The Knot: 3 Awesome Alternative Engagement Ring Styles to Consider

The Knot | Gem Gossip

We are incredibly pumped to reveal some exciting news–I am going to be contributing monthly features over at The Knot! The online destination and magazine are both leaders in all things bridal, reaching 8 out of 10 brides in America with more than 11 million monthly unique visitors! I’m looking forward to applying my gemological knowledge and style expertise, along with my taste and creative energy, to The Knot and reach a larger audience.

Look out for my posts–I will be sharing them on my social media platforms and I will try to post them here as well!

Here’s my first one–I’ve rounded up some alternative engagement ring styles. Here’s the link:


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Doyle & Doyle Debuts Rare Collection of Antique Jewels

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Doyle & Doyle is thrilled to debut pieces from a spectacular cache of rare antique jewels, all acquired from a single collector. Including jewelry from ancient Rome, 17th century Spain, and 19th century France, these are the best examples of their type and many are hallmarked by well known jewelers. Keep reading for a sneak peek of the historic collection before it goes on exhibition at Doyle & Doyle in September.

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These exquisite micromosaic pieces date to the mid-19th century and are hallmarked for the Vatican Workshop of the Papal State.The Vatican’s mosaic studio was founded in the 16th century, its skilled artisans create artworks commissioned by wealthy patrons and pieces for the Pope to give as gifts. The Sistine Chapel ceiling by Michelangelo, Saint Peter’s Square designed by Bernini, and Raphael’s “The School of Athens” are among the many masterpieces you can discover at the Vatican. Originally founded in the 16th century, the skilled artisans working in the Vatican’s mosaic studio create pieces for the Pope to give as gifts and artworks commissioned by wealthy patrons. They also oversee and maintain the ten thousand square meters of colorful mosaics that adorn Saint Peter’s Basilica. This bangle and brooch are beautifully made, featuring glass tesserae so tiny that the designs look like paintings in shades of red, blue, green, and white. Perhaps a wealthy young man purchased them during his Grand Tour through Europe, or they were gifts to an important Church official. No matter their origin, they are little works of art that display the incredible skill of the Vatican’s workshop.

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The collection includes other ecclesiastical jewels in addition to the Vatican micromosaics, including a variety of gem-set and enameled crosses from many different periods. This striking dimensional crucifix cross is Spanish from the 17th century, detailed with enamel and engraving that resembles wood grain. Although probably not original, we love it worn on the black ribbon choker, especially when layered with antique gold guard chains. Although these are museum quality jewels, they’re definitely wearable!

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There are also charming examples of sentimental and devotional jewelry. The rose cut diamond encrusted heart hangs from a sweet rose gold dove. The diamonds are foil backed and you can see hints of pink, gold, and even green reflecting through the stones. The rare late 17th century Spanish reliquary pendant is a small compartment that holds a tiny bit of a saint’s blood. It’s backed by a hand painted figure of a female saint and framed by emeralds and garnets. This type of jewel was probably a private devotional artwork. Spain being an intensely Catholic country, people believed in the power of saints to affect their daily life. In additional to more traditional liturgy, 17th century Spaniards prayed to their personal saint to intervene and make their lives better.

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The other half of this incredible collection is comprised of museum quality Arts & Crafts and Art Nouveau jewelry. The Arts & Crafts Movement was a direct response to the mechanization and poor working conditions engendered by the Industrial Revolution in the mid-19th century. Adherents looked to the Middle Ages, nature, and popular folk art for inspiration, seeking to return to an idyllic time before mass production. Shying away from precious materials, Arts & Crafts jewelers favored readily available gemstones, such as garnet, amethyst, citrine, opal, and moonstone. The delicate gold pendant is British, comprised of hand wrought wirework set with bright blue turquoise and glowing moonstone.

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By the end of the century, Art Nouveau artists took the theme of nature to the next level. Art Nouveau jewelry often incorporated idealized female forms with swirling, whiplash hair framed by sensuous flora, like this striking silver mirror locket. Dating to 1900, this lovely piece is hallmarked for French jeweler Lucien Coudray. Coudray specialized in engraving medals and won several prizes for his artistry. Another popular form was a winged female with gossamer enamel wings studded with tiny gems or pearls. This statuesque dragonfly woman was created around 1900 and bears the hallmark of noted Art Nouveau jeweler, Gaston Laffitte. The light filters through the translucent green plique-a-jour enamel wings, creating a delicate stained glass effect.

This is just a small preview of the incredible historic collection – want to see it all? Doyle & Doyle is putting on a public exhibition in September. Email [email protected] for more information and to get on the invite list!

This post was contributed by Juliet Rotenberg of Doyle & Doyle, thank you!!


