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Leon, Steven Kirsch or Victor Canera for halo setting?

Discussion in 'RockyTalky' started by t86, Jan 25, 2012.

  1. t86
    Rough_Rock

    Messages:
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    Jan 22, 2012
    by t86 » Jan 25, 2012
    I’ve been lurking for about 2 months on this site and have met with a number of jewelers (ERD, Good Old Gold) to find the perfect antique cushion. Perry Chen found me a beautiful one that fits all the criteria and was right in my budget. Now it’s onto settings, and I’m very torn as to what to do.

    Since Perry sourced my cushion, it makes a lot of sense to get it set by Leon. However, I have a few concerns about that route:

    1. Timeframe: Leon needs 4-6 weeks, and I know the boyfriend wants to propose in early March for personal reasons. Since I haven’t nailed down every detail of the setting yet, I don’t know if we can get it done fast enough. I believe Victor Canera has a faster turnaround time.

    2. Price: My guess from reading various posts is that Leon will be a bit more expensive than Victor, although probably the same price as Steven Kirsch.

    3. Miscellaneous: I think I may want to "tweak" my setting details and may be a bit indecisive. Generally, I want the classic halo (Adriana, I think it’s called), but as far as melee size and cut, shank size, etc., I am totally undecided. I also am undecided as to whether I want to wear the wedding bank and engagement ring together (I know Leon refuses to make them so that they sit flush). Overall, from reading the forum, I’m getting the sense that I may incur a PITA fee from Leon and that it’s a tossup as to whether I’ll have a great experience with him.

    As far as going with Steven or Victor, I also had some concerns:

    1. The main concern is that if I have Leon ship it to another jeweler, he’ll get upset at the thought of me getting it set elsewhere and refuse to ship it to another jeweler to be set or blacklist me. (Being blacklisted would be difficult because if I wanted to trade in/upgrade my diamond, I would have to go back to Perry). Basically, I don’t want to burn my bridges with Leon.

    2. I could get it shipped to myself (I don’t live in NY) and then send it via registered mail to Victor or Steven, but that sounds like a bit of a hassle and I don’t really want to have a loose stone in my possession without insurance. (It would be insured on both trips, but not when I had it in between the trips).

    3. I am a little concerned about working with Victor because he’s in LA and I wouldn’t be able to see anything in person or get sized by him. This wouldn’t be a problem if I went with Leon or Steven.

    Any thoughts would be appreciated! Sorry for the long post. As you can see, I am having quite the dilemma and would appreciate your opinions.
     
  2. bright ice
    Ideal_Rock

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    by bright ice » Jan 25, 2012
    Victor Canera without a doubt!!
     
  3. t86
    Rough_Rock

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    Jan 22, 2012
    by t86 » Jan 25, 2012
    Thanks bright ice!

    Any idea if Leon will freak out if I ask him to ship the stone to Victor?
     
  4. yssie
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by yssie » Jan 25, 2012
    All three do lovely work.. If you're buying the stone from LM the route that makes the most sense, and is safest in terms of liability, is going with a Leon setting as well.

    Have you *talked* to Leon? If not, I would strongly suggest that you do that first. Leon has many happy customers as well. Impressions are just that - impressions - why not see what the he has to say before assuming he will or won't treat you a certain way ::)
     
  5. BHMom
    Rough_Rock

    Messages:
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    Apr 21, 2011
    by BHMom » Jan 25, 2012
    I'm kind of biased since I have a VC halo but I think Frankiextah is the only one that has had pieces from all 3. Here is her comparison, you can make up your own mind

    https://www.pricescope.com/forum/show-me-the-ring/comparison-photos-of-my-victor-canera-sk-leon-ring-setting-t166496.html

    As for the diamond, why don't you have Victor source it? He completed a ring for my niece and actually sourced the diamond for them as well. They couldn't be happier with their ring.
     
