Find your diamond
Find your jewelry
shape
carat
color
clarity

Buying an Engagment Ring from Robbins Brothers

jbrown59

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 2, 2011
Messages
6
Hello All,

Great forum! I have already learned many new and exciting facts from reading the blogs here so Thank you!

Now onto the dilemma. I am getting ready to purchase this setting for my girlfriend very soon.

http://www.robbinsbrothers.com/Engagement-Rings/Ring-With-Sidestones/Robbins-Brothers-i22330.ring

It took her only 1.5 hours and she fell in love with it. I know that if I either try to replicate this setting or get her
something similar she will not be happy so I am set on purchasing this one.

Now as you probably expected, Robbins Brothers are offering me non certified diamonds in settings that I know are not
high quality but to my novice eyes seem fine.

Here are the specs I have on the diamonds that they showed me:

.91 carat C I2 - $2,500
.99 carat K I2 - $2,500
1.09 carat J I2 - $2,500

They only showed me diamonds that were in my budget and were also in settings (to hide irregularities). I need advice on
if these are fair prices on the diamonds they showed me and if not, then what I should do. I like Robbins Brothers for their
warranty and services, but I am also on a budget and I want to make sure that I am getting fair prices and that I am making
the right decision. Any help would be most appreciated. Thank you for reading.
 

rubybeth

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 12, 2007
Messages
2,567
The thing about uncertified diamonds or even diamonds certified by other than AGS or GIA is that you really have no idea what you are getting in terms of color and clarity based on what you're told. EGL diamonds can be off by 2 or more color or clarity grades, so you could pay for a D VS2 but get an F SI2. There isn't a way to compare prices when you don't really know what it is you're paying for.

You can, however, do a search on the front page of Pricescope with similar criteria. I found a GIA certified .93 J, I2 with excellent cut at Solomon Brothers for $1,472. And you can trust that the GIA clarity and color are correct. So, $2,500 seems like a LOT for an uncertified stone. Also, I would not buy an I2 for an engagement ring diamond. I probably wouldn't even buy an SI2 unless I could be guaranteed that it was eye clean or that the inclusion could be covered with a prong or something.

Here's the diamond for reference:

http://www.solomonbrothers.com/DiamondDetail.aspx?sku=4H993343&affiliate=9318613A-AD0C-4530-A456-0409DFEFB8DE%20&utm_source=PriceScope

I will also add that the setting seems really overpriced and not so unique that you couldn't find a very similar, if almost nearly exactly the same, version somewhere else, like the Tessa which is $1,785 in platinum and $1,285 in white gold from Eternity Diamonds whose quality I would trust:

http://www.eternitydiamonds.com/engagement-rings/diamond-engagement-ring/Tessa-Cathedral-Diamond-Ring-with-Cushion-Framed-Setting-%28.50-ctw.%29-171.htm

Or you could go custom with someplace like Whiteflash, Brian Gavin Diamonds, etc.

ETA: Here is an example of a similar custom ring done by Whiteflash: http://www.whiteflash.com/testimonials/details-2837.htm but you don't want the milgraining (little bead-looking edges) which could easily be left off.
 

nfowife

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 15, 2011
Messages
544
They are showing you junk and since it's not certified it's probably worse than what they are even saying it is. And there is no such thing as C color. Color grading begins at D. I think you would get a better deal to get a smaller diamond that you KNOW what you are getting. You simply cannot get a well-cut diamond that big in those specs at that price. Ots not certified because they know it won't come back at what they are selling it as. They are not dumb and are not doing you any favors. They are a business making money off uneducated shoppers. They know full well what that stone is worth and they are making money on it!!
 

rubybeth

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 12, 2007
Messages
2,567
I would also add that I doubt your girlfriend would be upset if you got a much nicer diamond and higher quality setting for her somewhere else and didn't get ripped off. Just my $.02. :wink2:
 

jbrown59

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 2, 2011
Messages
6
I actually meant J....not C, sorry. But I appreciate it, that does answer my question about certified vs. not certified. The
not so funny thing is the people that work there tell me that it's not a big deal being certified vs. not.
 

nfowife

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 15, 2011
Messages
544
Of course they are telling you that. They are trying to get you to buy from them! What's your budget (total). Let the nice people here find you a similar setting (better quality likely for less) with an really nice diamond that you won't wonder if it is what "they" say.
 

mrssalvo

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
19,132
you can do much better with a pricescope vendor. I absolutely would not buy and I2 stone for an e-ring, certified or not. I'd check with Brian Gavin and get a quote for a similar setting made by him and get a ideal cut stone that is in your budget.
 

jbrown59

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 2, 2011
Messages
6
I didn't know that "rule of not buying an I2 for an e-ring, so thank you for the advice. Well altogether, my ideal budget would
be 6-7k total but I don't want to stray to far from this particular setting. Therefore, I would like to get a diamond that would
fit this setting, even if I have to wait and buy a diamond in a few months after I get this setting. Is this possible to do:

.91-1.00 Carat Round for 3-4k that would fit this setting?

