‘Ruby Ruby Ruby Ruby!  …do ya, know what you’re doing to me?’ 

The surging insistence of the chorus of the memorable 2007 hit by the Kaiser Chiefs is actually a pretty good description of the gemstone.   They are bold and striking with a hue that can range from vibrant pink to rich blood-red, unavoidably the colour of romance and passion and victory. They insist on being noticed. Because of this, it is not a gem for the faint of heart. Red makes a statement and we are sometimes asked by clients if Ruby is the best choice for a bespoke piece. Here’s what we say…


Consider the occasion.

Ruby is the birthstone of July. It is nice to have your birthstone in at least one piece of jewellery.  If you feel the recipient may not wear that much red then consider using rubies sparingly, as a gesture and accompanying them with diamonds or use smaller stones incorporating pave into settings rather than a single large gem.

Will this be for everyday wear or for special occasions?  These days there are less formal events in life so people tend to want their jewellery to be for everyday wear.  That having been said, there is still plenty of scope for jewellery that is for dressing up but think weddings, cocktail parties, summer barbecues, a nice meal out or rooftop drinks in the city.  It is helpful to have an array of colours in the jewellery box that can be called on to go with any colour palette or outfit. Red of course goes very well with black  – a strong ruby can pretty much can make a look. Little black dress, lipstick, Ruby ring: done!

Here is an eternity ring we made recently, remounting old diamonds and rubies from a bracelet into a ring – see how the platinum when finished with black rhodium, sets off the rubies.


Rubies are also the celebratory stone for the 40th wedding anniversary. If you’ve spent 40 years together, the ‘King of Gemstones’ has the gravitas to hold the occasion.  A sense of victory too may well be fitting!

What about price?

Rubies are relatively rare and considered to be one of the four precious gemstones. They are increasingly rare in sizes over 2 carats and can command staggering prices for quality material in larger sizes.  Under this size, however, they are similar in price to sapphire and emerald.  At the time of writing, we have a parcel of oval and cushion-cut Thai rubies available.

If your heart is set on red, but you’re looking for a more cost-effective option, consider Rubelite, which is red Tourmaline, see a piece we featured on Instagram here.

Or how about existing jewellery? Perhaps you have some Rubies in the family that can be reworked into a new setting. We recently remounted a Ruby and Diamond bracelet into two rings.  

What piece do you envisage? 

Rubies are very durable and versatile. They are particularly good in pave settings as they sparkle, even in small sizes and they are hard.  This makes them excellent for use in an eternity ring or as a pair of stud earrings.  Here is a pair of 4mm ultra fine round rubies we are mounting as stud earrings.


Is it right for them? 

If you feel that red is not quite right for the recipient perhaps a pinker version, or even pink or padparadscha sapphire is better. Sapphire and rubies are both from the same family of gemstone; corundum. Not a world away and perhaps more suitable. Padparadscha sapphire, for example, is a softer alternative of peach and pink. Here is an example of a beautiful Padparadscha ring we made recently. 

Padparadscha Sapphire Platinum studs
After all, it’s better to make sure the colour suits the wearer than presenting a bespoke piece that is never worn. 

Whether your heart is still set on Ruby, or you’re looking for more guidance on a suitable alternative, you’re in the right place.  For a no-obligation conversation, speak to us today.