Want more?! To check out the store tour of Doyle & Doyle, click here.

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from top to bottom:

Fox & Bond packs a puch full of gorgeous antique rings from their inventory

Metier SF decorates a handful of favorites from their cases of the jewel box of a store

Estenza Jewelry believes in sweater weather and bundling up with diamond rings

The Eden Collective proves that a one finger stack is sometimes all you need

Stephanie Gottlieb piles on the Walters Faith rings

Under the Crown Jewelry shows off some favorite elongated diamond rings

Alana Jewelry sports some emeralds, green sapphires and tanzanite for a cool combo

three clusters and a snake from Doyle & Doyle — an ideal match

Isadora’s Antique Jewelry wearing some very old mourning pieces, highly collectible

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Doyle & Doyle Hosts a Gem Gossip Meet Up!

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Whenever I visit NYC, I like to think of Doyle & Doyle as my home-away-from-home. Everything about the store, the jewels inside, the people inside, the neighborhood…it’s my favorite! It only felt right to have my first ever meet up there and I was excited to also reunite with Elizabeth & Pamela, the best sister duo in the biz. And of course, I had to see their latest finds–there were even exclusive pieces displayed just for the event, and never seen before!

One of the pieces that had me in a trance was a carved emerald ring (pictured above) in a teardrop shape, with diamonds surrounding it. I don’t think it is on their website yet since it was making its debut when I visited, but you can always email the team at the store. Another ring I could have just stared at all day was the opal and demantoid garnet (a bright green colored garnet) ring. That particular ring is actually up on their website, so if you’d like more info, just click here. That ring seriously GLOWS and it surely made a splash on Instagram. Another popular piece that I featured from my visit was a peridot ring with a secret. I say secret because at first glance it looks like any cocktail ring–large, enchanting peridot gemstone, surrounded by some gorgeous diamonds. If you look closer, you will notice two tiny screw mechanisms on each side. These let the wearer remove the top portion of the ring and wear it as a pendant! How cool is that?! Those Victorians sure knew how to trail blaze convertible jewelry.

I just want to say a special thank you to the team at Doyle & Doyle for always welcoming me into their store. And thanks to those who took the time out of their day to come and visit with me, whether it was your first time meeting me or we’ve been BFF since the very beginning of Gem Gossip, your continued support means the world to me!

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New Heirloom Collection from Doyle & Doyle: Entwined, FW16

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Have you ever sat and thought about human interaction and our interconnectivity?! We as humans are connected on many different levels, with our friendships and relationships being extremely important to us. I just read an article the other day on the internet that said the secret to living a long and full life is building quality relationships with people we love and care about; our interactions and connections being most important than any other factor. Jewelry is often a representation of our most cherished memories and connections. It is within these relationships in which we receive jewelry, we gift jewelry, and we treasure jewelry. All these ideas came together as the basis of Doyle & Doyle‘s latest Heirloom Collection, which is the store’s own line of jewelry created by Elizabeth Doyle, often with a theme or purpose.

The new collection features rings, earrings, and bracelets which explore the concept of being intertwined. Co-owner of Doyle & Doyle and designer of the collection, Elizabeth Doyle says, “I was thinking about the interconnectivity and interdependency we rely on to live fulfilled and productive lives. This can take the form of a couple whose paths become entwined as they build their lives together…I brought the entwined design into several engagement rings and bands. Always looking back to the rich history of symbolism in jewelry, I incorporated other powerful representations of love. Snakes to represent eternal love. The crescent moon to represent the honeymoon, the magical first bloom of love. Diamonds set in darkened silver to represent the twinkling of stars in the night sky.”

Not only are the new pieces vintage-inspired and completely beautiful, they are presented alongside some original antique pieces that also play upon the same concepts that were explored to create the new Heirloom Collection. Some of the pieces include a Georgian ring with blue enamel and rose cut diamonds, a rare and incredible Victorian snake necklace set with emeralds and diamonds, and a crescent brooch of purple enamel, diamonds and pearls. The Heirloom Collection features lots of cool blues, which is one of my favorite colors in jewelry. Not only does it pair well with clothing but blue truly looks good on every skin tone. The dangle snake earrings are particularly my favorite; the diamonds and lapis mixed with the 18k yellow gold make for a great combination.

Be sure to check out the full collection, including the antique items curated specifically for this unveiling!


