Knox Jewelers Blog

Minneapolis Minnesota Jeweler Specializing in Custom Design and Unique Engagement Rings.

On Trend for 2016

If you are currently on the hunt for the perfect engagement ring to propose in the upcoming year, then Knox Jewelers has a few suggests of current designs being sought after in our showrooms. With our custom created rings, the possibilities are endless, but there are a few styles that are gaining trend status. We are always ready to help you create the ring of her dreams, maybe one of these listed styles was made just for her.

Nature Inspired

Floral and foliage themes have a long history of symbolizing romantic love when stylized into a piece of jewelry. This tradition has now emerged as a popular motif among engagement rings.  Selecting a nature inspired engagement ring can show her how your love has grown into something beautiful.

Vibrant Centers

A bright, white, scintillating diamond has taken center stage in many dream rings, and we are sure it will continue to. However, those who dream in color have recently been selecting vibrant hues of diamond and sapphire to complete their perfect engagement ring. Both sapphire and diamond naturally occur in every shade of the rainbow, and with a little searching, we are sure we can unite you with your perfect gemstone.


Flip through any fashion magazine and you are sure to spot a hand or two piled high with slim, stacked rings. This style has now found its way into bridal jewelry. We have seen customers opting for solitaire engagement rings and mixing them with several of our custom wedding bands to create their own unique grouping. This trend is ideal for the bride who likes to mix and match.

Antique Inspired

Engagement rings are currently taking a cue from past decades. Vintage inspired details add something of the extraordinary to any custom created piece. All of Knox Jewelers antique detailing like engraving, milgrain and filigree is hand fashioned by our talented goldsmiths. Micro details like these can make all the difference in an heirloom quality ring.

Split Shanks

What is better than one diamond band? Two, of course. Split band engagement rings have been the recent selection of many Knox Jewelers’ patrons. The style mixes well with a variety of center stone shapes and setting styles. Allowing it to be the final touch to any custom engagement ring.

Oval Cut Center

More and more women are stopping in-store and asking if we have oval shaped diamonds to see in person.  A close runner up to the round brilliant, oval shapes are definitely on trend. The shape flatters the finger and has an overall elegant vibe. Any of our custom created engagement rings can be crafted around an oval shape center.

Mixed Metal

Several Knox customers have recently undertaken a bold endeavor by creating their custom engagement rings in two or three tone metals. The warmth of yellow gold and skin flattering rose gold are being paired with the ever popular white metals. These daring combination can highlight the fine details included into your ring and give you a truly one-of-a-kind piece.

Now that you’ve been inspired by our current trends, stop in-store or livechat and let us answer any questions you may have on starting your very own custom engagement ring. The ring of her dreams is waiting to be created!

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Notable Sapphire

Did you know that sapphire is the official birthstone for September? This gemstone has captivated the world for centuries and has long been associated with royalty, wealth, and religion. In fact, the stone is given as a gem for the 5th wedding anniversary. By the end of this short article, you’re going to find out everything you ever wanted to know about sapphires and how you can create the perfect birthstone engagement ring or custom jewelry with Knox Jewelers.

1. Sapphires don’t have to be blue!

Knox Jewelers' Design 2544

Sapphires are known around the world for their vibrant blue color. However, this gemstone is characterized by any corundum (a type of mineral) that doesn’t qualify as a ruby and isn’t red in color. It’s a little-known fact that sapphires can be gray, orange, purple, yellow, and even black!

2. Sapphires are associated with royalty.

Knox Jewelers' Design 3032

Sapphires symbolizes truth, faithfulness, nobility and sincerity and for centuries have been associated with romance and royalty. The world’s most famous sapphire? Perhaps the one in Princess Diana’s engagement ring – given to her by Prince Charles. Because of this, sapphires evoke connotations of fairy tale and royalty. Sapphires made the news again when Prince William gave this then-fiance Kate Middleton an engagement ring with the mineral – just like his father did more than 20 years before.

