Post by alexdell » April 27th, 2011, 9:51 am
I would like to share my experience with Mark T of ERD which I purchased my gf’s engagement ring.

Let me first give you a brief background of the initial phase of when I started looking for a ring.
I casually started shopping around last year for an engagement ring. Since I work in NYC, I knew that I had access to some major jewelers. I started looking in Chinatown since my good friend (who was an NYPD Detective) knew a couple of local jewelers there. At this point I had no idea as to what kind of stone I should get, just strictly a budget. The diamonds that I saw seemed okay but not great. The jewelers were quite honest and indicated that they would need to source some diamonds from the diamond district if I want to see more stones. I even brought my girlfriend there once. She initially wanted an Asscher cut diamond but decided that she wanted a Cushion cut after seeing some in real life. A few months past and I somewhat lost interest in looking for a diamond.

Fast forward to late February this year, I found Pricesope and started reading some of the newbie guides and threads. This forum is what I needed with its wealth of information and helpful professional opinions. I started noticing that there’s quite a few highly recommended vendors here. From WF to GOG to BG to SK to LM, etc. and of course the “Cushion King” himself, Mark T. of ERD.

I decided to contact ERD first to see some stones. Mark asked me what was my budget and ideal size and specs. I initially was hoping for a 2 carat cushion but I know that I will be going over my budget. I went to see Mark during my lunch break and he showed me 5 different cushions in the 1.6 to 2 carat range. To be quite honest, I was a bit overwhelmed since I did not know what to look for besides what looks best in the naked eye and on paper. This is where I knew Mark was my guy. He slowly explained the differences of each cushion without pushing me in getting the most expensive one. He explained OMB, OEC, chunky and square cushions. I was impressed with Mark’s knowledge and passion which explains his success in his field. He actually convinced me not to get the 2 carat one since it’s more than $4-5k when compared to the 1.6 to 1.7c stones. I narrowed it down to two stones, one is the 1.72c G VS1 and the other is a 1.73 F VS1 which I eventually picked due to the F color. I realized at that moment that I do not need to see other jewelers since I felt very comfortable working with Mark. I picked out a setting and he gave me his price. I agreed on the price and gave a down payment.

A few days later, he e-mailed me the CAD design of the setting. I was initially somewhat dissatisfied with the CAD and was really concerned that the outcome of the setting will be a disappointment. Mark once again patiently walked me through my concerns and eased my worries. For those of you that have dealt with Mark, you all know how Mark has this very soothing tone on his voice. He said that I need to trust him that the outcome will be great.

After 3+ weeks of waiting, I got a call last week that the ring is ready. I went to see the ring but Mark was with another client. He introduced me to Chris whom I spent a couple of hours chatting with. Chris is also very knowledgeable. He seems very passionate at what he does. He also shared some insightful stories during his days working at Vatche.

Oh yeah, I forgot about my initial reaction when I saw the ring. WOW! I was amazed at the quality and workmanship. The details were impeccable. I just noticed a couple of minor excess platinum flakes which Chris noted to be fixed. I now have the ring and am planning to propose in a month.

Mark really went out of his way to keep this customer happy. Keeping his customers happy and satisfied is his bottom line. I would like to thank him for his patience and professionalism since I know I could be such a difficult person to deal with at times.

I could not say enough good things about Mark and ERD (engagmentringsdirect.com). I highly recommend ERD to anyone in the market for a ring. He just earned a customer for life. I know that everyone one has “a guy” that they would recommend and now I have one too.

Lastly, thank you Pricescope.com for this site. The wealth of knowledge and the participants in this forum have been a tremendous help during this process.

Feel free to contact me directly if you have any questions. In the meantime, attached is a photo of the diamond. I’ll post more pics next month after the proposal.

Here are the specs:
Old Mine Brilliant
Carat: 1.73
Color: F
Clarity: VS1
Measurement: 7.33-6.82-4.72
Ratio: 1.07
Depth %: 69.2
Table %: 53
Symmetry: VG
Polish: VG
Girdle: V.Thin-Medium Faceted
Culet: Slightly Large
Fluorescence: N

Image