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E-Ring Search / <$30k

Lmwsp13

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 7, 2016
Messages
39
Hello all,

Appreciate all the helpful info shared among the users here and thank you in advance for any help that you can provide me!

I've begun the search process and have found several recent, relevant posts that have been very informative. However, my situation may be slightly unique (compared to those in the posts I've read) in that my GF will offer no parameters to guide the decision-making process. I could bring her to a store to at least narrow down shape but, given her vote of confidence and her strong prioritization of engagement over ring, I'm going to run with it.

I'm going to select a diamond / custom ring (separately) online and will inevitably have more focused questions over the next several weeks but, for now, I could use the group's help with the following:

1) I would like to go with a classic shape rather than one en vogue. I'm leaning toward round but would appreciate the views of the group, even if subjective.

2) Budget on the whole package is $30k although I don't need to max this out. I'm looking at Ideal - Excellent Cut / probably 2.2 - 2.4 / G-H / VS1 - VS2. For a given size and excellent cut, is there a best "bang for the buck" color / clarity combo for rounds?

3) Seems like cut (even within the "EX" category) may be a large driver of $/carat. Looking for tips to optimize search given large number of rounds and high variance in $ / carat.

4) Now to setting - older posts point to LM; newer ones to VC / SK. Am I missing a vendor and is there a consensus view on (1) best of breed and (2) balanced quality / price?

thanks so much!
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
You know, classic is very flexible.

Personally with your budget I would go going for a large EC:
Like this beauty: http://www.goodoldgold.com/ecommerce/2.70ct-h-if-emerald-cut-diamond.html :love: :love: :love: :love:
And setting it like this:
https://www.victorcanera.com/rings/engagement/emerald-cut-sapphire-and-trapezoid-trilogy
Or this:
https://www.victorcanera.com/rings/engagement/emerald-and-tapered-baguette-trilogy
Or like this:
https://www.victorcanera.com/rings/engagement/the-evelyn-solitaire-with-2ct-emerald-cut

Classic. Elegant. And extremely gorgeous. That stone is phenomenal. I recommend you put it on hold (it's no cost, no obligation).

But why don't you tell us a bit about her first?

1. What is your budget?

2. How old are you guys?

3. What do she do for a living/working toward doing for a living.

4. How does she dress? Does she dress up a lot, or is she a jeans and T-shirts girl? Grundge? Tailored Ann Taylor tastes?

5. Does she prefer white metals or yellow/pinks ones

6. How is her house decorated? Does she love antique store trolling? Does she love everything Pottery Barn? Is she ultra modern with lots of metal and leather?

7. Is she clumsy? Is she very put together?

8. Does she love handbags and have a stable of them to choose from? Are they mostly practical (neutral colors: brown, black, beige) or are there a lot of colors in there? Blue, purple, red?

9. What metro area are you in or near? Or are you in the country? Tell me where you live and what it's like there (if it's not obvious, like NYC).

10. Do you guys have pets? Want them? What kind?

11. Is she a brand name girl? Does she love things with brand names? If so why? Is it the dependability of brand name quality that appeals to her or is it the bragging rights? Or is she more understated and while she appreciates quality brand names don't do it for her?

12. Okay now, describe her to us in your own words? I've never met her, bring her to life me. What qualities does she have that you love? What is her sense of humor like? Just... tell us about her.

13. Has she expressed an interest in any particular style of ring (halo, Legacy, solitaire, three stone) or shape of stone (round, marquise, pear, princess, emerald, radiant.)?

14. What is her existing jewelry like? A lot of variety, or are there a few select pieces of similar design? What does she wear regularly?
 

Lmwsp13

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 7, 2016
Messages
39
Hi Gypsy, I see that you're one of the experts here and really appreciate your response.

