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Custom or not to custom that is the question!

Is it feasible to reuse the diamonds for the custom ring?


  • Total voters
    11

Ceff

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2020
Messages
13
So first I have to thank Pricescope for their article about what to spend on engagement rings, especially right now in a pandemic I think it’s so important that people really consider value over status symbol! You inspired me to post this thread. (If you haven’t read it, it’s a great one.)

I’m the American and jewelry aficionado between my partner and I, he’s from India so he’s the gold guy but doesn’t know anything about American engagement traditions/rings or gemstones so basically we saw designing a custom engagement ring together as a relationship building exercise to blend our cultures. I get the sapphire and diamond ring I always dreamed of, he gets the traditional Vanki shape, and we settled on congac and white diamond accents as the color blend between us, in rose gold because it works well with both our skin tones. This has been going on for about a year trying on different size rings and metal colors to try and get a feel for what it would eventually be like. Between Covid killing my job as a professor and him becoming sole provider, money is tight. We got the design for free from an online retailer but weren’t comfortable with that format for such a big purchase, the free Cad came from a custom jewelry event at a local retailer where they bring in designers in hopes of landing the build (usually they do the design but because we had it already they agreed to do the Cad) and I got the center 1.42ct lavender Ceylon sapphire from a local jewelry store I’ve worked with a ton on other projects with my mom (material science engineer and dedicated jewelry addict lol) for $500.

8C5F30A8-703F-4CAC-8067-087918DFDDF3.jpeg CA44588C-0D67-4459-9309-2D74A1416C90.jpeg

Quotes we got for having this ring made were all between $4000-$12,000 (the higher was majorly trying to take advantage of the “custom” fees and the lowest wanted to use synthetic diamonds) we’ve been pretty stressed because while it’s the perfect dream ring for us, it just isn’t feasible right now and we want to be married in Oct. 2023 (for astrology dates to align per his culture) with a decent length engagement before hand so we have time to get everything and save up for the ceremony.

So this past weekend, I see the mall in my town is closing and Macy’s has 60% off signs plastered so I go check out the sales. I stumble into the jewelry section texting my mom if she wants anything not thinking anything of it and find this ring.

4408C75E-3DB4-489B-A7CB-A87B20A6C40B.jpeg

Effy 2ct sapphire, 1/4ctw diamonds in 14kt white gold (SO prefers higher kt but I prefer stable prongs! Lol). Original price, $3000, store closing clearance price $1250, they had rotating additional clearance % off until 2pm and because I found the ring at 1:45pm the price came down to $720 + tax. Steal of the century, since I had been texting my mom she said it was too flashy to which I said “for you, not for me lol” and called the SO to see if he minded me buying my own engagement ring, he loved the price as long as I was happy with the style so it became mine.

Fast forward to today we’re having innocent wake up cuddles when he pulls the ring out and officially asks me to marry him. While this process was unconventional and not what my teenage heart dreamed of with surprises and big romantic gestures, it was so practical, real and feels like a proper responsible adult decision.

Totally worth it, because guess what? THIS RING HAS THE EXACT NUMBER OF WHITE DIAMONDS NEEDED FOR THE CUSTOM RING!!! (18 are square but I’m thinking that they can just be arranged in the “crown” to give differing shape)

Like not only did we spend less than $800 for this ring but also I can reuse the diamonds for the custom ring when dust has settled from the pandemic and we’re more stable financially after the wedding (thinking 5 ish years from now maybe) and an extra 2ct sapphire and the white gold for an anniversary pendant or something we can do for our moms (split the gold and sapphire for them to feel more connected idk haven’t thought that far yet lol)

The place we were going to build with who did the Cad was going to charge us $2400 for diamonds alone; still need the cognacs but now I’ve sourced the white diamonds and gotten my engagement ring in time for a longer engagement and get the thrill of a great deal on a beautiful ring I’m ecstatic to call mine with a SO who is so much less stressed about not only the money but also the pressure of finding something we both like.

Ultimately my advice, if you’re looking for engagement rings, find out how much the standard traditions mean to you as a couple, which ones are you willing to break to do the process together (marriage is about cooperation and compromise after all), design your big beautiful custom ring that can become a sometime goal and then shop jewelry clearance sales to find something you can reuse in the eventually plan! It’s been so rewarding to find something we can afford and love and bring into our marriage.

Poll is for anyone interested/knowledgeable!
 
