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Help,BF looking for Stunning Center stone

ziggityzola86

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 11, 2021
Messages
28
Asscher cuts in a larger format are wonderful. A 4 carat plus asscher would show the pattern beautifully. I really love asscher cuts. But I feel you need a good size to see the pattern. If she's open to it, asscher cuts are very unique, and have a lot of elegance.

A criss cut or Ashoka style stone would also be worth considering. It has the sparkle a traditional emerald doesn't.

ETA: https://www.instagram.com/p/BaaMP5hnMzl/?igshid=14eezyc5d2v7x

It seems she greatly gravitated towards, Asscher, Cushion, Radiant and Princess. Overall she strongly favored yellow diamonds vs colorless, to be frank im not sure why, she just said that she thought they were more unique and pretty. I do appreciate the immense amount of insight and direction you have given me to help me in this process. It has been a huge help in being able to openly communicate with my SO so I can get her exactly what her heart desires. That means a great deal to me so thank you. Jeremy
 

ziggityzola86

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 11, 2021
Messages
28
How fun to have such a big budget and what a lucky lady she is! I wonder if a good idea might be to see what kind of jewelers she is following on Instagram (if she has an account) to see things she gravitates toward. Since you're talking about a 4+ ct and you mentioned cushions, I can see that being classically very elegant without being too BLINGY like a round shape might be.

For more presence on the finger, you can always add a delicate halo or side stones that suit the shape to add a unique flair. I'd love to see what she says when you sit down with her!

Thank you so much for taking the time to respond and contribute in this. I actually sat down with her last night and asked her to follow several jewelers/ring makers last night so that she could zero in on exactly what her heart desires. She started following several people and found a bunch that she loved. I really do appreciate the help and great idea! Coincidentally enough, she told me she loved halo settings and also loved the idea of a 3 piece setting that had a large colored center stone with two smaller colorless outside stones. It really just depends on the diamonds on which she would prefer she said. Thank you again for all your help, I do appreciate it greatly. Jeremy
 

elizat

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 23, 2013
Messages
2,272
It seems she greatly gravitated towards, Asscher, Cushion, Radiant and Princess. Overall she strongly favored yellow diamonds vs colorless, to be frank im not sure why, she just said that she thought they were more unique and pretty. I do appreciate the immense amount of insight and direction you have given me to help me in this process. It has been a huge help in being able to openly communicate with my SO so I can get her exactly what her heart desires. That means a great deal to me so thank you. Jeremy

You are welcome. Call David at Diamonds by Lauren. He is in New York City and his specialty is yellow diamonds and all colored diamonds. He also happens to love step cuts. Make sure that when you speak to him about doing a setting as well that you ask for his top Uber bench.
 

ziggityzola86

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 11, 2021
Messages
28
Completely understand where you're coming from about the opportunity cost of spending more. Your budget will get you a very very nice ring, so I would just try to stay within it unless you come across something that you both just absolutely love. Maybe prioritize what is important to your girlfriend and you? If you can get a 4ct with D-F and VVS2 or higher, awesome. If not and carat is the most important, you can relax the color to D-H if you both are not color sensitive (I am very color sensitive) and the clarity to eye clean VS. I would prioritize color over clarity as it's more visible. Could do faint florescence as well, but make sure it's not cloudy or hazy. If you get a step cut (emerald cut) it's very important to get high color and clarity as it showcases those features more. A halo and 3 stone will give your girlfriend more "finger coverage" so it will look bigger.

IMO, round brilliants look best when they are 3ct or smaller. Fancy cuts look best for larger carat rings. A cushion cut will definitely look smaller than an equivalent round though, due to how it's cut and how the weight is distributed.

I don't think I saw Brian Gavin mentioned in previous posts, but I would also check him out. He also specializes in super ideal precision cut diamonds!

Hello again!
Thank you as always for the plethora of knowledge you are willing to share with me. I learned last night that she gravitates towards, Asscher, Cushion, Radiant and Princess cuts. I had no idea but she simply doesn’t particularly like round cut diamonds, that was certainly a surprise to me but great to learn. Also I do not believe that I have heard of Brian Gavin but I will absolutely follow up on the reference and appreciate the recommendation of another greater artisan. As for my budget, after a talk with her, I essentially opened up the checkbook and told her to find what she would like, I think many on this forum rightly pointed out that perhaps I was approaching this in too rigid of a manner. To my surprise she stayed within or below my budget, and I linked several pieces in a post about that she liked. Overall I’d like to take the items she liked and possibly improve on them a bit to give her the best quality possible. Thank you again for all your guidance in this process. Jeremy
 

kah42

Rough_Rock
Joined
Aug 17, 2018
Messages
69
What a fun project! The others are infinitely more knowledgeable about diamonds than I, but I plan to follow along. That said, I wonder if she would like an Octavia? I've never seen one in person, but have drooled over the few I've seen on PS. Then again, I'm not sure about getting one in yellow.
 

