What is a Shared Prong Setting?

When it comes to gemstone and diamond settings, the options are practically endless. Each type of diamond jewelry has its own array of available settings that will showcase the stone in a unique and attractive way. One setting that is common in bridal jewelry in particular is the shared prong setting.

Shared prong settings are easily confused with channel and pavé settings. Each of these settings feature and complement gemstones in different ways, so it is important to distinguish the three.

Shared Prong vs. Pavé and Channel Settings

Shared prong setting engagement ring head

In a pavé setting, small diamonds or gemstones are held in place with even smaller metal beads. Because the stones are so closely set together with their almost-prongs, this creates an encrusted or “paved” look, hence the French name of pavé. Pavé settings are sought after for the twinkling, sparkly effect they give to a piece of jewelry.

As for the channel setting, it does not include prongs, beads, or any fixtures in between the diamonds. Instead, the stones are set right next to each other with only the minimum amount of space between them. The row of close-set diamonds is held in place by metal bars on each side. Channel-set diamonds are typically somewhat larger than pavé diamonds. Channel settings are known for providing continuous sparkle all the way around a ring band without the risk of snagging.

Shared prong setting wedding band

Shared prong settings are typically used for diamonds that are larger than those in both pavé and channel settings. Because the diamonds are larger, they require more metal to hold them in place. However, there would be no use in having bigger melée stones if each stone had its own set of prongs holding it in place and blocking the light. In a shared prong setting, each stone shares one set of prongs with the stone next to it. With less visible metal, more light can pass through each diamond, which leads to added sparkle.

Shared prong five-stone wedding band

Because the diamonds are displayed so prominently in a shared prong setting, it is a popular choice for eternity bands and diamond wedding rings. Some shared prong setting pieces are actually a cost-effective alternative to other eternity ring styles. Engagement rings with shared prong settings give the appearance of diamonds and gemstones spreading across the finger, with minimal visible metal.

Do you have any jewelry with a shared prong setting? Do you love the look that it creates? Please share your thoughts and photos in the comments below!