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Everything posted by LaurieH

  1. I have an AWESOME antique ring that I purchased for myself as a present to congratulate myself on a new job (this was a couple years ago) and finally having disposable income after years and years of struggling. However...I NEVER WEAR IT! I had it appraised once upon a time, and it was valued at about $5200, but this was when gold was considerably less, and I haven't yet gotten together with my appraiser to have it re-upped. We're struggling a little bit and I'm thinking that the ring, as much as I love it, is probably worth more in the bank to me than in my jewelry box. So all that blabbedyblab said, how much luck have folks had with selling such things on here? I definitely do not want to go the route of craigslist or ebay, as the scammers on the former and the risk of not making its value on the latter worries me. I *could* see if one of the local jewelers who carries estate/antique stuff would want to buy or consign it, but then I'm looking at only making about half of what it would likely sell for--and that's if I'm lucky! I know they need to make a buck, too, but I want to at least get my investment out of it! The ring is 14k white gold (size 6.75 or 7...I forget which, b/c both fit me) and was relatively recently rhodiumed and not worn since (besides trying it on and putting it back) and contains 15 diamonds. The largest, center one is probably about a 12-15pt (I'm a little out of practice guesstimating once they're set) and the cutting on each one varies slightly, as they're wont to do in antique rings, but the "flash" on the center three diamonds matches nicely. 3 diamonds in the center "swish" two on each side and one in each corner. Millgraining is still in pristine condition. Pretty basket filigree underneath, also in perfect condition. So...thoughts? Experiences? (interest...? )
  2. I know there is not (yet) a subsection for non-diamond jewelry, per se, but I'm curious what folks' favorite gemstone is BESIDES diamonds. Do you have a favorite colored stone? Is it your birthstone? Whatever it is, is it something you wear (that one's mostly for the gals, I guess!)? Why or why not? I'm personally a huge fan of Garnet and Labradorite (and love them together in the same piece), and I have several pieces of jewelry that I've made with both those stones. My birthstone is Peridot, and I have some jewelry that I made with it, that I don't wear much, and treated myself to a rose gold ring with a nicely cut round Peridot center a couple years ago, but I don't wear it often. I also LOOOOOOOVE Paraiba Tourmaline, but unfortunately, a good sized, well cut stone is out of my price point right now. But one day... In the meantime, I sometimes run across Apatite that is the same color and might have to have a ring made at some point if I find a nice one
  3. LaurieH

    Joke Of The Day

    Cuz who couldn't use a little giggle? Bad jokes especially welcome.
  4. LaurieH


    So yesterday, we lost our 4 legged old man, Oscar. He was a Rhodesian Ridgeback and he'd well outlived his breed. We didn't think we'd have him with us much longer, but besides loss of hearing and vision we hadn't seen any signs of decline. It was a shock and we are sad that we didn't have any warning, so that we could have spoiled him in his last days and had a chance to say goodbye. We still have our sweet kitty, Topaz, but we'll definitely miss having our goofy, flaky dog around. It was much harder on my guy, b/c Oscar had been his buddy for nearly 10 yrs, having gotten him from a rescue as a grown dog, and they went through a lot together. Our pets can be very important to us, and it's sad when we lose them. Don't forget to dish a little extra love on yours (if you have them) every day! I figured if anyone wanted to gush about their pets and share anything, here's your place.
  5. I have a random curiosity: The advertising and bridal jewelry industries make a point of pushing the idea that LOTS of people get engaged at holidays--Christmas, New Years and Valentine's day, especially. I know it certainly does happen, and probably statistically more often than any other day on the year you could pick out at random, just as I'm sure more engagements are on Friday and Saturday nights than, say Tuesdays. BUT...I wonder--how many of you out there got engaged at a holiday? Guys who are looking now--I know the "big 3" have passed for this year--but are you considering it? Do you know anyone else who proposed/was proposed to on a major holiday? Just something that popped into my head a few min ago, and figured this was as good a place as any for random sampling, no? A show of hands is good enough, but if you wanna share thoughts or a story, that's always welcome, too
  6. LaurieH

    Which Ring Should We Get? Should I Do Insurance?

