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Needs Help with Limited Budget Purchase

Discussion in 'RockyTalky' started by mousiegirl, Aug 15, 2013.

  1. mousiegirl
    Rough_Rock

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    by mousiegirl » Aug 15, 2013
    Hello Everyone!

    Since you all are the experts, I thought I'd ask your advice before doing anything rash/stupid/crazy ;-)

    My boyfriend has a fairly limited budget of $3,000 for my engagement ring and setting. For a long time I was completely content with ordering through James Allen and (hopefully) finding a 3/4 carat(ish) and pairing it with this setting:

    http://www.jamesallen.com/engagemen...cut-pave-set-diamond-engagement-ring-item-735

    The more I think about it though, I feel concerned with not seeing the stone and not trying the setting on. I worry that my stone might be too yellow and that the setting would be too high/thin and the prongs too chunky.

    So we REALLY want to visit Good Old Gold but I worry that with our small budget, I'll leave with tiny lil pebble of a diamond (albeit a gorgeous lil pebble) and I'm not even sure how much a simple setting would be there.

    What would you do in my shoes?

    Any help is much appreciated!
     
    


    


  2. mousiegirl
    Rough_Rock

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  3. soxfan
    Ideal_Rock

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  4. soxfan
    Ideal_Rock

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    by soxfan » Aug 15, 2013
    I, personally, do not find J/K's too yellow, but others do. It's in your preferences. I would see if you can check out some J's or K's at a local jeweler?
     
    


    


  5. crashprime
    Rough_Rock

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    by crashprime » Aug 15, 2013
    If it were me, I'd stick with Good Old Gold or Whiteflash ideal cut diamonds. If your budget was a bit higher, throw Brian Gavin into that mix. Those 3 companies have legions of fans here, and they seem to carry consistently high quality products.

    Good Old Gold has a very comparable setting that isn't listed on their website that is almost identical to that James Allen. It's a tiny bit more, I was quoted like $980 for 14k gold .20 tcw. I'd assume GOG's setting might be a bit higher in quality.

    rg_unique_1308_with_172ct_i_vs2_cu_profile.jpg

    Pair it up with a stone like this: http://www.goodoldgold.com/diamond/7459/

    Ideal Cut 0.61ct I VS1

    There's your $3000 e-ring. I wouldn't consider .61ct to be a pebble.

    Or Whiteflash.

    http://www.whiteflash.com/engagement-rings/diamond-settings/petite-diamond-engagement-ring-773.htm

    $1095

    http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-2953053.htm

    $1568

    Ideal Cut 0.58 ct H SI1 .. trade some clarity grade (it's still eye clean) and a tiny bit of carat weight for a higher color grade and a much lower price tag.

    There's a $2700 e-ring.

    You're budget is going to keep you from getting a whopper of a stone, but half carat screamers are still fantastic to look at. I believe GOG and Whiteflash both also offer lifetime upgrades, so if you find yourself wanting to upgrade for your 5 year anniversary or something, you can stick with those guys for getting a larger stone without losing your initial investment.
     
  6. mousiegirl
    Rough_Rock

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    by mousiegirl » Aug 15, 2013
    I am definitely open minded to getting a J/K and I probably should look at one in person. Because I want it set in Yellow Gold, I think a J/K should look lovely. How low would you drop in clarity?

    There's just something nagging me about getting a whiter stone! Grawr! Decisions, decisions.

    Thank you for your thoughts...I'm running in circles a bit here :)
     
  7. mousiegirl
    Rough_Rock

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    by mousiegirl » Aug 15, 2013
    I really want to go to Good Old Gold and see what they have because I know they have exceptional quality. Thanks for posting the image of that pave band! It's gorgeous but I sort of think $1,000 is too much for a setting when my budget is so low. I also want it set in yellow gold and I think that's slightly more expensive than white gold(I could be wrong).

    I really wish they posted more of their settings on their website! I also can't seem to find recently purchased rings on their site for some reason to get an idea of simple, thin bands with solitaires.
     
  8. mousiegirl
    Rough_Rock

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    by mousiegirl » Aug 15, 2013
    also...I'm new to this site and can't figure out how to reply to the individual responder instead of the entire topic. Help :twirl:
     
  9. soxfan
    Ideal_Rock

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    by soxfan » Aug 15, 2013
    I would go all the way down to S12. As long as it's eye-clean. I figure if I can't see the inclusions, neither can anyone else. I have no preference for really "white" stones. I have a D color marquise that is almost a carat. It's gorgeous, but I don't like the color more than my K round.

    It depends on whether you want to stay with a smaller, whiter stone or go down in color and get a larger stone. I think a K in yellow gold will be awesome!

    you'll get a lot of good suggestions here. Everyone is really helpful and knowledgable.
     
  10. soxfan
    Ideal_Rock

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    by soxfan » Aug 15, 2013

    Hit the quote button in the top right corner of whoever you want to respond to.
     
