Side Stone Diamonds - Everything There is to Know

How to Find the Perfect Side Stones for Your Three Stone Diamonds & More

What are Side Stone Diamonds?

Side Stone Diamonds are more often than not, perfectly calibrated matching diamonds strategically placed with the goal of enhancement or in some cases, subtle accents surrounding the center diamond.  Since the field of side stones is becoming more and more popular, so is their use in a variety of different designs. Where they were once primarily used in Three Stone Diamond Engagement Rings, they are now also featured in Halos, Five Stone Rings, Pendants, Bracelets and more. In this post we’ll cover some of the most sought after designs, their background, and buying guide lines, as well as the best available diamond shapes for side stones.


Three Stone Diamond Rings

three stone diamond engagement ring - side stone diamonds

The most popular and timeless of them all, Three Stone Diamond Rings are a perfect balance between flair and subtlety. While the first thing you notice about them is their beauty, they also hold a great deal of romantic significance. with their known symbolism of representing the three stages of a relationship. That is to say, the past, present, and future. This makes them great candidates for soon to be wed couples.

From a technical, or design outlook,  a three-stone diamond ring usually incorporates two matching medium-sized side stone diamonds, with each positioned on the opposing sides of a larger center diamond. However, in some cases, you might come across designs where all three stones are near identical in size.

Provided the ring is designed by professionals and intelligently planned., you will find that the three stone designs offer such benefits as emphasizing the already innate qualities of your center stone, and even improve on them. The possible combinations for shapes are incredibly rich, and in some cases designers implement colored diamonds or have gemstones included. 

Five Stone Diamonds Rings

5 stone diamond rings and side stone diamonds

Five Stone Diamond Rings have gained their own popularity in recent years, with taking some of the principles implemented in three stone designs, with two pairs situated on each opposing side of the center stone, as opposed to just one on each side. This powerful combination delivers a stunning result, and is only matched but its own unique symbolism.

Whereas three stone designs are said to represent the past present and future, five stone designs are a lot more specific, though varied. In certain cases they symbolize five years of marriage, and in others a representation of a lovely story starting from courting one another, starting to date, living together, getting engaged, getting married, and finally, starting your own family.

Five Stone Diamond Rings often found using combinations with fancy colored diamonds and gemstones, and of course, using the classic diamond variation.

Cathedral Diamond Engagement Rings

Cathedral Diamond Ring Design is another sought after choice that is often seen incorporating diamond side stones ring design. You may be wondering how it got its name from. The answer is in two parts. One, is that they are visually remarkable and hypnotizing much like Cathedrals, and two, it also uses arches which are one of the most recognizable aspects of cathedral designs. 

Cathedral diamonds rings have many popular variants, from the classic simple yet stunning minimal side stone implementation that aids in improving on the center diamond, to the more complex and powerful combinations of multiple layers of small side stones. Both these variations have their own appeal, it all depends on personal preferences. 

Which Diamond Shapes Could be Used as Side Stones?

The truth of the matter is that nearly any diamond out there today can be used as a side stone, but strategically planning planning which shapes to use is often the difference between good and bad design. There is also the factor of personal taste which also plays a role.

The safest choice to make will always be going for the classic combinations. That is to say, matching side stones that are cut in a similar fashion to the main stone. An Asscher Cut Diamond is manufactured using the step cut method, so classically it makes a lot of sense to match it with something like Step Cut Trapezoid Side Stone Diamonds 

Another example is the most popular Three Stone Diamond Engagement Ring with a Brilliant Cut Round Diamond as the center stone. A common theme is to either match it with additional smaller round cut diamonds, or other brilliant cuts such as the pear or oval. Brilliant Round Cut Diamond at its center is often combined with smaller round cuts, or other Brilliant Cut shapes such as pears, and oval-shaped diamonds, among others.

The Modern approach isn’t bound by these limitations. While a little more adventurous, when it is done correctly it can create some truly remarkable pieces, which are more connected to fashion. That is not to say that they become obsolete, they are just more popular in certain times than others based on demand. 

One of the most popular combinations recently is to combine a 3 Stone Diamond Engagement Ring with a Round Cut at the centre, and incorporating two baguette-cut diamonds on its opposing sides in a horizontal fashion. Despite the difference in cutting methods (rounds being brilliantly cut, and baguettes being step cut) this matching can works wonders.

Popular Diamond Shapes to Use as Side Stones

trapezoid cut diamond side stones-150x150

Trapezoid Cut Diamond Side Stones

While being somewhat new in the diamond industry, trapezoid cut diamonds really made a name for themselves in both their step cut and brilliant cut methods, and have truly dominated the side stone scene in an impressive fashion. They are often seen in 3 Stone Rings, because what of the more unique aspects of the Trapezoid is their noticeably large surface area, which provides a sense of closure to the design and enhancing the center diamond in a seamless manner. Square, as well as Rectangular shapes, are the ideal match up with trapezoids. 

