You may have heard that the chevron ring (also known as a wishbone ring) has a rich history of symbolism. But what you may not know is that the meaning behind the chevron shape is as notable as the meaning attached to the ring itself.
It is widely perceived that the chevron ring signifies these blessings:1
- Good fortune
- Hope for the future
You should indeed consider yourself lucky to have a beautiful chevron ring in your jewelry collection—luckier still if it were a chevron diamond ring.
But its promise of prosperity isn’t its only gleaming feature. With its “V” shape, the ring not only creates a captivating silhouette but is also a practical accessory as it can be worn and stacked with other rings. In this article, we will circle through the meaning behind the shape, significance, and allure of the diamond chevron ring.
(For the purpose of this article, the words “chevron” and “wishbone” are used interchangeably.)
The Symbolic Significance of Jewelry
Before we explore the significance of the chevron ring specifically, it’s helpful to understand the foundation of the symbolism of jewelry as a whole.
Jewelry can be as integral to a person’s wardrobe as clothing, shoes, or scarves. Although it is categorized as an accessory, a ring, necklace, bracelet, anklet, or a pair of earrings can hold considerable personal meaning for the wearer. The emotional significance of a piece of jewelry is perhaps stronger than any other item of wear.
In the instance of an inherited heirloom, that truth becomes even stronger, as the jewelry becomes an adored representation of a loved ancestor or storied family heritage—especially if that object is as splendid as fine jewelry.
Our shared global community continues to show us the significance of jewelry in many subtle (and not-so-subtle) ways:
- Rings commemorate vows of love and commitment
- Pendants are created from a loved one’s ashes for physical remembrance
- Heads of state wear brooches and necklaces to make political and cultural statements
- Jewelry is passed down through generations as a coveted gift
- Famous diamonds are kept in museums to be revered by onlookers
- Valuable jewelry is used as currency or barter in several cultures
What Does a Chevron Ring Symbolize?
Indeed, the capacity for a ring’s significance is vast and promising. So how can a chevron ring bring meaningful implications into your everyday style?
Its meaning is rooted in the wishbone.
The wishbone ring is one of those items that can hold great meaning—and not just for personal reasons. In fact, the modern chevron ring radiates symbolism throughout several cultures and eras. The ring, as well as the ring’s graceful figure, can be traced back many centuries.
Why Is It Called a Wishbone?
If you celebrate Thanksgiving, you may be attuned to the tradition of two people snapping a v-shaped bone in half. The individuals on each end make a wish and pull the bone until it breaks. As believed, the one holding the larger end will have their wish granted; if the bone breaks cleanly in half, then both wishes will come true.
Let’s look at the word behind the form. Most participants in this annual tradition may not know these two interesting tidbits:
- The wishbone is the forked bone (furcula) connecting the bird’s breast and neck
- The bone’s geometric pattern is a “chevron”
The wishbone ring, then, is recognized by its unique shape, where the two ends—instead of meeting in a linear enclosure—veer off the line of trajectory, creating a sharp point resembling a “V,”2 like the wishbone.
This shape also looks like a chevron, or the Greek letter “Lambda.” The word “wishbone” seems to be one that spans across different cultures and backgrounds.
What Is a Chevron?
The chevron is a highly recognizable, inverted v-shaped pattern used for decorative and symbolic purposes in fabric, architecture, crafting materials, weaponry, tools, flooring, art, and jewelry—to name just a few.
The word “chevron” first appeared in fourteenth-century English as a French word translated to “rafter,” referring to the literal “V” shape that roof pieces make when adjoined.3 This configuration has also been linked to deer antlers and goat legs to symbolize sustenance.4
The chevron pattern in jewelry was reportedly popular during the 1600s in France, through the Victorian era in Britain, and in the Art Deco period of the 1920s to 1930s in the United States.5
Where Is a Chevron Usually Found?
You will find the chevron pattern most common among these articles:
- Insignia – Worn on sleeves of military uniforms and police badges, the chevron stripes usually indicate rank and years of service or other hierarchical definitions. These symbols are worn up or down according to their individual purpose.6
- Heraldry – Throughout history, the chevron symbol has been used as emblems of glory:
- Painted and embroidered on flags, as a sign of “V” for victory after WWII
- Marked on Celtic warriors’ shields, as a depiction of arrowhead weaponry
- Utilized as an identifying cultural symbol of the Greek Spartans
- Family coats of arms – Chevrons included in coat-of-arms imagery usually portray the family as the “foot of a house,” or having engaged in a notable enterprise involving service to the church.7
- Art – Historically, the chevron has contributed to a common design concept in pottery and fabrics.6
- Jewelry (rings, bracelets, necklaces) – A wishbone ring or necklace, with a minimalistic design and infinite elegance, can serve as a classic wedding band, timeless keepsake, or inspired gift to a loved one.
Why Is a Chevron Associated With Luck?
