A Guide to Ruby Engagement Rings: The Meaning Behind The Hue

Few gemstones capture the heart quite like the ruby. Its fiery red brilliance has captivated royalty and commoners for centuries, symbolising passion, love, and prosperity. But beyond its beauty, the ruby offers a unique allure for the modern jewellery enthusiast. In recent years technological advances have made beautiful ruby fine jewellery more accessible with the advent of lab grown rubies!


The Giselle Ring by Lily Arkwright


Types of ruby

Nature offers a kaleidoscope of ruby hues, ranging from classic deep red to vibrant pinkish-red and even orangey-red variations. The most prized rubies, however, boast a pure, vibrant red known as "pigeon blood." This coveted colour is often associated with Burmese rubies, but ethically-sourced Chatham lab-grown rubies can also achieve this coveted hue. Chatham rubies can achieve this colour because they are grown from the seed of the best Burmese rubies. This process can take up to 6 months and due to the controlled conditions, Chatham are able to create rubies of beautiful colour quality and exceptional clarity.


Are rubies rare?

While not as rare as some gemstones, high-quality rubies are certainly uncommon. Factors like colour, clarity, and carat weight all contribute to a ruby's rarity and value. However, Chatham lab-grown rubies offer a sustainable and ethically-sourced alternative, replicating the natural beauty of mined rubies without environmental impact.


What colour ruby is most valuable?

Rubies range in colour from pinkish red to red to vivid red to the ideal pigeon blood red.The most valuable ruby colour is the aforementioned "pigeon blood" red – a vibrant, saturated red with a hint of blue. This hue signifies exceptional quality and often commands a premium price. The good news? Chatham lab-grown rubies can achieve this coveted colour consistently, ensuring you a stunning and ethically-sourced gemstone.


Are rubies more expensive than diamonds?

The value of a ruby ring depends on various factors, but carat for carat, top-quality rubies can rival diamonds in price. However, with Chatham lab-grown diamonds offering a more affordable and ethical alternative, creating a stunning ruby and diamond ring becomes more accessible.


What does a ruby ring symbolise?

Forget just fiery red – rubies symbolise passion, love, and even prosperity! This makes them a powerful choice for engagement rings, igniting a passionate start. But the symbolism goes deeper. Rubies also represent courage and strength, perfect for anniversary gifts, especially the 40th. The 40th wedding anniversary is colloquially called  the "ruby wedding anniversary" due to the traditional exchange of rubies. It's a celebration of enduring love and the fire that keeps it burning.
Also famous as the birthstone for those born in July, rubies make perfect birthday presents as well as engagement rings. Gemstones can be the perfect way to mark a special month. 
The fiery allure of rubies isn't just about their captivating beauty - they hold a special place in the British Royal Collection for their symbolic meaning. Queen Elizabeth's dazzling array of ruby pieces reflects not just exquisite taste, but also the very essence of a monarch's reign.

Take the Burmese Ruby Tiara, a dazzling cascade of red and white inherited from her mother. The ruby's association with passion perfectly complements the image of a devoted leader. Similarly, the  Crown Ruby necklace (designed by Prince Albert for Queen Victoria), features a central ruby pendant. Rubies have long been tied to prosperity, aligning with the grandeur of the British crown. Owning such a piece wasn't just a display of wealth, but a symbol of enduring legacy. Other iconic royal gemstone jewellery included princess Diana's engagement ring.

How much does a ruby engagement ring cost?

The cost of a ruby engagement ring can vary greatly depending on the size, colour, and clarity of the ruby, as well as the setting and any accompanying diamonds. However, with the availability of ethically-sourced Chatham lab-grown rubies and diamonds, creating a stunning and meaningful engagement ring becomes more attainable. Take a look at Lily Arkwright's extensive coloured gemstone engagement ring collection to find out more.


How are rubies formed?

Natural rubies form deep within the Earth under extreme pressure and heat. Trace amounts of chromium within the crystal structure contribute to the ruby's red colour. Chatham lab-grown rubies replicate this natural process in a controlled environment, ensuring a consistent and ethical source of these beautiful gemstones.

How to identify ruby quality

When selecting a ruby ring, consider the "4Cs" – cut, clarity, colour, and carat weight. Look for a well-cut ruby that maximises its sparkle and fire. Clarity should be high, with minimal inclusions visible to the naked eye. And of course, the colour should be a vibrant red, ideally with a hint of blue for the most valuable "pigeon blood" hue.


The Lily Arkwright Rosa Engagement Ring 


How to tell if a ruby is real

Identifying a real ruby requires specialised equipment and training. However, a reputable jeweller can provide a gem identification report, giving you peace of mind that your ruby is genuine. When choosing a Chatham lab-grown ruby, always ask for a certificate from the manufacturer, ensuring its ethical and sustainable origin.
The ruby ring offers a timeless elegance and captivating beauty. By considering Chatham lab-grown rubies, you can make a conscious choice for a stunning and ethically-sourced gemstone that will be cherished for generations to come.