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Trilliant Cut Diamond Side Stones

The Trilliant Shaped Diamond, also known as the Triangular or Trillion Cut is a thing of symmetrical beauty that makes for some truly magical pairings with center stones. Part of its success is due to its balancing act of offering remarkable light retention capabilities, without taking way from the center diamond., all while offering a nice step away from the household combinations.

Trilliant Cuts are cut shallow, and their width gives them the appearance of being larger than their weight would indicate. This makes them a great economical choice.

While The Trilliant Shape works with many center, some of the popular matching include Brilliant Round Cuts, Radiants, Princess, and many more.

step cut baguette diamond side stones

Baguette Cut Diamond Side Stones

The Baguette Shape is an extremely popular option when it comes to its use in side stones. It helps brings a sense of symmetry, elegance and class and is often chosen by customers that want to step away from the common and opt for a unique look.

One of the things that stand out for the Baguettes compared to the aforementioned Trapezoids for example, it that they are a viable option for a lot more diamond shape combinations as they seamlessly support and enhance nearly all possible center pieces.

step cut half moon diamond side stones

Half Moon Cut Diamond Side Stones

The Half Moon Shaped Diamond, used to be a step cut only type of diamond has expanded due to demand as well as technological advancements in manufacturing techniques to also include a brilliant cut rendition.  When it comes to side stones, you would have a pretty hard time rivaling the abilities and success the half moon has gotten, due to its ability to truly bring out the best of the center diamond as well as a seamless transition that elegantly encloses thanks to its unique curved corners it. 

It all does this while making the innate characteristics of the center diamond into further light, and best of all, it is an economical  savvy choice compared to some of its rivals. Half Moons are quite versatile when it comes to possible combinations. One of the more popular integrations is  matching half moons with rectangular shapes in nature, like the Princess, Radiants, and Emerald Cuts.

brilliant round cut diamonds as side stones

Brilliant Round Cut Diamond Side Stones

The classic Brilliant Round Cut Diamond Shape is not just the most popular and sought after diamond shape in the world, It can also act as both the key center stone as well as a remarkable side stone as a supporting role. You can see it most often implemented in three stone, as well as five stone rings among others. 

Some of its most beloved and successful implementations include positioning it on the left and right side of a Marquise-Shaped center diamond, opposing sides of a stunning marquise cut center stone piece, pear cut, ovals, and many others. 

Other Shapes Worth Consideration:

Diamonds from the Bullet and Tapered Bullet Types, Hexagonal and Octagonal Cut Diamond, Shields, Kites, and more.

What Size Side Stone Diamonds Should I go for?

While not overly complex, there are a few key factors worth considering to help you decide on the correct side stone sizes for your jewelry in order to truly benefit from them to the highest degree, and choosing the right size is one of the most important ones.

In cases such as Three Stone Engagement Rings there are in fact formulas to go for, but they also include some of your own personal preferences, as a consumer or designer.

The goal should be to find that perfect balance in your side stones of not being overly large and take away from your center stone, but also not so small that they have little to no effect of providing any support. A general rule to follow is to opt for side stones that are at a minimum, half (50 percent) up to two thirds  (65 percent) of the size of your center stone.

If you desire to calculate things further, it is recommended to divide the average diameter of your center stone.

If you are considering side stone implementation that is more than the classic three stone ring design, it would be wise to go for smaller sized side stones,  it is a general rule that they should be quite smaller.

How to Decide the Amount of Side Stone Diamonds for My Jewelry?

The amount of side stone diamonds is another crucial factor that can determine the appearance of your engagement ring, as well as other forms of jewelry. The three stone ring is without a doubt the most popular and requires the use of two side stones one of each opposing side of the center diamond. The second most desired design is a Five Stone Engagement Ring which is structured quite similarly with the exception of having two side stones on the left and right side of the large stone, as opposed to just one.

The truth is that you can choose how many side stones you want, provided you take into consideration that the more stones you opt for, the more ring settings you will have to adjust to support each individual stone. That should not necessarily be a discouraging factor, there are after all a lot of diamond rings that implement more than five side stones, but it should definitely be a worthwhile consideration in its price tag and potentially, repair costs in the future.

What Color Should I Choose for My Side Stone Diamonds?

The Color of your Side Stone Diamonds in your jewelry is largely what would determine their effectiveness. For starters they have to match one another completely, or as close as they can be.  Next is considering how they match up with your center, larger piece. Ideally, you want to opt for a grade lower, as to not outshine the main piece, but not too low as to be rendered ineffective and unnatural.

Take a Princess Shaped diamonds with a G Color as a center stone for example. The desired color grade for its supporting side stones would be an H color. 

What Clarity Is the Best for Side Stone Diamonds?

Clarity in side stones is another determining factor which must always be taken into consideration. Eye clean clarity is what you generally want to look for, diamonds that may have various imperfections such as inclusions which would make them less costly, but these imperfections are not visible to the naked eye without magnification. This choice however, is dependent on the jewelry design in question and in rings, the type of settings used which either make imperfections more likely to be visible. Strategically planning this can help you save a lot of money.

When it comes to clarity compared to each stone implemented in your design, much like in color grades you want them to be as close to identical as possible, and compared to the center stone, not more than a grade lower. 

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