Whether you’re looking for a way to tastefully accent your center stone or if you want enough diamonds lining your band to make people do a double-take, pavé engagement ring settings are perfect for people who simply cannot get enough sparkle.
Commonly used in engagement and wedding ring designs, people swoon for the pave’s irresistible dazzle and versatility. Stick around to discover just what exactly the term pavé means and how you can incorporate it into your forever adornment to create the ring of your dreams.
What Does Pavé Setting Mean?
The French word for “pavement”, a Pave (pronounced pah-vey) setting features several tiny gemstones or diamonds that “pave” the metal. Extremely popular in wedding band and engagement ring designs alike, pavé settings bring a welcomed pop of sparkle as bright stones cover the band to optimize the ring’s overall brilliance and detail.
There are several pavé engagement ring designs to choose from. Whether you’re looking for just a hint of extra sparkle or want to go all out with diamonds there’s a pavé style for you.
What Are the Different Types of Pavé Settings?
Crafted using very small diamonds, typically smaller than .01 of a carat, micro pavé settings create the illusion that the entire band is made of diamonds. Rings in this style often feature multiple rows of glimmering gems that cover the entire band.
The average micro pavé setting can hold up to 50 diamonds, sometimes, even more, making rings of this style especially beautiful to those who adore the irresistible sparkle of a diamond. Of course, all of those small stones add up. For this reason, a micro pavé setting can be more costly than other engagement ring styles.
The u-cut is among the most popular type of settings when it comes to paves. Modern in design, u-cut settings feature a series of grooves into which smaller stones are set, creating a u-like shape when viewed from the side.
A great way to increase your diamond to metal ratio without completely hiding the natural beauty of your wedding band, u-cut designs can be paired with a sleek solitaire band or combined with fancy filigree for a vintage vibe.
Also referred to as the fishtail pave, the French pavé is famous for its one-of-a-kind textured appearance. In this style, pave-set diamonds are placed into v-shaped grooves that are cut into the band of the ring. While similar in concept to the u-cut, the French pavé actually enhances the sparkle of a gemstone even more as it allows more light to pass through.
Wedding rings in this style are beloved as they require a minimal amount of metal to hold the accent diamonds into place.
A member of the traditional pavé setting family, the petite pavé uses tiny prongs to keep each micro pavé diamond in place. And while you might not think that prong size would make much of a difference, the smaller the metal prongs are the more visible and prominent each diamond appears.
Bright Cut Pavé
Also referred to as channel set pavé due to the placement of round melee between two walls of metal, bright cut pavé is one of the oldest styles of pave. While aesthetically pleasing, the distinctive “bright cut” metal walls that frame the small stones aren’t just for looks, in fact, they play an important role in improving the overall durability of the piece.
People love the antique vibe of a channel setting and rings in this style are enjoying a resurgence as vintage engagement rings continue to grow in demand.
Featuring similar design elements as the u-shaped pave, scalloped pavé settings feature metal beads with u-shaped cutouts underneath to hold the accent diamonds into place. This variety of pavé is less commonly used in engagement ring designs and you’re more likely to see it featured in wedding bands or right hand rings.
What Is the Difference Between Pavé and Micro Pavé?
Easily confused, pavé and micro pavé are two different things. The term pavé refers to any size stone that is set in the band whereas micro pavé refers to several stones that are all the same size and are typically far smaller in carat weight than gemstones used in a pave.
Pavé Rings Pros and Cons
Pavé settings are adored for their ability to accentuate a ring’s center stone. Whether you opt for a bold emerald cut or a romantic princess cut, with tiny diamonds lining the band one’s eye is naturally drawn to the captivating sparkle of your center diamond of choice. This is especially true when you select a thin band for your pavé setting.
Speaking of sparkle, one of the most obvious appeals of a pavé setting is the additional dazzle that they bring to the engagement ring equation. When compared to a plain band, a pavé setting adds a little extra oomph to a ring’s overall appearance and glam factor.
While one might expect a pavé diamond setting to cost less than say a standard solitaire engagement ring - smaller stones, smaller price tag - that’s not necessarily the case. Crafting a pavé ring is labor-intensive, with each stone hand placed into position one by one, and the price of these prized pieces is set to reflect that. Additionally, each accent diamond must be carefully chosen to ensure uniformity across the piece. An element that is also known to drive up the cost.
Two other things to keep in mind when choosing a pavé setting are cleaning and sizing. Similar to an eternity band, resizing a pavé setting can prove challenging. To avoid the hassle- trust us, no one likes having to resize their brand new ring- ensure that you have the right ring size from the start. As for cleaning, the intricate design elements of a pavé setting provide more places for dirt to hide. Regular cleaning sessions are recommended to keep your ring looking as good as new.