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Lost Soul Seeking Expertise Towards Purchase


Lostsoul
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Good morning/afternoon/evening all,

 

so here is the scoop....

 

I have started looking at getting my good lady an engagement ring. Several questions to follow and my own personal views (from the little knowledge i have gained).

 

Firstly what i gather is that my gf would like a solitaire, round cut, reasonable size stone (from pictures etc i have seen i believe i am looking between around 1.5 - 2ct) 

 

I am on a reasonable income and travel lots with work, so picking up in almost any destination worldwide could be an option. I have looked at places like panama diamond markets etc but from any information i have read it seems that the "saving" you may make, may be lost due to lack of restrictions on how places can advertise the quality, cut etc?

 

My next question comes from size vs quality.

 

I have been comparing between:

  • 2ct, J color, vvs1 clarity and excellent cut 

             vs

  • 1.5ct, F color, vvs1 clarity and excellent cut

Prices for both specs are very similar, but my question comes to what the difference (apart from size) will be to the untrained eye. I am aware that the yellow tinge is more prevalent in the higher alphabetic numbers, but in the range we are talking about, what possible differences would you be able to see?

Neither of us are diamond experts and i for one, own absolutely no diamonds.  

I am obviously looking for a nice size, but i feel if i am going to shell out a considerable amount of cash i would want it to be as close to perfection as possible, however this may blind ambition rather than anything to do with knowledge. 

 

My next questions relate to where to purchase.

 

From what i gather, buying in any retail store will only increase the cost due to overheads of the store, naturally. However actually being able to view the stone and ring prior to payment is a big bonus in this case. 

 

The option of buying online is very luring, especially since i travel lots and it is far easier to research online than it is to actually go into a store. However the pitfalls of this are vast. I have no idea who i am buying the item from, have no idea on their certification credentials, have a crazy amount of reading of small print for every single place i may consider and (as i mentioned before), not being any authority on diamonds, may also lead me to getting into something i am not fully conversant with. 

 

Therefore, if i look at getting diamond ring from either of the 2 stated methods above, how would i be able to be sure that i am getting an honest, independent evaluation and not just sending it to someone who will ring up the store or online store and decide in how to divide the "extra" payment i made for a higher grade ring, while providing me with a lower standard ring overall?

As i do not have a preferred jeweler, i have no control over the independent evaluation with the exception of the nominal payment i will make.

 

My last questions relate to the payment options.

 

The option of paying in 1 go obviously reduces the cost, (sometimes significantly), but the shortfalls i see with this is, once you have paid you probably only have the usual 30 day cover, after which you are stuck with it or at worst they will take some percentage to take the ring back off your hands. If my lady doesn't have the courage in the whole drama of the engagement to tell me up front, then i am stuck with an expensive eyesore or a significant loss to get the right ring.

 

If i go on some kind of payment plan, (which i have the time as i am not looking at proposing for at least the next 8 months), then how do i find somewhere that will hold my cash, but if in the case they went bankrupt or out of business, would not disappear with my accumulated funds? Is there any such way of payment in this way that would protect me? Also during this time would i be able to look at the ring, (either bought in store or online) or is it normal to assemble only after full payment has cleared? (Excuse me on this one but as i mentioned previously i am a total virgin on these matters). 

 

Maybe i am barking up completely the wrong tree and should just go for a 3.5ct, Z color sI2 good polish and be done with it, but any or all of your help on anything at all would be greatly appreciated and hopefully this post may give some guidance to anyone in a similar position. 

 

Thanks for taking the time to read and i hope to get some answers, insights or perhaps your own personal experience in any of the above matters.

 

Lostsoul

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Hi Lostsould, and welcome!

 

I am on a reasonable income and travel lots with work, so picking up in almost any destination worldwide could be an option. I have looked at places like panama diamond markets etc but from any information I have read it seems that the "saving" you may make, may be lost due to lack of restrictions on how places can advertise the quality, cut etc?

Diamonds are small, light, non-perishable and travel well for very low cost; by and large the wholesale cost of a diamond is the same no matter where you buy it. The factors that cause variation in retail costs have largely to do with cost and margin of the retailer - some of that is value added to you as a buyer, some may not be (for example, many people value the "safety" and extra service that comes from shopping at Cartier's or Tiffany's, but not everybody does).

