.

Palladium-Gents-wedder

 

 

If considering a different wedding band, only the slightest alterations can be made. For example, round black diamonds can be used instead with the grooves in the centre with an all over matte finish.

 

 

Mokume Ring    Love creating this luxurious and sophisticated multi – coloured Mokume wedding band for our customer. Mokume has a rich cultural history and translate from Japanese as ‘wood grain’. Individual and unique, there are different Mokume designs to go for and a perfect wedding band for couples.

 

 

 

 

 

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