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Jewelry Collection Stories: Elizabeth Doyle of Doyle & Doyle

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It all started with a love of jewelry–a similar beginning to a lot of collectors’ stories, but this passion was deeper, stronger and life-changing for Elizabeth Doyle. Add another sister to the mix–Pamela Doyle–and you’ve got yourself the most kick-ass sister duo to hit the antique jewelry scene. I’ve been a fan of their NYC-based jewelry store Doyle & Doyle since I first got into antique jewelry and getting a chance to meet and work with both sisters was a dream come true last year. Sharing Elizabeth’s favorite pieces from her personal collection is like unlocking a vault filled with years of travel and collecting, featuring pieces spanning several decades.

Elizabeth says, “For those of us who collect jewelry, looking through our collections is like looking through a scrap book. When I laid out my jewels to decide what to include in this exhibition, it was a flood of memories and emotions. Each piece marks an important event in my life, and they are all so varied. I have my baby bracelet engraved with my name. I can’t remember receiving it or ever wearing it, but nonetheless it is a prized memento of my childhood. Then there is my baby tooth necklace. It was designed (and sketched) by my son when he was five. The necklace is set with both his and his sister’s first lost baby teeth. They are, to me, the most precious and irreplaceable gems. Some pieces represent a turning point in my life (my ruby ring that was the first piece I was able to keep for myself from Doyle & Doyle) or even the moment when I learned something new and developed a new appreciation (my memento mori and mourning rings). For me, jewelry is a way to remember, a way to learn, a way to communicate, and a way to celebrate.”

The exhibit featuring pieces from her personal collection happened a week ago, but if you’re like me and don’t live in the NYC area, fear not! No need to feel like you missed out–above are some of the pieces that were on display at this enchanting event, all from Elizabeth’s personal collection with descriptions in tow. I love how every piece carries such meaning and is rooted in her life, even though the piece itself has an unknown past, it has a present with her.

If you’d like the full PDF featuring Elizabeth’s personal collection which was on display, feel free to email

To read about our collaboration from last year, click here.



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Doyle & Doyle Debut New Heirloom Collection for SS15

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New Heirloom Collection for Spring/Summer!

Doyle & Doyle is launching their latest installment to the Heirloom Collection–their exclusive line of vintage-inspired jewelry designed by the Doyle sisters–and the pieces are incredibly fun and so wearable! With these new pieces, Elizabeth Doyle was inspired by constellations, globes, stars and galaxies, along with geometric motifs and drops of the antique jewelry she is surrounded by daily. What is special about the new Spring/Summer 2015 line is that the pair of Plumb earrings done in sterling and rock crystal (shown to the left) are limited edition, meaning only a limited number were produced and will be released for sale on February 7th, 2015! Of course we all know how much women love limited edition items–the concept of exclusivity just enthralls me!

The Plumb earrings come in onyx/18k yellow gold, lapis/18k yellow gold, onyx/sterling, diamond pave/sterling, & all gold, all sterling. With the rock crystal/sterling pair being the limited edition ones. The design and shape is inspired by plumbs–scientific instruments used to determine true vertical. They are also easy to wear and go with just about any outfit! Whether it is casual or dressy, these can become your everyday signature piece!

Besides the Plumb earrings, Doyle & Doyle’s new Heirloom pieces include a Sunburst medallion and drop earrings, as well as a Sunburst bracelet. If you love the look of geometrical pieces, the octagonal link chain necklaces are really cool. For that perfect, classic gift–their diamond station bangles go with everything and the stacking options are endless! Want a piece inspired the constellations and galaxies? I love the North Star drop necklace, and the Constellation earrings and necklace are out of this world.

To shop the entire Heirloom Collection, click here.



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Gem Gossip Visits Doyle & Doyle in NYC

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Looking back upon my visit to Doyle & Doyle, it seems so magical and dreamlike–I have no doubt it is because of the ambiance of the shop and all the wonderful antique treasures inside. Doyle & Doyle has been one of my most beloved antique jewelry stores since I knew of its presence. This happened several years ago when Lucky magazine featured Doyle & Doyle in a four-page spread on estate jewelry, and the “secrets of the trade from two sisters whose business is unearthing fabulous old jewelry.” At the time, I was still a novice and only recently discovered eBay (back when you could score an amazing 14k gold ring for $40!!) and began learning about antique jewelry–this article was immediately torn out and went everywhere with me. I had read that spread so many times, I practically had it memorized! The article breaks down each time period of antique/estate jewelry, giving gorgeous examples from the Doyles’ inventory and a few other favorite shops. There is even a “where to shop” guide and “expert tips” all of which still stick with me today!

