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Am I doing the right thing?

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concun

Rough_Rock
Trade
Joined
Feb 11, 2009
Messages
34

Last time I posted to show you my CAD design from a local jeweler. I got feedbacks from you all and passed it to my jeweler. When I was there, I saw a band that I like, so I told him to coordinate the design of the band to my ring. The salesperson/owner said yes.


The salesperson is one of the owners (2 owners). The other owner is the designer, but not working on my ring. There are other designers/goldsmiths work in the back room, and one of them designs my ring. Of course, everytime I come in, it''s the salesperson/owner I talk to, and he communicates back to his team.


The designer emailed that the band I like is very thin, and the stones I choose are big, can''t do it. He suggested to design something else for me to see. I said ok. He then sent me this CAD below. I concerned about the cut-outs on the shank are too deep (to me, it''s like 2/3 into the shank) and would like to keep the orig design. The head of 3 stones are fine. He emailed back that he will do the wax as-is, and if I think it''s too deep still, we will talk about it. I got a call to come in, but it''s not the wax to see, it''s the ring in raw metal, just put the stones in, polish and done. Yes, the cut-outs are too deep into the shank which I do not like, and there are other minor things (like the square shape of the shank, the weight of the setting) I do not like comparing to the sample ring he shows me, but these minor things didn''t write down on paper, more like verbal communication b/w me and the jeweler, so now when I refer to it, he seems like never heard of it before. He convinced me that once the stones are set, it will be nice, and the design looks fine to him. If it''s the wax, they will be more willing to change it, but since it''s almost a finished product, they try to convince me to accept it. I made a mistake to go ahead.


I picked up my ring, the diamonds are smaller than what we agreed on (the 3 stones are mine, the small stones on the shank are theirs, and we did write down the size of those). This time, the jeweler I usually dealt with is not there, but the other owner is there, who is also the designer (but not the one designs my ring), so he said he will put the bigger stones in. I raised the concern that the band might not fit for the bigger stones, he said it will be fine.


I came back to pick up my ring. It''s nicer. I forgo all other minor things then. I paid. Walk out to my car and see it in the day light, realize that the prongs on those small diamonds are poorly done. I think they use the saw to cut. The diamonds are overhang on the band. The prongs are forced to open up to fit the bigger stones. I came right back, he said it looks ok, he has been designing ring for so many years, blah blah blah... At one point, he said that if I am happy for no reason, he will give me money back. Nobody offers me to look at my diamonds or setting under microscope or whatever... They gave me their appraisal which has the info of my stones and their stones on there. I did fax them my certificates.


I made another mistake that I should have said OK, give me my money back. But I was busy digesting his saying that i am not happy for no reason, so I told him that I will take it home to think about it. I asked my friends and family to look, they kept saying "bigger stones are better right"... I mean, I would like bigger stones, that''s what I paid for, but it has to fit the setting. The setting is custom made to accomodate the stones, not the other way around, else I would just pick up any stock setting. They think I am too picky. Btw, the jeweler did know that I will make the bands to wear with this ring, I delay on it because I want to see what this first piece from them turn out to be ... so w/ the diamonds overhang, it will cut into the bands and chipped. Then my family said "but u will custom the bands anyway, they will work around it, don''t worry"... Why would i spend money to get custom piece after custom piece because the first one didn''t work well so the next one has to be customed to work around it, what if I decide to buy the stock bands? KWIM...


I am not a confrontational type (whatever it means), I am scared to go back and argue, not argue, but will be since the designer disagrees with me, and the salesperson/owner is more aggressive. I am thinking of getting an independent appraisal ($100), and if my concern is valid, I will bring it back to get my money to go somewhere... I guess I will tell them that i have the independent appraisal to back me up, is it going to offend them? Should I just simply return it and not get the appraisal? My SIL''s rings are still in work there, and she works with them because I brought her to their store in one of my visits, so I am afraid that they might take it on her rings, u know... I don''t know what to do... Btw, if the appraisal disagrees w/ me, I guess I have to lower my expection on custom work, or I have to understand that this is normal, educate myself... I mean, I am easy, that''s why I got pushed around.


Tell me what u think... Long email. I can''t take good picture of the actual ring to show you


 

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purrfectpear

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 31, 2008
Messages
4,079
Based on your post, and mostly on the fact that all your friends and relatives think you are too picky after seeing your ring, I too think you are making a mountain out of a molehill.

It sounds like the jeweler has come to the same conclusion and is happy to give you a full refund too.

The bottom line is that if you are difficult to please and the jeweler would refund your money, then that is what you should do. No appraisal needed. Just get a refund.

Your picture is too small to get a good look, but the ring does look nice from what I can see.
 

Elmorton

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 5, 2007
Messages
3,998
If you''re not happy, you need to vocalize it in a professional, clear way (maybe even write down the changes you want) or ask for a refund. I think the jeweler sounds willing to work with you, actually - esp. since you were offered a refund.

In terms of your sister''s rings - well, IMO, that''s just silly. A jeweler isn''t going to "take out their frustration" on another client.

Go back, explain what you want. If it isn''t possible, ask for a refund.
 

Haven

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 15, 2007
Messages
13,166
You said that you made the mistake of backing down or saying "go ahead" with the project more than once during the design process even though you were unhappy with the design. At this point, you need to be very clear about your expectations with your jeweler, and tell him exactly what you would like changed. If he tries to convince you that the ring is perfect as-is, push back and tell him that you want the changes made. If he is unwilling to make those changes, take the refund.

