Grace Kelly’s Platinum and Diamond Engagement Ring: A Hollywood Icon

It was like the perfect Hollywood happy ending, when Oscar-winning actress Grace Kelly became engaged to Prince Rainier of Monaco in 1955. Every single detail of the union right up to the wedding the following year was intensely covered by the press. The focus made Grace’s dazzling platinum and emerald-cut diamond engagement ring one of the most famous and ultimately one of the most influential in the world.


Like any good Hollywood plot, there were a few fascinating twists and turns to the narrative of how the jewel from Cartier landed on Princess Grace’s finger. Remarkably one way the actress became familiar with the famous French jeweler’s inventory was through director Alfred Hitchcock. Before the Grace Kelly became royalty, she was once spotted at Cartier in New York with the ‘Master of Suspense’ who often used jewelry to advance the plots in his productions.

Hitchcock also inadvertently played matchmaker for Kelly when he cast her in To Catch A Thief. During the filming in Monaco, the actress was introduced to the ruler of the tiny principality, Prince Rainier III, who soon proposed with a platinum jewel from Cartier; but it wasn’t the ring that’s become famous.

After a high profile engagement announcement, another Cartier ring appeared on the third finger of Grace Kelly’s left hand. This jewel did not require any close-ups to be seen. It featured a stunning 10.48-emerald cut diamond flanked by two baguettes set in platinum.

The ring rapidly became famous as Kelly wore it in MGM publicity photographs and throughout her final film High Society. A musical rendition of Philadelphia Story, the jewel was just right for Kelly’s part as Tracy Lord, a socialite on the eve of her wedding.

When Kelly’s ex-husband in the film played by Bing Crosby remarks to her new fiancé, “Some stone George. Did you mine it yourself?” the platinum and diamond ring is given a Technicolor close-up. At one point in the production, Kelly rather hilariously polishes the ring on her dress and admires it.

The glamour of Kelly’s ring has influenced countless brides over the decades. Elizabeth Taylor received a similar platinum and diamond style from movie producer Mike Todd the same year Grace Kelly was engaged. When legendary singer Frank Sinatra proposed to Barbara Marx in the mid-1970s he chose a diamond twice the size of Grace Kelly’s. Obviously, the gem was set in platinum to secure it in the mounting.

More recently, in 2014 George Clooney proposed to human rights lawyer Amal Alamuddin with a platinum ring featuring an emerald-cut diamond ring flanked by tapered baguettes. While the press surrounding the jewel claimed George was involved in the design, it’s pretty clear he was channeling Grace Kelly’s eternally stylish platinum jewel.



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