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Sunday, June 26, 2005

      Money can buy Love and Diamonds

It is not lately that the world is engagement ring crazy. The first known celebrity diamond engagement ring was in 1477 Medieval Europe uniting the houses of Hapsburg and Burgundy. Maximilian I of Austria commissioned a diamond ring for his bride Mary of Burgundy. But when it comes to engagement rings, the celebrity world has slightly different rules. Big is beautiful - and often very expensive. Celebrity engagement rings set a standard for luxury and people often look up to them for ideas and to bask in their glory.

Nothing holds as much intrigue as the huge engagement rings that brides of Hollywood flash around tinsletown. By now, most of the world knows about J. Lo.'s 6-carat pink diamond from Harry Winston. But other ladies have equally enviable rocks.

For Brad Pitt, buying a ready-made diamond for Jennifer Aniston wouldn't do. He had one made to his instructions. (He also designed their wedding bands.) The Aside band in white gold with .18 carats of diamonds was the result. Of course, this isn't the first ring that Pitt has designed.

Director Guy Ritchie put some personal thought into the Edwardian Ring he gave Madonna; the platinum Neil Lane ring had a decorative band and three large stores to symbolize their family.

All of Hollywood was buzzing when Catherine Zeta-Jones sported her 10-carat antique diamond engagement ring from Michael Douglas, reminding us of the days when Liz Taylor stunned the world with the Taylor-Burton diamond. Douglas and Zeta-Jones prove once again that in Hollywood, size definitely matters.

Young Jessica Simpson's engagement ring from Nick Lachey contains a four-carat pear shaped diamond flanked with two more stones, set in platinum.

Amethyst Engagement RingNot everyone goes the traditional route. Colored gemstones are a stunning departure from tradition and often catch the eye more than plain diamonds. American Beauty star Mena Suvari chose to use her birthstones -- amethysts and citrines -- when she married her husband, cinematographer Robert Brinkmann. The stones are set in an asymmetrical design around a gold band. I particularly like this Amethyst ring from MontRED. They carry some pretty nice colored gemstone rings.

Having taken a gander at some of the recent rings blinding everyone on the red carpet, could it be more about getting a piece of jewellery worth a small Caribbean island on your hand than marrying the man of your dreams?

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