3. Sapphires have an illustrious history.

Despite its connections to modern-day royalty, sapphires have long been associated with monarchs throughout history. In fact, kings and queens believed that blue sapphires protected them from harm in ancient Rome and Greece. In the Middle Ages, priests would wear sapphires – the mineral was an instantly recognizable symbol of heaven. Even today, people wear sapphires to protect them from spirits or enemies – making this birthstone one of the most popular in the world.

4. Orange and pink sapphires are among the most rare.

Knox Jewelers' Design 2351

Different colored sapphires are becoming increasingly popular, especially those which are found in Sri Lanka. These sapphires range from light to medium tones of orange and pink and instantly catch the eye. These vibrant gems carry the name Padparadscha, meaning color of the Lotus Flower in Sanskrit. This shade of sapphire is among the rarest natural colored sapphire.

5. Sapphires are really strong.

Not a lot of people know this, but sapphires are really strong. In fact, they are the strongest natural gemstones in the world – second to diamonds. These gemstones can be found in various locations around the world, including Cambodia, China, Australia, Kashmir, and Madagascar.

6. Blue sapphires are still the most sought-after.

Sapphire Seville ring design by Knox Jewelers.

Despite sapphires coming in a wide range of colors, the most popular are still those with a concentrated blue hue which stays consistent under different lighting conditions. This gemstone is often given as a gift to friends, family members and partners for special occasions and is seen as being extremely valuable in various cultures and countries around the world.

7. Sapphires have been found in large sizes.

Most sapphires mined today weigh under two carats, but larger gems can be found. The Millennium Sapphire is the world’s largest polished and cut sapphire, weighing a whopping 61,500 karats! Many large sapphires are kept in museums in cities around the world.

8. Synthetic sapphires are sometimes used in jewelry.

Knox Jewelers' Design 3065

This September birthstone can also be created synthetically – the first being in 1902. These can be difficult to distinguish from natural sapphires by the untrained eye, and they are often used as an alternative in jewelry.

9. Color-changing sapphires actually exist!

Knox Jewelers' Design 2127.

Color-changing sapphires do actually exist and display different hues in various lights. Color change sapphires appear blue when in natural light but a violet color in artificial light. Most natural sapphires undergo heat treatment to improve their clarity and color – a practice which can prevent the birthstone from chipping or breaking.


Looking for a unique engagement ring that will wow your partner? A piece of jewelry that will make the ultimate gift? You’ve come to the right place! Knox Jewelers specializes in unique custom jewelry and engagement rings, including antique designs. We pride ourselves on the customer service we provide and offer lifetime warranty, maintenance services, and trade-in. We can search for sapphires in every color imaginable, which can add some sparkle to an engagement ring or jewelry piece. If sapphire’s not your thing, we can custom create rings in every shape, size, and type of gemstone.

So, what are you waiting for? Contact Knox Jewelers today for more information about our custom jewelry and engagement rings.

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What is a Round Brilliant Cut?

Knox Jeweler's Brittany Lennea custom designed ring.


A Round Brilliant Cut is the modern era’s most popular selection for diamond jewelry. This perfected cut represents six generations of skilled cutters’ efforts to create the maximum light return in a diamond.  A Brilliant Cut has a circular outline and a cone-like shape, with faceting patterns that create areas of light and dark contrast. Its triangular and quadrilateral facets are strategically placed to provide exceptional scintillation through the top facet of the gemstone, or its table. The faceting pattern of the modern Round Brilliant was developed in 1919 by Marcel Tolkowsky. Hailing from a family of diamond cutters, Marcel’s cut is based off mathematical calculations that took into account both the maximum brilliance and fire of a diamond. It is referenced to as a ‘Round Brilliant’ to distinguish it from earlier round shaped diamond cuts. The modern round cut consists or either 57 or 58 facets.  There are 33 on its crown, or top, and 25 on its pavilion, or bottom. A round brilliant may or may not include a culet, or the bottom-most point facet. Tolkowsky found that if a diamond is cut too shallow or too deep light can escape out of the side or bottom of the gemstone, resulting in the loss of brilliance and fire.