    For the most part, even things that are less expensive aren't made to just fall apart. Return policy/warranty or no, no one wants to get a reputation for selling goods that fall apart. That said, you have a greater risk of losing a stone at SOME POINT when you're talking about a lot of small stones, because the bits of metal holding them in place is smaller--has to be, or it covers the stone or looks clunky. Does that mean that you WILL lose a stone? No. But rings take a bigger beating than most any other jewelry (think of all the things you do with your hands in a day. Multiply that by 365. it's a lot!), so the chance of knocking out a stone are certainly there. But the biggest chance that you're going to lose a stone is if you're having to size the ring significantly up or down. If you don't anticipate that, then you've little to worry about. I do agree that--whatever you do--you aught to have the ring checked out by someone else; someone with no dog in the fight. Maybe you know of a local place that will clean it for free, and you can ask them to check and see if anything is loose or looks like it might need a tightening-up soon. Beyond that, I'd say it is still ALWAYS wise to have your own insurance on the ring in case of theft or loss. Consider that it's one of the major purchases in your life--you want to protect that investment, don't you?
  7. LaurieH

    Estate Gia Oval 2.02 G Si2 - Good Price? Good Buy?

    I agree with what the guys have said about the stone--and that looking a little bit milky in the pic could just be a bad pic. Diamonds are incredibly hard to photograph well. Also a note on the bow-tie effect--all ovals, pears, and marquise cuts are going to have SOME bowtie; it's just a matter of how strong it is and if it detracts from the overall beauty of the stone. I would normally be a little wary of an SI2 being eye-clean, but considering the nature and location of the inclusions and the fact that those are pretty darn good pics...and personally, I rather fancy the shape of that oval (sometimes they're too skinny or too fat--this has a pretty nice outline, IMHO). The setting itself is nothing to write home about, and if you decided to scrap it--as you say--you won't be out much. You could certainly try to sell the empty mount or sell it for scrap and recoup some of your money. Really, though, it's probably one of the least expensive types of settings that most sellers offer, and the reason they're not selling the stone unmounted is because, as a private seller (if I am understanding this correctly), they can't insure it without it being mounted. One of the little oddities of the jewelry insurance biz! If it's a jeweler selling it, they went ahead and mounted it in the simplest type of setting so that it was ready to go for the purchaser, as loads of people buy a diamond in a simple setting like that, whether they intend to keep it there or not. What is the guarantee or return policy they're offering, if any? I would expect that either way, you'd likely be responsible for shipping and insurance one or both directions, but are they giving you an opportunity to inspect the diamond and send it back if you're not happy with it?
  8. LaurieH

    Worth Difference In Price?

    HI! I'm back under my own steam. I never really meant to "disappear"--meant to just take a short break to do some things that got put on the back burner and then, well, life got in the way while I was making other plans! And of course, I never forgot about y'all--just was always at stupid times like when I was not exactly the right time to be logging in! But I've missed everyone and I've missed the diamonds, so now I'm back and you'll not be rid of me so easily again LOL And thanks for the info about B2C--looks like I'll have a little learning to do while I get back into the swing of things! And, like I'd said, they may be the way for the OP to go, I just couldn't have said for sure! Me--I like my customer service, but everyone has different needs when they're shopping for anything! But I have no horses in this race! (and that's just the way I like it!)
  9. LaurieH

    Worth Difference In Price?

    Yeah..i was going to say that both the diamonds look great-- so the difference is not so much in the diamonds themselves as, perhaps, the customer service/reputation value-for-money that you might get from one vs the other. I, myself, am not familiar with B2C Jewels--their reputation or their level of customer service, returns policies, etc--to be able to say that they're who to go with. They very well might be! But I do know that James Allen has been around a long time and has a good reputation. So you may see that you can negotiate with them a bit, but I think it's also that you've got a long-standing company behind you should there be any problems down the line. I'd maybe speak to folks at both places and just see who you are more comfortable working with and who can provide YOU the best customer service experience based on what YOU want. Sometimes spending a little more money is worth it for better service and peace of mind. Sometimes it's good to save some dough and go. But that decision is up to you.
  10. LaurieH

    Quality Round Stone?

