Find your diamond
Find your jewelry
shape
carat
color
clarity

How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles :)

Theo179

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 12, 2013
Messages
3
Hello PriceScope!

Spent months lurking around these forums and learned a ton to protect myself on the perilous quest most of us take when diamond hunting. Figured now that it is all over, I would post my story in hopes that some other confused and overwhelmed bloke just starting out can learn a few things and save some time and frustration.

Thanks to all of you for your posts and honesty. Couldn't have succeeded without you guys!

- Mike

---------------------

After I was certain I wanted to spend the rest of my life with the woman of my dreams, I started looking for rings. Over the course of our relationship, I managed to get the basics out of her in terms of what she was wanted in an engagement ring. We even went to a few mall jewelry shops and pretended to shop, just so I can get a sense of what she liked. I thought I had done everything I was supposed to and so I started legit shopping at all kinds of jewelry stores looking for the ring that would make her happiest, but within my budget. It turns out, that I had failed to do the one thing every single man must absolutely do before shopping for a diamond engagement ring... educate yourself on diamonds and I mean beyond the 4 Cs by visiting PriceScope.

This became clear after two months of shopping at almost every single jewelry store within a 25 mile radius. That's when I realized that there are essentially two types of brick and mortar jewelers. The honest ones, who have what you want and will negotiate as best as they can, but once they hit rock bottom they say sorry and shake your hand. Then there are the dishonest ones who from the moment you walk into their den of thieves, are analyzing everything about you as they try to figure out what from their bag of lies and tricks they can use to sell you something not even remotely worth the amount you are paying. During those two months, I came across way more dishonest ones than honest ones, even buying a ring only to find out I had been taken. You can bet, the next day the jeweler was shocked to find me waiting for him outside his store to demand my money back.

I was dejected, frustrated and time was running out for our planned dream proposal. That's when I sat down in front of my computer and spent a week on PriceScope in order to learn everything I could about diamonds and rings. I learned three very important things during that week:

1) Which of the 4 Cs I was willing to compromise on and where on the scales my bottoms were in order to make her happy but not break the bank.

2) What the ideal diamond dimensions are and how without a certificate from the GIA or AGS (don't buy IGI seemed the consensus) that states said dimensions, you will never know what you really have (GIA triple X doesn't mean everything after all; you need to know the dimensions above all else). In addition to that use the Holloway Cut Advisor as it is intended, do not abuse it. In other words read the instructions carefully and search the forums for credible posts on how and when to use the HCA.

3) Online is always the best bang for your buck.

The problem was which online vendor do you go with since there are several. I decided that WF and Blue Nile would be my vendors of choice based on BBB rating/report, online reviews, advice on PriceScope, and brand name recognition. I called both and gave them a list of what I was looking for, but WhiteFlash got my business in the end and here's why:

1) Liza, my sales rep and GIA trained expert, wasn't pushy or trying to make a sale as much as she was willing to educate and guide my choices along the way. By this point, I had accumulated more information about diamonds than a layperson really needs to know, so I was fairly certain I could smell most BS a mile away. But that was never the case with Liza. I felt as if throughout the many calls and emails, I was always in control. When I asked for her opinion, she gave it truthfully and willingly and in those few decision points where I overruled her opinion, it was definitive and we continued to move forward in our search for the best diamond within my price range.

We spent hours comparing diamonds both in WF's inventory and out, starting with a selection of 11 that I had pre-selected and whittling down to two. I started talking to Liza thinking I knew pretty much everything there was about diamonds, but I ended up learning a whole lot from her. Things I didn't think were a big deal, turned out to be quite so and we eliminated some pretty expensive diamonds all because they were not "worth it." In the same rite, things I thought were a big deal (such as a microscopic feather here or a pin there) turned out not to be big deals at all which allowed us to keep some choices that were priced very well and gorgeous, but I was ready to throw away due to misinformation.

Truly, thanks to Liza's patience, guidance and very easy going and friendly demeanour, we made the decision to bring in the diamond of choice and have it lab tested. The tests all came back very positive, well within acceptable standards and the diamond I fancied was surprisingly well priced compared to worth. After working with my girlfriend's mom and sister, we managed to choose the setting and matching wedding ring before I submitted payment. It took about a month of calls, emails, and a lot of patience and education on Liza's part before we settled my order, but it was all worth it as far as I was concerned. She made what I expected to be a very difficult process so very easy, knowing I had a trustworthy person on the other end of the phone.