Round Brilliant Facet Diagram

This illustration shows the facet arrangement of a modern round brilliant. © GIA

Considering a Round Brilliant Cut

Round Brilliant Cut diamonds are admired for their exceptional fire and modern aesthetic.  Nearly 75% of diamonds sold in today’s marketplace are round shaped.  The Gemological Institute of America, or GIA, introduced the 4Cs grading system to judge diamonds, with its cut grade exclusively created to evaluate Round Brilliant diamonds. A cut grade will determine how well a gemstone interacts with light.  A well-cut diamond will reflect light within itself, from one mirror-like facet to another. If a diamond is dark it means it has been cut too deep or too shallow and light is being lost through the side or bottom. This reduces its brilliance and value, and for this reason we recommend a cut grade of no lower than Excellent or Very Good when shopping for a Round Brilliant diamond.

Knox Jeweler's Meghan Renee custom designed ring.

A Round Brilliant’s faceting pattern will hide a small amounts of body color when face up, but we still recommend choosing a diamond above a I color grade to insure a near colorless stone.  When selecting a clarity grade for a Round Brilliant we recommend anything in the VS1 to SI2 range. A stone graded above an SI1 should be eye clean. Clear diamonds can be found in the SI1 and SI2 range, but it is best to evaluate them in person to determine if their characteristics are distracting or unnoticeable.

Knox Jewelers' custom designed ring.

Knox Jewelers is here to help you create a one-of-a-kind custom engagement ring. If you are considering a Round Brilliant center stone, our design consultants can walk you through all of your options and help you choose your perfect diamond. Contact us today to get started on your custom design.

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What is a Step Cut?


A Step Cut categorizes any gemstone with a square or rectangle outline whose facets are rectilinear and arranged parallel to its girdle. In the place of a culet, Step Cut  gemstones have a keel running the length of its pavilion. A Step Cut’s facets tend to be larger than its counterpart, the Round Brilliant. The facets also form a stair-like pattern, ergo its appropriate title. Diamonds cut in this fashion are among the first fashioned diamonds in history.

Common Step Cut Shapes

Emerald Cut

An Emerald Cut is a rectangle shaped Step Cut with truncated or angled corners, which gives it an octagonal outline.  Like all Step Cuts it holds rows of pavilion and crown facets that are parallel to its girdle. It is available in many length to width ratios, but the most sought after is the 1:1.5. The Emerald Cut has portrayed glamour and sophistication for decades, explaining its popularity with the royal and famed populations. An Emerald Cut diamond takes center stage in out Barcelona Engagement Ring below.

Asscher Cut

The Asscher Cut is essentially  a square variation of the Emerald Cut. It features similar truncated corners, octagonal shape and parallel running facets.  Asscher Cuts tend to hold a greater depth compared to an Emerald Cut.  Their unique octagon shape is famed for its connection to the daring Art Deco Jewelry of the 1920s and 1930s. An Asscher Cut diamond completes our Siempre Engagement Ring below.

Baguette Cut

The Baguette  Cut, which derives its name from the French loaf of bread, is the most common form of Step Cut seen today, though it is often used as an accent side stone not a center gemstone.  This cut does not feature the angled corners common to other Step-Cuts. Usually taking the supporting role in a piece of jewelry, the Baguette Cut does not emit a large amount of scintillation but its form adds a stylish and sleek accent. Tapered Baguette Cut diamonds compliment the center Emerald Cut in our Lucille Engagement Ring.

Carré Cut

A Carré Cut is a square shaped Step Cut without truncated corners. This cut was very popular in antique jewelry before the arrival of the modern square Princess Cut. An example of this cut can be seen featured in our Passion Engagement Ring as channel set side diamonds.

Considering a Step Cut

Step Cut gemstones are admired for their traditional outlines and understated elegance.

With a Step-Cut’s long facets and large table imperfections are not hidden well.  Inclusions may be seen with the naked eye in lower clarity grade diamonds. To ensure your center stone is clear, we recommend looking for Step Cut diamonds with a clarity grade of  VS2 and higher.

Step Cut style faceting does create a less scintillating stone compared to a round Brilliant Cut diamond.  Scintillation in a diamond often masks small amounts of body color. This means Step Cut diamonds will need a higher color grade to be bright white. We recommend looking for a Step Cut diamond with a color grade of G and higher.

