Experience with a B&M Store

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Oct 17, 2002
So I am now 100% certain that I am going to be buying my main stone on the internet. I went to a local jeweler this past weekend (who shall remain nameless), and had a very odd experience. It's a long story, but I hope you can get as big a kick out of it as I did :bigsmile:

I went into the store with the intention of checking out their ring mountings. I had no intention of buying a loose stone. I had my idealscope with me, and the jeweler helping me suggested I look at some loose stones. I always love scoping loose diamonds, so it didn't take much arm twisting. I noticed upon entering the store that all of their stones are GIA certified.

Similar to every single other jeweler I have encountered, she was soon feeding me her sale spiel about how all of their diamonds are 'Ideal Cut', or 'Signature Cut', or some other hogwash. The stones they had were decent enough (albeit pricy), so I didn't say anything. Well, midway into my stone scoping, she mentions that the stones I am looking at are of "Cut Grade 1". Knowing that GIA abandoned trying to do a cut grade LONG ago, I immediately asked what the heck "Cut Grade 1" means, figuring it was some jeweler specific rating. She kept insisting that the GIA does cut grades and that 1 was the best. The store manager overheard our debate and came on over to set me straight.

After arguing with him about GIA not doing cut gradings (he insisted that they just started grading cut like the AGS does), I asked him to produce the 'Cut Graded' GIA cert. He produced the certificate, and of course there was no mention of cut ANYWHERE. He mumbled something about them not printing the cut grade on the cert :-o. I know that I'm young, but yeeesh....I wasn't born yesterday. He then asked me if I knew how the AGS cut grade system works. Of course I know exactly how it works, but I told him "No", just to see what he would come up with. He ended up telling me that the clarity and color of the diamond are significant contributors to the AGS Cut score!!! I couldn't even believe what I was hearing. To top it all off, he said that the AGS cut grades range from 1 to 10! At this point, I decided to leave and never come back.

How could a store manager know so little about diamonds? Here I am, a 24yo kid, who has been researching diamonds for about 1 month, and I could run circles around this guy in a diamond debate. I know you all say that the B&Ms are idiots, but I really had no idea how bad it was until now.


Sep 2, 2002
I had a similar experience. A Hearts on Fire dealer told me that HoF are the only "perfectly" cut diamonds, and that they are the only diamonds that get a OOO cut grade. Other diamonds, she said, get at at best a O. It really undermines the cache of a brand if the dealers have no idea what they are talking about.

I completely agree with your surprise. You'd think if this were your job you'd know what you can learn after a few hours on the internet!


Oct 4, 2002
You think that is bad, go to a mall store and talk to them. Try and play dumb like you have no idea about diamonds and you have $20,000 burning a hole in your dumb pocket. It is quite entertaining listening to what some of these guys come up with. I like to do it with gem stone also. I find sales people know even less about those. I had one guy try and tell me that tanzanite is as hard as a diamond, yet tanzanite is actually rather soft.

Every once in a while if my girlfriend and I have time and are bored we go play with mall jewelers.:loopy:


Dec 31, 1999
PoopEater, cute story :)


Through the Internet, people are discovering and inventing new ways to share relevant knowledge with blinding speed. As a direct result, markets are getting smarter—and getting smarter faster than most companies.[/u]


Oct 26, 2002
I bumped into my mother's long-time (over 20 years) friend at a mall jewelry store where she has worked for over 10 years. She was saying how the LEO diamond was such much better than other cuts, and I know she believed it. I was amazed at how little she knew in general. She also said that 18K was not suitable for making fine jewelry from and 14K is much better. Sigh.


Nov 4, 2002
"Every once in a while if my girlfriend and I have time and are bored we go play with mall jewelers"

My boyfriend and I do that too! :bigsmile:
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