2) Becca, Magen, Mike and the rest of the WF team are the second reason why I was successful in my hunt. After Liza put in the order, she passed me to the very capable hands of her support team. Magen kept me in touch as every step of the design, build and shipment of rings unfolded; answering all my questions and being sure we were still on track to hit my target proposal date. Becca took some of the most amazing professional pictures of the ring that I have ever seen. In all my months of looking at pictures of rings and diamonds, I have never been as shocked as I was when I saw the pictures that Becca took of the rings. They were so beautiful and impressive that after the proposal, I showed them to my fiancé and she could not believe those were her rings and not some promotional photographs taken by the manufacturer. We ended up asking Becca for any others she may have had and my fiancé sent them to her girlfriend's and family abroad that were dying to see the ring. And Mike made sure everything got to me as quickly and as securely as possible. Unwrapping that package in my car to finally see the most beautiful set of rings that I had yet seen was a really awesome moment for me. As amazing as those pictures were, they just did not live up to the fire, brilliance, scintillation and unique elegance/beauty of those rings.

3) The Whiteflash approach to customer service was the last reason why both my fiancé and I ended up being so happy and appreciative of how things worked out. My take on the company is that they are more about making you happy and growing their business through positive customer experiences than making as much money as possible. Most honest online vendors have (comparatively) very low margins on diamonds. If you are lucky enough to know someone who buys diamonds wholesale, you can have them look up the diamond you are interested in by the cert number. What you will usually find is that trustworthy online vendors like WF are buying these diamonds at good prices, but only marking up a few points before they turn around and sell them to us compared to their brick and mortar competitors who have far more overhead to deal with in terms of rent, sales commission and the like. That is why you can't beat their prices anywhere else. But that's is NOT good enough in the diamond world, because you need to know if a diamond is worth it or not and the only way to do that is to educate yourself. Create a PriceScope account today and get started learning is my advice to everyone, but if you still want someone to hold your hand, than call WF as well, because education is where they shine.

Throughout my transaction, I felt as if Liza was more concerned about getting across the God honest truth about the 4Cs and diamonds and letting me make up my own mind. If you educate yourself using WF's or PriceScope's great resources, you should be able to figure out generally what you want. Then when you call and get paired up with a WF GIA trained expert, they will listen to what you are looking for, what you deem acceptable in terms of color, clarity, carat, cut and of course cost constraints before helping you find diamonds that fall within your parameters. I'm sure they can even help you figure out what you want if you don't even know where to start, but my advice is educate yourself first. It makes the whole process a lot easier.

At the end of the day I walked away with a beautiful pair of rings that made my gorgeous fiancé so incredibly happy and fall even more in love with me (apparently this is normal, talk to any guy that has pulled off a successful proposal with a solid ring ;-). I also walked away not having spent more than I budgeted and convinced that I got more than my money's worth, knowing what I learned about diamonds. After the initial experiences I had diamond shopping I know that had Whiteflash not been there for me, my chances of ending up with the joy, confidence and amazing final products that I walked away with would have been severely diminished.

Thanks to Liza, Magen, Becca, Mike and the rest of the Whiteflash team and just as important, EVERYONE on the PriceScope forums, I am more than happy and so is the woman of my dreams!

ring_114.jpg

ring_115.jpg

ring_116.jpg
 

LittleBigBling

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 21, 2012
Messages
36
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Wow...great job, and a wonderful finished product to show off all your hard work. Congrats!
 

MissGotRocks

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 23, 2005
Messages
11,664
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Your rings are beautiful and your educational experience should be pinned to the top of PS! First rate reporting and beautiful finished product. So glad she is happy with your choice as well!

Now, to finish your PS educational process, you need to share stats on the stone and we'll need handshots of at least the engagement ring on the bride to be! :appl:
 

Theo179

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 12, 2013
Messages
3
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Thank you for your kindness, Little and Miss! You guys represent the general supportive feel of this community :)

Attached are the reports you asked for. I don't have a shot of the ring on her finger, but I'll see what I can do.

For newbies that are curious, the attachments are the Ideal Scope, ASET and Hearts & Arrows respectively. Each have their strengths and weaknesses and each tells you a little something different about your diamond. There is a wealth of information in these forums about all the imaging tests so do yourself a favor and look them up. You will only gain more knowledge and even more power.

Finally, the table is called a SARIN report. You can never trust the GIA angles reported on the cert 100% so you ask to run a SARIN report and that gives you more accurate (though still not with 100% accuracy) angles. If you want perfection, make sure you have the cash. If you just want eye-clean, decent size and lots of sparkles and light return, know what to compromise on and what to be a little more critical of. It's all locked in these forums, I promise you.

