All The Deets About Kate's Engagement Ring

17 November 2010

Shall we talk about something important, Grazia Daily? How about this: The Ring.

We all know that it's polite to ooh and aah about one's friend's engagement rings even if they're not exactly to our own taste, but the ring that Prince William gave Kate Middleton to mark their engagement is one which needs no false enthusiasm whatsoever. This baby is one spectacular piece of kit.

Here's the science bit: featuring a 12 carat, oval cut Ceylon Sapphire surrounded by 18 diamonds, set in white gold with a narrow yellow gold band, Kate's engagement ring was originally chosen by William's mother, the Princess of Wales, for her engagement to Prince Charles. Costing £28,500 (and that was in 1981- it's value now is supposedly around the £250,000 mark - eep) the ring was one of a selection of eight sent to Diana and Charles by Royal jeweller Garrard, and was unusual in that it was a part of the regular Garrard catalogue and could, in theory, have been purchased by anybody. Anybody with £28,500 to spare.

Worn by Diana even after her separation and divorce from Prince Charles, the ring was initially inherited by Prince Harry (whilst William chose a Cartier watch that had been a favourite of his mother's.) It was later passed to William, who proposed to Kate on holiday in Kenya after - and we love this bit - lugging the ring around in his rucksack for three weeks. William acknowledged the history of the ring yesterday at the flashbulb-fest that was the press conference to mark the couple's engagement, saying 'It’s very special to me. As Kate’s very special to me now, it was right to put the two together'. Being both ridiculously romantic and slightly overemotional, team Grazia Daily is not ashamed to admit that we shed a little tear as William spoke.

In 1981, Diana's ring sparked countless more affordable copies (contrary to what 'Dynasty' might have us believe about the 80s, not everyone was rolling in cash) and according to the NY Daily News it's already happening again, with one jeweller reporting that two dozen lookalike bands had been manufactured as of Tuesday (in a DAY? What are they made of - Lego?) Grazia Daily cannot WAIT to see whether the furore surrounding the ring is going to be as intense for Kate as it was for Diana. Though frankly, if this particular workplace is anything to go by, we already know the answer.

- Alex Butt


Alex Butt is Grazia Daily's self-appointed Royal Correspondent. In coming months, Alex will be reporting on all matters pertaining to the forthcoming nuptials in excruciating detail right here on the site. Should you have any burning questions, style musings or historical facts you would like investigating, Alex would be delighted to hear from you. Please post your thoughts below and Alex will try and pick up on as many as possible in his reports.


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