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Jared Vs. Zales


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#1 Dashizz

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Posted 18 December 2009 - 10:22 PM

Hey guys,
So I purchased a nice platinum engagment setting from Scott Kay, without the center stone for a princess cut diamond. I am looking for a princess cut cente stong ~1.25 carat wt G-H color, VS1-VS2, etc. and was shopping between Jared and Zales. Of course neither have a stone worth consideration in any store nearby so i'm looking at ordering one from one of them from the online selection or virtual vault.

This has been my experience thus far:

Jared: nice selection, good info on www with pics, staff are friendly at first, in-store mounting for ~1 day turn around, but they are starting to turn because I didn't want to buy the junk single diamond they had in the store. Want to charge me $300 to mount it.

Zales: Almost no selection in store, friendly staff, have to send ring away for ~7 day turn around for mounting after waiting for an "online only" purchase that can't be sent to the store, but only to me. And not 100% garantee they can do the work. They want another $225 or so for some "lifetime warranty" even though all their diamonds come with a "lifetime diamond commitment"...confusing.

Both are getting on my nerves when I'm looking at spending an additional $7-8,000!

Any thoughts are greatly appreciated. Thanks.

#2 davidelevi

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Posted 19 December 2009 - 05:19 AM

Erm, the first unkind thought is that you are working bass-ackwards. First buy the stone (which as you point out may well be around $7-8k), then buy the setting with the remaining money - even if you may have decided on the setting overall design beforehand. But there you are, so never mind.

What size stone is the setting built for - in mm, forget weight, particularly with princesses. 5.5 - 6.0 x 5.5 - 6.0?

To be honest, I'd give both Zales and Jared a skip, and find something you like online. $300 for setting a single stone sounds like a ripoff if you are planning to buy the stone from the same shop.
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#3 Dashizz

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Posted 20 December 2009 - 11:38 AM

Well, she absolutely loved this one particular setting from Scott Kay, and I happen to be lucky enough to find a local dealer going out of business (Bailey Banks Biddle) and thus all their stuff was 75-80% off. So I ended up getting a $6000 setting for about $1000. But they had crap for stone selection to go in it. Yes, I've had the ring at Zales and Jared, and they know what they can put in it.

The biggest prob isn't diameter size, but depth. This setting can only hold like 4.3 or less depth, but they say 5.8-6-ish is where I want to say for the top. But they don't hae anything in the stores locally hense my problems with ordering something.

I'm going to try a local diamond place if I ever get off work before 5pm as they close every day at 5 (which I hate to be a supporter of a store like that and purchase anything from).

#4 davidelevi

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Posted 20 December 2009 - 12:29 PM

If the setting accommodates a 6 mm stone, you shouldn't have a problem with a 4.3 mm depth (72%). And you can always lengthen the prongs a little/adapt the basket.

This one http://www.highperfo...d...ity&id=112p looks like it fits the bill (and the setting). And so does this, at $2,500 less http://www.whiteflas...nd-2231087.htm#. Both are very well cut.

One more question - does the setting protect the corners? If not, think carefully whether you want a princess; exposed corners are fragile.
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#5 Jan Roos

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Posted 23 December 2009 - 03:00 PM

Why don't you look at a few other online retailers like Blue Nile, James Allen and Abazias. I recently made a video where I looked for a 1 carat princess cut diamond at these 3 retailers and the prices difference came to almost 3K with a few minor tweaks to the 4 C's

You can take a look at the video in my sig if wish otherwise head over to the above mentioned retailers and check them out. Much better prices there than zales etc.

Hope that helps,

Jan
Free Video Reveals 3 Insider Tips To Saving Thousands On The Purchase Of A Diamond Engagement Ring http://www.diamondringforher.com

#6 davidelevi

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Posted 24 December 2009 - 03:06 AM

Jan - not so much to disagree with what you say, but if you are going to advertise, at least be honest about it.

Your site/video, apart from containing some incorrect, incomplete and at times inconsistent information, is so obviously a plug for the above mentioned retailers that I suspect it's paid-for advertising. Even the diagrams and pictures come from Blue Nile's site.

There's plenty of other perfectly good internet retailers, and the advice to focus on the three you mention is to say the least disingenuous.
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#7 denverappraiser

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Posted 24 December 2009 - 05:06 AM

I suspect it's paid-for advertising.

Davide,

Check the details of the links provided to each of the endorsed retailers. They're part of the 'affiliate' advertising programs.

Neil
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#8 davidelevi

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Posted 24 December 2009 - 05:34 AM

Thanks, Neil - I've seen your post on the other thread as well, but after writing this one.

By the way: Merry Christmas to you and all at diamond.info
Davide - Specialised Consumer Information and Assistance,
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#9 denverappraiser

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Posted 24 December 2009 - 09:20 AM

Merry Christmas to you as well. Thank you for all your support to people in the forum. You are a great addition to the place.

Neil
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#10 Dashizz

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Posted 30 December 2009 - 12:37 PM

Ok, I think I found a reputable local retailer. They have been recommended by my co-workers and I trust them. They seem to have a decent selection. Only bad part is if I move out of the area, the warranty is only going to be offered by them and all the ususal crap with "cleanings every 6 months" blah blah....so if I move away from the area I can kiss the waranty good bye :D . That was one of the reasons I was looking at Jared/zales as they have stores everywhere so the waranty should carry wherever I moved.

