10 Fascinating Facts: Meghan Markle’s Engagement Ring

The fairy tale story started with roasting chicken.

Ask Prince Harry, he told the BBC it was “a dry roast chicken.”

That’s what was on the Kensington Palace menu when he took to one knee and proposed to Meghan Markle.

The sales of roast chickens may have soard from that day forward but you are here to discover 10 fascinating facts (and intriguing unknowns) about Meghan Markle’s engagement ring. A piece certainly set to become one of the world’s most famous engagement rings.

Before you dive in, feel free to get inspired with a hand drawn sketch of Ms Markle’s diamond engagement ring. Download it right here.

1. How real men buy engagement rings?

As you may know, Prince Harry passed on the opportunity to buy an engagement ring off the brand shelf.

No Garrard, Van Cleef & Arpel, or Cartier stamp on this royal ring.

Instead of designing an engagement ring that countless others could claim, Harry chose bespoke. The stamp of Harry.

Harry handpicked the three diamonds, chose where the gold came from, and took part in the entire design process, creating a truly unique engagement ring, with unrivalled depth and meaning – capturing Meghan’s personal style and taste too.

Harry would of spent countless hours, possibly even sleepless nights finalising every detail, to ensure his royal engagement ring was perfect. In fact, according to Prince Harry, it took him six months to design Meghan’s engagement ring. This truth opens up a number of interesting questions.

Was Meghan involved in any part of the design process? If not, how did Prince Harry factor her personal tastes into the design? (without spoiling the surprise)

Harry’s requirements and personal touches aside, what would he have to know about Meghan to ensure the bespoke ring was a piece that reflected her true personality? On things for sure, to land this royal ring, with the entire world watching, Prince Harry would have had his work cut out.

If you’d like to know 12 things Prince Harry needed to know before commissioning Meghan’s engagement ring, download “When Real Men Say I Do!” 12 design secrets of the world’s most personalised engagement rings.

2. “That’s not a trilogy!” he said.

The world is calling Meghan Markle’s engagement ring design – a “trilogy.”

How accurate is that description?

According to a good friend, who is an old school Hatton Garden jeweller:

“That’s not a trilogy! It has one cushion and two smaller rounds. A true trilogy, features three stones of the exact same shape and size.”

To appease both sides, and for the purpose of accuracy, how else can you describe the timeless design of the new royal ring?

It’s a “three-stone engagement ring,” or quite simply, a “cushion with two rounds.” Not as catchy as “trilogy” but you won’t get stoned by a purist.

3. Three royal diamonds

The centre jewel is a fine African cushion cut diamond, estimated to weight between 3 to 4 carats. The two smaller round diamonds which flank the centre stone come from an item of jewellery in Princess Diana’s private collection

It’s no surprise Prince Harry handpicked a diamond mined in Botswana for the centre stone.

Apart from his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth owning the world’s largest African diamond, weighing a whopping 3,106 carats, taking its illustrious place in the crown jewels, there is a more important reason why Harry overlooked Australian, Canadian, Russian and even trendy lab-grown diamonds. Here’s why…

4. The art of meaningful connection

In the couples first BBC interview, Harry said the following:

“…the main stone itself I sourced from Botswana and the little diamonds either side are from my mother’s jewellery collection, to make sure that she’s with us on this crazy journey together.”

But why an African diamond? You mean apart from the majority of the world’s finest diamonds coming from Africa? And Botswana hosting the highest dollar per carat kimberlite diamond mine in the world? OK, here’s another reason why he settled for an African beauty:

“I first went to Botswana in 1997, straight after my mum died. My dad told my brother and me we were going to Africa to get away from it all. This is where I feel more like myself than anywhere else in the world,” the Prince told ABC News. “I have this intense sense of complete relaxation and normality here,” said Prince Harry.

That’s what the Okavango Delta does to a man. Harry calls Botswana his “second home.” He used Africa’s raw beauty to serenade Meghan Markle when they recently vacationed, and camped in the magical wilderness.

“It’s incredible,” Markle said. “Everything about Harry’s thoughtfulness and the inclusion of [Princess Diana’s two supporting diamonds] and obviously not being able to meet his mom, it’s so important to me to know that she’s a part of this with us.”

"When I first saw the ring, my heart sunk" said Jen.
Discover how to avoid buying a ring she'd prefer to exchange. Take the quick assessment

5. Gap in (diamond) provenance?

One thing’s for sure, its a Botswana diamond. But which mine produced the royal jewel?

Botswana has, at least, six producing diamond mines: Damtshaa, Ghaghoo, Jwaneng, Karowe, Letlhakane, Lerala, and the Orapa diamond mine.

