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Dream upgrade shopping - not having fun (yet??)

anne_h

Brilliant_Rock
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Jun 13, 2005
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I don't really know where to put this, hope no one minds it here.

I'm posting on PS because I don't think anybody in my real life would understand. Plus, in the scheme of things, this "problem" is not a very important one. :razz:

Anyways - so I have an unexpected lovely upgrade budget from my DH. It's a very sweet surprise. So I've been looking for a largish OEC for a little while now. This has not been fun! I'm in Canada, and as we all know, pretty much everything is in the US. I am not enjoying the process of shopping remotely. I need to see stones in person, but cannot.

Plus, for whatever reason, I'm needing a lot of support and encouragement in this process and I think most vendors don't realize this or don't encounter it often, so I'm often left feeling like I'm not getting what I need. (I'm dealing with both PS and non-PS vendors in a few places around the US. BTW, everyone has been very professional, so this is not a knock against anyone by any stretch.) There is one dealer who has been great on the softer side of things, but we've not found any stone matches together yet.

So I don't know. I just feel... frustrated. By being in Canada, not being comfortable shipping stones in this range back and forth over the border. By having to shop remotely, sometime with vendors who don't have good pictures or are unable to provide videos. By hearing rumors that stone prices are going nuts and giving myself pressure to hurry up and just find something.

Mostly I feel lost and alone in the process. I feel I need help.

I'll be going to Las Vegas next week so hope to see a number of possible matches there. But if that falls through, I guess next I'm going to NYC later this summer.

Boo. I feel I should be enjoying this process, but I am distinctly NOT. I am finding it stressful.

Will gladly accept any comments or advice. Has anyone else felt this way?

Do I need to change my approach and/or expectations?

Thanks for reading,

Anne
 

Winks_Elf

Brilliant_Rock
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Nov 28, 2008
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1,674
Re: Dream upgrade shopping - not having fun

This is supposed to be fun, not frustrating. Before you go to Vegas, see if there are any jewelers there who specialize in antique diamonds, and then make an appointment so that you know where you're going before you get there.
 

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Aug 14, 2009
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21,101
Have you told the vendors you're working with that you want more communication throughout the process? Some people are happy touching base once a week, or when something happens, others (like me, for most projects) need the reassurance of hearing back every couple of days regardless of updates - definitely let your SA know what you expect on this front, and give him/her a chance to make it enjoyable for you :))
 

maplefemme

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May 12, 2011
Messages
874
Hi Anne,

I'm also in Canada and have been diamond hunting since the beginning of the year, we just finally bought a 2.93 OEC. I really feel where you are coming from, it is very challenging up here to find OEC's, OMC's and the likes, at least in larger sizes. It was not fun, and our biggest challenge was finding a local vendor with integrity, quite frankly I was shocked with some of our experiences. We didn't start out looking for an OEC, we were in the market for a cushion cut, however, it was jungle no less.
Thankfully finding PS, a savior in our crash course of diamond buying, we did buy from a PS vendor in the US without seeing the stone live.
I trust the vendor's reputation and I'm happy with the video and photos, but I know without all those elements I'd be nervous about the purchase sight unseen.

As Yssie said, I'd be upfront with my needs, whatever yours are, so that they have an understanding of your communication needs. Even if that means regular contact just to say they're still looking.
Because OEC's vary so much, and depending on the specs you are looking for; it could take a while longer than sourcing a newer cut stone and I know that's frustrating, especially in light of the price increases.

Are any of the vendors you are speaking with going to the Las Vegas Antique Jewelry and Watch Show June 2-5th? Maybe they could keep and eye out for you for an OEC within your specs?

What specs are you looking for in an OEC?
 

anne_h

Brilliant_Rock
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Jun 13, 2005
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Thanks ladies.

Yssie - Good point. I think you're right - I will let the vendors know explicitly that I may need extra help and communication.

May I ask your thoughts on this - What is the most effective way to find possible matches for me? Should I pick 1-2 "preferred" dealers and work only through them? Right now I am also doing a LOT of searching myself (trolling eBay, other vendor sites, etc.) I was doing this to have the most options (since no single vendor has been able to find/offer as many stones as I was hoping to select from), but by now I am exhausted and this seems to be going nowhere. How should I go about this?

Maplefemme - I'm glad to know another Canadian has experienced the same frustrations I have. Definitely there is nothing for me to look at in Canada. I called every antique jeweler in my city and nobody had any real matches. I did find one suitable stone in Toronto, but the price was ridiculous (as expected, IMO nobody in Canada can compete with the US vendors who sell online). Anyways, all that to say I *must* shop in the US, as that is where the goods are. Plus, of course all the great PS vendors are US-based too.

Anyways, I'm always open to any further feedback or suggestions if anyone has any.

Anne
 

dreamer_dachsie

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Dec 16, 2007
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I would choose 2-3 vendors and focus my energy on them, personally.

I would also not expect them to come up with a large number of stones at any one time. You will likely have to "yay or nay" one stone at a time. You will likely also need to accept that you will ship stones accross the border and return them. Think of it as part of the cost of saving money in the US! I am Canadain, and it is not that difficult to ship a stone to view, then return it. You simply keep your documents from customs, and once the stone is returned (you need to use the vendor's FedEx/UPS account to have insurance), you send proof of return and a form to customs and get refunded your taxes. So seeing a stone in person is totally possible if you need to see it prior to buying.

