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Mathieu

Diamondstuds.com - Legit ?

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Good evening,

 

Wanted to buy pair of a diamond earrings as a gift for my wife and I've came across site mentioned in title.

 

Prices seems to be good nad they have exact setting I prefer (bezel). But I've failed to find any reviews of them. Only diamondstudswholesale.com which seems to be something different :-)

 

To be specific, I was thinking about Hearts & Arrows or round shape, 14k white bezel setting, clarity SI1/SI2. Not sure about stones size / weight. Budget 300-900$. Any thoughts ?

 

Here's clickable link: https://www.diamondstuds.com/diamond-studs-ds-4.html?shape=Hearts-_and_-Arrows

 

Thanks in advance for your help.

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I don't know the vendor - which means nothing one way or the other. More concerning to me is that you can't find that much about them by searching.

 

Even more concerning is that they make cut quality, colour and clarity claims without anything to back them up (not even a definition of what they mean by H&A), that you cannot see a lab report for the specific stones you'd be getting (even where a report would be provided - i.e. for the "more expensive" items), and that therefore you are relying solely on their word for what you are getting. It doesn't make them wrong, but united to the lack of reviews it does make it a bit of a risky proposition.

 

Incidentally, their prices are about in line with what you'd pay for properly graded stones and cheap settings at the bottom of the range: a 0.15 GIA G/VS2 XXX is about $250, of which about $50 are report. Take two of those without the report, plus a pair of cheap settings and labour and you are in for $600 or so. Their "GIA graded" line at the top quotes a price of $4,200 for a pair of 0.50 ct G/VS2 Very Good cut and strongly fluorescent - which is quite a bit higher than competitive internet prices for that type of stone (so much for their "you save 60-70%" line): http://www.diamondreview.com/diamonds/?sortOrder=price&sortDesc=1&fShape=Rnd&fCaratLo=0.50&fCaratHi=0.55&fColorLo=G&fColorHi=G&fClarityLo=VS2&fClarityHi=VS2&fCutLo=vgood&fCutHi=poor&fDepthLo=0.0&fDepthHi=100.0&fTableLo=0.0&fTableHi=100.0&fSymLo=&fSymHi=poor&fPolLo=&fPolHi=poor&fCulLo=&fCulHi=vlarge&fFlrLo=med&fFlrHi=vstrong&fPriceLo=1&fPriceHi=1000000000&adv=1

 

In all: I think you can do better by purchasing from a known vendor, at the same or lower price. If you really want the bezel settings, ask - it's perfectly possible to find those, even if they are not listed on someone's website.

Edited by davidelevi

Davide - Specialised Consumer Information and Assistance,
Diamonds by Lauren (http://www.diamondsbylauren.com)
davide@diamondsbylauren.com

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Hello Davide,

 

Thanks for such extensive response. Yes, the fact I wasn't able to lookup any reliable reviews made me a bit concerned too. That was the reason why I decided to ask here before purchase.

 

I'd go with a better estblished vendor as you suggest, was thinking about Blue Nile ? Often recomended on this site, plus it seems that they are based in Ireland, so easier to import since I'm located in EU.

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Blue Nile is fine - it's seldom the cheapest, and it doesn't list any bezel settings (and it's typically one of those vendors for which "if it's not on the website we don't do it")

 

FWIW, B2C, James Allen and Brian Gavin (at a minimum; didn't check others!) list bezel settings on their sites - I haven't looked in any depth at what they offer, but I would trust all three vendors (and BN!) to sell fairly described goods.

 

The advantage of an EU-based shipment is that any VAT refunds if you return the goods are taken care of by the vendor, and they will invoice you directly for a price that is (duty and) VAT inclusive, rather than you having to settle separately with whoever acts as custom clearance agent (courier or post office). In other words: a possibly significant advantage if you think you may return/exchange the item, but not otherwise.


Davide - Specialised Consumer Information and Assistance,
Diamonds by Lauren (http://www.diamondsbylauren.com)
davide@diamondsbylauren.com

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I've checked some local jewelry stores and maybe I would consider "princess" cut along with the round cut in bezel setting.