What’s more, Botswana has over 383 diamond kimberlites, many closed diamond mines, and vast diamond tailing dumps scattered across the diamond rich country. Today, these old workings and remnant piles of waste provide a rich bounty for local artisan diggers.

The government classifies the majority of these local artisan diggers as “illegals.” (Which I totally disagree with). This means, there is always a chance that a diamond, like the stone in Meghan Markle’s engagement ring, could have been discovered by a so-called illegal artisan.

What happens after a fine diamond is discovered by an illegal artisan? It will sell instantly, within minutes of discovery. And this illegally discovered or illicit diamond will slip into Botswana’s “legal” diamond supply chain – and quite easily, find its way into a jewellery house in London, New York or Paris.

A diamond dealer with a proper understanding of how the diamond supply chain works – from source, will never discount such a diamond journey.

The point is this: Until we see a certificate of origin from the mine that produced the centre jewel, which I’m certain exists, Meghan Markle’s engagement ring will always have a gap in provenance. That is, in the eyes of most diamond connoisseur’s.

6. The shape of class

The charming cushion shape diamond has a long history – and is one of the oldest diamond cuts.

It was extremely sought after from the late 1800’s to the early 1900’s and is synonymous with elegance and classic beauty.

The modern day cushion is a much improved cut, replacing the early “old mine cut” with a more light-efficient shape and style of faceting.

The cushion cut starts off as a square or like Meghan’s, an elongated rectangle with rounded corners. The cushion cuts pièce de résistance is a result of the larger facets that expel brilliance.

The science of the cushion cuts exquisite light performance sets it apart from other fancy shape diamond cuts.

That’s right, as we speak, Meghan Markle’s cushion cut diamond is swallowing-up sunlight and reflecting it back in a stunning fiery rainbow of shooting colour. (swoon!)

7. Is it really yellow, yellow gold?

“The ring is obviously yellow gold because that’s Megan’s favourite…” said Prince Harry. But there is something else you need to know about Meghan’s metal.

You see, the ring has two main metal components. The band and the setting. The band, is yellow gold. What about the setting, the basket of metal that holds the three diamonds? It is in fact 18 carat white gold.

But why isn’t the setting yellow gold too? If the entire ring was yellow gold, the sparkling “white” diamond would reflect the yellow of the metal, losing the stones true colour. Mother Nature would not be happy with that!

8. Let’s talk ethics

As an ethical jeweller, Wild is most interested in the origin of it’s gold and jewels. What about the gold and jewels used to create Megan’s engagement ring? Where they ethically sourced? Most likely, but get this:

As stated in the above .4) “Gap in (diamond) provenance”, until we see a certificate of origin from the mine that produced the centre jewel, Meghan Markle’s engagement ring will always have a gap in diamond provenance.

What’s more, this gap leaves another unanswered question. How ethical is the royal cushion diamond?

We don’t know enough about it to confirm either way. That’s because we need to know which mine produced the diamond before we can confirm if it was responsibly mined.

"When I first saw the ring, my heart sunk" said Jen.
Discover how to avoid buying a ring she'd prefer to exchange. Take the quick assessment

9. What about the gold in Meghan’s engagement ring?

How ethical is it? It depends on the following.

Did Prince Harry tap into Botswana’s rich gold deposits to create the ring? Did he raid and melt items in his mothers private collection for the gold? Did he use Welsh gold like the Royal Family has done for over 100 years? Maybe Meghan had her way and insisted on using modern Fairtrade or Fairmined gold instead.

The truth is, we just don’t know – yet. But here’s a clue that could help us speculate what gold they did or did not use. In a recent announcement about Megan’s “wedding band,” we are reliably informed: “Ms. Markle’s ring has been fashioned from a piece of Welsh Gold, gifted by Her Majesty The Queen. – Royal.uk

The question is, are both rings created with Welsh gold? If not, what gold did Harry use to create Meghan’s engagement ring?

10. Craftsmanship

The gold ring was custom made by court jewellers Cleave and Company, the Queens preferred jeweller.

What about the centre diamond? Who’s master touch is behind crafting it from a dusty rough African diamond?

Again, nobody knows. But I can confirm, Cleave and Company do not cut and polish diamonds in-house. They source cut gemstones from dealers and wholesalers. What’s the significance of that?

Was the diamond in Meghan Markle’s engagement ring cut at source, in Botswana?

Was it cut in India, where 90% of the world’s diamonds are cut today? Or was it cut on arrival in London, Made in Britain? (Like every jewel used to create Wild Engagement Rings)

True, we know very little about the diamond’s craftsmanship. Hopefully, more detail is revealed in the future. I can’t wait to find out the missing pieces.

What we do know is this: Prince Harry aced Meghan Markle’s engagement ring. Kudos to the lad who has become a man!

 


 

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