 

Generally speaking, the US retail diamond market is as competitive as any others in the world, and there are no significant financial downsides (if any!) to shopping in the US; on the other hand, if it happens to be your domestic market there are significant upsides in terms of shipping, tax/customs and - if it comes to that - recourse with a vendor or a court of law.

 

My next question comes from size vs quality.

 

[...]

 

Prices for both specs are very similar, but my question comes to what the difference (apart from size) will be to the untrained eye. I am aware that the yellow tinge is more prevalent in the higher alphabetic numbers, but in the range we are talking about, what possible differences would you be able to see?

Sensitivity to colour is highly individual; taste for colour even more so; I personally can easily see the difference between an F and a J in pretty much all conditions, and I prefer the F (all else being equal) - however there is nothing wrong if you prefer a J. On the other hand, why go for VVS1, considering all VS1 (and pretty much all VS2, the majority of SI1 and many SI2) will look the same without a loupe - as far as visibility of inclusions goes?

 

On colour: go and see for yourself, and ideally take your to-be-fiancée with you; as I said, this is a very individual thing.

 

i would want it to be as close to perfection as possible, however this may blind ambition rather than anything to do with knowledge.

The real issue here is "how do you define perfection?". Round D/IF is a simple answer, but in my opinion it is simply wrong. If I could choose ONE diamond and one only, I'd choose the Moussaieff red. Or perhaps the Dresden, or the Hope. Or the Graff Pink. None of these - as far as I know - is flawless, none is round and none is a "D".

 

My next questions relate to where to purchase.

 

From what i gather, buying in any retail store will only increase the cost due to overheads of the store, naturally. However actually being able to view the stone and ring prior to payment is a big bonus in this case.

Yes - but some of those overheads have value too: the ability to see who you are talking to, the ability to compare different stones "live" and to bring in another one to make a point or to show a difference are all things that most shoppers value. Also, many retail stores advertise online - they are simply a retail store not in your neighbourhood, which makes the "online vs. brick-and-mortar" distinction very blurred.

 

In addition, just as there are good and bad online retailers, the same vetting process applies (with at least as much inconvenience) to a brick-and-mortar store.

 

Therefore, if i look at getting diamond ring from either of the 2 stated methods above, how would i be able to be sure that i am getting an honest, independent evaluation and not just sending it to someone who will ring up the store or online store and decide in how to divide the "extra" payment i made for a higher grade ring, while providing me with a lower standard ring overall?

In the same way you decide on who to shop with in the first place: research and personal empathy. There are plenty of qualified appraisers, and it should be your call to whom you send the stone (and ring) for assessment; any retailer that refuses to send the diamond to your choice of expert is automatically off your buying list; plenty more left. Just make sure that you choose someone who is not a competitor.

 

As i do not have a preferred jeweler, i have no control over the independent evaluation with the exception of the nominal payment i will make.

You have all the control in the world. The "nominal" payment is the appraiser's fees, and these are typically of a few tens of dollars; it's not nominal, it's fair payment for a relatively simple if highly skilled process. You decide to whom you send the stone, you decide to what extent you rely on their opinion.

 

My last questions relate to the payment options.

 

The option of paying in 1 go obviously reduces the cost [...]

 

If i go on some kind of payment plan, (which i have the time as i am not looking at proposing for at least the next 8 months), then [...]

Financing is one thing; extending a return period quite another.

 

how do i find somewhere that will hold my cash, but if in the case they went bankrupt or out of business, would not disappear with my accumulated funds?

That's called a bank. What you are shopping for is not difficult to find (literally thousands of 1.50-2.00 stones listed just on this site); if you want to save over time, there are plenty of vehicles for that, but a payment plan at a jewellery store would be among my last choices for that purpose. No retailer will hold a stone for 8 months or so without penalty (or some sort of non-refundable deposit at best); they are as strapped for cash as anybody, and their suppliers will not give them 8 months to pay for the stone.

 

Maybe i am barking up completely the wrong tree and should just go for a 3.5ct, Z color sI2 good polish and be done with it, but any or all of your help on anything at all would be greatly appreciated and hopefully this post may give some guidance to anyone in a similar position.

Nothing wrong with 3.50 ct, nor with the right SI2. A Y-Z will be decidedly yellow - and not necessarily worth less (or less rare) than a J or a K - and in my opinion far more beautiful than most J or K... but it will look different. Edited by davidelevi
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Hi Davide,

 

firstly apologies for the late reply, been travelling quite a bit and not had any time to sit down and write a reply and secondly thanks for taking the time to write a detailed answer. 