    I think it looks like a great stone--can't beat a Triple Excellent. It'll face-up white, totally eye're staying under that "magic number" of 1 carat, so you're saving some money without forfeiting much on size (no one would know it wasn't closer to a 1, unless it was side-by-side with one and they were really scrutinizing!), so I'd say you've picked a winner! ( all the regulars--hi! I'm back! didn't mean to be away so long--um. or at all! but that'll be for another post! )
  11. LaurieH

    Gia Diamond Grading Report Vs Dossier

    What's the size of the diamond? And, roughly, what do you think the diamond might come back as? If you're talking about something under a carat--esp a round--it's not uncommon to just go the dossier route and have the diamond laser inscribed with the cert number (or some other thing to use as an identifier), since you won't have the plot to act as the "fingerprint" for the diamond. Over a carat, fancy shape, high Clarity (or any or all of these), I'd go with a full cert grading report. Then you have the plot for ID, and if you want it--for peace of mind, to be fancy, or just for the sake of getting it done--you can have it inscribed, too.
  12. LaurieH

    Over My Head....resetting Diamonds

    So does that 750 include the new mounting? If so, and considering the labor and materials both in the mounting itself and to remove and reset the diamonds you have, I don't think it sounds unreasonable. AND, some jewelers won't deal with channel setting because it's more difficult/involved than, say, prong setting, so some of that is the expertise (and what I call the PITA factor) to do it right.
  13. That is absolutely a red flag with anyone! Or if you ask the same question a few times and either get different answers or they ignore the heart of the question and talk around it (or ignore it altogether). Just good points to look out for for ANYONE buying anything anywhere, but especially when you're dealing with something long-distance. If you let us know what you're looking for a little more specifically, I'm sure almost anyone here would be more than happy to help you (besides just picking it out for you! ) with any questions you might have on how to search, what to look for, what to avoid, etc.
  14. Agreed with the above. Remember the old adage: If something seems too good to be true, it probably is. There are tons and tons of reputable dealers online and around the world--I'd certainly make a better point of buying something that you can know what you're getting for a fair price somewhere reputable over buying something that's a "deal" or "steal" somewhere else that you don't have any idea what might arrive.
  15. LaurieH

    Tiffany Platinum Diamond Ring For Sale

    Dofseo, Please leave such comments and requests to the moderators, ok? If you think there's a violation of some sort, you're more than welcome to alert Hermann or myself to it and we'll go from there. Thanks.
  16. LaurieH

    Which Diamond Is Better

    Is there any particular reason that you're looking at branded cut square diamonds? You can get more bang for your buck out of going for a certified (GIA or AGS) that is cut well, and you'll likely get something with better Clarity and Color for the size and budget that you're looking to stay within. A lot of times, those branded diamonds are lower quality diamond, and they put extra facets on them to give them more "sparkle" or cut them shallow and wide to make them look bigger, when in fact, what makes a diamond good are the basic 4 C's, but the CUT--which means that the light performance in a standard Modified Square Radiant aka "Princess Cut" that is well cut is going to look better not only on the surface, but through-and-through, than those with some trademark name. "Ideal" ratios for Princess cuts are UP TO 1:1.04 (which, esp if set N-S, will still appear square to the human eye most all the time) but the closer you get to 1:1, obviously, the better. Once you're past 1.06, you definitely start to get the impression of the stone being more rectangular. Not that there's anything WRONG with's still a Radiant, but you're getting further from where it can more legitimately be called a "Princess" (IMHO) I say this as "expert advice", but whatever any of us tell you, it really comes down to what you like and what you're comfortable with buying and from whom. It's nearly impossible to price shop the branded cuts, so we couldn't tell you as far as fair price or value for money with any REAL certainty, because most of those branded cuts are owned by a particular chain, so there's no one else to price shop against. BUT, use the diamond finder tool at the top, plug in your basic specs, and just look at what ballpark of prices come up. If you see that it's REALLY out of line (either in your favor or in theirs) with what they're asking, then stop and consider further what direction to take. Otherwise, all other advice aside, you've just gotta go with your gut! Good luck!
  17. LaurieH