  6. TristanC
    Brilliant_Rock

    Messages:
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    Jun 6, 2011
    by TristanC » Jan 25, 2012
    Victor! Best price, fastest and most polite communication.

    A true and true artist - but he appreciates that you are the customer so he'll advise suggest and guide but never insist or make you uncomfortable.

    Also, I THINK he has the most OTT happy reviews and I actually can't find a bad one (if someone would point one out please, nobody can be That perfect right?).

    I can understand your need to go with LM since the stone is from there (plus he does produce some nice work) - why don't you speak to him? If the timelines don't match, or the price is high, just engage VC. Your requirements are not unreasonable if someone else can meet them.

    I'm very sure you won't burn a bridge, especially since you bought a stone from him already. If he IS going to blacklist you for buying his stone, and getting work done elsewhere, then that bridge should never have been built in the first place.
     
  7. t86
    Rough_Rock

    Messages:
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    Jan 22, 2012
    by t86 » Jan 25, 2012
    Yssie: I talked to Leon only briefly on the phone to ask a fairly routine question. The experience was kind of what I expected. He was very opinionated, I was caught a bit offguard and rattled, and I had to spend some time trying to smooth things over. That's what kind of made me think that it might not be smooth sailing.

    BHMom: I actually have been in contact with Victor to see if he could source a stone for me. He just wasn't able to find something that fit my criteria in terms of carat weight, budget and shape (I want a squarish stone). Perry nailed it, and I've put a deposit on the stone already, which is why I find myself in this conundrum!

    Tristanc: Thanks for that! That's great advice. Let me get a price quote from him and see if the timeline matches up--if not, I'll go elsewhere. The reason I was so worried about burning a bridge is because the only time I talked to Leon (see above) was when I called Perry to find out if it was even possible to source a stone from them and get it set elsewhere. I didn't care one way or another, I just wanted to know upfront what their policy was. Leon picked up and got a little insulted.
     
  8. m-2-b
    Ideal_Rock

    Messages:
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    Mar 1, 2011
    by m-2-b » Jan 25, 2012
    I agree w/ all of the above--I personally recommend Victor Canera. I have a halo ring from VC and it is gorgeous! He has a great eye for detail and beauty in all of his work. Good luck in your decision!
     
  9. Gypsy
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by Gypsy » Jan 25, 2012
    I would go with Steven. He's in the same building as your stone so there is no mailing time. His lead time is more flexible than Leon. He's cheaper than Victor. And he's great with people who want to tweak things and is a professional about the work he does.
     
  10. MrsBettyBoop
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by MrsBettyBoop » Jan 25, 2012
    In my personal experience, I found VC priced quite high. In the end, I did not get a quote from VC for the exact style I am getting now because I didn't like his price on the first quote. But when quoted on the exact same ring from SK and Leon, SK was cheaper by exactly 1K. Leon being over 5K.
     
  11. diamondseeker2006
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by diamondseeker2006 » Jan 25, 2012
    That would be a dilemma because after seeing Frankie's thread, I think Victor and SK have been maing better halo rings. I think Leon's people are capable of making it, but I would be showing pictures of exactly how you want the pieces under that halo because Leon's were not as pretty plus the stone was set too low. But if they can't deliver by March 1, then you don't have to worry. In fact, if you'd rather someone else make it, just move the date up! Just say you need it in about 3 weeks and then when he says no, say you are so sorry but you'll have to find someone else to make it. It would be best to have it sent to you so he doesn't know who is making it, and I would do that if you are sending it to Victor. But in the case of SK, well, he is in the same building as Leon, so that would be pretty crazy to have it sent to you! Are you close enough that you could go pick up the diamond? That would be ideal because you could deliver it to SK yourself. If SK is more accessible to you than Victor, then I'd choose SK so he can do repairs, etc.

    Do you have current quotes from all three since you said you think Leon is higher than VC? I also have had a quote of $6000 for a different halo ring by VC which I thought was incredibly high considering that the center stone I would be providing was very small.
     