 

A lot of good information for me to work on in the answers noted above. 

 

Still a little bit frustrated/confused as to why, for example, in the US there is no regulated way to approve a purchase without sending to an independent evaluator, who again is unregulated in the sense that he could turn out to be not so impartial and for a layman like me, especially when the product is a costly one but more so since it is a large industry. But perhaps this is just my confusion of the market.

 

I think from your comments the best approach is firstly go in to a few stores to get a feel for what i am after.

 

For now I have tested the water with a pair of diamond studs vvs1, f color, bought from an online retailer to firstly see the quality of the product, then secondly and probably more importantly, how she reacts to them!!  

Hopefully this will give me a good insight into what i am getting and when she isn't looking i can sneak them off to have an assessment of the quality and see if it matches what i paid for. 

 

I thought this was a reasonable approach to give me a little insight into the trade without parting with a vast amount of cash at this stage. 

 

I am frequently in New York for periods so i am sure i will be able to find a few stores to start making tracks on my plans and actually see in the flesh what the different colors, polish and inclusion factors actually mean and look like towards the finished product, based on your information i may be able to save myself a little cash without my lady ever knowing! 

 

Again Davide, thanks for your insight and knowledge, it is much appreciated and i am sure that you have had several of these kinds of messages over the years and it gets harder to write a response each time but i am truly grateful. 

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Further to my reply i have also been looking at a few of the other posts in greater detail in regards to other factors. 

 

I think at this stage the old phrase "beauty is in the eye of the beholder" rings a true bell. 

 

I guess on my trips to new york i will need to take my good lady down to a few stores to see what she believes is more important, whether that be size/sparkle/setting or in worst case scenario none of the above! 

 

I think at this stage in my hunting i am bogged down with the "purest" diamond that is within my budget, however not taking into account the actual physical look is a problem i am creating myself and i am purely looking at the data element.

 

Here is a photo i have found on another website that my girlfriend currently uses (i don't have any real data on what specs this is but from a guess it is around a 2ct, solitaire round cut ring). Could anyone give me any other pointers with their expert eyes on other factors that would lead me towards the right ball park of what i am looking at? 

 

thanks again

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I’m not actually sure what regulations you wish appraisers had but the way to keep the conflict of interest down is simple enough.  First, YOU hire them, not the jeweler as Davide mentioned.  Second, if you’re concerned about collusion, simply don’t tell who the jeweler even is.  It’s not relevant to an appraisal unless we’re talking about branded goods (ex. Cartier).  Third, choose your appraiser based on things like credentials, equipment and your personal feelings about them rather than primarily on their address, their prices or their relationship with the jeweler (which are the top 3 ways people shop appraisals by the way).  Lastly, make sure you and the appraiser are on the same page about what you’re asking.  Most clients are looking for documentation for insurance, which is a bit different from the sorts of questions you’re asking here.

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Thanks for the quick response Neil.

 

Well i suppose when i am talking about regulations i am refering to an apple being called an apple whether it be in the US, UK, China or anywhere else for that matter. 

 

From what i gather, depending who certifies the diamond, whether it be GIA, in house or any other certification authority, can greatly differ in what their opinion of say a 2ct F VVS1 round cut diamond would be, (probably depending on what market they are trying to sell to). Therefore what accreditation does the evaluater have and what is this measured against for him to make a final say on the diamond? 

 

As far as i understand an evaluation comes based on the evaluation persons skill based on master stones they may have as a guide or perhaps trained on, (in some instances). Or is this completely wrong and they just set the evaluation on pure experience? 

 

I understand the fact that i choose the evaluation portion, however if the retailer has to send the diamond for an evaluation not through me, then instantly a link between retailer and evaluation place is formed, (regardless of distance or location). 

 

If in the case it is an online purchase then you can only gauge the person who will evaluate based on what you read/review scores etc, therefore anyone can be anyone they like online or even over the phone for that matter and without physically having a diamond in hand before purchase, it will not pass through my hands. 

In my case with the earrings, i will however have them in hand and the process with evaluation can proceed however i choose.

 

Back to my original case that all i want to make sure of in this case is that the product i buy and receive is actually or as close to the product that i paid for.

 

If i were to buy an Aston martin Vanquish then i would be able to compare it to all the other Aston martins from the same year and model, however buying an expensive diamond it seems that the waters are vastly more cloudy in comparison. 

