When Malin Åkerman’s English boyfriend, actor Jack Donnelly, decided it was time to pop the question, he went to jewelry designer Soraya Silchenstedt for a very special ring. “He wanted something magical and mystical,” remembers Soraya who specializes in custom engagement rings with unique details. “At first he had the idea of a black diamond but when we started looking at stones he chose what’s called a galaxy diamond.”
A gem that’s rising in popularity with couple’s who are looking for something different, galaxy diamonds are filled with inclusions and judged based on the beauty of the marks. The name of the natural diamonds stems from the fact that they can look like a picture of the stars in the sky or a constellation. “Jack saw the artistry in this galaxy diamond,” says Soraya. “It’s truly special.”
Once the diamond was chosen, Soraya and Jack began to zero in on the design of the ring. “We looked at some medieval museum pieces,” remembers Soraya. “Jack was very involved in the creative process and thoughtfully reviewed my sketches.” After toying with a couple of concepts, they both decided the design should be somewhat minimal to show off the uniqueness of the center stone.
“Jack wanted the prongs on the galaxy diamond to be more prominent and in yellow gold to add warmth,” says Soraya. The diamonds around the center stone are various shades of gray, another increasingly popular choice for alternative engagement rings. Each of the gems have high tables—the flat section on top of stone—to add texture. Soraya designed two rows of grey diamonds around the center stone—one facing up and one facing out—a glam technique to keep the edges rounded. She gave the gold setting a black rhodium wash to blend with the marks in the galaxy diamond and create a vintage appearance.
“It was amazing to work with Jack on the design,” says Soraya. “He is so positive, really on a different plane.” Obviously, Malin agrees. When she announced their engagement October 13, 2017 on her Instagram account, she wrote in the caption, “This sweet and loving man has stepped into our lives and stole both our hearts!” The “we” in the equation includes the Billions star’s son from a previous marriage. Malin went on to add, “I think we’re gonna keep him around for a while 😉#engaged #isaidyes #jackdonnelly #family #yes.”