  12. Skippy123
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by Skippy123 » Jan 25, 2012
    THIS!!! :cheeky:

    Here is another stunning one https://www.pricescope.com/forum/show-me-the-ring/my-victor-canera-dual-shank-halo-solitaire-t170880.html
     
  13. Skippy123
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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  14. t86
    Rough_Rock

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    by t86 » Jan 25, 2012
    Wow, thanks for the great advice!

    Thanks for the link--I had seen the thread by Frankiextah. Well, to be honest, I scrupulously read it multiple times, examined the pictures and also sent it to the boyfriend and made him look. :)

    I didn't know that Steven was in the same building as Leon. That would make transport much easier. The only other thing is if I picked the stone up in person instead of getting it shipped out of state, I would have to pay crazy in-state NY sales tax. If I got it shipped to me, I would have a lower sales tax. But that's neither here nor there--I either pay the high taxes for the convenience or get it shipped to me and bring it/mail it to a jeweler (and risk losing it).

    Okay, I think I will go ahead and get a price quote from all three. I had been assuming that they would generally be the same, with Victor a bit lower (just from reading tons of threads), but getting a quote is probably the next logical step. I had no idea there would be such variation!

    Thanks for all the thoughts and please keep them coming!
     
  15. CharmyPoo
    Ideal_Rock

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    by CharmyPoo » Jan 25, 2012
    I honestly believe Steven is the best bet for you. As mentioned, he is literally only several floors down from Leon. He has fast turn around time although not as fast as Victor. His prices are the same as Leon but I actually suspect both are better priced than Victor - but perhaps not for halos. Steven would be willing to make you a matching band.

    But ... I think you can't go wrong with all three. I actually love all 3 of them and would use all 3 of them without hesitation. I have used two already .. and would love to try out Victor.
     
  16. tenyearanniversary
    Shiny_Rock

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    by tenyearanniversary » Jan 25, 2012
    You can ask Leon if he can give your stone to SK, but I would be very surprised if he didn't mind at all. I think he would be happier to send it to VC. Of course he would be happiest to set it himself.
     
  17. maplefemme
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by maplefemme » Jan 25, 2012
    Respectfully, I would not ask him that, that may not go down too well at all... Leon was frosty at the suggestion of sending it out to someone else to be set when it was suggested initially, the fact that it's SK you want him to take it to, that would rub him wrong given their history especially.
    I'd go pick it up myself and take it to SK if you don't want to work with VC due to distance. VC was $800 more than SK for my setting with no halo, but he was beyond accommodating, beyond.
    They both make beautiful pieces, I'd talk to them both and see who you are most comfortable with, who you feel can accommodate you best.
     
  18. donnabrsd
    Rough_Rock

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    by donnabrsd » Jan 26, 2012
    My ring by Victor Canera took exactly 35 days/5 weeks from the day I gave final approval to the day it was ready and I picked it up.

    I paid 6.5K plus tax for my split shank halo setting. Get quotes if price is a concern because each job is specific to your stone and details.

    I am happy that I used someone local. I do need to get my prongs adjusted and if I need other repairs, I like the fact that I can do it without mailing my ring.

    Victor is very nice. We communicated fine in person, although not as well via email and phone calls.

    If using another vendor to make the setting, I would pick up the stone and deliver/ship it to the other vendor myself.

    I am sure it will be fabulous with any of the three you are considering.
     
  19. tenyearanniversary
    Shiny_Rock

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  20. t86
    Rough_Rock

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    by t86 » Jan 26, 2012
    tenyearanniversary and donnabrsd--your rings are GORGEOUS!!!!

    I have started to contact them for quotes, which will get me on the right track. Talking to each jeweler also would help, I'm sure.

    I'll keep you all posted!
     
  21. kathness
    Shiny_Rock

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    by kathness » Apr 18, 2013
    OP Who did you end up going with?
     

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