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Still a little bit frustrated/confused as to why, for example, in the US there is no regulated way to approve a purchase without sending to an independent evaluator, who again is unregulated in the sense that he could turn out to be not so impartial and for a layman like me, especially when the product is a costly one but more so since it is a large industry. But perhaps this is just my confusion of the market.

Not any different from any other "large purchase". A house requires a survey, but that is typically a requirement of the financial institution providing the funds. If you are rich enough to pay cash, you may still want a survey, but the vendor is not obliged to let one in (though by doing that they may lose the sale), and the surveyor you choose is up to you. To some extent you can rely on external qualifications for the surveyor, but so you can for an appraiser (membership of relevant professional bodies), and in any case formal qualification is only part of the answer about specific skills and abilities. For cars, even worse: there is no formally accepted process, and if you want someone to inspect a car, you are totally in the dark as to their skills other than their reputation, or you have a significant conflict of interest - the only "formally qualified" experts are those that work for a particular brand.

 

I am frequently in New York for periods so i am sure i will be able to find a few stores to start making tracks on my plans and actually see in the flesh what the different colors, polish and inclusion factors actually mean and look like towards the finished product, based on your information i may be able to save myself a little cash without my lady ever knowing!

Indeed. However, one thing that is conspicuously absent from your posts so far is any mention of cut: there is a bit more to it than shape, and actually it determines looks far more than colour or clarity. Not all GIA "Excellent" look the same.

 

I think at this stage in my hunting i am bogged down with the "purest" diamond that is within my budget, however not taking into account the actual physical look is a problem i am creating myself and i am purely looking at the data element.

Yes. See also my comment above re: cut, which to some extent is about "data", but to a much greater extent it is about personal preferences.

 

Here is a photo i have found on another website that my girlfriend currently uses (i don't have any real data on what specs this is but from a guess it is around a 2ct, solitaire round cut ring). Could anyone give me any other pointers with their expert eyes on other factors that would lead me towards the right ball park of what i am looking at?

No way of telling without having a reference. If that were my wife's hand (who wears a slightly larger than average 6.75 US size ring), that would be over 3 carat. If that were the hand of a friend of mine who wears a 4, that would be about 1.75 carats.

 

Well i suppose when i am talking about regulations i am refering to an apple being called an apple whether it be in the US, UK, China or anywhere else for that matter. 

 

From what i gather, depending who certifies the diamond, whether it be GIA, in house or any other certification authority, can greatly differ in what their opinion of say a 2ct F VVS1 round cut diamond would be, (probably depending on what market they are trying to sell to). Therefore what accreditation does the evaluator have and what is this measured against for him to make a final say on the diamond? 

 

As far as i understand an evaluation comes based on the evaluation persons skill based on master stones they may have as a guide or perhaps trained on, (in some instances). Or is this completely wrong and they just set the evaluation on pure experience?

Um. Easy solution: limit yourself to GIA and AGS-graded stones (perhaps HRD or Gübelin if you shop in Europe), and relative uncertainty on colour and clarity is very low. GIA is the de-facto standard in grading diamonds within the trade; most other labs exist as marketing tools for vendors.

 

As to accreditation of the evaluator, yes there are some, but in the end - just like for anything else - formal accreditation only gets so far, and frankly without having in-depth knowledge of what the accreditation involves, it may do more harm than good for you to rely on that.

 

I understand the fact that i choose the evaluation portion, however if the retailer has to send the diamond for an evaluation not through me, then instantly a link between retailer and evaluation place is formed, (regardless of distance or location).

If you really are concerned to this extent about collusion, then there is still the same solution: have the diamond sent to a trusted third party (who may be yourself, or someone else) and then forwarded to the appraiser. The return periods offered by most good vendors allow ample time for this.

 

However, in my humble opinion, this is total overkill; not least because the majority of diamonds are offered for retail sale through multiple vendors, and true independent appraisers have no specific interest in dissing or praising the goods of any particular vendor. The collusion risk is high when you are dealing with dealers wanting you to use "their friend in the building because the security risk is low". Otherwise, there is still something called professional ethics, even in jewellery.

 

Back to my original case that all i want to make sure of in this case is that the product i buy and receive is actually or as close to the product that i paid for.

That is actually far less of a problem than you may think. Purchasing from any of the big online names pretty much guarantees that you get what you paid for; substitutions are absent if you vet your retailer with just a little care. The issue is that what you pay for may not be what you expect: the difference in colour from a D and an H is tiny by any objective standard, and the difference in clarity between an IF and an SI1 is equally tiny. The difference in price isn't so.

