Engagement Rings: Fresh Design Trends - What's Hot for Brides-to-be from Diamond and Design Experts,

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HOUSTON, TX - June 29 (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) -- From the grace of halo to the sophistication of micro pave, design trends in engagement ring and wedding band settings are changing, reflecting today's busy lifestyles. Ergonomic designs reign supreme in today's market, no longer does pure panache determine the design that leads to 'I Do.'

"Some brides prefer an ergonomic design that can comfortably be worn day in and day out," says Brian Gavin, Executive Vice President of "Others look for added style in an intricate or trendy setting; which, unfortunately, can be limiting when it comes everyday wear," adds Gavin. is an e-jewelry boutique specializing in Hearts & Arrows diamonds and custom-designed engagement rings.

Here's a peek at the up-and-coming trends in engagement rings according to the boutique's jewelry designers:

Myth: solitaires stand tall

Not true of today's diamond solitaire settings, says Gavin. "Solitaire settings are traditionally upswept, raising the diamond to make a very bold statement," he adds. "However, people are also choosing settings where the center stone sits down low, creating a look that is extremely elegant and also ergonomic." With the diamond down in the setting, brides-to-be are able to wear the engagement ring in everyday work and play situations long after they say their "I Do"s.

Halos make a comeback

The likely reason for that comeback, according to Gavin, is that the halo-style ring setting makes the center diamond appear larger than it really is. "And the appearance of a high carat weight in the center stone is extremely important for many who are headed to the altar," says Gavin. has introduced several halo designs to its line of engagement rings in the past year, including one with beaded diamonds along the shank as well as around the center stone, Increased sales prove the design's resurgence and staying power.

A toast to the 'Champagne' setting

One design stunning even to the most fashion-savvy is the 'Champagne' setting. "Those who desire this setting know exactly what they're looking for...and that's something unique," says Gavin. "The Champagne style of setting has an unmistakable following." The designers at deserve a toast of the bubbly for their interpretation of the Champagne-style bubble design in their U-prong Champagne engagement ring...among others.

Gavin says the company's Champagne fashions have produced a great deal of spin-off custom-design work, much of which incorporates's exclusive 'A Cut Above' (ACA) melee diamonds. "The design of the Champagne setting intermixes several's these combined features that really draw[s] people to it," he says.

"Often people ask us to replicate one aspect or another of the Champagne design into a custom project, and of course we don't hesitate to do so." According to Gavin, the U-Prong, domed shank and accent diamonds are examples of features that can be applied to any custom piece. "Our 'A Cut Above' (ACA) melee diamonds have been adopted into thousands of projects, and are a stunning complement to any setting style," comments Gavin.

Delicate pave and micro-pave designs

The old debate: Delicate versus complex, which is better? According to the designers at, this season the style leans more heavily towards delicacy rather than complexity.

The diamond pave setting is widely admired for its refinement. To give the setting its simplistic, yet exquisite appearance, beads of metal are raised to create secure channels where the diamonds sit securely in the ring. According to the craftsmen at, the raised metal of the band (or ring) is used to create the tiny prongs that hold the petite diamonds in place.

Center stage: Eternity bands

The pave and micro pave settings come into play when customers are looking at smaller diamond settings like the eternity band. According to Gavin - who is also a fifth-generation cutter from the world's largest diamond center (South Africa) - there has been a recent push for smaller diamonds in settings. "In some cases even solitaires are being replaced with semi, and even full eternity bands," he says. The trend is likely a response to the aforementioned movement towards dainty-looking styles and those that offer daily wear. Eternity bands traditionally are set with diamonds anywhere from one to three points (carats).

Brides trade up

The 'trading-up' trend will never fade into obscurity. "We've found that it makes a difference in the design process if the bride-to-be is involved up front," says Gavin. "If the groom chooses to go it alone, he typically gravitates toward a simple design with a smaller-than-desired diamond. And what happens next? The bride-to-be upgrades the size of her diamonds, even adding side stones, and looks for a setting more suited to their tastes."

'Trading up' need not always be done up front. Many couples consider upgrades for important milestones like anniversaries, birthdays and holidays. "While her engagement ring was [current] as a newlywed, many years later she might change or modify her setting to reflect transition in her own life or to keep up with current jewelry trends," says Gavin. "Even if she keeps the setting forever, there is a chance that down the road she may require a larger diamond. We have many repeat customers who upgrade their diamonds with us," he finishes. anticipates change as a constant and has made it simple for customers to upgrade with a unique guarantee: Every certified diamond sold at comes with a lifetime trade-up option. The company will accept the return of any original purchase and extend full credit in the amount of the original purchase price. The credit can be used to purchase a different diamond.

"Marriage is a lifetime commitment," Gavin says. "When you choose, we'll be there for a lifetime with you."

About Whiteflash is the first company in the U.S. to offer an exclusive brand of Hearts & Arrows diamond and bring the sheer beauty of "super ideal cut" to the Internet. Brian Gavin, a 5th generation diamond cutter, and Debi Wexler, a computer entrepreneur, together founded in 1999 bringing an expansive selection of loose diamonds to the Internet, including an exclusive brand of Hearts & Arrows diamonds. 'A Cut Above' (ACA(TM)) is unmatched in its brilliance, fire and sparkle and remains the only Hearts & Arrows diamond sold online with advertised standards and a "true patterning" guarantee. also offers original, handcrafted platinum and gold settings, diamond engagement rings and wedding bands, custom diamond ring designs and specialty jewelry.

For more information, log on to or call 877.612.6770.

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REFERENCES: , , whiteflash, hearts and arrows diamonds, retailer, gems, artisan, white flash, Brian Gavin, 5th generation diamond cutter, Debi Wexler, A Cut Above, ACA diamond engagement ring, pave and micro pave settings, Champagne, custom-designed engagement rings, e-jewelry boutique, Houston, Texas brides, news, press release from, Jun 29, 2006, Fashion, , , , , Engagement Rings: Fresh Design Trends - What's Hot for Brides-to-be from Diamond and Design Experts,