1. Budget of 30k
2. I'm 33, she is 30. We've dated for one year.
3. She has a management role at a large tech company
4. She wears jeans to work and when we're casually hanging out. She wears dresses when we go out.
5. She wears gold because other metals give her an adverse reaction (not sure about platinum). With her olive complexion, she looks great in gold but i wouldn't chose a yellow ring
6. She has a nice apt / girly yet sophisticated (not modern) with relatively inexpensive furnishings
7. Very well put together
8. She has 2 LVs and prefers them for their quality not bragging rights. Bags are neutral colors. While mixed, her clothes are more elegant than loud
9. We're in San Francisco but we're not SF people. She's originally from South America. I'm from the east coast.
10. We'd like to get a golden retriever eventually; we like most dogs and certain breeds of cats
11. We both appreciate nice things but only buy in moderation. We rarely shop. We're motivated by quality / reliability
12. Family is everything to us both. Both had modest upbringings. She is extremely charismatic and lights up the room with her presence. She can make friends with anyone. Ethical, trustworthy, smart, culturally-intelligent, punctual. Mature but emoji lover. My friends, mom, parents' cat and probably my dad like her more than they like me. She works in tech but belongs on a magazine cover. She rarely wears makeup and gets more beautiful everyday.
Top 40, Sinatra, rom-coms...
13. She has no preference and would accept a diamond-less ring. I will definitely go with solitaire. I'd like to propose within a couple of months before she beats me to it. A diamond flaw would be something that would bother me, not her. She hasn't and likely wont communicate a ring / diamond preference. Somewhat inconsistent with some of the above, I'm sure she would prefer (if money were no object) a Tiffany ring but I would not consider the cash burn.
14. In the year I've know her, she has only worn one piece of jewelry -- gold earnings that her mom gave her. I got her a Tiffany's necklace for Christmas.

The stone you posted looks great. And actually identical to the stone in this link (which has the same stats except for what looks like a rounding error with one of the measurements). http://www.bluenile.com/diamond-details/LD06475430?click_id=309205142
This stone appears to have been rated "VG" for cut despite EX polish, EX symmetry and identical stats to those of the previously linked stone. How are we able to assess cut in this case, based on the non-reflection evaluation methods (which appear to show well)? Are there different scales / classifications for different vendors?

Of the 3 settings you posted, the following is definitely more my (and probably her) style: https://www.victorcanera.com/rings/engagement/the-evelyn-solitaire-with-2ct-emerald-cut... Great mix of classic and modern.

Or, if I ultimately go with round, something like this: https://www.victorcanera.com/rings/engagement/pave-four-prong-solitaire

Also, what's your take on the emerald vs. square emerald / asscher?

thanks!
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
Okay so, that was a lot of good information.

Step cuts are hard to shop for. Most of them worth buying fall in the B range. If we use a A-F scale. THAT particular stone is an A. Seriously.

What I use to judge that (Fancies are very different than rounds) is the photo and the ASET and the Sarin. GOG will HAPPILY make a video of the stone for you too, which is great. Numbers are largely meaningless, the one that matters the most is the crown height off the Sarin. And VG for symmetry or polish is fine, truly.

My thoughts on Square Emeralds (I happen to own one) versus Emeralds is that Emeralds have broader appeal and if you are surprising someone with a ring, Emeralds are a much safer choice. Asschers are tricky little buggers that you either love or hate. I personally wouldn't surprise someone with one. Plus the suckers face up small for the carat weight and that can be irritating.

Your lady sounds a person who appreciates value, classic tailored styles, and is a bit of a romantic.

I honestly think THAT particular Emerald cut with the Evelyn Solitaire setting that you liked would be a fantastic choice for her.

It's honestly such a lovely stone and so outside the common run of round solitaires (that everyone has), but still very elegant and classic, plus like I said, it's a VERY nice stone.

Put it on hold. Get a video, post it. Get a quote from Victor (should be around 5K) for that setting. Or if for some reason Victor passes, then ask Steven Kirsch (he did my setting) http://www.stevenkirsch.com/engagement/solitaire.html?limit=all It's a bright cut pave solitiare without milgrain (I would ask for about a 2.2mm shank) with a gallery that allows for a flush fit band.

And he can do that.
 

pearaffair

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 15, 2015
Messages
3,274
Re: E-Ring Search / <$30k

Gypsy said:
Okay so, that was a lot of good information.

Step cuts are hard to shop for. Most of them worth buying fall in the B range. If we use a A-F scale. THAT particular stone is an A. Seriously.

What I use to judge that (Fancies are very different than rounds) is the photo and the ASET and the Sarin. GOG will HAPPILY make a video of the stone for you too, which is great. Numbers are largely meaningless, the one that matters the most is the crown height off the Sarin. And VG for symmetry or polish is fine, truly.

My thoughts on Square Emeralds (I happen to own one) versus Emeralds is that Emeralds have broader appeal and if you are surprising someone with a ring, Emeralds are a much safer choice. Asschers are tricky little buggers that you either love or hate. I personally wouldn't surprise someone with one. Plus the suckers face up small for the carat weight and that can be irritating.