Not sure if you guys read or not, but I was looking for a 1.25 ct or larger stone so thanks for the links to some 1.0 ct stones. lol

#11 diamondsbylauren

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Posted 30 December 2009 - 01:08 PM

Posted Image

HI All,
Dashizz- the stone above is a 1.22 G/SI2 which is eye clean, and quite nice in person.
It lists on our site for $5995

#12 davidelevi

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Posted 30 December 2009 - 02:18 PM

Not sure if you guys read or not, but I was looking for a 1.25 ct or larger stone so thanks for the links to some 1.0 ct stones. lol


Yes, I read, including the detail that you wanted a stone with maximum depth of 4.3 mm and between 5.8 and 6 mm width for a $7-8k budget. If you read, you would have noticed that those two fit the bill (width is 0.2 mm smaller, which can easily be compensated). The weight is - frankly - immaterial. What matters is how big the stone looks and whether it fits the setting without major rework. However, suit yourself. I'm not selling here.

Edited by davidelevi, 30 December 2009 - 02:19 PM.

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#13 Dashizz

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Posted 31 December 2009 - 01:35 PM

davidelevi: Thanks for your input. I actually have seen 1.0 ct stones and 1.25 ct stones (as well as some larger ones) in the actual ring and I can see quite a difference in the size. My personal oppinion is that the stones <1.25 ct in the setting look too small or "lost" by the rest of the setting. That is my reason for wanting 1.25 or larger. Some 1.22 ct stones I've looked at I couldn't see the difference apart from the 1.25 ct ones, but the 1.0 ct range I could.

Thanks for your help guys. I think I may have found a stone at this local place called "Goldstock Jewelers". Per local people they are pretty decent and reputable, although I have no personal/family experience with them. The owner is a friend of a co-worker, and I can trust her judgement at least. They have a nice looking 1.3X ct (1.34 ct, I think), F/VS1 for ~$6800 and will set it for free. I am trying to find time to get back there and talk to them. They were very nice, but only open until like 5pm and my schedule is hard to get in there :(

#14 denverappraiser

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Posted 31 December 2009 - 01:54 PM

I"m a big fan of supporting your local small businesses. You would think they'd be able to work with you on the 5 o'clock thing. One of the things that's been hammered into me as a small business owner is that if you're hours are 9-5 M-F then you're catering to the unemployed. If you want customers with actual jobs you need to flex on this a bit.

Let us know how it comes out and what your appraiser has to say. As I'm sure you know, details matter.

Neil
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#15 Dashizz

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Posted 01 January 2010 - 11:55 AM

Thanks Neil. Yes, I completely agree with your comment about catering to the unemployed. It's a huge pet peive of mine. In terms of finding an appraiser, who or how should I find the person to do that when the ring is complete. Obviously if the jeweler who does the work is the same person, they could be biased. Also, I've read reviews that a 2nd jeweler that sells similar products tends to under-estimate things from other sources with a hope to get you to return and buy something from them trying to be a "good guy" in loose context. Any thoughts on the appraiser?

I'll keep you all posted once I have details. I've very detail oriented, so everything's about details to me.

#16 denverappraiser

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Posted 01 January 2010 - 01:10 PM

Where are you?

Here's some online places to look for a qualified appraiser:
www.najaappraisers.com (National Association of Jewelry Appraisers)
www.appraisers.org (American Society of Appraisers)
www.ags.org (American Gem Society)

Nearly all of the qualified appraisers I know of are members of one or more of these organizations and all have online lookup systems based on your city or state. It's worth noting that the only one that has a category for independent appraisers, meaning those who don't sell diamonds or jewelry is the AGS, and there are only 17 of those in the whole country. Make sure to ask your appraiser this question when you contact them. Don't assume that just because they are a member of one of these groups that they aren't a competitive seller.

Neil

Edited by denverappraiser, 01 January 2010 - 02:20 PM.

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#17 Dashizz

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 08:51 AM

Pittsburgh, PA. I look at those sites and see what pops up. Thanks.

#18 Dashizz

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 03:55 PM

I think I just found what I'm looking for at a local store. :( Here are the specs:

Carat: 1.25
Color: F
Clarity: VS1
Cut: ideal
Polish/Symm: VG/VG
Sizes (mm): 6.02x5.87x4.28 (I think)
Certified: GIA
Price: $7,200 (with free mounting)

I've seen it and it is really clean. I can't find any inclusions even with the loupe in the store. It looks great on the setting, and "out shines" all the others stones I looked at today side-by-side.

I've seen similar ones online going for $9,500-11,000

Does that seem like a "GOOD DEAL"???

#19 davidelevi

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Posted 08 January 2010 - 04:21 AM

Depending on what the free mounting is, it may be a good deal. In any case it's a reasonable price, notwithstanding that we know nothing of the cut (except that you like it - which may well be enough).
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#20 Dashizz

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Posted 08 January 2010 - 01:04 PM

the cut is ideal. I forget the exact percentages but it was something like 70%table and 69%depth or vice-versa