I hope this helps someone out there...

diamond_tests_wf.png
 

MizNina

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Apr 20, 2010
Messages
284
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Awesome honest report of your journey! I loved reading every word and am thrilled your bride to be is so happy :appl:

Oh and it's a pretty spectacular set of rings too :sun:
 

Andelain

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 10, 2010
Messages
3,525
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Wow, very nice! Love that design. Please tell us about the stone you picked. I can tell it's not an ACA, but it's a beauty. Around 85 points? You done good, real good! Many happy years for both of you!

BTW, that's a really great review, I hope a lot of would-be diamond buyers get to read it.


P. S. I hope you know, we'll be needing hand pics! :appl: :naughty: :tongue:
 

mrs-b

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 18, 2013
Messages
6,146
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Andelain|1388317006|3582397 said:
Wow, very nice! Love that design. Please tell us about the stone you picked. I can tell it's not an ACA, but it's a beauty. Around 85 points? You done good, real good! Many happy years for both of you!

BTW, that's a really great review, I hope a lot of would-be diamond buyers get to read it.


P. S. I hope you know, we'll be needing hand pics! :appl: :naughty: :tongue:
Andelain - I'm lost. How can you tell this is not an ACA? What am I missing? This looks like a bang on H&A to me so I'm missing something.
 

periwinklegirl

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 8, 2010
Messages
1,007
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Stunning set! Great job Theo! I'm not surprised that she loves you even more since you gave her the rings!
I suspect that will continue to grow.
 

kalomeli

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 25, 2012
Messages
460
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Lovely rings! :appl: :appl: Hand shots, please!!
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
55,106
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

mrs-blop|1388320272|3582411 said:
Andelain|1388317006|3582397 said:
Wow, very nice! Love that design. Please tell us about the stone you picked. I can tell it's not an ACA, but it's a beauty. Around 85 points? You done good, real good! Many happy years for both of you!

BTW, that's a really great review, I hope a lot of would-be diamond buyers get to read it.


P. S. I hope you know, we'll be needing hand pics! :appl: :naughty: :tongue:
Andelain - I'm lost. How can you tell this is not an ACA? What am I missing? This looks like a bang on H&A to me so I'm missing something.
ACA's are AGS graded and this one is GIA, so he bought a stone from the virtual inventory that they called in apparently. I believe he got a H&A stone, though! :))

Gorgeous rings and outstanding job on the diamond buying process! :)) Thankfully, you found the info you needed before making a big mistake! :appl:
 

Andelain

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 10, 2010
Messages
3,525
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

mrs-blop|1388320272|3582411 said:
Andelain|1388317006|3582397 said:
Wow, very nice! Love that design. Please tell us about the stone you picked. I can tell it's not an ACA, but it's a beauty. Around 85 points? You done good, real good! Many happy years for both of you!

BTW, that's a really great review, I hope a lot of would-be diamond buyers get to read it.


P. S. I hope you know, we'll be needing hand pics! :appl: :naughty: :tongue:
Andelain - I'm lost. How can you tell this is not an ACA? What am I missing? This looks like a bang on H&A to me so I'm missing something.
This is a great looking stone. ACA's just have a slightly different look that I can recognize, because I've seen a lot of them.



DS, good eye. I didn't even see the part where it was graded by GIA. :oops:
 

Tekate

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
May 11, 2013
Messages
5,711
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Pricescope people are very VERY helpful.. there is so much knowledge from consumers and professionals.. it's a wonderful story, many best wishes for a long, happy, peaceful life... it's a glowing report about WF jewelry store/vendor.. many people have wonderful things to say about all the vendors here.. I would pick any of them to start my adventure...your rings are stunning.. she is one happy woman and her boyfriend is one smart guy! congrats.

:appl: :wavey: :wavey:
 

AprilBaby

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 17, 2008
Messages
10,261
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Congratulations!!! You did your homework and you got a superior product! That will do you well over the next 50 years of married life :naughty:

Lovely set!
 

LLJsmom

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 24, 2012
Messages
9,192
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Congratulations and great job!! I am so happy that your hard work paid off, and that your fiance is "more" in love with you than ever. :lol: Your rings are truly beautiful...
 

Theo179

Rough_Rock
Joined
Oct 12, 2013
Messages
3
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Thanks to all of you, your kindness and replies are truly warming to the heart. It really is a beautiful set, but not nearly as beautiful as its wearer. That said, there is one final, very important and unfortunately, long-winded thing I feel I must say so apologies in advance.