Your lady sounds a person who appreciates value, classic tailored styles, and is a bit of a romantic.

I honestly think THAT particular Emerald cut with the Evelyn Solitaire setting that you liked would be a fantastic choice for her.

It's honestly such a lovely stone and so outside the common run of round solitaires (that everyone has), but still very elegant and classic, plus like I said, it's a VERY nice stone.

Put it on hold. Get a video, post it. Get a quote from Victor (should be around 5K) for that setting. Or if for some reason Victor passes, then ask Steven Kirsch (he did my setting) http://www.stevenkirsch.com/engagement/solitaire.html?limit=all It's a bright cut pave solitiare without milgrain (I would ask for about a 2.2mm shank) with a gallery that allows for a flush fit band.

And he can do that.

+1 on everything, but especially the emerald vs asscher debate :)
 

pearaffair

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 15, 2015
Messages
3,274
Re: E-Ring Search / <$30k

Looks like the GOG diamond is out of stock :/
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
Good news! Can't wait for that video!
 

Lmwsp13

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 7, 2016
Messages
39
Gypsy, Pear, hope you've both had a nice weekend. While I wait for the video, I was hoping to get your thoughts on the H color here. I realize that a solid cut mitigates down-spectrum color but, still, for a 2.7 emerald, is H a bit too warm? Do you think it would be smart to trade some size or clarity for F/G? Thanks
 

pearaffair

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 15, 2015
Messages
3,274
Re: E-Ring Search / <$30k

Lmwsp13 said:
Gypsy, Pear, hope you've both had a nice weekend. While I wait for the video, I was hoping to get your thoughts on the H color here. I realize that a solid cut mitigates down-spectrum color but, still, for a 2.7 emerald, is H a bit too warm? Do you think it would be smart to trade some size or clarity for F/G? Thanks

I'm no expert, but typically a superior cut makes a diamond look brighter/lighter. I don't think colour is going to be an issue here, at all! But I'll let the more experienced PS'ers chime in :)
 

LLJsmom

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 24, 2012
Messages
11,432
Have you gone out and looked at some H and higher color emerald cuts? It would be helpful if you could see for yourself. Color can be a very subjective and personal decision.
 

Lmwsp13

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 7, 2016
Messages
39
LLJsmom|1452488154|3974007 said:
Have you gone out and looked at some H and higher color emerald cuts? It would be helpful if you could see for yourself. Color can be a very subjective and personal decision.


I went to two shops this weekend. Unfortunately the large majority of diamonds were round with many cushions (pretty appealing shape as well) and only 2 smaller emeralds. They were F and H and I did notice a difference but only after about 5 seconds of squinting.

The sales associate told me to go for eye clean (assuming EX cut) and maximize color. Seemed like sound advice to me but, then again, maybe H is sufficiently white.
 

LLJsmom

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 24, 2012
Messages
11,432
Lmwsp13|1452491351|3974025 said:
LLJsmom|1452488154|3974007 said:
Have you gone out and looked at some H and higher color emerald cuts? It would be helpful if you could see for yourself. Color can be a very subjective and personal decision.


I went to two shops this weekend. Unfortunately the large majority of diamonds were round with many cushions (pretty appealing shape as well) and only 2 smaller emeralds. They were F and H and I did notice a difference but only after about 5 seconds of squinting.

The sales associate told me to go for eye clean (assuming EX cut) and maximize color. Seemed like sound advice to me but, then again, maybe H is sufficiently white.


What did you think? I prefer as white as possible with step cuts so I would get the F if I could swing it. But what matters is what you like. And can afford.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
57,718
H is as low as I'd go in an emerald cut, but I think that stone is a little too elongated for my taste (1.48). I prefer closer to a 1.3 ratio. I'd honestly go for an ideal cut round. Have GOG make a video for you of the EC and a round. Color will show less in an ideal cut round brilliant as opposed to a step cut or other large faceted stone.

http://www.goodoldgold.com/ecommerce/2-3ct-h-vs1-premium-round-ideal-cut-diamond.html

http://www.goodoldgold.com/ecommerce/2.4ct-g-si1-platinum-select-round-ideal-cut-diamond.html

http://www.goodoldgold.com/ecommerce/2.1ct-g-vs2-platinum-select-round-ideal-cut-diamond.html

http://www.goodoldgold.com/ecommerce/2.1ct-h-vs1-platinum-select-round-ideal-cut-diamond.html
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
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Messages
57,718
I do have to add, though, if you buy the diamond from GOG, you'll probably use Steven Kirsch in NYC. If you want to use Victor Canera, then you ought to look at his diamonds as well. I think he gives a discount on the setting if you buy the diamond from him.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
57,718
Lmwsp13|1452491351|3974025 said:
LLJsmom|1452488154|3974007 said:
Have you gone out and looked at some H and higher color emerald cuts? It would be helpful if you could see for yourself. Color can be a very subjective and personal decision.


