Diamonds come in a multitude of different shapes, colors, clarities, cuts and setting combinations. Lets explore one of the most commonly used setting styles, Pavé.
WHAT IS A PAVÉ ENGAGEMENT RING?
First lets understand what pavé means. Pavé is French in origin and means "paved". What does a paved surface have to do with diamonds you may ask? When diamonds are set in the pavé style, it means that they are set in close proximity to other small diamonds on a row or plane (surface) being held in place by very small bits of metal in between them. Because the metal is set low and small, this gives the row or plane a sparkling smooth or "paved" look. It looks as if there is no breaks between the diamonds.
When we us this beautiful setting for diamond engagement rings, and the resulting effect accentuates the center stones or main stones. You may see this technique used to wrap around a single solitare engagement ring, which transforms it into a "halo" style engagement ring. It also gives the ring a more grand and special look. The addition of these smaller diamonds also raises the total diamond carat count and the overall value of ring.
WHAT IS MICRO-PAVÉ?
In addition to the standard the small sizes of stones mentioned above, some engagement rings or wedding bands may come with very small diamonds on the head or band. This may be for budget considerations or for a specific thin, elegant look that you may be trying to achieve. Whatever the reason, this is a very popular setting style as well. In a micro-pavé setting you see these more numerous diamonds and set them next to each other in a much more densely packed arrangement. This more densely packed arrangement is the root of the setting name, micro-pavé.
PROBLEMS RELATED TO PAVÉ AND MICRO-PAVÉ DIAMOND RINGS?
Pavé diamond engagement rings and wedding bands project a beautiful, elegant and delicate look. They accent any stone or setting type. However, they do have a couple small problems that many newly married couples and diamond ring buyers face quite frequently. Loosing stones, whether they are set with diamonds or small colored stones, pavé and micro-pavé rings use smaller metal beads or prongs to hold them in place. These smaller fixtures are not as secure as traditional prongs which hold larger center and side stones.
Additionally, cleaning becomes more difficult when you are working on small stones which have a tendency to come loose more frequently than prong set diamonds. A good rule of thumb is to clean the ring gently with a gem cleaning solution and/or water and a soft application tool for the solution. Typically the come together in jewelry cleaning kits. However, remember to be gentile and thorough.
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