In colored gemstones, Step Cuts are employed to enhance richness and saturation. Their large tables and deep pavilions draw in light creating intensified colors and mesmerizing your eye.

Knox Jewelers is here to help you create the engagement ring of your dreams. If you are considering a Step Cut center stone, our design consultants can walk you through all of your options and help you choose your perfect diamond. Contact us today to get started on your custom design.

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Peridot – August’s Gem of Legend

Peridot, the August birthstone,  is one of the most sought after green gems, and is said to bring the wearer luck and a sense of tranquility. It is known for its glistening yellowish-green hue. Ranging from a lime green to olive color, and sometimes a deeper brown shade, it is without a doubt that peridot is a gorgeous gemstone. This article takes a close look at this August birthstone, including its history and how you can land yourself astonishing custom made jewels.
These two examples from GIA’s Dr. Eduard J. Gubelin Collection, a 10.09-ct oval peridot from Norway, and an 8.13-ct from round peridot from Pakistan display the gem’s finest colors. GIA

About peridot

Peridot is the gemstone form of olivine, a common mineral that is found in lava rocks. The gemstone forms deep inside the earth, and is brought to the surface by volcanic action. It is mainly found inside lava flows in countries like China, the U.S and Vietnam. It can also be found inside solidified molten rock in some regions – Pakistan, Mynmar and Zabargad. In some rare occasions, it can be as a result of extraterrestrial activity, being found inside fallen meteorites.

Peridot is chemically composed of Iron and Magnesium. It is one of the Idiochromatic gems, meaning it derives its color from the chemical composition rather than its impurities. It thus exhibits a narrow range of colors. It is found in shades of olive green, lime green and a brown-green to yellowish green hue. The yellowish-green color is the most common shade found in august birthstone jewelry, and it is a result of the iron content.

Significance and Symbology

Peridot produces a soft, light green glow under artificial light, which has earned the name “the evening emeralds.” The gemstone is associated with peace, prosperity and goodness. In Hawaii, the stone is believed to represent the tears of Pele, the goddess of fire and volcanoes.

Although large crystals are available to cut impressive gems above 10-cts., smaller size rough is still vastly more abundant. GIA


Peridot is among the oldest known gemstones. References of the august birthstone go all the way back to the Bible, where it is referred to by its Hebrew name “Pitdah”. It is believed that “topaz”, which was on the breast plate of the High Priest Aaron in the Old Testament, was actually a peridot.

Historically, the gemstone was used to create beads during the Ancient Egyptians era around 1580 B.C to 1350 B.C. The Egyptians associated it with light, and it was even referred to as the “gem of the sun.” On top of being used to create beads, it was believed to protect the wearer from evil. The Egyptians mined the stone from a Red Sea island called Topazios, the current day Island of Zabargad.

Peridot was also popular gemstone in other early civilizations. In Greece, it was believed to bring dignity to the wearer. It was also a prized gemstone in the Ottoman Empire, as well as among the Turkish Sultans, who are believed to have owned the largest collection of peridots in the world.

Throughout history, peridot gemstones have been confused with other gems. It is one of the many gems that have been referred to as “topaz.” It is also believed that the famous gemstones worn by Queen Cleopatra were in fact peridots, and not emeralds as many people believed.

Today, peridot is one of the most prized gemstones, mainly due to its soothing hues and its long, colorful history.
Peridot and white gold stud earrings

Custom Made Peridot Jewelry

If you are in search of custom created august birthstone jewelry, Knox Jewelers is the place to be. We specialize in crafting custom designed jewelry, ranging from engagement rings to pendants and earrings. Peridot gems are a perfect birthday gift for people born in August. You can consult with Knox Jewelers to create an original design for the perfect birthstone jewelry.

Here at Knox, we have a wealth of experience in creating custom masterpiece jewelry from gemstones, having been designing engagement rings and other jewelry for decades. We employ skilled artisans who are always at hand, ready to make your dream come true. Our jewelry is of the highest quality, and it is guaranteed to stand the test of time.

To own a custom design of peridot jewelry, contact one of our knowledgeable consultants today.

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