 

If i were to buy an Aston martin Vanquish then i would be able to compare it to all the other Aston martins from the same year and model, however buying an expensive diamond it seems that the waters are vastly more cloudy in comparison.

Not really. The Aston Martins are going to be significantly different in terms of body style, colour, mileage, accessories and wear - some of which may well be invisible and require significant technical expertise and tools to ascertain. You are also limited to a few hundreds of candidates in all. Once you specify size, grading source, colour, clarity and a few proportion numbers for cut, you are pretty much done with a round diamond (from a "fair price" perspective), and you have thousands of alternatives. With a fancy cut you may need a few more pieces of data, but a diamond is significantly simpler to inspect and actually very transparently priced (this site provides a multi-vendor listing engine, and it's not the only one on the web). Edited by davidelevi
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I think we may be talking about two different things.

Grading has to do with what it is.  Clarity, color, weight, treatments, angles and so on.  These are statements of fact.   The source of that data is from a lab, not an appraiser, and yes it makes a difference what lab they choose.  The onus is on them, not you.  This is data provided by the seller as part of their pitch.  They are making a statement about what they’re selling and they’re backing that up with a lab opinion.  You absolutely want this, and the list of acceptable labs is short.  This is the statement that the Aston Martin being presented is actually an Aston Martin, not some knock off. Heck yes, it matters.  And yes it matters who’s telling you this.  The more money is involved and the higher the grade, the more it matters.  The list of acceptable labs is short and Davide talks about it above.  For practical purposes it's just got one name on it, with a nod to a couple of others in specialized circumstances.
 

The second has to do with the appraisal, or valuation as most of the rest of the world calls it.  The appraiser is an expert jeweler working for you to give opinions on various things.  It's an expert 3rd party opinion to confirm or refute things that the seller has told you, or perhaps omitted.  This can range from confirming that the stone is the same as the one that the lab saw and remains undamaged since they saw it to adding different information on things like cutting quality.  The appraisal usually also is for a piece of jewelry, not a loose stone, so it includes the other stones as well as the craftsmanship and condition of the piece.  With new purchases, this is a quality control step and this is actually where the collusion is a risk.  As you can tell from my signature, I’m an appraiser, and I do this sort of job daily.  New purchasers who want to confirm that they got what they thought they got are a significant portion of my business.  It’s the same reason you hire a home inspector when you buy a house.  The appraisal ordered by the bank covered the number of bathrooms, the square footage and the school district, but they don’t talk about whether the plumbing works properly.  That meets the bank's requirements, but it doesn't necessarily meet yours.  That's ok, the bank was the appraisal client, not you. 
 

In nearly every case, the seller has made specific representations about various things and implied others as part of their sales presentation.  Often they’ve provided an ‘appraisal’ to back up at least some of them.  I won’t get into what complaints I have with jeweler provided appraisals, they're numerous, but I’ll make a quick observation.  I have YET to see one that indicates a material craftsmanship defect on a piece they’re selling even though I spot problems regularly in my inspections.  Why do you suppose that is? 

 

Nearly every single client has questions about attributes that are NOT discussed in the seller’s documents, even the thorough ones, and the vast majority are laughably incomplete.  It’s not always an attempt to hide things, writing a thorough description and taking good pictures takes time and some talent and few people do their best work for free but yes, it matters and yes, sometimes it IS an attempt to hide something.  The customer is looking for an outside expert opinion to confirm or refute what they've been told by the seller and they forget that it's not a 2nd opinion if it comes from the same source as the first.  Trust, but verify.

Edited by denverappraiser
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Davide an Neil, 

 

i can't thank you enough for the information you have provided to me so far, it is invaluable. 

 

I had a chuckle to myself with the statement :

" Otherwise, there is still something called professional ethics, even in jewellery."

 

and also there is  slight comparison to be made with Neils comment :

" I have YET to see one that indicates a material craftsmanship defect on a piece they’re selling even though I spot problems regularly in my inspections.  Why do you suppose that is? "

 

I suppose my way forward for now is do some ground work of actually viewing these items in person in stores, making some in ways on researching jewelers and appraisers until i find one or two i am comfortable with. Then the hard slog of actually honing in on the particular diamond can truly begin. 