 

Looked up this one on BN:

 

http://www.bluenile.com/cz/princess-cut-diamond-earrings_55630?action=14kWhiteGoldSelect&referrer=customizer&track=alternate-metalsCustomizer

 

But I'm not sure about I1 clarity... Is it a big differnce to a SI2 ? I've choosen SI2 clarity for both engement and wedding rings she already has. 

 

Yes, easier return is a benefit in case of EU based store, but US based store isn't problem too, I know lotof expats in US who travel regularly to EU and can bring it over for me, so import customs fees wouldn't be an issue.

Edited by Mathieu

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SI2 -> I1 is a pretty big difference:

 

1. The chances of finding something that is eye-clean decrease very significantly. This is not as important for earrings as it is for a ring, but still...
 

2. The chances of having an inclusion that is possibly detrimental to integrity or durability increase very significantly (in theory SI do NOT present these risks at all, but understand that grading is a subjective evaluation, particularly for these things!)

 

3. The price drops equally significantly.

 

There are many I1 that are lovely stones (my wife regularly wears some of them - the most frequent comments by people, including jewellery professionals, is about how stunning they look, and no-one has ever mentioned the inclusions - not out of being polite), it's just that finding them it's a bit more difficult.

 

Final point re: princess vs. round - bear in mind that princess cuts tend to look smaller for the same weight, partly because of geometry (more depth and square corners) and partly because they are less bright. On the other hand, they also cost less per carat.


Davide - Specialised Consumer Information and Assistance,
Diamonds by Lauren (http://www.diamondsbylauren.com)
davide@diamondsbylauren.com

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Go shopping and look at some real diamonds.  Live and in person.  Si2/I1 is a big deal and the answer is based on what YOU like.

Buying in the US and smuggling them in is definitely going to save you money but it is, of course, illegal and her majesty wouldn't approve.  That's your call. 

 

Those aren't bezels.


Neil Beaty

GG(GIA) ICGA(AGS) NAJA

 

There's never a crowd when you go that extra mile.

Professional Appraisals in Denver

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Since the site linked to was the Czech site, I suspect the President won't approve, while Her Majesty won't care too much one way or t'other. ;)

 

Also, remember that while in the US getting no-sales-tax at source is relatively easy, it still requires the vendor to ship out-of-state and this is not always practical (especially if you are relying on a friend to pick things up for you during a business trip). Otherwise you need to add local sales tax into the price.


Davide - Specialised Consumer Information and Assistance,
Diamonds by Lauren (http://www.diamondsbylauren.com)
davide@diamondsbylauren.com

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Thanks, I'll stick with SI2 then.

 

And yes, Czech President will be eventually dissapointed, not the Queen. I'm glad that it wasn't obvious from my written expression :-) 

 

Got one more question regarding certificates, EGL to be specific. I've found a local vendor selling nice earrings for a decent prices, but the certificates are issued by EGL, according to this article, it's not very trustworthy I guess ?

 

https://www.diamonds.pro/egl/

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Not only according to that article; you'll find the same posted over this forum over and over again... the whole point has been most recently nicely summarised by Neil here:

 

http://www.diamondreview.com/forum/topic/10774-2ct-diamond-stud-earrings/#entry57024


Davide - Specialised Consumer Information and Assistance,
Diamonds by Lauren (http://www.diamondsbylauren.com)
davide@diamondsbylauren.com

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Did some research and I will probably buy diamonds in the US and then have earrings made here in Czech rep. 

 

Was thinking about B2C Jewels and diamonds of approx. 0.25 ct each with GIA certificate and price arround 300$ /piece.

 

For example these 2:

 

http://www.b2cjewels.com/dd-9045223-0.26-carat-Round-diamond-D-color-SI2-clarity.aspx

 

http://www.b2cjewels.com/dd-9037746-0.26-carat-Round-diamond-G-color-SI2-clarity.aspx

 

Price seems to be fair according to the DiamondReview finder..?

Edited by Mathieu

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They both seem well cut (the D more than the G) and they are an excellent match in terms of diameter. B2C is generally competitive price wise, however, in increasing order of importance:

 

1. You may see some minor difference in cut/appearance (higher crown and smaller table).

2. You may see some difference in colour.

3. You are getting stones priced at the bottom of their price range... which with an SI2 is likely to mean easily visible inclusions.

