When it comes to engagement rings and wedding bands, many of the traditional and long-standing rules about what settings, styles, and stones to wear have fallen by the wayside. These days, it’s far more common to focus on an overall composition that feels uniquely suited to your marriage and partnership.
But if you feel intimidated about finding the perfect wedding band to match engagement ring styles, don’t stress. The world and wonder of nuptial rings are expansive, which can make it very tricky to pick out jewelry that offers a perfect fit for a lifetime.
So, how should the two rings complement each other?
By comparing the different elements of your rings, you can make a list of what to look for and streamline your shopping. Here’s a guide to help you ensure both rings live on together in harmony—just like you and your future spouse.
Pairing Engagement Rings and Wedding Bands: An Overview
Because engagement rings can be so unique, it can feel difficult at the outset of your search to find a wedding band style to match what may be a totally unusual style. Think intertwined or even flowy asymmetrical bands, elaborate stone settings, and atypical gems and materials such as amethyst, topaz, or garnet.
You can make things a little bit easier on yourself by focusing first on the shape of the diamond engagement ring and considering how an additional ring will fit with it. You may be stuck between the baguette diamond shape and emerald cut. Depending on your diamond engagement ring, your wedding band style may “fit flush” against it, or not.
What does this mean? Simply put, a flush fit design means that a band can sit right up alongside it with no gap between the two rings.1 A non-flush fit design means that the shape or stone setting of your engagement ring won’t allow a simple band to fit seamlessly to its contour. Instead, there may be a little space or gap between the two.
So, which is better? Ultimately, that’s up to your preference. Some couples love the coherence and simplicity of the two rings stacking like puzzle pieces, while others prioritize the distinctiveness of their two bands over a uniform configuration.
If you don’t like a non-flush look, there are options that will help your two rings fit together more smoothly. These include:
- Raised setting engagement rings
- Contoured wedding bands
- Notched wedding bands
Let’s briefly take a deeper look into what these mean.
Raised Setting Engagement Rings
Here, we’re talking about the center stone and how low or high it lies. Take a look at any engagement ring’s profile and you’ll be able to see whether the stone is elevated off the band (raised setting) or whether it’s set closer to the band (low setting). Take for example our floating diamond ring which has handcrafted diamonds that give the appearance of a raised and elevated look.
While there are many pros and cons to either type of design, remember that raised setting rings offer the greater potential to snag your stone on fabric and sometimes aren’t the smartest choice for those who work with their hands.
Contoured Wedding Bands
This style is specifically designed to match the contours of your engagement ring for a seamless fit, and is often entirely customized to fit your finger. This typically means that the face of the band curves around the center stone of your engagement ring and is straight in the back.
A contoured wedding band for an engagement ring is often a bespoke option. However, because low-set stones are so common, many jewelers carry an array of contoured wedding rings in their offerings.
Notched Wedding Bands
Similar to the contoured design, a notched wedding band is designed to fit flush with the engagement ring. In this case, it’s usually a straight band until the front, where a notch is cut out so that there’s no gap between the two. These are sometimes known as “v-cut rings” and can come with either a more angled slot or a softer, more subtle notch.
Matching Your Wedding Ring to Your Engagement Ring
Determining how your two rings will fit together is only half the battle. How do they look together on the hand? Do the metals seem to complement each other, or clash? And what about the matter of gemstones?
Below, we’ll cover some important strategies for getting your wedding band to match engagement ring styles, such as matching by:
- Band width
- Your partner’s ring
Matching by Band Width
Generally speaking, most jewelers will tell you to make sure your engagement ring and wedding band are the same thickness.1 That means if you have a thin engagement band, you should look for a similarly slim wedding band.
While rules are made to be broken, we typically favor abiding by this one because it cuts down on the number of options out there, simplifying the matching process. Of course, some unusual custom wedding rings, such as one with multiple interweaving bands, can create the look of breadth but still pair nicely with a thinner diamond wedding band shape.