If it can't be done then I'll have to change the setting to something similiar which would allow me to invest more in the quality of the diamond. My girlfriend is set on 1 carat but I want to make sure that this is quality too.
 

slg47

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
9,667

jbrown59

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 2, 2011
Messages
6
The Isabella Diamond Ring is very similar but I can see from the comparison that the price of a platinum band pushes the price up.
Therefore, if Im already paying the premium of a platinum band then I'd rather get her what she really wants.

If I purchase a diamond online then I'm assuming I would bring it back to Robbins Brothers to get it set. Any help with finding a good
e-ring diamond would be much appreciated.
 

dreamer_dachsie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 16, 2007
Messages
24,364
Consider white gold in place of platinum to save some money on the setting. I would buy the setting at RB once you have chosen your stone online, then send the setting to the diamond vendor to set the stone. The diamond vendor will take responsibility for the diamond during setting, RB will not, and so it is simpler. Just choose the diamond first and make sure you order the right size setting from RB.

Your budget it tight for a well cut, correctly graded stone.

Call to see if this is eye clean:

http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/I-SI2-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1353916.asp

Better options right under the .90ct mark, and in a halo the size difference is not noticable at all. I recommend better color in a halo, like these two"

http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/H-SI1-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1380141.asp
http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/G-SI1-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1380140.asp
 

jbrown59

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 2, 2011
Messages
6
Wow...I can't tell you how much I love the James Allen website. It even has the picture of the actual diamond. I really appreciate your
help.

What made you choose that particular diamond, I'm curious because I am looking into diamonds with these specs

Round
0.90-1.09 Carat
Color from G-J
Clarity VS1-SI2

Should I narrow my search down further, I don't see any diamonds @ 1 Carat or above that are in my price range.
 

rubybeth

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 12, 2007
Messages
2,567
jbrown59|1307077209|2936725 said:
Wow...I can't tell you how much I love the James Allen website. It even has the picture of the actual diamond. I really appreciate your
help.

What made you choose that particular diamond, I'm curious because I am looking into diamonds with these specs

Round
0.90-1.09 Carat
Color from G-J
Clarity VS1-SI2

Should I narrow my search down further, I don't see any diamonds @ 1 Carat or above that are in my price range.
I don't think you're in a bad range at all, but I think too much of your budget is going toward a sub-par setting. Could you send your girlfriend the links to the similar settings (or maybe the James Allen site in general, since she can see all the angles of their rings in HD video) and explain that you want to her a 1+ carat center stone but are finding it tough with nearly $4K toward a setting? I don't think I'd be happy knowing more than half the overall budget went toward the setting.
 

mrssalvo

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
19,132
You've got a very nice budget but the RB setting is eating up a lot of it. I agree that if there is a way to talk to your GF and let her see some of the other settings out there you can probably do better on the diamond and still get her a beautiful setting with your budget. If she is 100% solid on the RB setting then I'd take dreamer's suggestions and get the stone first. Then buy the RB setting and have them send it to the vendor you buy the diamond from and let them set it.

here's one from Brian Gavin that is close, they could make the stone prong set like the RB's ring and not add the milrain (which is the bumps in the metal one the edges) I'm not sure if the price is for plat. so you could call them for a quote in WG with the modifications you are wanting.

http://www.briangavindiamonds.com/home/ring-details/?product_id=5671

here's another one from pearlmans, it's $2300 in whitegold and you can ask them if the milgrain could not be added to this one as well. They don't list stones on their site but have ideal diamonds as well and could find you something in budget..

http://www.pearlmansjewelers.com/jewelry-designers/pearlmans-bridal-jewelry/rings/167EE1/
 

Sheherizaad

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 7, 2011
Messages
244
I don't want to beat this horse to death but DON"T DO IT!!!! :o

If you were to get it CUSTOM by a skilled craftsman, it wouldn't even cost that much!!! You have a healthy budget of $7000! Does she understand the dynamics between cut and clarity, etc and that by buying such a high setting the center stone is going to suffer? I understand you want to make her happy, but I think it would in both your interests if you go to a higher end jewelry store. You must show her the difference between what an Excellent cut and elegant setting sparkles like vs a ring that is very heavy in metal and is swallowed up by a smaller diamond because there wasn't enough money left over for the center.

For God's sake, man, don't do it!!! Tell her to join the forum or show her the videos from GOG! Do something! Anything but the I2...

:: :(( ::
 

nfowife

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 15, 2011
Messages
544
Here's 2 options with very similar settings (in white gold):
http://www.briangavindiamonds.com/home/ring-details/?product_id=5671
with this diamond:
http://www.briangavindiamonds.com/diamond/diamond-detail/?product_id=AGS-104051075003 (confirm eye clean to your specs; though if you were looking at I2's I can't imagine you wouldn't love it!)

a bit over your budget (don't forget the PS discount of 5%) but there is no tax.

Or this:
http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-2650814.htm
with this setting:
http://www.whiteflash.com/engagement-rings/diamond-settings/grace-diamond-engagement-ring-by-vatche-256.htm

again, no tax.

Both vendors have impeccable reputations, diamonds are AGS certified ideal so they are great and you know what you are getting, and both have easy 30 day returns and upgrade policies as you are buying their top in-house diamond cuts.

