Claw setting – Is four or six safest for my diamond engagement ring?

Claw setting – Is four or six safest for my diamond engagement ring?

Written by Alec Page on 20 June 2016

The claw setting or clasp setting is perhaps the most popular choice for an engagement ring. It looks like small claws that rise up and grasp the diamond, holding it in place. While holding the diamond or gemstone it shows off the stone as much as possible, letting in maximum light, ensuring the stone is bright and visible. Typically used to hold a large central stone or multiple featured stones, this setting can hold many gemstones in varying shapes or sizes.

It is one of the most traditional setting types and comes in many different options. Varying the shape, number, orientation of the claws or metal type can give a more contemporary feel and updates this traditional look.

Claw settings vary, based on the shape of the diamond or gemstone they are holding. With many round shapes you frequently see four or six claws, but either number of claws work just as well. A princess cut or pear shape diamond will often feature claws that take on a “V” shape’’, and are designed to protect the sharply angled corners but there are many more setting style options.

A four-claw setting allows you to see more of the stone and offers a limited amount of metal coverage on your diamond. It will let in more light, allowing your diamond to sparkle brightly. Some believe the position of a four claw setting at the 2, 4, 8 and 10 o’clock position creates a cleaner/ geometric look to the ring. Claws can also be set in a north-east-south-west orientation, which will give a different feel to your engagement ring. Some feel it creates the illusion of making the diamond feel bigger. Ultimately it is personal preference rather than the safety of the diamond.

A six claw setting gives your diamond a much more detailed look. Six evenly-spaced claws placed around a diamond form a hexagonal shape. Some people believe this may make the diamond look rounder and bigger when viewed from a distance. This is also a visual preference.

Although four or six claws are more common, eight is also possible and even odd numbers or as many as you choose. As a gemstone increases in size, often so too does the amount of claws. The safest rule is the more claws the safer the setting. This does not mean however that a four claw setting is in any way unsafe. It is more of a visual design choice. Here at Harriet Kelsall Bespoke Jewellery Design we take every care to ensure your diamond or gemstone setting is safe and secure. If you are unsure what setting type is best for your engagement ring idea please feel free to ask us, as we would be more than happy to help suggest the best option for you and your design.

The best way to keep your diamond or gemstone secure in an existing setting would be to get it checked over every couple of years to ensure the claws are tight and secure. Think of your engagement ring as you would any precious item you own. For example would you drive your car around every day for years at a time and not take it to a garage to get a service? Your engagement ring is so important and special to you; just remember to take care of it as you would any other precious items you own to ensure it will remain perfect for a life time.