I can see how this would be very frustrating for a jeweler, or any other businessperson, because you are agreeing to certain details and then regretting it later. You will only get what you want if you are clear with your jeweler. It is not about being confrontational, it's about communicating clearly and making sure that your expectations are understood.

ETA: RE: Lowering your expectations for custom work
Your expectations will only be met if your jeweler knows what they are. There are many jewelers out there who can create beautiful custom pieces for you, but they can only make you happy if you tell them what you want.
 

concun

Rough_Rock
Trade
Joined
Feb 11, 2009
Messages
34
Thanks for the responses. I do reallize my mistake in this design process. It''s a lesson learned. I will be very clear and firm of my expectation and write down myself eventhough the designer does not take note - that''s for sure.

In the end, the ring does look nice. Just the prongs on the shank that scare me a little since the diamonds are overhang. I guess I can simply ask him to change it to smaller diamonds and give me discount. However, I wonder if changing again will make the prongs weaken and ruin the setting. I''ll think about what I have to say to him and see if he offers any option to make it better. I don''t want to be unreasonable if it''s on my part of the fault, that''s why I post it here. I laid out the whole story because I feel like maybe I have this urk feeling since the beginning and act unfair to the vendor.

I will still go with the appraisal though. I hope I can learn something since I have never done it before. I was hoping that I can find someone local that I feel comfortable to work with since I know custom pieces are what I want in the future.

Thanks again.
 

loveloveloveit

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 31, 2009
Messages
738
from the photo the ring looks lovely and unique, but you have to be happy with the detail - i say get a couple of professional opinions then you will know if you are worried about nothing or something worth fussing over. good luck
 

RubyCharm

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 10, 2009
Messages
364
I picked up my ring,the diamonds are smaller than what we agreed on (the 3 stones are mine, the small stones on the shank are theirs, and we did write down the size of those). This time, the jeweler I usually dealt with is not there, but the other owner is there, who is also the designer (but not the one designs my ring), so he said he will put the bigger stones in. I raised the concern that the band might not fit for the bigger stones, he said it will be fine.
I came back to pick up my ring. It''s nicer. I forgo all other minor things then. I paid. Walk out to my car and see it in the day light, realize that the prongs on those small diamonds are poorly done. I think they use the saw to cut. The diamonds are overhang on the band. The prongs are forced to open up to fit the bigger stones. I came right back, he said it looks ok, he has been designing ring for so many years, blah blah blah... At one point, he said that if I am happy for no reason, he will give me money back. Nobody offers me to look at my diamonds or setting under microscope or whatever... They gave me their appraisal which has the info of my stones and their stones on there. I did fax them my certificates.
I made another mistake that I should have said OK, give me my money back. But I was busy digesting his saying that i am not happy for no reason, so I told him that I will take it home to think about it. I asked my friends and family to look, they kept saying "bigger stones are better right"... I mean, I would like bigger stones, that''s what I paid for, but it has to fit the setting. The setting is custom made to accomodate the stones, not the other way around, else I would just pick up any stock setting. They think I am too picky.
It seems to me that, after having had the ring for a little while, concun is no longer unhappy with the other details that she forgot to put in writing but is still unhappy with the way the jeweler accommodated bigger stones into a setting made for smaller stones. However, she *did* write down the size of the stones that she originally wanted. So, there shouldn’t have been any misunderstanding as far as that particular detail (e.g., stone size) was concerned. Now, I’m no expert in setting techniques, but right now I’m going through a similar situation and my jeweler was honest and kind enough to point out that he would not be able to accommodate stones of a different size into the same setting, but that he would need to build the setting from scratch, instead.

So, to recap:

1. Concun forgot to put a lot of details in writing, but she did put the size of the stones in writing.
2. The jeweler set smaller stones than the ones concun specified into the custom-made mounting.
3. Concun didn’t like the smaller stones, which were not what she specified in writing, and the jeweler went ahead and put larger stones into the same setting.
4. Concun was given the option to get her money back.

However, at this point she doesn’t dislike her ring in its entirety. The thing that really bugs her is that larger stones were forced into a setting made for smaller stones, even though she paid for custom work. In my opinion, if the setting was unsuitable for larger stones, the jeweler should have built a new setting from scratch to accommodate the larger stones, given that she paid for custom work specifying the larger stones and that it was a mistake on the jeweler’s part to use smaller stones instead.

Concun, I think it would be very helpful if you could take close-up pictures of your ring and post them here so that people could give you a more accurate opinion/advice on what to do. Otherwise, if you’re still unhappy with your ring and you think you won’t be able to work things out with your jeweler (and assuming that the refund offer is still in place), get your money back and work with a different jeweler to get a new setting made to your satisfaction. And make good use of everything that you’ve learned from this experience so that you won’t repeat the same mistakes next time.
Good luck!
 

concun

Rough_Rock
Trade
Joined
Feb 11, 2009
Messages
34
rubycharm,
you are exactly right on what i feel. In the end, I was excited to see the ring. I was ready to forgo all the other things. The design is lovely. The ring is lovely. Just the way the stones are set makes me worried. If they agree to set the smaller stones, I am afraid the prongs will be weaken. I didn''t want smaller stones to begin with. I will try to take pictures tomorrow. Need to read the tutorial.
 
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