I would work with Jewels By Erica Grace myself and then just wait until they find what I wanted. They seem tapped into the market, and they provide LOTS of photos and videos of their diamonds which would make buying easier.

Second option for me would be to go with GOG and pay the premium for an AVR.
 

canuk-gal

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Apr 19, 2004
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21,152
HI:

If you are close to the East/border--can you take a trip to see offerings at GOG? That way you could get a RL perspective of shape, design, color, size of stones and from there you might be able to make a more informed choice about what you want. I am also Canadian and have had no issue with shipping/receiving stones to and from the US--but it can get cost prohibitive. If you could handle a little flight or road trip it might be worth the effort!

cheers--Sharon
 

maplefemme

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May 12, 2011
Messages
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Anne, where in Canada are you?
There's an auction coming up in Toronto in less than a couple of weeks and they have some OECs and OMCs up for bid, hard to say what the hammer price will be and you would "definately" have to go see them in person prior, as no certs with these stones so the given stats don't mean much, you have to go see them and asses them yourself. All are set in platinum vintage rings, they have no price res. and they have low bidding estimates.
For eg:
OMC 2.90ct K/L Si1 - $6,000-$8,000CAD est.
OMC 3.27ct L VS2 -$12,000-$15,000CAD est.
OEC 2.85 L VVS - $12,000-$15,000 est.
If I were in Toronto I'd check them out myself :naughty: alas, I'm in Alberta ;(
 

canuk-gal

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maplefemme|1306971976|2935774 said:
Anne, where in Canada are you?
There's an auction coming up in Toronto in less than a couple of weeks and they have some OECs and OMCs up for bid, hard to say what the hammer price will be and you would "definately" have to go see them in person prior, as no certs with these stones so the given stats don't mean much, you have to go see them and asses them yourself. All are set in platinum vintage rings, they have no price res. and they have low bidding estimates.
For eg:
OMC 2.90ct K/L Si1 - $6,000-$8,000CAD est.
OMC 3.27ct L VS2 -$12,000-$15,000CAD est.
OEC 2.85 L VVS - $12,000-$15,000 est.
If I were in Toronto I'd check them out myself :naughty: alas, I'm in Alberta ;(

HI:

MF are you referring to Dupuis? I perused their auction calendar just last week....... :lickout: BTW I am also in Alberta....there are a few of us around here....

cheers--Sharon
 

anne_h

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Thanks Maplefemme!! I was not aware of these guys.

BTW, I'm leaving for Las Vegas tonight, wish me luck! :)

Anne
 

maplefemme

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Hi Sharon,

Yes it's the Dupuis auction. I sure wish I were closer, I'd like to check out a couple of the pieces. If I hadn't just bought an OEC I'd have flown out for the auction early, I'm already heading to Ontario mid-month, would've been worth an early arrival :naughty:

Are you a native Albertan, Sharon? I moved here in 1990 from the UK. Can you recommend a good appraiser in Alberta by chance?

Good luck Anne, fingers crossed for you.
 

canuk-gal

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anne_h|1307007057|2936075 said:
Thanks Maplefemme!! I was not aware of these guys.

BTW, I'm leaving for Las Vegas tonight, wish me luck! :)

Anne
Good luck Anne! Let us know how it turns out!

cheers--Sharon
 

canuk-gal

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maplefemme|1307024865|2936190 said:
Hi Sharon,

Yes it's the Dupuis auction. I sure wish I were closer, I'd like to check out a couple of the pieces. If I hadn't just bought an OEC I'd have flown out for the auction early, I'm already heading to Ontario mid-month, would've been worth an early arrival :naughty:

Are you a native Albertan, Sharon? I moved here in 1990 from the UK. Can you recommend a good appraiser in Alberta by chance?

Good luck Anne, fingers crossed for you.

HI MF:

Yes, I am native to these parts.... :bigsmile:

Here is the appraiser I use in Calgary.....

http://intergemlabs.com/

cheers--Sharon
 

maplefemme

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 12, 2011
Messages
874
canuk-gal|1307138518|2937181 said:
maplefemme|1307024865|2936190 said:
Hi Sharon,

Yes it's the Dupuis auction. I sure wish I were closer, I'd like to check out a couple of the pieces. If I hadn't just bought an OEC I'd have flown out for the auction early, I'm already heading to Ontario mid-month, would've been worth an early arrival :naughty:

Are you a native Albertan, Sharon? I moved here in 1990 from the UK. Can you recommend a good appraiser in Alberta by chance?

Good luck Anne, fingers crossed for you.

HI MF:

Yes, I am native to these parts.... :bigsmile:

Here is the appraiser I use in Calgary.....

http://intergemlabs.com/

cheers--Sharon
Thanks Sharon,
This was only one I managed to find too, it's nice to know someone who has used them.
I like that you can watch your stone being graded, not because I'm paranoid, I just find it fascinating to watch the process.

Cheers,

Naomi
 
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