Mrs_Strizzle

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 14, 2018
Messages
713
I haven't read all the posts, so forgive me if it's redundant. But I want to propose an opposing view.

I see many are suggesting an emerald cut because of the elegance of them and the fact that they are less "In your face" large and flashy. While I definitely agree with this, are you sure that's what she would want? A cushion cut with brilliant facets is very different than a step cut. While both are very beautiful, I honestly would say I would not ever chose a step cut if given the opportunity to choose, which I did have. I personally feel the need for my diamonds to sparkle and throw fire, so I chose an OEC. I wear my 3.63 ct OEC everyday. In scrubs at work, in my yoga pants at the grocery, and in my evening gowns. Yes, I have a travel ring for vacations, but I don't believe in not wearing my jewelry when it makes me so happy! Your lady may feel either way, and that's ok. But I wanted to put out there that myself along with many others don't feel like a 4 ct is too flashy and uncomfortable in every day life. I just think it would be a sin to search for a year, invest that amount of $, and not have exactly what she adores. That is the beauty of money. It can't buy everything. It can't buy happiness. But it sure as hell can buy her an amazing diamond that she will love!

Edited to say I just read that she narrowed it down to what exact cuts she likes. So happy for you. And p.s. I love fanccolored diamonds too! That will certainly be unique and stand out.
 
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ziggityzola86

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 11, 2021
Messages
28
I’ll address the elephant in the room.
It is a very nice feeling to own and wear a magnificent piece of jewellery.
21 years ago my dear husband bought me a very expensive engagement ring in relative terms. It is a ring I have worn, loved and enjoyed ever since. Every time I look down and see it I get a happy feeling, it’s just so beautiful and special.
Its not an “investment” as such but none of the shares or property etc we own gives me a “thrill” every day! So to me, this ring is one of our best “investments”. That said though there’s not much point in having a magnificent piece if she hardly wears it.
The engagement ring is probably the “most” important piece of jewellery in a woman’s jewellery wardrobe. It’s the piece of jewellery that everyone’s eyes tend to gravitate towards.
I would suggest, if money isn’t an issue, to let her choose what makes her heart sing but also allows her to wear it without worry. Either that or have a replica created using Moissanite for times and places she doesn’t feel comfortable wearing her magnificent ring.
Many of us have what we call “travel rings”. This is the set of rings we wear on holidays or places etc when it’s not practical to be taking jewellery worth tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars.
In terms of diamond prices, anything certified “fancy vivid” will attract a higher price. Even much much higher. To me anyway, labels aren’t what’s important, it what I like best that matters. I love the more pastel tones in coloured diamonds, that’s me.
so enjoy the process, it’s a fantastic journey.

Bron,
I appreciate your direct form of communication greatly. I think you hit the nail on the head and what you presented was a valid critique of my rigid way of thinking. I unquestionably get stuck in a financial mind frame, as the markets are open 24/5 and it can be hard to break free of that mindset, even in my personal life. At the end of the day, money is really easy to get but an amazing partner that works with me and my flaws isn’t. It takes courage to tell a stranger in earnest and good faith that they are looking at a situation the wrong way. You took that difficult step of saying the hard thing that many had hinted at but I clearly had not picked up on accurately. Thank you for your honest opinion and helping me understand that I needed to shift mindsets because as you said, this is beyond any financial investment i can make but an emotional one, that goes beyond just dollars and sense. Thank you for the candor, it was heard and appreciated, Jeremy
 

ziggityzola86

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 11, 2021
Messages
28
Since so many posters mentioned Victor Canera, below is the thread that consolidates most of his pieces. Some people have just gotten settings from him, and some people have purchased both diamonds and settings. Victor does cut super ideal cut modern round brilliant stones, and ideal cut old european rounds and antique cushions as well.


He posts on Instagram regularly.

Seems like you might be in CA. He's located in LA. At this point, he is mostly setting stones purchased from him. If you find a beautiful stone you love (not from Victor Canera) and want a stunning setting, I would consider Steven Kirsch in NYC.


Both Steven and Victor do hand forged platinum settings. Hand forged means they do not use cast molds. I personally do love knowing that someone worked my piece by hand.

I have worked with Victor, and he is lovely. Very easy to reach him. Just call.

And I find Steven absolutely wonderful too. I hope to have something from him at some point. And just call him. Super easy.

You can read about @yssie's experience with Erika Winters below.

Erika Winters also does stunning settings. She uses a mix of forging and hand casting, according to what she thinks works the best for the work and the piece.

@yssie has one of the most beautiful examples of Erika's work. And it doesn't hurt that her photography skills are off the charts.

Of course, these are the pricier of the artisans but given the stone you are considering and the quality of product to which your SO is accustomed, it probably would not be a sticking point.

