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mechagodzilla

What Do You Think Of This Stone?

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Howdy,

 

I am getting ready to take the plunge, and have been searching for a ring/diamond that she'll love. She's made it clear her primary criteria are sparkle (cut?) and clarity (no black specks visible to the naked eye). I found this stone at blue nile for $3519, and have it on hold for another couple days. I was nervous about buying an SI1, but the customer service rep at blue nile assured me that their signature ideal cut stones never have visible flaws. Could someone with a little knowledge of the diamond business give me their opinion of that stone? Could you please compare it to similar stones at blue nile and diamond.com, such as this? Diamond.com appears to be significantly cheaper (especially with 8% cashback through Chase credit cards).

 

Finally, a question of aesthetics. My girlfriend is a pretty, petite little thing, and wears a 3.5 ring. I was looking at this setting, and didn't know if the side stones would take away from the central diamond. (It's cheaper at Leroy's jewelers, but jared's has a better picture). Would a 3/4 carat center stone with that band be too big for such a little hand? Is it going to look too small?

 

I'm an analytical guy, but I'm way out of my depth when it comes to jewelry! Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!

Edited by mechagodzilla

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Hi Mech,

In terms of clarity, I don;t believe BN actually has the stones in stock to be able to make claims about eye cleanliness- many SI1's are eye clean- but there are others that are not.

i'd ask if they have the stone to be able to verify the eye cleanliness.

 

The second stone, again does not seem to be in the hands of the seller. They very well might be very nice, but the also may not.

 

When it comers to analyzing diamonds, the visual aspects trump pretty much everything else. That is to say, if GIA gives to "EX" cut grade, it is going to be a well cut stone. However that by itself does not mean you'll love it.

 

As far as the setting- this is definitely a question of style- do you think she'll love the setting?

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The Blue Nile ‘signature ideal’ line is a set of stones that’s owned (or at least exclusively controlled) by Blue Nile, that meet their set of parameters in terms of cut/color/clarity and that have had some extra paperwork and packaging prepared by their friends over at GCAL. It’s roughly the same gig as any other jeweler who is promoting their own house line and is offering their own expertise in terms of selection. Bear in mind that, as far as I can tell, this expertise at BN doesn't include actually looking at any diamonds. It seems to cost something like 5-10% extra. What you get for this is confidence that it met their standards (which means you don’t have to go through the trouble of developing your own standards if you don’t want), that the stone actually exists and likely hasn’t been sold to someone else before you (this can be a problem in the Internet diamond business) and it comes with some nice extra packaging. What you DON’T get is a necessarily better stone. It is what it is, and fancy packaging, slick reports and a BN girdle inscription won’t change that, nor will lack of these things change the stones from the competition. BN is a good company, that's a nice line, and most people who buy BN sigs are happy at the end, but they definitely have some stiff competition out there.

 

I’m surprised you chose an E color given the set of specs you listed. A G or even an H will be visibly the same, identical in terms of sparkle and clarity (assuming the cut and clarity are the same) and cost bunches less. Why did you go for an E?

 

That ring will be lovely on a size 3.5. Nearly every dealer has one that looks about like that by the way. This surely includes BN although I’m not going to take the trouble to look. There are some strong reasons to buy the diamond, the mounting and the setting labor from the same source if you can arrange it so I would recommend choosing the diamond first, then checking to see if your chosen vendor has the right mounting. Tiny differences in manufacturing style are important by the way. The one from Jared's uses a setting dle they call 'nick set', which is not the same thing as a channel set that you'll see in most places. Personally, I think a channel both looks better and is more secure but it's part of the decision process for you to make. Make sure you understand the terms used and, if you don't, come back and ask.

 

8% cash back? Wow! That’s quite a bit. Can you tell us more please? I’ve not heard of this offer before. Usually it’s a few percent extra to use a credit card, not the reverse.

Edited by denverappraiser

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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Thanks for the advice! I appreciate your insight. It seems like you all are saying that the blue nile signature ideal line may not be any better than a "regular" ideal stone. If it's not worth the premium, I could use that to get a clearer, larger rock. What are the cutoffs for a stone to be considered 7/8 carat? Is there any advantage to being in that class?

 

As far as the color goes, that is actually my choice. Of all the variables among diamonds, I was able to tell the difference between the classes of diamond color, and probably wanted to stay with one that is "colorless".

 

The 8% cashback through Chase turned out to be too good to be true: the policy applies to any purchase except loose diamonds and engagement rings. I'll probably end up going for the 2% cashback available through fatwallet.com, and the regular 1% cashback on my Chase Freedom credit card.

 

What do you think of this stone? Or perhaps this one? Do you have any recommendations for that range?

Edited by mechagodzilla

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Size-wise: the advantage is all to the cutter. You pay more per carat whenever the weight goes above the threshold; that doesn't mean you can visually see the difference (which often is in hundredths of mm).

 

Both seem nice on paper; the question is what do they look like in reality! On paper - and let me repeat this "on paper" - I think I would probably like more the E/VS2 because it looks more of an antique stone and I like old cuts. But it's a matter of personal taste, not an absolute statement.

 

The big disadvantage of Blue Nile (or other drop-shippers) is that no-one can tell you what the stone looks like because no-one you deal with actually ever sees it. The only way around it is to keep ordering and returning stones...


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

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