 

None of these are showstoppers given the size of the stones and their intended use, but be prepared... (especially for number 3).


Davide - Specialised Consumer Information and Assistance,
Diamonds by Lauren (http://www.diamondsbylauren.com)
davide@diamondsbylauren.com

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So maybe these will be a better choice in terms of price/value ?

 

http://www.b2cjewels.com/dd-8495653-0.29-carat-Round-diamond-D-color-SI1-clarity.aspx

http://www.b2cjewels.com/dd-8385335-0.29-carat-Round-diamond-D-color-SI1-clarity.aspx

 

I've forgot that SI2 is "worse" than SI1... 

 

I'm aware of a slight difference between dimensions, but since it's for an earrings...

 

By the way, I've checked papers for that engagement and wedding ring I've bought in the past and it's SI1 clarity, not SI2 as I thought and written in my previous post.

 

Since these diamonds (not certified) are looking good to me, I should be fine with SI1 certified by GIA ?

Edited by Mathieu

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Apart from colour, less well matched and less well cut than the first two, if slightly larger in diameter... and with minimal risk of visible inclusions.

 

It's not a question of "price/value" - both pairs are fairly priced; it's a question of what matters.

 

FWIW, I would lower colour to G or H (which in a smaller stone is going to look white anyway), keep clarity around SI1 for safety (especially given cost of shipping things back to the US) and get something that is really well cut, rather than spending your money on getting a D colour pair, but that's just my opinion.


Davide - Specialised Consumer Information and Assistance,
Diamonds by Lauren (http://www.diamondsbylauren.com)
davide@diamondsbylauren.com

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The problem with lab grading on stones like this is that GIAs fee to grade it is about $60.  Add shipping and insurance and we’re talking about $100 or so for the paperwork.  Each. That’s 1/3 of the cost of the stones.  Pretty steep for a piece of paper that doesn't contribute to beauty or even really answer all of the questions you're asking.

The problem with house grading is the reliability of the grader.  There are plenty of capable gemologists who can do it for less, and surely the seller has one, but credibility comes now into play.  The issue is vetting your seller.  As with the above, I don’t know these people at all, and as with Davide that means nothing beyond that I’m not contributing mush useful info to your vetting. You're on your own.

FWIW, mostly stones under about $2000 net are routinely sold without lab papers for this reason. The difference in price between SI1 and SI2 doesn’t justify the cost of paying the lab to answer the question.  At the same time, they ARE different, and if the seller is misleading you it’s important to understand that.


Neil Beaty

GG(GIA) ICGA(AGS) NAJA

 

There's never a crowd when you go that extra mile.

Professional Appraisals in Denver

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Sorry - was writing my answer just as you were changing your post... so I missed the second part.

 

The issue with SI1 (and more so with SI2 and I1) is that there is no general answer: there are I1 that have inclusions that are on the whole less "visible" and bothersome than some SI1 inclusions. Then there is the issue of the grader's reliability as pointed out by Neil...

 

This said, I'll stick my neck out and say that with GIA SI1 in 0.2x size used for a pair of earring you'll be absolutely fine.


Davide - Specialised Consumer Information and Assistance,
Diamonds by Lauren (http://www.diamondsbylauren.com)
davide@diamondsbylauren.com

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denverappraiser: I'm aware of that, frankly, I wouldn't insist on GIA certificate, but I don't have other options since I don't know any reputable US seller who could supply decent quality gems for a reasonable price without certificate. So, the GIA certificate is the only lead I have - I know what I'm getting.

 

Funny thing is, these loose diamonds with GIA certificate sold by B2C are still approx. 40% cheaper than similar ones sold here in CZ, often without any certificate from a reputable lab. Not to mention the efforts of our central bank to weaken our currency :-)

 

davidelevi: thanks for advice. So, I'll go for an excellent cut then. Refined search gave me these results:

 

http://www.b2cjewels.com/dd-9068414-0.25-carat-Round-diamond-H-color-SI1-clarity.aspx

http://www.b2cjewels.com/dd-9092076-0.25-carat-Round-diamond-G-color-SI1-clarity.aspx

Edited by Mathieu

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I would suggest you give B2C a call and see if they can tell you something about visibility of inclusions in the "first" pair. Although "risky", they are by far the best cut pair among your three options. Also, B2C (or whoever else you end up picking as a vendor) may well have access to more stones than they list on their site or on the Finder here, so it doesn't hurt to ask.

