The Flower Setting: A Complete Guide

by * Aug 17, 2021

Key Takeaways

  • Like the cluster setting, a flower setting makes use of smaller stones to create a precise and intricate floral shape. This gives the ring a unique and beautiful vibe, unlike any other.
  • It also has the ability to make the center stone look bigger than it actually is, but only if you aim for a far larger center stone to pop against the outer diamonds.
  • The only thing to beware of is the practicality, due to the shape of the setting, it is easier to snag and harder to clean. Plus, smaller stones simply don’t have the impact of larger stones, so make sure you invest more attention into the center diamond.
  • Charming, unique and the perfect eye catcher; the flower setting could be a great option, but it’s not without its negatives. Make sure to weigh everything together before going for it.
round cut diamond ring with flower shape

There are few things in life more romantic than fresh cut flowers – except, of course, a sparkling engagement ring fresh out the box. In the flower setting, these two mainstays of romantic film and literature have been combined together to create something strikingly modern, but clearly inspired by more organic shapes.

It is, undoubtedly, a beautiful and eye-capturing design, but there are a few things you should know about this unique setting before falling head over heels for it…

What Is a Flower Diamond Setting?

With this design, many smaller stones are set closely around a larger, central diamond. It’s a bold take on the more traditional cluster setting, designed to represent the pattern created by a flower’s petals.

Unlike the more traditional halo setting, these diamonds are intentionally set to create a rippled or uneven shape around the center stone, effectively giving it a more organic silhouette. For this reason, the flower setting typically looks much more effective against round or oval cut diamonds, although it can be used on any shape.

Similarly, the center stone can be large or small, with different sizes creating very different effects, and the accent stones can be layered or arranged in a single band around the center diamond.

Will a Flower Setting Make a Diamond Look Bigger?

Yes, all cluster settings like the flower can play a trick on the eye, and make it look as though the central diamond is considerably bigger than it really is.

It does, however, depend on the size of the diamond. If the center diamond is only marginally bigger than the accent stones, this could achieve the opposite effect. The results will still be beautiful, and create a great amount of sparkle on the finger, but it probably won’t make your 0.5 carat diamond look like a 1.5 carat diamond.

Aim for a noticeable difference in size between the inner and outer diamonds if you want to make that center stone look a little bigger than it really is.

Do Flower Settings Sparkle?

Kind of. All diamonds sparkle, large or small, but a lower surface area means a different kind of sparkle not quite on a par with one large solitaire diamond.

The unique way a diamond sparkles is also known as its ‘light performance’ – which is, in turn, primarily determined by the cut, clarity and size of the diamond.

More facets cut into the stone mean that the light refracts off more surfaces, and creates more flashes of light. A better clarity means fewer blemishes to interrupt the light’s path through the center of the diamond. And, most important to the flower setting, a larger carat weight generally means a larger surface area to receive and emit light.

If your flower setting is built around a large center stone, then the ‘smaller’ sparkles of the accent stones creating the petals will simply amplify that diamond’s light performance.

If, on the other hand, your diamonds are all on the small side, you’ll notice a significant difference between that ring’s sparkle, and, say, a solitaire diamond ring.

Don’t get us wrong – the effect will be beautiful – but it just might not be as beautiful and mesmeric and breathtaking as the more popular diamond engagement rings we discuss on this site.

Is the Flower Setting Practical?

Not exactly. The unique, petalled shape of the flower setting makes it much more likely that the wearer will snag or catch it on her clothing, bag, or even the bedsheets while she sleeps.

Like a real flower, this setting should be considered one of the more delicate options, and could easily require to more frequent trips to the jeweler, who will check the prongs and diamonds for any signs of damage, than a setting better suited to an active or busy life.

The smoother the edge of the setting, the less likely It is to get caught on loose fibers, or anything else that could begin to undermine the prongs holding those diamonds in place. 

For this reason, we wouldn’t recommend this for anyone with a physically demanding job – instead, if you like the look of a cluster setting, we’d suggest you take a look at a pavé halo setting, which will offer a little more security during daily wear.

Another thing to consider is cleaning. Any fine or intricate parts of a diamond ring make keeping it clear of dust, oil, makeup, and moisturizer a pretty big chore – more than if it held a simpler shape. You’ll still only need to follow the usual directions on how to care for a diamond ring, but you may need to do it more often – and spend a little longer on those little accent stones – than others in order to maintain its shine.

twisted wide diamond ring

Is the Flower Setting a More Affordable Choice?

Yes and no. If you’re planning on using a much smaller diamond, and making it look bigger with accent stones, then that part of the cost will most likely work out much cheaper than investing into a considerably larger diamond. However, the flower setting is complex, and requires more time, skill, and attention from the jeweler to get right – which will cost a premium.

Like any diamond engagement ring, its total cost depends on a long list of factors. The diamond is the biggest expense, and if you find a settling that allows you to invest in one with a low carat weight, you’ll potentially save thousands.

Our Verdict

The flower setting is a charming design ideally suited to those with a real flair for vintage styles, but it does mean that you and the intended wearer will need to make a few compromises. While you might be happy to invest in a ring that will require a little more maintenance than some of the other styles available, sparkle is a whole different story.

A large part of our fascination with diamonds lies in their unrivalled fire and brilliance – those flashes of white and colored light that erupt whenever the light hits. This means that a big part of your investment goes toward that sparkle.

In a flower engagement ring setting, unless your budget can stretch to a large center stone (on top of those accent diamonds) you’ll need to sacrifice that fire and brilliance for a smaller, more muted glitter that may not look quite as beguiling in person as it does in a picture.

Your best bet? Visit the jeweler and ask to see what they have in this style – experiencing it in person will cinch the deal one way or the other.