Matching by Style
Planning on receiving your husband’s grandmother’s diamond ring? It’s quite common for families to pass jewelry down through the generations, and wedding bands are no exception. But always remember—a classic design will mean you’ll want your other jewelry to provide continuity between the ring’s historic past and the present, and not clash with the vintage style of the piece.
Similarly, you’ll want to consider the style of any newly purchased diamond ring in the context of the wedding band. There are a few ways to do this:
- One way is to go for a band that matches your engagement ring in elaboration. This can mean a thin setting of diamonds around the band to match your princess-cut gemstone.
- Another route is finding a simpler wedding band so that your engagement ring can stand out and sparkle to perfection.
Matching by Metal
Gold looks fabulous with gold, and white gold works with white gold—and the two should never mix, right? Not necessarily. Again, your personal preference comes into play here. For a long time, it was customary that the two band metals on one finger needed to be the same material. Nowadays, this custom has gone by the wayside.
When it comes to matching by metal, keep a few things in mind:
- Your personal jewelry style – Do you tend to wear rose gold necklaces, silver earrings, and yellow gold rings all on the same day? Mixing metals is becoming more common, especially for those looking to achieve a more bohemian and contemporary vibe.
- How much jewelry you wear – If you tend to let your wrists, neck, and ears live free from decoration, a mixed pair of rings on your hand may look a little more out of place. However, if you’re constantly seen out in your finest finery, you can probably pull off more unexpected styles, even when it comes to your rings.
- The hardness and durability of the metals – While the possibilities are endless from a design perspective, the reality is that some metals shouldn’t come into contact with each other.2 Rose gold and silver, for example, are softer metals that can become nicked, dinged, or scratched when kept alongside harder materials like white gold and platinum. A professional jeweler will be able to advise you away from combinations that might not play nice with each other.
Matching Your Partner
While it’s customary for only the person who receives the marriage proposal to receive an engagement ring (another tradition that’s changing with the times), some couples like to make a nod to their eternal bond by looking for wedding bands that match.
Usually this is done by those who are opting for a simple metal band in lieu of diamonds and elaborate designs. Matching your partner is a wonderful way for two people to express continuity between each other.
Which Comes First, the Engagement Ring or the Wedding Band?
Once you find the perfect wedding band to match your engagement ring, there’s still one question to consider—what order should you stack them in on your finger?
Tradition dictates a usual order, based on the wedding ceremony itself:3
- Before the wedding ceremony, the engagement ring is removed.
- The diamond wedding band is placed on the finger.
- Later, the engagement ring is worn on top.
That said, you’ll see all kinds of configurations these days, including people rocking both rings on other fingers, around the neck, or on the right hand. Some people may choose to leave one ring at home at certain times, particularly if it’s especially expensive or a family heirloom.
If you choose to swap your custom wedding band for engagement ring on the regular or depending on the occasion, there’s no need to worry about ensuring that these two match. We suggest going with what feels natural, and if that means forgoing a stack entirely, so be it.
Find Your Perfect Ring Combination with Noémie
When it comes to matching your wedding band and engagement ring, always remember that the right choice is what feels special and magical to you and your partner. Customs may dictate what metals to wear together or how many gemstones a ring should feature, but at the end of the day, this decision is one that will hopefully live on your hand for your lifetime. Make it count by making it your own.
At Noémie, we make fine jewelry for life’s every moment and are committed to helping you find a pairing that endures through the ages.
Visit us today in Aspen or New York to find the perfect rings to celebrate your engagement and marriage. Or, check us out online to learn more about our modern materials, custom designs, and Loyalty Club.
- TheKnot. 9 Ways to Pick the Perfect Wedding Ring. https://www.theknot.com/content/rules-for-choosing-your-wedding-bands
- Brides. Which Type of Ring Metal Should You Choose? https://www.brides.com/ring-metals-5070639
- Emily Post. Ring Regulation: In what order should you wear your rings? https://emilypost.com/advice/ring-regulation-in-what-order-should-you-wear-your-rings