What’s a Promise Ring? And How To Wear One?

October 11, 2017


No, really. What is it?Read our guide on what it means, how to give one, wear one, and honor one.

Promise ring, pre-engagement ring, commitment ring… you say toe-mah-toe, I say toe-may-toe. Whatever you call it, this post-modern pre-engagement trend is on the rise, and we absolutely love the idea. More opportunities to celebrate and solidify the love? Count us in!

What’s a promise ring?

A promise ring is just that – a ring that symbolizes a promise, although not THE promise (as in, marriage). The beauty of the promise ring is that its meaning is entirely up to you. Some couples use the promise ring as a pre-engagement ring, others use it to signify an important milestone in their relationship or a promise they’ve made together. It makes total sense – couples these days are usually already living together or happily choosing to marry later in life. So, a token of commitment in the form of a thoughtful ring that was born out of an intimate promise between two loved up people? Why not?

Where did it come from?

Miley Cyrus. Not. Although she did play a big part in making it so popular among modern couples. 

The promise ring reminds us of the good ol’ high school sweetheart tale of the guy giving a girl his class ring. But actually, the idea of the promise ring goes way back. Posy rings – engraved with lovely poems – were common in 16th century England, and acrostic rings – spelling out names of loved ones in gemstones – were all the rage in the Victorian times. And the concept of a ring to symbolize love and loyalty dates back to Roman times, when brides-to-be would wear bands around their left ring finger.

What should it look like?

Whatever your heart desires. We’re not exactly traditional here at Gardens of the Sun, and we’d never tell anyone how their rings should look, but even in mainstream thought, promise rings are a free-for-all. The more pragmatic folks out there tend to pick a promise ring with their engagement ring and wedding band in mind (nothing that would clash). And some couples see the promise ring as a chance to get creative and make it a fashion piece. Bands with a mosaic or a cluster of stones are popular as they signify fruitful years together. We think the Hidden Gems, Particles and Soul Searchers collections make great promise rings. 

How to wear one? Or give one?

Some people wear promise rings on the left ring finger (if not engaged or married), because there’s a vein that runs from that finger straight to the heart. Others wear them on a chain or on their little fingers (pinky promise, get it?). 

Giving a promise ring would be similar to making someone a promise. Do it over a candle-lit dinner, in front of the TV, at a baseball game, while you’re hiking in the desert, through a love letter, on Skype – the point is, each couple expresses their love and enjoys their time together differently, so that should inform the whole process. 

The main thing is, there’s no “on bended knee” expectation with the promise ring. It’s whatever floats your love boat.

We love the promise ring because it reminds us to stop, slow down, step back and talk about important and intimate commitments with the person we love. Sometimes we get so caught up in the wedding whirlwind that we forget about the most important thing: the true promise we make to each other. 

What does a promise ring mean to you?



01 Flawed Diamond Slice ring  /  02 Wabi Sabi // Organic wedding band for him  /  03 Aquamarine ring // Hidden gems  




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