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Mrs_Strizzle

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 14, 2018
Messages
997
Congrats to you! As we tend to be bling obsessed here on PS it is easy to forget, but true. Nothing is more beautiful than stress free! Plus giving yourself the time to find just the right jeweler to make your dream ring is priceless.
 

AnastasiaBeaverhausen

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Sep 11, 2013
Messages
1,405
Congrats on finding an e-ring that spoke to you! Sometime we just see something and know it's "the one." Wear it in good health!
 

AllAboardTheBlingTrain

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Apr 22, 2020
Messages
1,233
Congratulations on your engagement! And the ring is very pretty! Just a note based on your poll, you might find it more feasible to get your ring custom made in India whenever you do decide to go with your design, labour costs are lower there and jewelers are willing to take your gold and set your stones etc. If your MIL has a trusted (good) jeweler that would be a place to start!
 

Ceff

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2020
Messages
13
Congrats to you! As we tend to be bling obsessed here on PS it is easy to forget, but true. Nothing is more beautiful than stress free! Plus giving yourself the time to find just the right jeweler to make your dream ring is priceless.

Thank you! And yes, especially right now any stress reducer is welcomed! I also like that we can take our time to find the right people, I just never expected to find the solution in a dilapidated mall for 75% off! :lol-2: We always go to the high end local shops with the amazing victorian estate pieces and I definitely thought that'd be the backup plan.
 

Ceff

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2020
Messages
13
Congratulations on your engagement! And the ring is very pretty! Just a note based on your poll, you might find it more feasible to get your ring custom made in India whenever you do decide to go with your design, labour costs are lower there and jewelers are willing to take your gold and set your stones etc. If your MIL has a trusted (good) jeweler that would be a place to start!

Thanks for mentioning this, we actually went to his moms local jeweler in Chirala for a quote but they don't do prong settings so we're going to ask around in Hydrabad when I go visit. If you (or anyone reading this) has any specific recommendations I'd love to start a list.
 

mommylawyer

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 27, 2020
Messages
372
Congratulations on your engagement! I like your ring; it's beautiful. Personally, I wouldn't tear it apart to make your custom ring. When the dust settles and you have the budget, commission your dream ring from scratch. I can tell you from experience that it's really nice to have more than one engagement ring. I really can't imagine having only one. I mean, it's wonderful to have one husband for the rest of your life, but one ring?! No, thank you. ;)2
 

Ceff

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2020
Messages
13
Congratulations on your engagement! I like your ring; it's beautiful. Personally, I wouldn't tear it apart to make your custom ring. When the dust settles and you have the budget, commission your dream ring from scratch. I can tell you from experience that it's really nice to have more than one engagement ring. I really can't imagine having only one. I mean, it's wonderful to have one husband for the rest of your life, but one ring?! No, thank you. ;)2

Haha aren't you a smart thinker! :mrgreen2: I'll definitely have to think about that, I also have this heirloom set (don't mind my terrible cuticles):

Rings.jpg

Bottom: great grandmothers 1920 fishtail set wedding band that was fused
Top: to my grandmothers 1940's-50's engagement ring

Pretty sure they’re both platinum. But I want to get a custom band made to match the original to sandwich gma's engagement ring and balance the set for my wedding band.

No shortage of projects or jewelry over here haha
 

mommylawyer

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 27, 2020
Messages
372
What a beautiful vintage set! It's so special to have an heirloom treasure like that. And I really like your new engagement ring with the split shank, baguettes, and flower setting.
 

Ceff

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2020
Messages
13
What a beautiful vintage set! It's so special to have an heirloom treasure like that. And I really like your new engagement ring with the split shank, baguettes, and flower setting.

Thank you! It is so amazing to know that ring has been in my family over 100 years! I never even realized how the split shank mimicked the vintage set haha but I'm so excited about the new ring I haven't gotten anything done I've been calling friends and family and staring at it all day :lol-2:
 

Lvoeshinythings

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 25, 2018
Messages
380
To me - it def means something that its the exact number of diamonds you need for the "other" ring. ;-)

Congrats, btw! I love the sketch already. It is going to be so unique. The idea of blending cultures just melts my heart, too.

Edit - one thing to add is that if the diamonds are too small (like many melee diamonds), they can break/chip when the jeweler gets them out of the current setting... so there is that to consider...
 