 

I have tried to find a pair cut and matching to "my" satisfaction, but for less than $400 each I cannot find much... sorry.


Davide - Specialised Consumer Information and Assistance,
Diamonds by Lauren (http://www.diamondsbylauren.com)
davide@diamondsbylauren.com

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OK, I've just emailed them, I hope that they will be able to tell me something more about these particular stones.

 

I'll probably stick with B2C as long as I'm running out of time - friend of mine who will bring diamonds over to me is leaving US in two weeks.

 

By the way, thank you for looking, I know that budget of 900$ isn't much...

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Phew, one of the stones from the first pair is gone :-/

 

So, I've raised a budget little bit, and found these, excellent cut a good match in terms of diameter I guess ?

 

2017-02-21_114056.jpg

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These two look good - I imagine it's these?

 

https://www.gia.edu/report-check?reportno=6187095225

http://www.b2cjewels.com/dd-9095981-0.30-carat-Round-diamond-H-color-SI1-clarity.aspx(no report number!!!)

 

If so, note that the 0.30 G is advertised here (by B2C!) at a lower price: you may still be able to get it at this price if you order quickly via phone and you tell them about the ad here on Diamond Review. Also, I would expect the inclusion on the G to be somewhat prominent, given it's well cut it's not "normal" that it's less than an otherwise equivalent H with VG symmetry.

 

http://www.diamondreview.com/diamonds/?sortOrder=price&sortDesc=1&fShape=Rnd&fCaratLo=0.30&fCaratHi=0.31&fColorLo=G&fColorHi=H&fClarityLo=SI1&fClarityHi=SI1&fCutLo=&fCutHi=poor&fDepthLo=61.9&fDepthHi=62.0&fTableLo=53.0&fTableHi=57.0&fSymLo=&fSymHi=poor&fPolLo=ideal&fPolHi=exc&fCulLo=&fCulHi=vlarge&fFlrLo=none&fFlrHi=none&fPriceLo=1&fPriceHi=500&fLabGIA=1&fLabAGS=1&adv=1


Davide - Specialised Consumer Information and Assistance,
Diamonds by Lauren (http://www.diamondsbylauren.com)
davide@diamondsbylauren.com

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Yes, these 2 and again, one sold as I've been informed by B2C just now. It's like buying cheap air tickets :-)

 

They've also offered substitution for the sold diamond from the first pair:

 

http://www.b2cjewels.com/dd-8720437-0.25-carat-Round-diamond-E-color-SI2-clarity.aspx /new one/

http://www.b2cjewels.com/dd-9037746-0.26-carat-Round-diamond-G-color-SI2-clarity.aspx

 

Thanks for advice with different prices here and on B2C website, will check it before buying.

 

EDIT: Looks like they advertise their "bank wire" prices on this website.

Edited by Mathieu

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The "new" one is far less nice cut-wise - and again, by fishing at the bottom of the SI2 pool you risk getting something with a black blot in its middle...


Davide - Specialised Consumer Information and Assistance,
Diamonds by Lauren (http://www.diamondsbylauren.com)
davide@diamondsbylauren.com

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I'm aware of that, I've decided to pass this pair.

 

I'll keep looking at SI1 and better with excellent cut as you advised. How about polish and symmetry ? According to the B2C search engine, should I look only at "excellent" or very good/good will do as well in my case ?

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If you find XXX, go for it. If one has to sacrifice something, I'd rather have let go of polish than symmetry.

 

Ultimately, they will end up as a pair of earrings; if someone gets close enough to your girlfriend/fiancée/wife's ears to see the difference between VG and EX polish or symmetry you have other problems... (and a diamond fetishist on hand: you need a loupe to see it!)


Davide - Specialised Consumer Information and Assistance,
Diamonds by Lauren (http://www.diamondsbylauren.com)
davide@diamondsbylauren.com

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