From Victorian sweetness to romantic horror, gothic engagement rings are highly symbolic choices for many couples who embrace a gothic lifestyle. While many of these rings are unique alternatives to traditional engagement rings, there are also stunning vintage styles that will appeal to many couples interested in distinctive and unusual engagement ring designs.
About Gothic Styles
When many people think of a "gothic" style, they picture dark, heavy makeup, black clothes, and a generally dismal attitude. The gothic style, however, is richly symbolic. Many designs for gothic rings use heavy symbolism and specialized designs to create beautiful and meaningful rings.
Types of Gothic Engagement Rings
There are two basic types of gothic style rings: those that symbolize the romantic side of the gothic medieval movements, and those that symbolize the romantic horror of contemporary gothic culture. Both gothic styles are usually made from silver metals to show a starker contrast between the design and any gems or inlaid engravings, and the cooler color of a silver metal is more appropriate to gothic symbolism. Modern rings, however, may use specialized metals such as black titanium or heavier tungsten for a contemporary touch.
Gothic romance is filled with natural beauty and distinction. Gothic rings that embrace this romance may use many different designs, such as:
- Filigree patterns, particularly with flowers, vines, or leaves
- Antique engagement ring designs with bold metalwork and colored semi precious gemstones
- Detailed scrollwork, such as Celtic engagement rings and similar designs
- Colored gemstones such as amethyst, ruby, garnet, onyx, or black diamonds for a true gothic touch
The gothic horror movement is more contemporary and embraces darker symbolism that is no less rich. While many people may consider gothic symbolism unsuitable for romantic love, in fact it often illustrates a couple's commitment "'till death do they part." Imagery and designs commonly found on these gothic engagement rings include:
- Gothic crosses
These symbols may stand alone or they may be part of a highly detailed and intricate ring design. Poison boxes - small rings with a hidden compartment in the setting - are particularly popular gothic ring designs that use both darker imagery as well as elaborately detailed designs. To add a romantic touch to a poison box ring, fill it with a secret love note or a lock of hair.
Where to Find Gothic Rings
Gothic engagement rings can be difficult to find because they are not classic engagement ring designs. Specialty jewelers who focus on antique or gothic styles may carry a limited selection, but a wider range of ring styles is available through online retailers such as:
When searching for gothic rings, it is also possible to use search terms such as biker, pagan, or Wicca rings to find similar styles with gothic elements. Engagement ring prices for gothic styles range from less than $50 to $1,000 or higher depending on the ring design, gemstones, quality, precious metals, customization, and other factors.
Proposing with a Gothic Ring
Proposing with a gothic ring can be similar to a classic marriage proposal on bended knee or it may involve some elements of gothic culture. To add a gothic touch to this special question, consider:
- Including fire. Fire is a highly ceremonial element for many gothic rituals, and either a fireplace or candles can add a touch of heat to this romantic question.
- Nighttime proposals. Most gothic culture ceremonies are sunset or nighttime events, and proposing beneath a full moon, vivid star field, or otherwise in the darker hours is the perfect way to emphasize the symbolism of the gothic ring.
- Privacy. Any ceremonial function that invokes gothic styles is sacred and should be kept intimate and private.
Gothic rings are richly symbolic and exquisitely detailed, and they can be the perfect choice for a couple who shares a love not only of one another, but of the gothic lifestyle and culture. By choosing such a symbolic ring, the couple declares their love for one another and shows their pride in their own uniqueness.