    Help!!! 0.83 G/if Ags Ideal

    Yeah...that sounds a little lowball price to me, too. Has the stone been treated in any way?
  18. LaurieH

    Info And/or Opinions On Baguettes

    I appreciate your feedback! I would have never thought of using a chamois to clean diamonds. My sister-in-law told me a long time ago that she uses toothpaste to clean her wedding ring set (I don't know if she still does), but I don't think I'll be doing that. I usually just soak my colored gemstone rings in the jewelry cleaning solution that my jeweler would give me every now and then when I'd buy another ring from them and it works great. OMG...tell your SIL *NO NO NO NO NO NO NO!* Dish soap (without skin conditioners, b/c like was stated above, diamonds love grease/oils!), SOFT bristle toothbrush, warm water. That is ALL you need to keep 99% of any and all jewelry clean. You want a soft brush so that you don't scratch the metal (or softer stones, although those are another story), and some toothpastes have a bit of grit to them, so she's really possibly damaging her rings doing that over time. If she's got white gold, she's certainly taking off the Rhodium finish faster than normal wear and tear would! I also don't recommend soaking in the solution too long. It's really only going to loosen whatever dirt is on there, whereas the toothbrush will actually take away whatever oils (and dirt that is stuck to it).
  19. LaurieH

    Cushion Cut Diamond Shopping

    If it's a legitimately certified diamond, any enhancements would be disclosed on the certification. Did the salesperson allow you to see the accompanying cert for that diamond? It really does come down to what you like, because you wear the diamond, not the cert, but certainly you want to know exactly what it is to know if you're being offered a fair price.
  20. LaurieH

    Egl Usa 1.24Ct Si2J Worth $5K???

    GIA considers the ideal range for table % to be from 55-65%. From there, it seems to be personal preference. I know Davide prefers a higher crown angle and smaller table, reminiscent of many older cuts, whereas, I like a good "flash" on a RB, so I prefer something on the higher end of that range. But I agree, 69% is out of spec, and it means a much larger window into the center of the stone and potentially less light performance, because you're shortening all the facets on the crown that are needed to help bounce the light around inside the stone, which means you end up with a bit of a "flat" look. I think you can definitely do better, even if that means going a bit smaller. IMHO, quality is much more important than "quantity" (or, in this case, size). And esp since you're considering something that is EGL (even USA) J SI2, chances are you're going to get something that is going to show a tiny bit yellow (might not translate to the eye as "yellow", but kinda "warm", if that makes sense to you) and you've got potentially visible inclusions. Also a good bet that if EGL was calling it an SI2, GIA would call it an I1. Doesn't mean it's not necessarily a pretty stone, even with all those things (and others) considered, but I really think you can find something else that will be better value for money without sacrificing what you're looking for appearance-wise.
  21. LaurieH

    Tiffany Platinum Diamond Ring For Sale

    I would suggest using the Diamond Finder tool at the top of the page to find something using the search parameters of size, Color, Clarity, etc. and go from there.
  22. LaurieH

