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Looking for the Perfect E-Ring for my Lady - $30k budget

Travelist

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 14, 2011
Messages
19
I have spent the last couple of months searching for the perfect engagement ring for my girlfriend. PS is such a great resource! I have a $30k budget and know that she would love a round diamond. The Carat size isn't as important as the brilliance/fire/scintillation for her. She just wants it to be shiny as possible. I'm looking at round diamonds with these specs: Ideal Cut, 1.6 - 1.8 Carat, F Color, and VS2 Clarity.

Though I'm seriously considering making a purchase from Bluenile, the lack of an Idealscope image or Sarin report has given me second thoughts. As a substitute, I am using both the HCA tool and the GIA report to identify diamonds with scores less than 2 with Excellent Light Return, Fire, Scintillation, and Very Good - Excellent Spread, and with Excellent ratings for symmetry, polish, and cut grades in the GIA report. I've read on PS that HCA is an elimination tool, not a selection tool and the HCA score is based on the angles of the main facets and doesn't take into account alot of the minor facets. Still, I haven't seen any PS user reports where the HCA specs and GIA reports indicate an ideal cut diamond, but where an idealscope image indicates otherwise. Should I have 95% confidence in this approach? It seems to be the general view on PS that an AGS report is much more determinative of ideal cut quality than the GIA. If that's the case, what sort of weight can I give to the GIA report for cut quality. I noticed on the GIA report, it shows some defects that are on the diamond. What type of defects would cause light leakage from the diamond?

Purchasing from WhiteFlash is always an option, but based on the same specs, prices seem a tad more expensive. I'm considering buying a BN ideal cut diamond, versus their signature ideal diamonds, which seems to have a markup. If I bought from BN, could I get an Idealscope image or sarin report from a local jeweler or from another online source?

Any advice is appreciated. Thanks for your help in advance!
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
If you buy a BN stone stick to the signature ideal. There is a reason for that premium.

And why just WF. We have a ton of great vendors, not that WF isn't one of them, but there are many others worth looking at.

My first choices would be an Infinity Diamond from either High Performance Diamonds or Dimend Scaasi or a BGD Signature Ideal from Brian Gavin.

Both have great return, upgrade and buy back policies.
 

Regular Guy

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 6, 2004
Messages
5,954
Travelist|1316501347|3021207 said:
Purchasing from WhiteFlash is always an option, but based on the same specs, prices seem a tad more expensive. I'm considering buying a BN ideal cut diamond, versus their signature ideal diamonds, which seems to have a markup. If I bought from BN, could I get an Idealscope image or sarin report from a local jeweler or from another online source?

Any advice is appreciated. Thanks for your help in advance!
First, keep up the good work.

Appraisers on this board could probably help you with an IS, but a narrow range. Call first and ask. See upper right under resources.

Can you describe the advantage you see in BN? Is it to you like Tiffany's little blue box?

You do see a value in the IS.

With the onboard search tool, it can do a lot of heavy lifting for you, see here:

https://www.pricescope.com/diamond-search-results/191940

But, BN is not included. Eternity is heavily included. You could ask them if they're able to produce an IS


Best,

Ira Z.
 

Regular Guy

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 6, 2004
Messages
5,954
Travelist|1316501347|3021207 said:
Though I'm seriously considering making a purchase from Bluenile, the lack of an Idealscope image or Sarin report has given me second thoughts. As a substitute, I am using both the HCA tool and the GIA report to identify diamonds with scores less than 2 with Excellent Light Return, Fire, Scintillation, and Very Good - Excellent Spread, and with Excellent ratings for symmetry, polish, and cut grades in the GIA report. I've read on PS that HCA is an elimination tool, not a selection tool and the HCA score is based on the angles of the main facets and doesn't take into account alot of the minor facets. Still, I haven't seen any PS user reports where the HCA specs and GIA reports indicate an ideal cut diamond, but where an idealscope image indicates otherwise. Should I have 95% confidence in this approach? It seems to be the general view on PS that an AGS report is much more determinative of ideal cut quality than the GIA. If that's the case, what sort of weight can I give to the GIA report for cut quality. I noticed on the GIA report, it shows some defects that are on the diamond. What type of defects would cause light leakage from the diamond?
!
Two things to add:

Your questions above are very good, and though I've been disappointed our sciency types don't try to give more definition here, the practice does seem to be to follow the better, because...for the price differential...it's worth it, and the value is there.