Though I consider myself a hard worker, I am not a man of means by any stretch of the definition. Before this, the most expensive piece of jewelry I gave her was barely a couple hundred bucks. She does very well for herself without any help from anyone and has quite a few pieces in her collection that I suppose would fetch a very pretty penny if sold. Yet, she regularly chooses to wear the jewelry I gift her because “they mean more to her than the others” she says. After we seriously started considering marriage together, she once told me that the rings I give her would be the only engagement and wedding bands she would ever wear, which is a very beautiful and rare thing when you consider the meaning behind it. I guess those many of us lucky enough to come across partners that are that loving, kind, mature, down-to-earth, intelligent and gorgeous (inside and out) and are older/wiser enough to realize what they have, will trip head over heels to keep that warm smile on their partner’s face for all eternity. Thinking about all of this has reminded me of a lesson I learned on these forums far greater than anything gleaned about diamonds and if you bear with me, I’d like to share it with those who care to listen.

I’d like to start off by saying that the following does not pertain to any professional, para-professional, or any seasoned consumer with a discerning eye, so please don’t waste your time. What I have to say is addressed specifically to the average working stiff who has been blessed with the gift of an eternal loving partner that they would spend all night and all day working to bring the moon, all the stars and the sun and lay them at their partner’s feet if they could.

I was in your shoes not that long ago, when I first started reading the forums here on PS. At first you are very excited to find such a warm, supportive and knowledgeable community that is ready to help you along your own daunting and overwhelming rite of passage towards marriage. You are hopeful at first, but maybe you start losing that hope. Maybe you come across those myriads of threads where someone is second guessing their e-ring or literally, stuck between a rock and a hard place trying to decide between to gorgeous stones outside of their budget. All because the only thing they want to do is make the love of their life happy. Maybe you start getting a little insecure, envious or dejected like I did, knowing that you too want to do right by your loved one, but you just don’t have the budget you think you need to do it.

To you, average Joe, I’d like to say…. stop. Stop what you are [over]thinking, stop what you are feeling, stop worrying, stop exactly where you are and listen. First off, you don’t know who is on the other side of that thread. Maybe it’s a professional conducting business and looking for opinions, maybe it’s just an eagled eye bride-to-be that has certain expectations, or maybe it’s just another poor guy like you and me, caught in the hype of it all. The fact of the matter is, it doesn’t really matter who is on the other side. When I read the replies to those threads a bit more closely, I noticed something very beautiful. The vast majority of posters would give their opinion of course, but they wouldn’t end their post without first re-enforcing that 1) if true, the ring/diamond was gorgeous as is, especially if it was already a done deal (which was frequently the case) 2) it was just their opinion, biased towards their unique tastes 3) remind the person to not stress out and go with what makes them/their partner truly happy and many times I suspect, they weren’t even talking about the ring. It’s those replies that made me realize the single most important thing I took away from this whole experience.

It. Is. Just. A. Diamond.
I know, I know…. I am going to get crucified by some people here, but I feel like this has to be said specifically to the demographic targeted. Yes, educate and protect yourself by becoming an active member here. Yes, set a budget where you are spending as much as you possibly can, comfortably and with no regret. Yes, find a reputable and well-reviewed partner/retailer that has BOTH your best interests at heart. But do not stress yourself out over any of this. Believe it or not, this is supposed to be a fun and exciting part of your journey. After all, you are getting ready to ask the apple of your eye, the beat of your heart, the essence of your soul to spend the rest of your God given lives together. At the end, if she really is the one, she will find happiness and joy not necessarily in what you put on her finger, but what you place in her heart.

A lot of people think a diamond embodies love. IMHO, a diamond doesn’t embody anything by the strict definition of the term. Well, other than light, but even then the best diamonds do not contain light. Rather, they reflect that light back towards you, her and the rest of the world, just like the beautiful relationship the two of you have together. Diamonds are simply symbols, in my book, but they do have a lot in common with the one thing more durable, more beautiful, more eternal than the best diamonds in the world… love. Warning, I am about to get pretty sappy here so, skip on to the end if you are not into this kind of stuff.

Love is like a diamond rough. At first there is a lot of excitement over the potential of what form this rough could take, but it’s still not worth a whole lot. Together, you each chip away at all the angles using the intense heat of passion, sharp experiences and the emotions they bring and whatever else life throws your way. Over time, a diamond takes shape, but just like diamond cutting, love isn’t easy. There is a science behind it; there exists a set of best practices known to all those that are humble and open-minded enough to learn. Then there are the special and unique things that each of you picks up throughout the relationship that you do for the other in order to give that beauty of a diamond an identity of its own.

