What is a Bar Setting for an Engagement Ring?

gold bar and channel set diamond ring

A bar setting features two vertical bars of metal on either side of a diamond or gemstone to hold it securely in place while also allowing a lot of light to enter the stones. This type of setting is often used in eternity, engagement and wedding rings that have a few stones or an entire band of gems. 

What is a Bar Ring Setting?

Unlike prong or bezel settings where the stone is held by metal tips or frames, in a bar setting, the stone is held in position by thin vertical bars on either side of the stone. Bar settings have a basket at their base shaped for the stone being set and then bars on either side of the basket. Each bar has a groove etched into it and when the stone is set into the basket, its girdle fits into the grooves and it is held securely.

A bar setting is similar to a channel in that the stone is held within the groove of two bars, however channel settings are often longer and hold more diamonds. Channel settings are usually set horizontally, whereas bar settings tend to be vertically set so they follow the line of your finger when worn. While they may look similar from a distance, pavé settings use tiny metal beads or prongs to hold stones in place.

The design of a bar setting is very secure, making it a great choice for those with an active lifestyle or in need of a more protective setting that is still quite stunning. Because the setting has vertical bars, it leaves the top and bottom of the band open which allows lots of light to enter the stone which creates more sparkle. This type of setting can be used on both engagement and wedding bands as well as other types of jewelry. 

Why Choose a Bar Set Engagement Ring?

One of the most exciting parts of designing an engagement ring is choosing the setting. The bar setting is very versatile and can work as a stand-alone band or with a center stone design and can also be incorporated into both an engagement and wedding band to create a beautiful set. Bar set rings create stunning symmetry especially in three-stone and eternity styles and can support a range of diamond shapes. 

While round diamonds are the most common shape used for this setting, technically any shape can be used. Other popular shapes include baguette and emerald, especially as accent stones in a three-stone design, and even uncommon shapes like marquise or hearts can be mounted into a bar setting. Keep in mind that like a channel setting, resizing a bar setting can be a challenge especially if it circles the circumference of the ring.

In addition to the sparkle factor, because the stone is only obscured on two sides, it’s more visible, which can make the gem appear larger. Although the stones sit flush with the tops of the bars and aren’t prone to snags, the stones are more exposed in this setting which does leave them vulnerable to being chipped or damaged if subjected to a hard blow. Regular cleaning and care will ensure this style continues to stun for years to come. 

If you have questions about engagement ring settings, give us a call at 303-385-8449 or click here to schedule an appointment. We’ll help you design the ring of your dreams!