The History Behind The Cocktail Ring

Author Corinne DiZoglio
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Date Apr 5, 2018

Speakeasy

When making a statement with jewelry, nothing beats a good cocktail ring! Generally defined as any ring with a large center stone, the term “cocktail ring” dates back to Prohibition and the decade of excess. Read on to learn more about the history of cocktails ring and five stunning, rings currently in our collection!

Cocktail rings date back to the Prohibition era of the 1920’s. During this time, alcohol was banned across the country. Instead of a sober nation, however, Prohibition lead to drinking in secret and the rise of the speakeasy. Here eager drinkers would flock to enjoy a rebellious cocktail like the Sidecar or French 75. For the first time, woman also started going to bars. The stylish and fashionable women of the decade, intent on having a good time, dressed dripping in jewels like multi-strand pearl necklaces, diadems and stacks of bracelets. No jewelry was as symbolic as the cocktail ring though. As a way to fully flaunt their illicit behavior, women wore large, ornamental rings on the same hand that wielded their illegal cocktail, making the act impossible to miss.

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1. 18K TWO-TONE GOLD OPAL AND DIAMOND RING
SOLD!

Cocktail rings showcased large diamonds or other precious gemstones, like emeralds and sapphires, and were often surrounded by pave diamonds. More interesting designs used colorful gemstones such as opals or abstract shapes. First up we have a beautiful two-tone gold opal and diamond ring. The marquise shaped opal is 1.57 cts. and is framed by 32 single cut diamonds. Definitely a standout piece!

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  1. 2. 14K YELLOW GOLD GREEN TOURMALINE AND DIAMOND RING
    SOLD!

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    1. 3. 14K YELLOW GOLD GREEN TOURMALINE AND DIAMOND RING
      ESRG7029 || $1,200 || SHOP NOW

Nowadays, the possibilities for cocktail rings are limited somewhat due to the decreasing availability of large gemstones. As a solution, designers have started using other gemstones such as quartz, tourmaline, blue topaz or citrine, all of which are still available in large sizes. We have two beautiful tourmaline rings currently in our collection. The first is set with an emerald cut green tourmaline and further set with six full cut diamonds. The second is set with a triangular cut green tourmaline and framed by 21 full cut diamonds.

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  1. 4. 14K WHITE GOLD TANZANITE AND DIAMOND RING
    SOLD!

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    2. 5. 14K WHITE GOLD AMETHYST AND DIAMOND RING
      SOLD!

Cocktail rings come in a variety of colors and shapes. Here we have a stunning, tanzanite and diamond ring. The ring is set with a round cut tanzanite (2.08 cts.) in the center and is surrounded by 21 full cut diamonds. Lastly we have an amethyst and diamond ring. This 14k white gold ring is set with a heart shaped amethyst weighing 2.45 carats and framed by 18 single cut diamonds. Both of these rings would make for a bold look!

Whether you’re looking to compliment your cocktail or simply want a standout piece of jewelry, cocktail rings are the perfect additional to any jewelry box!

Want more cocktail rings? Browse our full vintage & estate online collection or visit us in stores to see more fabulous vintage and estate rings!

Vintage & Estate Jewelry - Shop the Collection

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