Glossary: Pavé Diamonds
Translated as ‘pavement’ in French, pavé settings describe diamonds that are set close together in a way that resembles a road made out of diamonds. The ring is basically ‘paved’ with glittering diamond gemstones, creating a continuous sparkle. This sought-after setting maximizes brilliance while creating a compelling eye-line that leads directly to the center stone.
What is a Pavé Diamond?
While often used to refer to diamonds, the term “pavé” doesn’t actually describe an actual diamond or even the cut of the gemstone. Instead, pavé essentially refers to the setting style.
There are three kinds of pavé settings: petite pavé, micro-pavé and pavé. With petite pavé and micro-pave settings, smaller prongs are used to hold the diamond gemstones in place. Pavé settings are set with larger, more prominent prongs, which creates more of a cobblestone appearance.
Since the difference between the three types centers on prong size and prominence, it’s best to view several designs to see what suits your personality and style. More visible prongs may accentuate a larger diamond in a pavé setting. If your ring features bigger diamonds in a pavé setting, a regular pavé style may look best. If you want a design that provides the illusion of a near-seamless row of gemstones, micro-pavé will work better. A mid-size compromise, petite pavé is best for those who want a small glint of metal.
Traditionally, pavé details feature round brilliant diamonds because the shape creates maximum sparkle at any size. Since many pavé designs include smaller carat weights, it’s best to use a shape that will provide optimal brilliance. Round brilliant diamonds also create the desired cobblestone effect.
The Benefits of Pavé
All three pavé settings are beautiful, and there are several stylish ways to include the designs in various jewelry pieces. Jewelers often use pavé details to:
- Illuminate center stones with a halo
- Accentuate larger center stones in engagement rings
- Add a subtle brilliance and sparkle to dainty wedding bands
- Create tiers of diamond gemstones without adding bulk to a ring design
The beauty of pavé diamond settings lies in their simplicity. A nice row of small pavé diamonds adds just the right amount of extra fire to accentuate the beauty of bigger stones
Many ring designs include a row of pavé diamonds within the engagement ring band. This forms an eye-line directly to the eye-catching center stone. Pavé accents are also popular among buyers who want some accent stones without the added bulk of traditional side stones. That said, pavé diamonds don’t have to be tiny. The right jeweler can craft designs that feature larger diamonds that create a show-stopping multi-carat statement ring.
Many people love the look of eternity rings, which include an unbroken line of scintillating diamonds or colorful gemstones. Pavé wedding rings or engagement rings can be styled in a beautiful eternity setting. This design ensures that no matter how the piece turns, the design stays the same. Wedding bands will often roll around the finger, and this can frustrate people who want their designs front-and-center. With eternity bands, the design always looks the same no matter how the ring moves on the hand.
Whether you choose petite pavé, micro-pavé, or pavé diamonds, this striking diamond accent style will add interest and sparkle to any ring. You can use pavé details to boost brilliance, attract the eye to a center stone, draw a halo around a diamond gemstone, or “pave” the whole ring with glittering roads of diamonds.
There are pavé designs to fit every personality. That said, when weighing the pros and cons of any diamond setting, it all comes down to personal preferences. What might seem like a negative to some can seem like a big benefit to someone else. This is why it's essential to talk to a knowledgeable expert who can provide sound guidance that will help you determine whether a specific design is right for your situation.
Every person’s diamond search is unique. At John Atencio, our attentive experts can help you find the perfect carat, cut, style and setting. Paired with a lovely John Atencio jewelry design, our stunning diamonds result in a breathtaking expression of luxury and unlike anything else.
Explore our diamond search or schedule an appointment at one of our many locations, where our expert team will provide a personalized approach to help you find the best diamond option for your jewelry.