Ceff

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2020
Messages
13
To me - it def means something that its the exact number of diamonds you need for the "other" ring. ;-)

Congrats, btw! I love the sketch already. It is going to be so unique. The idea of blending cultures just melts my heart, too.

Right?! I'm laying there just staring and counting them and couldn't believe it haha checked 3 times to make sure.

I honestly can't wait to see the custom come to life, I built it in Photoshop out of google image searches and my imagination and it looks like Frankenstein.

4cff8bcbe68907d_37d5e567_bd33_4d78_ba2c_9e6277c74c00.png

Then somehow the Artist who did the sketch just knew exactly what I wanted after a little back and forth. (for those interested, I found them through custommade.com and the artist is Mher, it was a great experience I just wasn't comfortable with online, they wanted to use Moissanite for the crown and lab diamonds for the halo and were still over $5k) here is the evolution of sketches then I added the color above in photoshop.

8f15a41791e192c__774_v1.jpg
3940d73f9106c8f__774_v2.jpg
c7da19fa63da830__774_v6.jpg
0b972c7616e945b__774_v7.jpg

It's so important to me that his culture is honored at every turn since he's so far away from family and changed his whole life plan to be with me it's the least I can do haha plus it was such a good exercise for us to work together on small details for such a big purchase.
 
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Lvoeshinythings

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 25, 2018
Messages
380
Right?! I'm laying there just staring and counting them and couldn't believe it haha checked 3 times to make sure.

I honestly can't wait to see the custom come to life, I built it in Photoshop out of google image searches and my imagination and it looks like Frankenstein.

4cff8bcbe68907d_37d5e567_bd33_4d78_ba2c_9e6277c74c00.png

Then somehow the Artist who did the sketch just knew exactly what I wanted after a little back and forth. (for those interested, I found them through custommade.com and the artist is Mher) here is the evolution of sketches before the final one above.

8f15a41791e192c__774_v1.jpg
3940d73f9106c8f__774_v2.jpg
c7da19fa63da830__774_v6.jpg

It's so important to me that his culture is honored at every turn since he's so far away from family and changed his whole life plan to be with me it's the least I can do haha plus it was such a good exercise for us to work together on small details for such a big purchase.

I think you did pretty good with the Frankenstein, lol! The sketch is everything though. Do you mind if I ask how much something like that costs? The sketch itself.

I feel like it will be verrrry dainty when complete. Is that what you were going for? I love all the details. It will be so lovely when it comes to life!
 

Ceff

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2020
Messages
13
I think you did pretty good with the Frankenstein, lol! The sketch is everything though. Do you mind if I ask how much something like that costs? The sketch itself.

I feel like it will be verrrry dainty when complete. Is that what you were going for? I love all the details. It will be so lovely when it comes to life!

Here are the quotes I received from custommade.com who sourced the sketch from Mher. The sketch is free with consultation, they only take a $100 non-refundable deposit for the Cad process if you agree to move forward. They are basically a middleman which I think is apparent in their pricing (even keeping in mind the metal market has been insane the last year.) I was debating on having them find a center stone which you see here but I decided to source my own for financial reasons so I could get the almost 1.5ct for the same price they wanted for .5ct.

c9e84e71eba23c3_748218_crystals_engagement_ring_1.png
9667228ad930273_748218_crystals_engagement_ring_2.png
02a1d336896a9c2_748218_crystals_engagement_ring_3.png

In total it's an inch from tip of the "crown" to the most forward part of the band so it's actually quite large but I definitely wanted it to be delicate and intricate so the cut-outs helped reduce weight but also add the detail I wanted.
 

Diamond Girl 21

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 26, 2017
Messages
1,063
Both your design and new engagement ring are beautiful...Congratulations! I didn't have time to read through all the posts, so I apologize if you received this advice already, but I would recommend getting estimates from other trusted vendors for your custom piece. Many on here have had custom work done, and can recommend those with stellar reputations.
 

Natylad

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 17, 2009
Messages
2,483
Congratulations on your engagement and on your gorgeous ring!!! And what a steal!!! It looks perfect on your hand!!!
My suggestion would be to keep your original engagement ring as is and enjoy it! Don't attempt to have the melee stones removed, they might get damaged and that would be a double loss for you, both monetary and sentimental.
When the right time comes, you will find the funds for the custom made ring that you have been planning with your fiancé. Now you are engaged and you have a wonderful ring and there is no need to rush about anything anymore!!!
Huge congratulations again! Your story put a big smile on my face!!!
 
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