    Cushion Cut Diamond Shopping

    As a rule, since I'm a moderator here and formerly worked for an e-tailer, I will (almost) never recommend for or against any legitimate retailer (ie, company that is a known name and has a good reputation--if we've never heard of it or know of it to be a fly-by-night or something, that's another story) because I see it as a conflict of interest and my "job" here is to provide general information and assistance w/o any bias. That said, Diamond Review HAS vetted a number of diamond e-tailers as trustworthy (you're going to get what you pay for and good service), reliable (you're going to get it in a reasonable amount of time, barring any crazy problems with a custom order once in a blue moon) and with a fair return policy (you should have a reasonable amount of time to view your item and return it for full refund--maybe minus shipping, but no restocking--if you're not happy with it). You will find their stones listed in the Diamond Finder tool at the top of the page. Again, we're not selling or even outright recommending them, or anything, but it is a good resource if nothing else. We're happy if you do toss them your business, but we never pressure or say "here's a stone like what you're looking for--buy it!" or anything like that. Also, some of the e-tailers we've vetted offer some discounts (see the Coupons tab @ top of page) if you DO happen to find a stone in their inventory that you like. Everyone is going to have a different experience with any e-tailer, same as they would with any brick-and-mortar store. You just need to find a company and/or salesperson that you are comfortable with and trust them to be able to answer your questions to your satisfaction. I'll say though, of course, everyone is going to have one area of technical knowledge different from another, so try to talk to someone who is pretty familiar with selling Cushions (as opposed to someone/some company that really only sells Rounds or Princess cuts all day long and can't tell you much about Cushions), so that they can better understand what you're looking for, the look you're going for, and can better act as your advocate in your search. And, just b/c you mentioned that you're also looking on ebay--I know they have buyer protections and so does paypal if you pay for things that route--just be sure to check out any seller's reputation (and google them, etc. DUE DILIGENCE!) and be careful. Make sure you're only buying certified stones so that you know that you're actually getting what you're supposed to be getting, not just what some Tom, Dick, or Harry wants to call something, ya know? Anyway...I know that was a bit of a roundabout answer, but hopefully that helps a little! When you do find a diamond (or ring, if you find a finished piece or whatever), you're more than welcome to come back, ask questions about it/them, post pictures, copies of certs, etc, and we'll be happy to give you unbiased info and opinions on them to help you get the best thing you can
  23. LaurieH

    Cushion Cut Diamond Shopping

    The first thing you need to know--which you may already--is that Cushions are *the* most varied cut of all. There are not only two cutting types (Cushion Brilliant and Cushion Modified Brilliant), but they can vary greatly in outline as well. Some are more square, some more rectangular; you can have squarer shoulders or more rounded ones. But this kind of information does NOT translate to a plot--so you need to work with someone who can actually call in the stones and see them for themselves and, hopefully, be able to provide you images of the ACTUAL diamonds. So it's certainly not impossible to shop for a Cushion with an e-tailer, but you need to make sure to ask the right questions and know what they are able and willing to do for you to help you with your search. The good thing is that Cushions are often a fairly "busy" cut, so you can often find eye-clean SI1s, which will allow you to potentially get more bang for your buck. Good luck and we'll all be happy to help you with your search--I know I'm not the only one here who *loves* Cushion cuts
  24. LaurieH

    Info And/or Opinions On Baguettes

    All of the above. I'm not a HUGE fan of baguettes, but if they're eye-clean and well cut, I think they can really compliment some designs. Especially if you're talking about something rectangular, I think tapered baguettes are quite nice as a little more subtle compliment to the center stone. I agree--get what you want. While I understand the jeweler's feeling about not wanting to work with certain things for his own designs, if he's making something for you at your request, he should be willing to give a little to give you what you want. After all, you'll be the one who wears it for the rest of your life, not him, so you have to get something that you actually like looking at! Good luck and I'd love if you'd come back and post a picture of your finished ring--whatever design you go with--when it's all said and done. And congrats in advance
  25. LaurieH

    Need Some Help Chosing Between Two-

    When newly polished, the difference is almost imperceptible, after a little while it's barely noticeable. The biggest difference is after a while of wear and tear. White gold is routinely plated with Rhodium (a naturally white metal in the Platinum family) because white gold is alloyed from yellow to be white, but it's still kinda dish-watery white, and the plating will wear off over time, leaving it a little duller looking. Platinum (and Palladium) will take on tiny scratches from wear over time which develops into what is referred to as a pattina--and it will look a little more grey or antiquey looking. So either one, just have it polished (and/or replated in the case of white gold) and they'll look almost the same again. But they won't look TREMENDOUSLY different side-by-side even if you do nothing, providing she's not unusually rough on her jewelry or wears it swimming or dealing with lots of cleaning products.