Since then, Doyle & Doyle has been a favorite online destination for me, always browsing their breathtaking new arrivals and enjoying their store blog. Their move from Lower East Side to the Meatpacking District last year had me wanting to visit more than ever, and I got my chance in early October–a perfect time of year to visit New York City. It was my first time ever in the Meatpacking District, and I fell in love with the cobblestone streets and upscale designer shops of the neighborhood. Doyle & Doyle fits right in with the area’s historic charm and stepping into the store is like walking into a secret jewelry lair of a noble princess. For a few minutes, I felt like that princess, as I got to play with some rings and enjoy the store in a hands-on way.

Each glass curio display housed neatly pinned necklaces, bracelets, earrings and rings, all which had a placard which revealed what each item was, along with a price. I was pleasantly surprised to see prices on display and found it refreshingly awesome! Most jewelry stores hide tags, so asking an associate is necessary, but this strategy took a different approach and I love it! Elizabeth Doyle showed me around and highlighted some magnificent and special pieces. Then she tempted me by pulling some rings from the back, and one seemed as though it belonged to me, so I obviously obliged and gave it a home in my jewelry box! Can you guess which ring? It is one pictured above in the first ring picture!

If you get a chance to visit NYC, Doyle & Doyle is a must! Their website is amazing, as well…with most of the rings pictured above listed on their site, where you can purchase directly there. Make sure to read their blog, which is so fun, and follow on Facebook, Instagram & Twitter! I hope to visit again soon! 🙂

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Doyle & Doyle, Gem Gossip THE VAULT Preview Party

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New York City has a whole different feel to it, and you experience it as soon as you get off the plane, walk down the streets, and see the flashing hustle and bustle. My laid back vibe and newfound southern charm quickly fade, and as soon as I step out of my Uber car (no taxis please), I can feel the confidence and excitement radiating off the skyscrapers. I was so ready to begin a fun night on Wednesday, as Doyle & Doyle and myself unveiled THE VAULT’s 2nd edition, “Sentimental Rings: From Birth to Death and In-between.”

The topic of rings was a no-brainer for me–if you know me, you know that rings are my passion, my obsession…basically, my LIFE. Sentimental rings always have either a story behind them or a mystery. I love that. And bringing these pieces together into one curation was incredible. I am extremely thankful and gracious for each and every person who came to the event to show your support and it meant more than I realized it would! Getting the opportunity to work alongside the Doyle sisters was a once in a lifetime moment, a true highlight of my career. Both Elizabeth and Pamela are such huge role models for me and have set such a precedent in the antique jewelry world. It was an honor to be a part of this! Deanne and Teresa of Avant Collective–thank you as well, you two are so fun! And the staff at Doyle & Doyle are awesome! Such a fun-spirited place to be!

I will leave you with my opening thoughts from the catalog that accompanies the exhibit. Make sure if you are in the NYC area, to stop by and check it out–runs from October 9th through November 9th, 2014.

Collecting rings has become my passion, which should be better known as my crazy obsession. From the bold geometric and diamond dazzlers of the Art Deco period, to the poetic poesy rings of the early devotional times, and everything in between! And I mean everything–right now I’m on a 1960s/70s kick, searching out and coveting the biggest and strangest designs I can find!

Something so small has got me hooked and I am now seeking out my next big find! The thrill of the hunt has me awake at 5am and logged onto a live auction thousands of miles away, planning trips across the country, scouring online, all while constantly trading the latest inside scoop with some of the best antique dealers out there. My most recent jaunt had me flying across the Atlantic and meeting up with a fellow antique ring collector who I hadn’t met in person before. We planned an entire trip based on treasure hunting in London, England and I never had so much fun in my life! Our visit to the Victoria & Albert Museum, an entire day at Portobello Road, and a trip to the famous Grays Antique Centre had me inspired in a whole new way. I grew a penchant for Victorian Era jewelry and a deep connection with sentimental rings.

This newfound love has led me to choose it as the topic of my first ever museum curation on behalf of Doyle & Doyle. There are many types of rings that can be considered sentimental, whether it be an austere memento mori ring with skulls and crossbones, or a wedding ring once worn by your grandmother, which has now been passed down. Or how about a late 1800s ring with a child’s tooth set among solid gold. Yes, teeth, hair, portraits, enamel work, secret engravings…these all make up the obscure and compelling details of sentimental jewelry. It is a category I like to revere as most important, because I feel everyone should own a piece of jewelry that has some sort of sentimental meaning behind it.

We hope you enjoy this selection of sentimental rings both from Doyle & Doyle and my very own personal collection. Each piece represents a type within this category, all of which are highly collectible and rare in their own right, with a history both deep and sometimes unknown.

* What I wore: earrings by Nora Kogan 14k yellow gold large Ankh earrings, rings all my own antique/vintage pieces, Spider brooch in 14k yellow gold with a Tahitian pearl body by Nicole Landaw Jewelry

Thanks to Gossip Gem

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