Anyway...since you've identified WF as another reasonable target, you should know that Brian Gavin helped create/give WF it's cache, and he somewhat recently splintered off.

And, though I don't routinely shop outside of the search by cut utility here, as I did above...did you look at that second option above from Gypsy, from BG? A stunner, and rather modestly priced.

A problem you have with BN is that they're mostly not looked at. You're partly solving that by going for their signature series, but then, as you note, YOU"RE not being allowed to look at it (they won't give you an IS).

An advantage of operations like WF, BG, is their both looking at the diamond, and showing you what they see.

Regards,
 

Travelist

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 14, 2011
Messages
19
Thanks for the responses. I've gravitated towards BN because it's a publicly traded company, and since buying a diamond is such a large purchase, it's comforting to know that they will probably still be around if anything happens to the diamond. BN also seems to be a tad more inexpensive than other vendors, though, in fairness, it's hard to compare apples to apples without the IS. Regarding the first point, I'm aware that that's the purpose of insurance, but I'm not sure if insurance would protect me in all situations?

I will say that I've almost been exclusively looking at BN so far, but other options are looking more and more attractive. First, I don't like any of the settings at BN. My gf likes very classic, elegant, traditional pieces of jewelry/clothes and I haven't seen any solitaire/pave setting that I particularly like. Before, I was thinking about buying a loose diamond from BN and taking the diamond to a local jeweler and picking a setting. I'll take a look at some of the other vendors suggested, such as BGD, High Performance Diamonds, etc.

Thanks!
 

slg47

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
9,667
Hi Travelist-

There are some cases with GIA Ex/HCA under 2 that show leakage under idealscope. I think this is very rare though...it just depends on the amount of information you need to feel comfortable with your purchase. A GIA Ex/HCA under 2 will certainly not be /bad/ by any means, but the other tools available can provide more information.

BN being around for a long time should not have an effect on your purchase unless you are looking to upgrade (and BN's upgrade policy requires you to upgrade within the first year I believe). Independent insurance will 'cover' the diamond in case of loss, theft, or damage, and they will not require you to get a replacement with the original vendor.

What type of setting are you looking for? We can suggest some options if you'd like :)
 

Travelist

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 14, 2011
Messages
19
Thanks! My gf would like a thin band where the setting showcases the diamond. When we went ring shopping at Tiffany's and Cartier, she didn't really like any of the channel setting styles because they looked too thick and didn't love the 6 prong ring styles. But she did like some of the rings at Cartier and Hearts on Fire. I'm going to go with a platinum band too. I'll have to say that the Cartier settings looked alot nicer than the settings available at BN!

I'm probably more interested in a 4 prong style ring and the pave styles. I saw some pictures of rings by Vatche that looked gorgeous. What's the price range for the Vatche rings or other designers for platinum 4 prong styles? Do they have physical stores or how would the process work if I bought the loose diamond separately online.

Could anyone suggest other designers or rings to look at?
 

slg47

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
9,667
I am not sure...I would check on pricing. You can definitely get the center stone and setting from different vendors...this is what I did. I would recommend getting an insurance policy started during the setting process so your stone is covered.

OR you can get the stone and setting at the same place...many of the PS vendors can make a custom setting or perhaps carry designer settings.

For a custom handmade platinum setting I would recommend Victor Canera. I'm sure he can make you a gorgeous custom setting. With a hand-forged setting there is less metal and more diamonds showing.

http://www.victorcanera.com/jewelry/engagement-rings/the-trueste-solitaire.html
something like this with pave would be gorgeous.
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
My favorite settings that in house or custom setting makers are Brian Gavin and Dimend Scaasi (who will only set outside stones for Pricescopers), Jewels by Erica Grace, Victor Canera, and Steven Kirsch.

