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How small is small?

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TigerWoods

Rough_Rock
Joined
Feb 8, 2003
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26
Looking for an engagement ring. But here is a question that I can''t seem to find an answer on:

How small is small?

When the average woman looks at another woman''s engagement ring, at what point (in carats), does the AVERAGE woman smile but really think to herself (it''s kinda small).

When I say Average woman, I don''t mean a snobby, wealthy woman or a mullet haired trailer-park woman. You know...average. Uh....like those girls in the show "Friends". They don''t know much about diamonds but have a good sense of style.

In your opinion, does a .5 ct rock look small to the average person?
 

Richard Sherwood

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Sep 25, 2002
Messages
4,924
-----------
When I say Average woman, I don't mean a snobby, wealthy woman or a
mullet haired trailer-park woman. You know...average. Uh....like
those girls in the show "Friends". They don't know much about
diamonds but have a good sense of style.
-----------

Heh heh heh...

You're pretty safe with a 3/4 carat and up. Half carat.....maybe. Just depends on which trailer park you're in.

For a long time the average size diamond purchased for an engagement ring was a 1/3rd carat. I'm not sure if that still holds. I might have heard that it's gone up to a 1/2 carat, but my memory's not as good as it used to be.

Anybody got any info on that?

Let's ask Mara. She'll know. If she doesn't, her brother Tim will.
 

Hest88

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 22, 2003
Messages
4,357
I agree with Richard, though it is hard to put a firm number on it. .5 and under might be considered small, and .75 and above is probably safe.
 

jetcaptain

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 3, 2002
Messages
72
----------------
On 2/8/2003 6:11
2 PM barney sumner wrote:

Looking for an engagement ring. But here is a question that I can't seem to find an answer on:

How small is small?

When the average woman looks at another woman's engagement ring, at what point (in carats), does the AVERAGE woman smile but really think to herself (it's kinda small).

When I say Average woman, I don't mean a snobby, wealthy woman or a mullet haired trailer-park woman. You know...average. Uh....like those girls in the show "Friends". They don't know much about diamonds but have a good sense of style.

In your opinion, does a .5 ct rock look small to the average person?
----------------
I think the overall "look" of a diamond on a woman's hand depends on several factors besides carat weight. One is the length and width of her fingers. Another is the setting it is placed into. The shape of the diamond matters too (i.e. marquise vs. princess), as does the quality of the cut. And of course, there's always the inevitable comparison of her diamond with those of her engaged/married friends, which may be the most significant indicator of "how small is small." In my opinion, your question doesn't have a definitive answer, since there are other considerations. The approach that seems to be favored here on Rocky Talk is to establish a reasonable budget for your engagement ring (diamond plus setting), and then to work together as a team (either before or after you pop the question)to maximize the overall look of the ring so that you both are happy.
 

The Grudge

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 31, 2003
Messages
13
I would say that "small" is relative to the area you are from and what her friends have for a diamond size. If her friends are wearing 2 carats and you buy her a .5, it will look very small to her. Of course, if its the best you can do then she should love it anyway. Feel her out to see what her expectations are and balance that with your budget.
 

Girls-best-friend

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 21, 2003
Messages
136
I don't consider myself a snob or trailer park. I do say anything under 1 carat is small. The only opinion that matters though is your girlfriends.
 

Idiam

Rough_Rock
Joined
Feb 5, 2003
Messages
3
Barney:

My wife and I were married 10 years before she had her first diamond. We are now at 23 years. Our $$$$ priorities were elswhere at the time
. She understands your $$$$ situation and there's nothing worse than starting out on the wrong track $$$$-wise by trying to be the biggest (you won't be).

I think a 0.5-0.6 C well cut, clean, g-h will out perform most of the low end 0.7-1.0 C's out there. Go a little "top heavy" it will look larger, she'll be proud and she'll feel good about your judgment.

Asking here is a good start!! Besides, if you start out at the moon it will be tough to beat later. It will be fun going for that big one when you have your feet on the ground.

Good Luck!!!
 

Lugus

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 17, 2003
Messages
213
It really depends on where you live and what your social circle is. My friends who are getting married have all given their fiances stones under a carat (about 1/2 - 3/4). My girlfriend swears that some of the teachers are her school all have at least a carat and a half (what an odd thing for her to say
).

In California where I live, I would guess people might have larger stones than the average (guess I have cheap friends
). I thought that 1 carat stones looked small - acceptable, but small. Of course I did settle on a 1.73 so maybe I'm not the guy to talk to if you're looking for a reason to buy the minimum size that won't seem too small.

And am I the only one here that thinks you should find out what size your girlfriend wants and go from there? If she wants a .5 ct stone does it really matter if most people think it's too small? And if she wants a 1 ct do you think she's gonna care if JoeBob on the forums said a .75 ct stone was a decent size?
 

futures

Rough_Rock
Joined
Feb 3, 2003
Messages
16
----------------
On 2/8/2003 6:11
2 PM barney sumner wrote:

opinion, does a .5 ct rock look small to the average person?
----------------
Barney, based on my TWO WEEKS worth of diamond knowledge. If you're looking to maximize your money/value.. I would suggest to get a well cut Hearts and Arrows, AGS0, .75 - .99 carat. You'll find the cost per carat is significantly less for diamonds just under 1 carat.

