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What are promise rings, and what do they symbolise?

What are promise rings, and what do they symbolise?

What is a promise ring?

A promise ring is a sign of dedication and commitment between couples, friends and family. They are most typically given to loved ones and partners, as they signify the bond between two people. Promise rings are a gesture to the one you love, and the reasons for getting and giving promise rings may vary, based on the individuality between each couple. Overall, it comes down to the fidelity, loyalty and everlasting love between them.

The history of promise rings

The concept of promise rings is thought to date back to the Roman era, where they were required to wait a certain amount of time before marrying. During this time period, much like today, rings were given as a sign of commitment, in other words, that you are promised to each other. 

Promise rings came to England in the 16th Century, and were also known as ‘posy rings’, as they were engraved with romantic poems and short messages. 

Today, promise rings continue to rise in popularity. The idea of them being a pre-engagement ring is more of a modern concept, giving partners reassurance that their romantic relationship will stay, especially during a longer courtship. 

When are promise rings given?

When it comes to promise rings, the perfect time to gift one is personal to a couple, depending completely on the people involved. Therefore, timing and reason tends to vary quite a lot. It would be impossible to put a time on when each and every partner should give a promise ring, but when they feel that the time is right, then that will be the perfect moment. 

Sentimental rings are often exchanged between a couple who want to demonstrate their loyalty to one another, but feel that their relationship is too new, or that they are too young to get engaged. This displays how strong their bond is, and reassures each other of their commitment. Another time where promise rings are gifted is when two partners, friends or family members have to spend a long time away from each other, or are separated by distance. They act as a reminder of each other’s love, and are a reminder of the special connection that you possess. Sometimes, promise rings are used as a more permanent symbol of togetherness. For example, a couple may not intend to marry, but want to find a way to express to each other their commitment, as well as making others aware of their special bond.


Eternity Rings at Sonny's


What finger does a promise ring go on?

When it comes to deciding which finger to wear your promise ring on, there are a few options; some that are trendy, others that are meaningful, and ones that are more for personal preference.

Ring Finger - Left Hand

As mentioned, a promise ring symbolises a couple’s commitment to one another, so often precedes an engagement ring. Therefore, most people choose to wear their promise ring on the ‘ring finger’ of the left hand, that is, the finger an engagement ring is typically worn on. Once engaged, the couple will swap the promise ring for the engagement ring, and wear it on a different finger to maintain sentiment and value. 

Wearing a promise ring on the ‘ring finger’ of your left hand is a beautiful way to show your deep love and devotion to your partner. However, it is important to consider the fact that once you move this ring onto another finger, then it may need to be resized, as each finger has different measurements. 

Ring Finger - Right Hand

An alternate option is to wear your promise ring on the ‘ring finger’ of your right hand. This may be more of a practical choice, as there will be no need to swap fingers once engaged, therefore, there being no need for a ring resize. This will prove to be more cost effective, and you won’t have to worry about adjusting to the change of having your ring on a different finger. 

Opting for the ‘ring finger’ on your right hand will also leave your finger open for an engagement ring, which will also help to avoid others being under the impression that a couple is now engaged. 

Other ways to wear a promise ring

If you would prefer to try something unique, and personal to your couple, then there are many different ways that you can wear a promise ring. A promise ring can be worn on any finger, not just the ring fingers. Many have a personal preference of comfort, want to pair this ring with their existing collections, or have a more deep and meaningful reason for choosing a specific finger. 

Some wear their promise ring around their neck on a chain, to keep it close to their heart, whilst others decide to demonstrate their commitment to each other by finding an alternative to a ring. A few popular choices are as a charm, pendant or bracelet. 

Whatever stands out to each individual couple tends to be the choice that shows the most individuality for them together. As long as it is something that will continuously remind them of their commitment to each other whenever they wear it, then it is the perfect choice. 


Sonny's Promise Ring

What are the styles of promise rings?

There are many different styles of promise rings, each displaying an unmatched simplicity and beauty. Your promise ring should express individuality, showcasing the unique love and value that you place on a relationship. It would also be wise to consider choosing a piece that is timeless in appearance, and that will not go out of fashion or begin to look dated, so that it can live up to its eternal and everlasting connotations.

Simple Bands 

A simple band may incorporate delicate gemstones, meaningful engravings, or solely be a plain band. It is guaranteed that this style of promise ring will display timeless class and beauty, always staying on trend. Opting for a simple band also means that your promise ring is less likely to get mistaken for an engagement ring. 

Solitaire Rings / Single Stone Rings

A solitaire ring is the most popular and traditional style of ring that never goes out of style. They evoke simplicity and elegance, and are always a stunning go-to piece. Solitaire rings are, however, associated with engagement rings, especially those with larger diamonds. Due to this, it is common that stones below 0.25ct are used within solitaire promise rings. View our Diamond Solitaire Range

Gemstone Rings

Gemstones can make a beautiful alternative to diamonds. There is a wide range to choose from, and they are typically the more affordable option. A birthstone ring would be a wonderful gift as a promise ring, as they are ideal for longevity, show thought, and can be nicely paired with an engagement ring when the time comes. View our Gemstone Rings

Cluster & Halo Rings

A cluster ring (Halo Ring) contains several small diamonds grouped together to create the illusion of one larger stone. As a promise ring, they will display maximum shine and sparkle, standing out from the crowd. View our Halo Rings


Bespoke Jewellery Service

Here at Sonny's Jewellers, we understand the value that comes along with having jewellery that is unique to you, and to your partner. If you can't quite find the ring that you are looking for, or want something with a personal touch, then our Bespoke Jewellery Service is the perfect way to create your dream piece. Get in touch to begin your bespoke journey today!

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