Yet there exists the one thing that scares so many of us newbie diamond hunters off… inclusions... most are natural, some are man-made. You try to cut around as many of the inclusions as you can, but sometimes you can’t change all that much about you, she can’t change that much about her and you certainly can’t change each other. It is therefore inevitable, that some imperfections will remain encased in your love forever, but as long as they aren’t structurally compromising to your relationship, and you learn to identify and accept them from what they are, it actually becomes a very beautiful thing; a fingerprint of your love or diamond that makes it special and unique, incomparable to any other diamond in the world. You see, we each bring our own set of imperfect inclusions incased in the love we create. Some are not eye-clean and obvious to the outside world. Others are only known by us and those we trust most enough to get close and advise us. But like many of us learned here on Price Scope, a diamond doesn’t have to be absolutely flawless or colorless to be beautiful. Neither does it have to take a specific shape to be pleasing to the eye.

The one thing that a diamond must be in order to be beautiful is cut excellently, not even precisely to spec, just well enough to have symmetry, balance, and equilibrium. It just so happens, that cut is the only feature of a diamond that is controlled by man. It takes a lot of hard work, patience, practice and dedication to cut a diamond just right and give it that perfect balance of brilliance, scintillation and fire that we have all come to admire. Is it not so with love as well? Love comes in all shapes, all colors, with all kinds of seen an unseen imperfections. Yet, that does not define true and beautiful love. Like diamonds, what defines love is the amount of time and work we put into our relationships to balance them just right in order to make them that much more brilliant/warm, add that much fire/desire, and work the bellows of scintillation/titillation that makes our love that much more beautiful, not only to us but to all those who are caught in the radiance and reflection of the light emanating from our love.

So you have come here looking for guidance to find her the perfect ring that will make her realize how much she loves you, right? Well friend, if she doesn’t already realize how much she loves you, even a 10 carat, D, flawless crown jewel will not lead her to that recognition. No, you are here, because you have spent months/years perfecting the love that you both share and just like she puts your happiness, your needs, your wants ahead of hers, you are here to do the same in finding the SYMBOL of love that is as unique as your relationship. After all, no two diamonds are alike thanks to all those defining characteristics in the same way that no two relationships are alike.

So, at the end of it all, don’t lose heart or second guess yourself or overthink your choices when you come across such moments of weakness on your journey here. Don’t lose sight of your goal, which is not necessarily the biggest, brightest, clearest, most flawless diamond of all, but to simply find the most affordable symbol of your relationship that will open the door to a life filled with many years of joy, happiness and above all… love.

Thanking you all for the light that you have shown me during my time here and may the love that chose you out sparkle, outshine and outlast the very diamond you chose :love:
 

LLJsmom

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 24, 2012
Messages
9,192
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Theo179|1388352188|3582643 said:
Thanking you all for the light that you have shown me during my time here and may the love that chose you out sparkle, outshine and outlast the very diamond you chose :love:
Thank you Theo for sharing your thoughts and a lovely reminder. May you and your fiance have a wonderful life together.
 

MissGotRocks

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 23, 2005
Messages
11,664
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Theo, you are an exceptional person to have such insight! Please print and save this - you might need to use it one day to help counsel and guide your children. Not just the diamond part but the oh so true parts about a relationship and about love. The diamond is just a symbol and your generation is so fortunate to have the internet and educational resources regarding them that my generation was so lacking. It makes it possible for you to learn and choose a very well cut stone from the beginning. Had I had that, I might never have felt the urge to upgrade either. There are plenty of other beautiful pieces of diamond jewelry to bestow upon your bride as the years go by - how special that she always wants to wear her first and only set of rings.

I wish you both all things good - a long, healthy and happy life together. Thanks for gracing us!
 

tyty333

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Dec 17, 2008
Messages
21,044
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Congratulations! Its a beautiful set!!!
 

Polished

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 28, 2012
Messages
1,039
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

I think you captured the spirit of an engagement ring beautifully in your post Theo. Thanks for sharing. Also the diamond needs to be worked on (just like a marriage) - cleaned, maintained in order to keep it at it's sparkling best. There's a sense of on-going care that increases the enjoyment of it over time, rather than simply the thrill of the new. All the best to you.
 

Scarlett1

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 9, 2013
Messages
591
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Fabulous set. Congratulations :appl:
 

Laila619

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 28, 2008
Messages
11,538
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Beautiful set!! So sparkly!
 

Dandi

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 9, 2006
Messages
5,130
Re: How Whiteflash and PriceScope Are the Reason She Smiles

Absolutely exquisite set, and thank you for sharing your wonderful story and experience. Congratulations to you and your fiancée!
 
Be a part of the community It's free, join today!

Need Something Special?

Get a quote from multiple trusted and vetted jewelers.

Holloway Cut Advisor



Diamond Eye Candy

Click to view full-size image.
Top