Cut: Round, Ideal, AGS0, Hearts and Arrows (for a nice brilliant shine)
Carat: .75 to .99
Colour: G or H
Clarity: VS2 or a good SI1

You could get your diamond cut so that the top is spread out more, but you wont have the same brilliance of a ideally cut diamond.
 

optimized

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 28, 2002
Messages
306
Well, I did some research (someone give Richard a pat on the back for calling it) and found a few references to "average" engagement diamond sizes, but no consensus among the sources, and no overriding figure from any truly authoritative source. What I can say though is that of the half-dozen or so credible-looking sources I found, the general range mentioned for "average" size falls between .50 and .75 carat. I presume these figures are raw averages, and so would be affected greatly by specific demographic considerations (as noted by Grudge).

on The Diamond Registry site that details the pricing statistics of diamond engagement rings as reported in the DeBeers "red book" (as of 1999). This article quotes the average diamond engagement ring at a $2,000 retail price, up from $1,804 in 1997, but may seem rather skewed to Pricescope readers as the figures likely include mass-merchant sales by the likes of JC Penney and Sears. The Diamond Registry itself notes their experience indicates a $5,000 - $6,000 average, which is probably more in line with Pricescope averages (at least among the folks who populate the forums). It would be interesting to hear from Leonid about what the most common search parameters are in the price engine (for size and price), if it's possible to extract that information.

Now, my personal opinion would jibe nicely with Richard's opinion in that a 3/4 carat diamond is probably "safe" under many circumstances, but may need to be adjusted based on socioeconomic factors of the couple and their peers. I'll leave the "trailer park" comment alone except to say that I firmly believe my sweetie would have been happy with a .50 carat stone despite the fact that she grew up in the relatively affluent town of Cherry Hill, NJ (and lives now in an adjacent town), which is a place filthy with huge honkers of diamonds. Some people just don't put the same priority on compressed carbon, regardless of their background.

Btw, Mara: Richard says we're related. I'm personally offended that you've failed to send me so much as a lousy birthday card these last 30+ years!


-Tim
[/u]
 

Giangi

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 23, 2003
Messages
2,530
I live in Italy, and here anything over 0.40 is pretty big and many stones are just 0.10 - 0.20 ct--yes, you've read right
! 1 ct is quite unusual and many stores do not even have one in stock!!!!!!!
Based on what I've seen in the US, I would say that with a 0.75 you should be pretty safe... After all, small or big, a diamond is always a diamond
!!!

Giangi
 

Mara

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Oct 30, 2002
Messages
31,003
Rich...size is not important! Haven't you ever heard that?


Well I'm chiming in a little late...but here I go. It is a relative question and it definitely depends on these three variables in my opinion: size of your girl's hands, her social circle and her mentality. If she is a small girl, with a size 4 finger, getting her a 1.5 or 2c rock may make her feel uncomfortable. My coworker is really small, her finger is about a 4, her stone is a .80c solitaire and it looks like a 1c on her little finger. So extra bang for the buck. If her friends are mostly married or engaged, what size stones are they wearing? If you are taking into consideration what will make her feel like it's a great size and/or more than she expected, that is a good indication of what she may be thinking of. If her friends all have under 1c size...maybe you want to get a 3/4c to keep inline, or really knock her socks off with a 1c. Also, her mentality comes into play as sometimes women do not like large stones or jewels. Does she wear jewelry..does she have diamond earrings? Does she wish they were larger or smaller? Does she go for large boxy aquamarine or trendy large rings? Or smaller?

Larger...smaller...it's very objective. Having said all of that, I have read in a few various places that 1c stones are the 'average' right about now even though I know Tim had some Underwiters Laboratories tested scientific experiment findings posted up above that said 3/4c is more popular.
Also many stores stock more 1c stones than any other size as that seems to somehow be the 'magic' number. Even just looking at Rhino's site, he has an overabundance of around 1c stones in all shapes and sizes. We just had a forum member a few days ago who really wanted to make that 1c marker, regardless of details. That is not unusual. I even had that mentality while looking...we found some HOF stones that were .85c that were in our budget, the 1c was a little pricey...and I just couldn't really get over the fact that...awwww it's under 1c! We ended up with a 1.23c stone that looks like a 1.35c so I'm pretty happy as 1c was the hopeful mental marker in my mind. Somehow that 'I just want...' number seems to rise the more you think about it, hee hee.

Bottom line...take into consideration what you know about your girl and her tastes, friends, fashion, etc (if that stuff is important to her). I bet you probably already have an idea of what stone would be the right size for her...it really is your decision, too large or too small is a personal preference, but I also want to say that I'm pretty sure she won't be disappointed by what you choose, as long as it comes from the heart (and checks out at the independent appraiser..haahaa!!).
Good luck!

BTW Tim...I've always wanted an older brother! But if we are indeed related, you owe *me* 28 years of presents!
I'll send your cards when I get the presents....and of course you know....diamonds are always welcome...
HA HA.
 

Lugus

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 17, 2003
Messages
213
wanted to pass this advice along as well. We've all assumed you wanted a round cut stone. A marquis (wrong spelling, don't care
) will look much bigger than a round cut stone of the same carat weight.
 
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