The Princess of Wales' ring features a stunning sought-after stone

Princess Kate’s ‘powerful’ diamond and sapphire engagement ring is an Instagram dream

One of the most beloved engagement rings is the one that Prince William gave to the Princess of Wales. Its distinctive design instantly identifies it as royal, adding to its incredible legacy of having been owned by the late Princess Diana.

While on vacation in Kenya on October 20, 2010, Prince William proposed to Kate Middleton using a ring from his late mother’s collection. The infamous design included a gorgeous oval 12-carat Ceylon sapphire set on a white gold band, encircled by 14 brilliant round solitaire diamonds.

Kate’s engagement ring has an incredible legacy
Photo: © Getty Images

In 2024, only Princess Kate could pull off the most fashionable yet completely timeless ring. Sapphire engagement rings are the most popular, per a recent study on Instagrammable engagement rings by fine jewelry brand Mark Broumand and Diamond engagement rings.

With 647,198 hashtagged Instagram posts, sapphire engagement rings are the most Instagrammable style, according to the experts. “Sapphire, one of the four precious stones (along with diamond, ruby, and emerald), represents strength, wisdom, royalty, and power. While sapphires are most commonly blue in color, they come in almost every hue under the rainbow, including colorless sapphires.”

 

The ring was first seen in 1981
Photo: © Getty Images

Catherine’s ring has a fascinating history in addition to being a major trend. The ring that was first revealed to the public when Princess Diana announced her engagement to King Charles in February 1981 reportedly got its start from Prince Albert, who in 1840 had British jeweler Garrard make a sapphire and diamond brooch for Queen Victoria.

The late Queen Elizabeth wore the brooch on multiple occasions, including to Ascot in 2015, when she wore a matching cobalt blue dress and a two-toned blue hat. The brooch stayed in the family.

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Prince William proposed to Kate back in 2010 and gifted her Princess Diana’s sapphire engagement ring   Photo: © Getty Images

In a significant departure from custom, the identifiable sparkler was purchased from the same jeweler decades later. Rather than have his ring crafted from the ground up, as his father and son Prince Harry had done, Prince Charles chose to purchase his future bride’s ring from Garrard’s catalogue.

 

Princess Diana wore her engagement ring during her tour of Argentina
Photo: © Getty Images

While Prince Philip used recycled diamonds from Princess Alice of Greece’s tiara to create Queen Elizabeth’s engagement ring in 1947, his son chose a ring that, although now associated with royalty, could have been purchased by anyone (with a reasonable budget) at the time.

 

The late Queen’s engagement ring had diamonds belonging to his mother, Princess Alice of Greece
Photo: © Getty Images

Many would-be brides, including a few well-known faces, have been inspired by Princess Kate’s public display of the stunning jewel. Star of Austin Powers Elizabeth Hurley proposed to Australian cricket player Shane Warne in 2011 and accepted a blue sapphire and diamond number.

 

Elizabeth Hurley sports a similar blue sapphire ring
Photo: © Getty Images

 

Penelope Cruz, a Ferrari actress, proposed to her fiancé in 2010 with a sapphire and silver ring that resembled Diana’s well-known item featuring the same floral design.

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