Princess Eugenie, daughter of Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson, (and, of course, granddaughter of the Queen) has just revealed her engagement to long-term partner, wine merchant Jack Brooksbank.
He is said to have proposed last month, while the couple were visiting the Central American country of Nicaragua. Upon their return to London, the pair commissioned a gorgeous, unique engagement ring to their own design. There’s been a lot of buzz surrounding this amazing piece of jewellery, so here’s EST’s lowdown on that special ring.
Mounted in 18ct gold, this special ring is set with a stunning pink Padparadscha Sapphire and is encircled by a number of round and pear-cut white diamonds in a cluster style. The classic yellow gold band gives this ring a timeless charm and is very reminiscent of the engagement ring given to Eugenie’s mother, Sarah Ferguson, by Prince Andrew in 1986.
Ferguson’s engagement ring featured a bright red Burmese ruby, surrounded by pear-cut white diamonds on a gold band. It’s very similar in design to Eugenie’s engagement ring, and may well have inspired the newly engaged couple as they went through the exciting process of designing their own.
Coloured diamonds and gemstones are becoming a more popular choice for engagement rings than ever before, most notably since Prince William proposed to Kate Middleton with Princess Diana’s brilliant blue sapphire engagement ring in 2010. Rose gold and pink tones – dubbed ‘millennial pink’ – are also heavily in-style at the moment, allowing Eugenie’s ring to look both classic and trendy at the same time.
The Padparadscha sapphire
When most people think of sapphires, they think of the colour blue. While this is the most common colour for a sapphire, they can in fact naturally occur in orange, green, purple and yellow, and sometimes have a mix of two or more of these colours. The colour a sapphire will be depends on the trace amounts of iron, copper, magnesium and other elements that are present in the stone.
Princess Eugenie’s stunning pinkish orange Padparadscha sapphire is a very rare coloured variety which can only be found Sri Lanka, Vietnam or parts of East Africa. The name Padparadscha is derived from the Sanskrit ‘padma ranga’, which means lotus blossom. It is named after the lotus flower due to their similar colour and natural beauty.
Most Padparadscha gems are small, at less than two carats in weight. The stunning pinkish-orange colour of these gemstones catches the light when cut and polished, to produce an eye-catching twinkle. The colour of good a quality Padparadscha sapphire also appears to brighten or deepen depending on the light, which gives them a transformative and mysterious appearance.
How much did it cost?
As with all sapphires, the value hinges enormously on the origin and colour of the stone. The clarity of Padparadscha sapphires is also extremely important, as their light colour tones can reveal small imperfections which are naturally hidden in the darker blue variety. It’s likely that Princess Eugenie’s engagement ring is a quality stone of excellent clarity given her status as a member of the Royal family.
High end auction house Christie’s recently sold this very similar ring (which contains a 28ct Padparadscha sapphire) for a whopping £1,730,000! This highlights the potential value of these wonderfully rare gemstones, particularly when the clarity is good.
Many values for Princess Eugenie’s ring have been guessed at, but as the couple haven’t yet revealed exactly who made the ring and the specifics of the design, it’s very hard to tell. One thing’s for sure: you just can’t put a price on love.
Browse our brilliant and unique selection of pre-loved rings here to find the perfect ring at a price you’ll love.