I went to two shops this weekend. Unfortunately the large majority of diamonds were round with many cushions (pretty appealing shape as well) and only 2 smaller emeralds. They were F and H and I did notice a difference but only after about 5 seconds of squinting.

The sales associate told me to go for eye clean (assuming EX cut) and maximize color. Seemed like sound advice to me but, then again, maybe H is sufficiently white.

You can't tell a thing about color in jewelry store lighting. You'd have to be in daylight out of the sun and inside in your normal environment to see color. That lighting most jewelry stores have is designed to show the sparkle and it masks color really well. There is a definite difference in F and H.
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
In a well cut step cut H is a great color. And that stone has amazing light return. Ratio is a personal thing but a classic EC ratio is closer to 1.5 than 1.3. Plus it maximizes spread.

Remember your lady willl be wearing this ring on her hand alone. Not next to an F.

I think you said you were in the bay area. Go browsing in Campbell at Joe Escobar if that's the case. Also in SF go to Shreve and Langs.
Lots of places to browse!

The advice about maximizing color at the expense of clarity is one we give as well. But not with ECs and step cuts. They show inclusions more easily and you buy for performance not specs on a lab report.

Remember you wear the diamond not the report.
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
Um. All I got is Jazz music. No words. Am i missing something?
 

Lmwsp13

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 7, 2016
Messages
39
Gypsy|1452662890|3975257 said:
Um. All I got is Jazz music. No words. Am i missing something?

Ha, sorry, I meant that the diamond has a feature not previously discussed and was wondering whether the group would be able to notice it in the video.
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
I have had a long bad day. Just nutshell it for me, please. What's the issue?
 

Lmwsp13

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 7, 2016
Messages
39
Sorry to hear about your day.

It has a brown tint (not mentioned in Gia cert), which, according to gog and others on this forum, apparently makes the stone look whiter from the top but is making me a bit uncomfortable.
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
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Messages
40,198
Lmwsp13|1452664796|3975271 said:
Sorry to hear about your day.

It has a brown tint (not mentioned in Gia cert), which, according to gog and others on this forum, apparently makes the stone look whiter from the top but is making me a bit uncomfortable.


Ooooooh. Yeah, that's makes me uncomfortable in a stone I couldn't see in person before buying too. I had the chance to buy a H pear with brown tint and I couldn't get that mind clean for me.


Okay. So I STILL think you should shoot for something more unique that a modern round brilliant solitaire. So I'm going to throw out a couple ideas.

1. You can ask GOG to source you a nice EC at around 2.5 carats G-H VS. They do a great job of that.

I just had another idea though.

How about this since you like Victor's work:

https://www.victorcanera.com/diamonds/pre1tq-1.951-i-vs2-ideal-estimated-old-european-cut
or
https://www.victorcanera.com/diamonds/4dr78y-1.607-f-vs2-old-european-cut

I'd actually ask Victor if he can do two get 30-40 point diamonds (depending on the size of the center) with the same faceting and the same color in a three stone for you. Or two nice pears.

You can set that European faceted stone in a classic three stone like these:
https://www.victorcanera.com/rings/engagement/the-lily-round-trilogy
https://www.victorcanera.com/rings/engagement/round-and-pear-shaped-trilogy


I do think classic but unique is the way to go. This way you get the gorgeous unique flowery faceting of a european style round, in a really lovely classic three stone setting which would give her coverage across the top of her finger.
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Messages
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purplesilk

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Oct 8, 2010
Messages
1,588
I'd buy a round diamond and put it in a simple six prong solitaire:classic and classy.
 

purplesilk

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Oct 8, 2010
Messages
1,588
Step cuts are beautiful , but since your girlfriend gave no input, I think a round diamond is a safer choice.
 
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