The association of luck and good fortune with the chevron shape is derived from different sources of lore around the world. Here are a few fun facts:1
- The Etruscan civilization of Italy thought that fowl had powers of prediction due to the hen’s egg-laying squawks and the rooster's morning crows. These birds were considered prophetic, and their bones were considered sacred.
- The breaking of bones didn’t happen until the Romans began their own related customs, then the English caught on, and the tradition lives on in today’s world.
- The Pilgrims started the practice of using turkeys for the wishbone-pulling tradition due to the scarcity of chickens.
- The phrase “lucky break” came from breaking the bones to make wishes.
Which Way Do You Wear a Chevron Ring?
Not only is a chevron ring an absolutely lovely piece of jewelry in an understated form, but it can also be a sophisticated treasure, embellished with as many diamonds as it will hold.
So, how to wear a Chevron ring? There is no significance attached to wearing the ring either pointing up or down, but it may be useful to wear it as observed in the following instances:
#1 Wedding Band
The wishbone ring is ideal for a wedding band because it can accommodate an engagement ring perfectly without each clashing against the other. If you go this route, the following suggestions are helpful:
- Traditionally, the wedding band is worn “closest to the heart,”8 so it would most likely be displayed with the “V” pointing toward the wrist.
- The engagement ring would slide on after the wedding band, nestling perfectly into the chevron’s indention.
#2 Engagement Ring
If you opt for a chevron engagement ring, follow these recommendations for a traditional pairing with the wedding band:
- Before the wedding ring is added, wear the chevron engagement ring with either side pointing up or down. You may want to experiment to find the best aesthetic for your particular style.
- When partnering with a wedding band, put on the engagement ring last, after the band. The band will go closest to the heart, and the engagement ring will be added with the point aimed toward the knuckle.
#3 Chevron Rings Stacked Together
Stacking chevron rings together can be an inspired look. If you purchase them initially as a set you could wear them one at a time, or together—with the seamless appearance of a combination made for each other.
Of course, you can wear your chevron ring any way you choose, and whichever way feels the most comfortable to you. There is no “wrong” way to wear a chevron ring.9
Other Names for Chevron Rings
While “chevron” and “wishbone” are the best-known names for this style, the v-shaped ring category encompasses a wide variety of names. Here are a few names that are used to describe v-shaped rings that you might come across as you shop for your chevron soulmate:
- Chevron rings
- Wishbone rings
- Stacking rings
- Notched rings
- Contour rings
- Nestle (or nesting) rings
More On V-Shaped Rings
The grandmother tree that shades the chevron and wishbone flowers, v-shaped rings as a larger category hold some significant meaning of their own.
By most accounts, the v-shaped ring symbolizes prosperity, hope, and a new chapter in life. Stylish and functional, a chevron-shaped ring can be an exquisite solution to wearing two rings on the same finger.
A few other potential meanings that have been thought to be associated with v-shaped rings include:
- Lucky charm
- Good fortune
- Untapped potential
- Control of your own luck
- Rise and fall during a lifetime
Hold Your Meaning Dear with Rings from Noémie
Not only does a chevron ring hold a bounty of both cultural and personal meaning, but it is also an incredibly versatile and stylish jewelry option for any occasion. The chevron ring can be a unique and functional choice for a wedding band, engagement ring, or simply a beautiful piece of personal jewelry.
If you are looking for a versatile, transcendent, statement ring that has a style as durable as the materials used to craft it, look no further than a chevron ring made by a reputable, quality-driven, fine jewelry source like Noémie.
With the strength of 18-karat gold combined with quality craftsmanship and near-perfect diamonds, the beautiful Chevron Diamond Ring in rose gold, white gold, yellow gold, or platinum is an elegant choice for your most significant occasions. Aside from the Chevron style, you can also pick out a floating diamond ring and floating diamond necklace for your jewelry collection.
While there’ll be no snapping traditions involved, with this wishbone, you’ll still feel like you’ve found your lucky break.
- Symbol Sage. Wishbone Symbolism – Why is it Lucky? https://symbolsage.com/wishbone-meaning
- Our Organic Wedding. Complete Guide to V-Shaped Wedding Bands. https://ourorganicwedding.com/v-shaped-wedding-bands/
- Online Etymology Dictionary. Chevron (n.) https://www.etymonline.com/search?q=chevron
- The American Heritage Dictionary. Chev·ron (shĕvrən). https://ahdictionary.com/word/search.html?q=chevron
- International Gem Society. A Guide to Early Victorian Romantic Period Jewelry. https://www.gemsociety.org/article/victorian-period-jewelry-1837-1860
- Britannica, The Editors of Encyclopaedia. Chevron heraldry. https://www.britannica.com/topic/chevron-heraldry
- Hall of Names. Heraldry Meanings. https://www.hallofnames.org.uk/heraldry-symbols-and-what-they-mean
- Brides. Which Finger Does a Wedding Ring Go On? https://www.brides.com/story/why-are-wedding-rings-worn-on-left-hand
- Wedding Knowhow. Chevron Wedding Rings – What Do They Mean? https://weddingknowhow.com/wedding-ring/chevron-wedding-rings-guide