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Internet Vs Retail Store

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Hi there! I am new to the forum and I need your help.


The big day is finally approaching and now its down to buying the ring. After dating the same lady for the last 10 years (yes I know, call me old fashioned) I will be poping the question next month.


Now lets get to the business part. I have been doing some research and now I am little torn between buying the ring online or going to a jewelry store. I found a few sites such as (http://www.americangemsociety.org) online about why you shouldn't buy a ring online and I wanted to know what you guys thought. Money, thank god, is not an issue, quality is what I am worried about. The warranties and maintenance are a big part of the decision as well.


What do you guys think?



Edited by BenjaminPorter
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You sound a lot like me. I have been dating my Girlfriend for close to 9 years, and just purchased a diamond this last Monday. I spent close to the last year educating myself and learning everything I could about diamonds. Price was not a limitation for me, but I wanted to keep the price under 25K. (I ended up choosing a beautiful diamond with a simple gold setting for an 'out the door' price of $23,000)


Everyone has their own personal experiences, mine were as follows: Most if not all "mall" retailers or major names in jewelry simply couldn’t offer me what I wanted without placing a special order that would then cause 'all sorts of problems for them...' Further, most of these chains were in my opinion unknowledgeable, or couldn’t answer any of my questions. Some sales people plain told me, “I don't know.†and left it at that… I even came across some Jewelers who were rude!


The online market didn’t bother me at all, I've purchased all sorts of things online and feel more then comfortable making a large diamond transaction online... I initially planned on making my purchase from an online 'store.' however, when I started talking with some of the Fine Jewelry dealers, and brought in printouts of what I was looking at online at places like Blue Nile, the Jewelers I was working with were more then willing to have diamonds of the same specifications, and in 2 cases, the EXACT SAME diamond shipped in for viewing. The prices the local jewelers offered were either across the board matches in price, or very comparable for some of the diamonds that were not the ones I was looking at online.


In all, I probably looked at 10-12 diamonds that were either online at places I was looking or were ordered in from elsewhere. Working with a physical jeweler who knows your name and has your phone number is an awesome experience, they work for you, as your expert and confidant- and my jeweler was just excited as I was when a 'new' diamond popped up that looked promising.


As you can tell, I choose to buy in a brick and mortar store- the personal attention and expertise can not be matched. A lot of diamonds look AWESOME on paper; they look like a great deal, an absolute steal!!- But when you have one shipped in and you see that the stone is actually a total rip, or is just totally lackluster, you quickly see why stone is priced the way it is... One of the diamonds my Jeweler and I ordered in from an online store was one I found; it was a GIA cert with EX cut, EX symmetry, EX polish, and a VS1 clarity. (H color and over 2 ct) On the cert. in the notes/comments section the grader wrote "additional clouds not noted" or something like that- well when we took a look at the stone under the microscope we found that over half of the diamond was covered in a GIANT cloud, and the stone had such a poor sparkle I couldn’t believe it.


I guess what I am saying is, Every diamond is either priced fairly or is over expensive, as a consumer you cannot search out and find a great deal, there is no sale, bargains don’t exist with diamonds. These beautiful stones are cut and sold by experts who know them inside and out- they know EXACTLY how much they are worth. If you are going to make a major purchase, get someone you trust to help you through the process. Everything online is priced at exactly what it is worth, or more. And in my opinion, a truly good jeweler will work with you to find just what you want for just what you want to spend.


And for the record: There are not very many 'truly good' jewelers around. So spend time tracking one down, ask friends, ask family, 'interview' / test potential jewelers. Ask them about matching internet prices, ask them about shipping in something from an online site, and see if they will bend over backwards? It took me what seemed like forever, but I found a good Jeweler. If you look hard enough, you will too.



Best of luck, it’s a long process, the learning and research took over a year, finding a knowledgeable, helpful, great jeweler to help me, took just as long...






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