And I definitely don't think that you are making a mistake by NOT going with a high end brand. I think the benefit of not going with a high brand is how much you are educating yourself by doing your own research, learning about the characteristics of diamonds and deciding for you and your SO what is most important to you. Knowing what is even out there is a big part of it. You don't know what you don't know, KWIM?

But enough about settings. What about THE ROCK? If you want to consider something more traditional and classic like a modern round brilliant...

I don't know if it's been mentioned, but something that a lot of people here like about certain vendors is their upgrade program. At first glance it may seem like that would not be relevant to you since you are making such a significant purchase the first time around. Maybe you never want to upgrade. BUT just in case you want to leave that option open for your SO, that at some point in the future, she may want to go up in size, color, clarity certain vendors have great upgrade policies. There are countless Pricescopers that have used this benefit, and for multiple upgrades. For these vendors, to upgrade, you just have to spend more than the original stone. There are some details to it, so ask when you speak to them. In no particular order:

1. Whiteflash - located in Houston. They cut super ideal modern round brilliants (MRB) and their patented cut A Cut Above (ACA) stones are stunning. They can also help you hunt down certain non ACA stones. They will procure it and do a full performance evaluation, light performance, videos, evaluate the inclusions to see if they compromise the stone, etc.

2. HPD - High Performance Diamonds. located in Idaho. They are a vendor for Crafted By Infinity, also cut super ideal MRBs. Stunning stones.

3. Victor Canera - Located in LA. Cuts super ideal MRBs, Antique Rounds, Antique Cushions. Out of all three, I prefer his settings. But the other two do very nice basic settings as well. However, you will likely need to buy a stone from Victor if you want his setting.

Their stock may be limited right now, given covid and supply chain issues. Call them each and talk to them, and get a feel of who they are and how they work.

Both Victor and HPD will do custom cut diamonds. If there is a certain spec you want, for example, 3 carat H VS1 Antique Round, Victor can acquire the rough and cut it to your specifications. There are threads where people have done exactly that with both Victor and HPD.

There are other vendors, and I will let other members share other vendors as they like and their experiences. I have had personal experience with all three vendors, and they are top notch in quality of product and level of service.

Good luck on the next steps. There is a lot out there. Good for you for doing your due diligence.

Wow! what a post, excuse my language but holy crap, what a ton of useful information and guidance. I absolutely will look into each artisan that you mentioned, as, I am willing to pay for the quality setting, I had even toyed with the idea of paying an artisan a large premium to sit down with me and assist me in making the setting for her. I don’t think most would even entertain the idea but before I started my consulting business I worked as an artisan in another trade so I am toying with the idea of how I can incorporate that idea into her ring. It likely sounds a bit over the top and cliche and maybe it is a bit to “me”-centric but I want to make this something extra special for her. Thank you so much for all your help and the amazing amount of information you provided. Jeremy
 

ziggityzola86

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 11, 2021
Messages
28
I can’t wait to see what you pick out! This is so exciting!

Thank you, I’m sure it will be a slow process as I tend to be a patient measured person but I will absolutely keep the forum updated on what we end up with as you all have been invaluably helpful in this process. I appreciate the kind words. Jeremy
 

ziggityzola86

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 11, 2021
Messages
28
You are welcome. Call David at Diamonds by Lauren. He is in New York City and his specialty is yellow diamonds and all colored diamonds. He also happens to love step cuts. Make sure that when you speak to him about doing a setting as well that you ask for his top Uber bench.

I took notes on this and will absolutely follow up with him. Thank you so much for the direction and immense amount of help on this project. I will be sure to keep you all updated as we move along and keep searching. Jeremy
 

lala646

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Nov 4, 2018
Messages
321
@ziggityzola86 After reading through the thread, here are a few antique/vintage rings from a few very reputable vendors I thought might be of interest. In addition to Christie's/Sotheby's, also keep an eye on Lang Antiques for incredible antique jewelry.







 

mystiletto

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 10, 2011
Messages
17
How exciting! I can’t wait to see what you choose. I’m also in nyc and started my search 3 months ago, but with a budget that’s half yours. Victor was patient and knowledgeable. If you decide on a halo setting, his work seems superb. Steven Kirsch was nice if you find a diamond elsewhere you want to have him set. I think they are terrific options if you know exactly what you want.

I would also recommend contacting Scott at Kwiat in nyc. I originally had my heart set on a HW ring but disliked their settings, and quickly realized I want a 3c ring (with ~ 50k budget). I care less about brand names than your gf (my fav bag is an Alexander Wang backpack) but prestige matters to me. Kwiat charges a slight premium over online retailers but far less than other brands, while still giving you a brand name status, and having a store on Madison Ave for service. I love their plain solitaire cushion setting. To me, it’s simple and exquisite. They have a generous exchange/upgrade policy (but online retailers with upgrade policies will have larger inventory). It’s a good option if she’s indecisive like me or her tastes may change. This also bridges the gap between brand name vs quality/size.