 

It may seem like i am giving the industry a little bit of a bashing, but i am really not trying to. I am more trying to explore the things to look out for, prior to wasting time with diamonds, and for that matter jewelers who now i can head away from armed with the knowledge addressed above. 

 

The internet is a wonderful and dangerous thing in this aspect. It on one hand can give you all the prices/specs of diamonds in a flash, with an unlimited range of distance but on the other hand it can overload you with information, which to the beginner can subsequently pull you towards a decision made with no real "hands on" experience of the field and perhaps disappointment with the final result.

 

From the comments above i am now more aware of some of the things to be on the lookout for and i can't thank you enough.

 

I will for sure annoy you with further questions and updates over the coming weeks as i start to set my sights more firmly on what i am heading towards. Also i will update on the earrings once arrived and post some pictures and a bit of information about them. 

 

For anyone just casually reading these posts i cannot state how helpful the diamond finder is at the top of the page, if you really use the filters well you can quickly skip through the various options you require, removing all the deadwood, then also compare this with any of the stores not listed on the finder, (however your lack of filter means you have to be a little more careful when comparing like for like). 

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Hi Lostsoul --

 

Your comments indicate that beyond several broad parameters, you really don't know where to start.  So let me suggest a few things for you.

 

1.  Grading certificate -- GIA or AGS only.

2.  Shape -- round

3.  Cut -- Excellent

4.  Size -- < 2.00 carats

5.  Color -- G

6.  Clarity -- SI1

 

The "size" is the controlling feature in this selection, surprisingly.  You would actually set the slider in the Diamond Finder for 1.80 - 1.99 carats.  This finds (with the other criteria) only 16 diamonds offered for sale.  That's a decent starting place.

 

The REASON size controls is because all diamond cutters will try to stretch any rough stone to 2.00 carats, so the selling price per carat can hit the price bump that occurs at these typical points (1 ct, 1.5, 2.0 and so on.).  From your standpoint, however, you're more interested in that the stone have excellent proportions.

 

After you've studied this small universe of stones online and seen how the price reflects the stone's qualities, like width, table %, depth%, type and size of inclusions, etc. then you're ready to start looking at stones with differing main criteria.  Which you can find by moving the sliders on the Diamond Finder.

 

The other part of your approach is to visit 47th Street in New York.  Casually.  If you start on 6th Ave (Avenue of the Americas) side of the block, the rents are cheaper, and I think you're more likely to see non-GIA or altered (fracture-filled) stones.  If you start on the block from 5th Avenue, you'll see the better stones.  HOWEVER, almost everything you see at street level is not as good as you'll see upstairs.  While you're visiting various shops, you will make contacts which will help you gain entry to the rabbit maze of offices upstairs.

 

At some point you will have gained enough knowledge to have provisionally selected several merchants to work with.  Among your short list should be Barry at Excel Diamonds, a frequent contributor here, and Diamonds By Lauren, the employer of Davidelevi (who resides in Switzerland).  The latter store specializes in colored stones set in finished pieces, and this may be a purchase for later in life ... a white solitaire is how everyone starts out, and DBL is more for people who are expanding their jewelry collections. (It's well worth it to at least look at the DBL website to see what the future has to offer.)

 

I would not visit these known professionals until you have made certain preliminary decisions regarding what you're looking for, so that an innocent question (like your preference about fluorescence in stones) does not cause personal agita or require a lengthy explanation from the jeweler.  They'd be happy to educate you, but this is not a productive use of your or their time. 

 

Another big question is if you like wider, "spready" cuts or not.  If you're looking at excellent-cut stones, you won't have a very large variance to pick from, but a wider stone will seem larger, at the possible expense of reduced fire and brilliance.  Probably 80% of online discussion, once you get past simple mechanics, is in issues related to maximizing the sparkle, and there's a lot of very heavy technical discussion you can get into... or simply look for "excellent" cut. :)

 

 

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I suppose my way forward for now is do some ground work of actually viewing these items in person in stores, making some in ways on researching jewelers and appraisers until i find one or two i am comfortable with. Then the hard slog of actually honing in on the particular diamond can truly begin.

Sounds like an excellent plan.

 

It may seem like i am giving the industry a little bit of a bashing

No bashing whatsoever; you have reasonable questions, and buying a diamond is something that most people do rather infrequently.

 

I will for sure annoy you with further questions and updates over the coming weeks

Looking forward to the questions and updates - without any feeling of annoyance. This is what the forum is for!
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