My favorite solitaires by "brand name" settings are by Bridget Durnell (Pearlmans), Sholdt (Pearlmans, GOG), Vatche (HPD, GOG and WF) and H. Levi (BGD is their carrier).

So does she WANT diamonds on the band (called the shank) or does she want all metal... what were the styles she likes. The 4 prong thing is cool, because I think there are a LOT of awesome 4 prong settings.

Let us know is she wants diamonds in the shank or not and we can post some for your consideration.


First you can look in this thread: [URL='https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/post-your-favorite-plain-solitaire-setting.164906/']https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/post-your-favorite-plain-solitaire-setting.164906/[/URL] and tell us what you think of the settings we've posted.

https://www.pricescope.com/blog/jewel-week-bridget-durnell-engagement-ring One of my favorites with diamonds in the shank. You can get it in platinum or white gold as well, just as an FYI
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
Since you have a "healthy budget" and want a largish center stone... I'm going to suggest an expensive setting option.

Channel set carre cuts. This was made by Leon Mege, who can be a challenge to work with. So I would have Steven Kirsch, who used to work with him, but now has his own business do this for me, personally as he can do the channel set thinner than Victor can.

As you can see it is incredible on the hand, subltly blingy and thin ... just gorgeous and elegant and so so very unique.

file.jpg

file.jpg

file.jpg

file.jpg
 

Travelist

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 14, 2011
Messages
19
Thanks for linking me to that Solitaire thread. Very informative. I'd say she probably prefers a solitaire setting with no diamonds in the shank. There were 3 rings in particular that look amazing. I'd rate them

1. Scaasi's Alessandra

2. Vatche X-Prong Pave

3. Vatche Caroline

The first 2 were pretty close for me, but the Alessandra ring looks quite amazing.
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
Travelist|1316673014|3022742 said:
Thanks for linking me to that Solitaire thread. Very informative. I'd say she probably prefers a solitaire setting with no diamonds in the shank. There were 3 rings in particular that look amazing. I'd rate them

1. Scaasi's Alessandra

2. Vatche X-Prong Pave

3. Vatche Caroline

The first 2 were pretty close for me, but the Alessandra ring looks quite amazing.
It's GORGEOUS. Great choice.

NOW, pay attention to be here, my friend... Dimend Scassi will ONLY set outside stones in their settings for Pricescopers. So if the Alessandra is your choice, make sure you tell them you are a pricescoper and that we referred you to them for that setting.

You can, of course, buy a stone from them. And they ARE an Infinity Dealer so they absolutely know what an ideal cut diamond is all about.

Is there anyway you can check with her on the diamonds in the shank issue? Maybe show her the carre cut ring I posted and the Alesandra and ask her which she prefers?
 

smokey99

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Aug 16, 2011
Messages
124
Travelist|1316673014|3022742 said:
Thanks for linking me to that Solitaire thread. Very informative. I'd say she probably prefers a solitaire setting with no diamonds in the shank. There were 3 rings in particular that look amazing. I'd rate them

1. Scaasi's Alessandra

2. Vatche X-Prong Pave

3. Vatche Caroline

The first 2 were pretty close for me, but the Alessandra ring looks quite amazing.

I love quite a few of the Vatche designs, they're fantastic!

Check out these as well at the Vatche site: http://dvatche.com
Under "bridal"

Vatche 1021 Classic French cut down
Vatche 1018 Solange
Vatche 281 Solstice Pave
Vatche 195 Sisley Pave

The Caroline is very elegant looking as well, not as much a fan of the X-Prong. My favorite is probably the 1005 Corsica with French Cut Down Pave, but I dont think it would look as good with a round center. Best of luck to you, Im sure she'll love whatever you decide as all of your choices are excellent ! :)
 
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