The asschers she picked are stunning! Have your gf visit more stores to try on rings. Seeing a ring on your finger is different. I originally wanted a square cushion but after months of searching realized I want an EC. But I’m prob more minimalistic in style than your gf. The sparkles in the cushion are distracting to me and frankly give me a headache. While all my family and friends prefer a cushion (bc it faces up larger, is shinier and looks “prettier”), I find myself drawn to a clean, sleek EC. I would have never realized that just by looking at stones online.
 

lovedogs

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 31, 2014
Messages
11,703
I'm so glad you were able to sit down with her and begin planning. So exciting! Note that the big asscher stones you linked dont show real photos so you would need to email the vendors to get IRL pics.

I think if she wants a fancy color then 100% contact diamonds by Lauren in NYC. He specializes in such stones and would be excited to help you.
 

Polabowla

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2019
Messages
1,457
Sounds like you guys had an honest conversation & you learned a lot!
@lovedogs very good point about the pictures online sometimes being stock photos & not the actual diamond.
 

lulu_ma

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 9, 2020
Messages
245
@ziggityzola86 Sounds like you have made good progress on your project!

Based on your SO's preferences, I found these rings. These are estate pieces but might be a good for inspo:




 
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lulu_ma

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 9, 2020
Messages
245
@ziggityzola86 a couple more stunning colorless rings


 
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foxinsox

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 18, 2015
Messages
3,359
Bit out of left field but the comment about liking the idea of having an artisan make her ring for her over a big brand, made me wonder whether you might consider having a custom cut asscher, or more excitingly, a custom cut Octavia which is like a super-perfect sparkly asscher?
Yoram cuts these and I’ve seen some astonishing coloured diamonds he’s cut working with argyle rough etc.
His website is https://gemconcepts.net/ and this is an example of some of his yellow diamond cutting on Instagram.
He posts here under diagem but won’t be able to speak too much to what’s possible due to forum rules on trade members posting but it could be a way to get an truly unique ring for your future fiancée. He is also very skilled at cutting both for light return and for colour which is not very common with coloured diamonds so you get both fantastic light play and beautiful colours.
 

MsShnooks

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 11, 2020
Messages
168
@foxinsox, that sounds so cool and unique!
Probably not much Argyle rough knocking about as I think the mine has run out and just shut (?)
 

foxinsox

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 18, 2015
Messages
3,359
@foxinsox, that sounds so cool and unique!
Probably not much Argyle rough knocking about as I think the mine has run out and just shut (?)
He’s got other coloured rough, I just particularly remembered a sequence of shots he had posted of some exploratory cutting on (I think) orangey Argyle rough as he was commenting about the different texture (if that’s the right word) of the different sourced diamonds. I’d never realised that they were so different!
I think the IG link I posted was of some small Zimbabwean yellow asschers
 

MsShnooks

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 11, 2020
Messages
168
He’s got other coloured rough, I just particularly remembered a sequence of shots he had posted of some exploratory cutting on (I think) orangey Argyle rough as he was commenting about the different texture (if that’s the right word) of the different sourced diamonds. I’d never realised that they were so different!
I think the IG link I posted was of some small Zimbabwean yellow asschers

Out of the rings I’ve seen in person, the pink Argyles at Boodles always make my eyes pop. :kiss2:

Sounds like there’s a great selection of people/shops in NYC for fancy colours.
 
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MRBXXXFVVS1

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Dec 5, 2019
Messages
893
Another jeweler to consider is Lorraine Schwartz. A lot of A list celebrities have engagement rings from her. One thought in terms of colored diamonds is that other than yellow, a larger carat, high color and clarity will likely be in the seven figures. Depending on the specific colored diamond, it can be "investment grade" and hold its value better than colorless diamonds and may even appreciate. It's a lot of money, but it will definitely stand out from her Birkin bags. You could get her a blingy eternity band as her "everyday ring" as it sounds like it would fit her style and reduce security risk. Lastly, depending on the jeweler you can likely get a discount if you do a wire transfer instead of paying by card.
 

NicoleNeedsHelp

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Aug 20, 2020
Messages
359
Can’t wait to see what you guys choose. What an exciting time! I highly recommend that you contact victor canera to see what he can do, especially if you go with a halo. I think his halos are wonderful. Halos seem easy, but it truth they are super complicated. All of VC’s stuff is hand made and often, by Victor himself. I bought a stone from him and I love it. However, from my experience, you can’t go wrong with any PS vendor— they all seem to know their stuff. I am totally biased because I just got a ring by Victor, but I just think the quality of his work is superb. He can get you stones not on his website. Maybe speak to a few jewelers and see who you connect with. Good luck!
 
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