This is a no-brainer. Run, don't walk, away from Robbins Brothers.
 

jbrown59

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 2, 2011
Messages
6
I appreciate all your advice and I do understand...No I2 or even an I1. I am seeing that by dropping the color to the J's the price
also goes back into my budget range.

I get that I am paying more for the setting but I want to show you why because the settings you show me are similiar yes, but
in this link on the right you can see that the setting is in the shape of a flower, THIS is what caught my girlfriends I and made
her eyes "sparkle.
http://www.robbinsbrothers.com/Bridget-Collection-Designer.ring
(Look at the right side, middle of page, that is the side view of the setting)

The second issue is platinum, My girlfriend is set on platinum, she also has very sensitive skin so I am hesitant to
work with white gold, if I were to choose white gold I could do it through RB, which would save me $500 that could go
back into the ring.

I am risking too much with trade offs of a diamond? Is J too low of a color grade and S1 too low in the clarity grade.

Please let me know if something is wrong with my choices of these diamonds:
http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/J-SI2-Premium-Cut-Round-Diamond-1354750.asphttp://www.bluenile.com/diamond-search?pt=sig&filter_id=0#diamonds_pid=LD02118994http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/J-SI1-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1382860.asp

Also, Can Brian Gavin replicate the setting I chose taking into consideration the flower shape, because
the setting above from his collection is very close but I saw he does customer, and I think it would be
amazing to get something done by him. I may contact his company to see some time today.
 

nfowife

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 15, 2011
Messages
544
My concern about a J diamond in a halo is there might be a contrast between the center stone and the melee of the halo. That's something you will need to think about. There will be a contrast that might make the J look more tinted. I'd go with the BGD .9 G/SI1 stone I posted above if you can swing it, or go slightly smaller. The difference between .8 and .9 will be very small, especially in a halo setting.
Here's a slightly smaller one:
http://www.briangavindiamonds.com/diamond/diamond-detail/?product_id=AGS-104051366017

and here's a BGD blue stone that has flourescence so it's a better price for the size:
http://www.briangavindiamonds.com/diamond/diamond-detail/?product_id=BLAGS-104052029001
with the 5% pricescope/wire discount it's $4900.

Although I believe the BGD setting will be better quality than what you are looking at, going custom increases the price a lot. I don't think you will get the custom version from BGD for the same as you are getting at RB- but send them pics and get a quote from them, for sure.

Have you discussed your budget with your GF? Does she have any idea how much $$ you have to spend?
 

dreamer_dachsie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 16, 2007
Messages
24,364
jbrown59|1307121305|2936983 said:
I am risking too much with trade offs of a diamond? Is J too low of a color grade and S1 too low in the clarity grade.

Please let me know if something is wrong with my choices of these diamonds:
http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/J-SI2-Premium-Cut-Round-Diamond-1354750.asphttp://www.bluenile.com/diamond-search?pt=sig&filter_id=0#diamonds_pid=LD02118994http://www.jamesallen.com/diamonds/J-SI1-Ideal-Cut-Round-Diamond-1382860.asp

Also, Can Brian Gavin replicate the setting I chose taking into consideration the flower shape, because
the setting above from his collection is very close but I saw he does customer, and I think it would be
amazing to get something done by him. I may contact his company to see some time today.
He can likely replicate the setting for you, the quality will be much better, but I doubt the price will be hugely less. Maybe enough to help your diamond hunt.

The JA stone you linked above is not well cut. I cannot see the BN stone as I am not in the US and can't link to BNs website.

I chose the stones I chose because they are the closest you will get in a WELL CUT stone for your budget. I would like to see you get a G/H color stone for a halo, so dropping to a .80ct stone like the ones I linked is a great option. Trust me... the difference in size is NOT noticable. Especially in a halo setting like you have chosen. There is no point compromising on color and clarity for an extra 0.10mm (the thickness of two sheets of paper) when you plan to halo your diamond -- the same size halo setting would be used for both a .80 and a .90ct stone, and so you will not see the difference anyways.
 

dreamer_dachsie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 16, 2007
Messages
24,364
nfowife|1307121848|2936987 said:
Have you discussed your budget with your GF? Does she have any idea how much $$ you have to spend?
This is a very good point. Often women do not understand how much diamonds cost, or settings, and might change their priorities if they did know.

I also think if your gf SAW some of the settings that others have posted, she would see the better quality and like them more than the RB setting.
 
Be a part of the community It's free, join today!
    Celebratory Engagement Ring Upgrade And Bracelet
    Celebratory Engagement Ring Upgrade And Bracelet
    Chiguys's Cushion Cut Engagement Ring
    Chiguys's Cushion Cut Engagement Ring
    Archduchess Eleonore von Habsburg and Jérôme d’Ambrosio Royal Wedding
    Archduchess Eleonore von Habsburg and Jérôme d’Ambrosio Royal Wedding

Need Something Special?

Get a quote from multiple trusted and vetted jewelers.

Holloway Cut Advisor



Diamond Eye Candy

Click to view full-size image.
Top