What Gemstones Go Well Together: Popular Gemstone Combinations

We love to custom design jewelry for our customers! One of the questions often asked is “What gemstones go well together?” Whether you are redesigning out-of-date jewelry, updating your wedding rings, or starting from the beginning to create jewelry for a special occasion, we can guide you through the entire process. 


When designing jewelry we take our cues from the art world. Great custom jewelry craftsmanship includes the design elements of color and balance. Let’s look at some popular gemstone combinations and the design principles behind them. 


Diamonds + Any Gemstone!


By far the most popular gemstone combinations include a diamond and any other favorite colored stone. You may choose to have a larger diamond as your dazzling focal point and surround it with any smaller colored gemstone that you please. The opposite gemstone combination also looks fabulous- choosing a colored gemstone as your primary gemstone and surrounding it with dainty diamonds. The important thing to remember with a diamond/colored gemstone combination is balance. Make sure the stones complement each other in size, placement, and cut and none are competing to be the focal point. 


No matter the gemstone color you choose to pair with a diamond or which you choose to be your focal stone, the results will be exquisite! Here are a few of our favorite diamond and colored gemstone combinations:

custom-designed tulip setting diamond and sapphire ring placed in a blue ring box
A custom-designed tulip setting with a diamond surrounded by smaller sapphire gemstones.
antique sapphire and diamond scallop setting ring placed on a mirrored surface
Antique sapphire gemstone surrounded by diamonds in a scalloped setting.








ruby gemstone and diamond earring and necklace set placed in a black isbell jewelers box
Ruby gemstones are surrounded by dainty diamonds in this earring and necklace set.
double halo ruby gemstone and custom-designed diamond ring on a white background
Custom-designed diamond surrounded by a double halo of rubies and diamonds.











Consider the Color Wheel


When choosing what gemstones go well together, consider the color wheel. The range of gemstone color options includes the entire color wheel so when deciding what gemstones go well together, we take our cues from the following color wheel combinations: monochromatic, complementary, triadic, or tetradic. Once you have chosen the color of the gemstone you want to be primary, or in other words “the focal point”, you can easily choose the color of any other gemstones knowing they would go well with it. 

popular gemstone combinations shown with rings on top of a green succulent graphic of the full color wheel











Monochromatic or Color Chords

color wheel showing monochromatic colors and color chords of three (yellows and oranges)

One of our most popular jewelry designs is using a monochromatic color scheme or color chords. “Mono” meaning 1 and “chromatic” meaning “color”, these popular gemstone combinations feature one main gemstone surrounded by subtle hues of that same primary color. 


Color chords could also include the analogous color scheme. Analogous means “next to” so analogous colors sit next to each other on the color wheel. 


Popular gemstone combinations using the monochromatic or color chord plan include green gemstones like emeralds and peridots, red gemstones like rubies, garnets, and pink tourmalines, or blue gemstones like sapphires, aquamarines, blue topaz, and tanzanite.


Complementary Colored Gemstones

color wheel showing complementary colors purple and yellow

Complementary colors on the color wheel are colors that sit opposite of each other on the wheel. You will recognize complementary colors schemes because they stand out when placed together because of their contrast. Red and green, yellow and purple, and blue and orange are all complementary colors. 


Jewelry designs utilizing complementary colors often include the primary gemstone surrounded by the opposite color set in smaller stones. You may also see two smaller gemstones of the same size set next to each other. 


Popular gemstone combinations using complementary colors include ruby and emerald (red and green) and amethyst and citrine (purple and yellow). While these stones are opposite in color, their presence next to each creates a harmonious balance. 


Triadic or Tetradic Colored Gemstones

If your dream is to incorporate many different colored gemstones into one setting, consider following a triadic (3 colors) or a tetradic (4 colors) color scheme. Triadic color schemes are found by drawing an equilateral triangle over the color wheel. Whichever three colors the vertices touch would complement each other. In the same way, a tetradic color scheme is found by drawing a square over the color wheel. 

The triadic and tetradic color schemes are harder to balance than the previous color schemes. Be sure to choose a focal point stone and surround it with the opposite colors. You can also count the color of the metal you choose in your jewelry to count as one of the colors with yellow gold being obviously in the yellow realm of the color wheel, rose gold falling into the red/pink/orange realm, and white gold or silver in the lighter cooler colors of the color wheel. 

color wheel showing the triadic colors of blue red and yellow


Popular gemstone combinations in the triadic color wheel include: Blue topaz (blue), pink sapphire (pink) in a yellow gold setting or orange topaz (orange), amethyst (purple), and emerald (green). 







tetradic color wheel showing the colors red green yellow and purple


A popular gemstone combination in the tetradic color scheme is ruby (red), sapphire (blue), emerald (green) in a yellow gold (orange) setting.







Let Isbell be Your Guide to Choosing What Gemstones Go Well Together


We are Birmingham’s leader in custom jewelry so if choosing what gemstones go well together seems overwhelming to you, we can help! We will be your guide every step of the way choosing what gemstones go well together as we create a custom design unique to you! This year we are celebrating 40 years in business and there is no one you can trust more for all your jewelry needs. Stop by our showroom today or browse our online gallery


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