    


    


  11. mousiegirl
    Rough_Rock

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    by mousiegirl » Aug 15, 2013


    WOOT! thanks
     
  12. bunnycat
    Ideal_Rock

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    by bunnycat » Aug 15, 2013
    I would second going with one of the vendors that has a really good upgrade policy for later. If you are setting it in a basic prong head that can be changed out later to accommodate a larger stone (as opposed to a halo) then all it would take is a head change if you upgrade and you'll still have the same band. Look carefully at the upgrade policies. Currently- Good Old Gold and Whiteflash are the most generous (no spending double) and so even if you start with a slightly smaller stone, you won't have to break the bank and spend double necessarily to upgrade the center.

    http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-2978081.htm

    http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-2937168.htm
     
  13. mousiegirl
    Rough_Rock

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    by mousiegirl » Aug 15, 2013

    That's a really good point and absolutely something to think about. I mentioned the idea of a possible upgrade down the road and my boyfriend almost exploded LOL Think I'll wait a few years before bringing that one up again
     
  14. mousiegirl
    Rough_Rock

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    by mousiegirl » Aug 15, 2013

    I saw that Good Old Gold has a Pricescope discount too but I wonder if that's only online. Their website says the bank wire price is the equivalent to the discount but I'm not sure if my BF want to pay that way or not.
     
  15. bunnycat
    Ideal_Rock

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    by bunnycat » Aug 15, 2013
    Bank Wire is generally going to get you your best price with any of the vendors. It costs about $15 to do. I've done it a couple of times now.

    And honestly, talk to your BF about you pitching in a little too. If it will get you towards the size stone you were hoping for (since he looks like he may need "working on" with the upgrade idea) then I would highly recommend trying to pitch in a little to get you up towards the .75 in the pave band. I wish I had thought to do that when hubby and I were looking. It might have saved me a load of cash in the long run....Oh well. IMO, you'll be much less likely to "keep looking" if you can get close to where you wanted to be in the first place.

    On upgrades, at first my hubs did not understand the concept (fine with me, I certainly know how to save on my own) and was fine with a stone change, but no band change. You are lucky in that you seem to want a pave band with changeable peg head (make sure on that though) and so you can always make the case that you still have the same ring, just a different stone....
     
    


    


  16. mousiegirl
    Rough_Rock

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    by mousiegirl » Aug 15, 2013
    I know my boyfriend does NOT want me helping him with this purchase. I make a bit more money than him, so I will be buying the wedding bands. I figure if my ring lacks a little sparkle, I'll make up for it with the band. He is a very frugal man and the fact that he's willing to spend this much money on my ring is incredible! I think it's very generous and I'm okay with the cost. Though $5k would be nice :cheeky:
     
  17. Maisie
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by Maisie » Aug 15, 2013
    If you go into Good Old Gold and buy your ring won't you have to pay sales tax? Does paying online avoid that? Maybe your boyfriend will be happier to pay online if he thinks he will save some money?

    I would visit GOG if you live near enough. Jonathon is a lovely person and i'm sure he would look after you.
     
  18. mousiegirl
    Rough_Rock

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    by mousiegirl » Aug 15, 2013

    I'm also wondering that same thing. Definitely something to ask him when we're there.
     
  19. Maisie
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by Maisie » Aug 15, 2013
    I live in England so I don't know how sales tax works but if you go in and see the ring/diamond you want maybe you can pay with a wire later. At least you will be able to decide what colour you are comfortable with :))
     
  20. tyty333
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by tyty333 » Aug 15, 2013
    Do you have a Jared's near by? You can look at lower colors in their Peerless line (these are their well cut stones) .
    That way you can determine if a J is too yellow for you or not. I have a small J which I still consider very white.
     
  21. recordaras
    Shiny_Rock

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    by recordaras » Aug 15, 2013
    We were actually recently searching for just about the same ring as you, and with a very similar budget. :)
    Before you get the pave setting, I would very much recommend trying something similar on in a jewelry store (big ones should have all the standard settings). I fell in LOVE with them on PS, but when we tried one on both me and my boyfriend really didn't like how it looked on my hand, and I was also able to determine what other styles I don't like (for example, cathedral settings felt very heavy and uncomfortable).

    And then the ring kind of happened by pure chance - I saw a stone on BGD that I fell in love with: a 0.64ct J VS2 Signature H&A. We set that in a plain solitaire and altogether it came $1K under budget. Since the boyfriend got such a "deal", we agreed that after the wedding we would upgrade to a 3-stone setting.
    So initially we weren't even considering BGD, since overall they are a touch more expensive than JA, but this one just had to be mine I guess. :)
     
  22. Gypsy
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by Gypsy » Aug 15, 2013
    http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/0.80-carat-j-color-si1-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-189333 If eyeclean, I think this one has a LOT of potential for you.

    I like the other vendors suggested here, but I wouldn't spend my budget on a brand name diamond, and feel that is a waste unless you plan to use the upgrade polices quickly. A great GIA Ex/Ex with a good HCA and an good idealscope image is the best value by far, and JA's upgrade policy on those is actually BETTER than the upgrade policy offered by WF and others on similar, not-branded diamonds.
     
  23. TC1987
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by TC1987 » Aug 15, 2013
    I think that J or K is too tinted. This is I SI1 and nicely cut, for $3331 wire price. The diameter is 6mm, so that's a real nice size if you can't afford a 1ct. Mount it in a plain solitaire for now, and remount later, perhaps change it to a wedding set later, since you are buying the wedding bands.
     
  24. Gypsy
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by Gypsy » Aug 15, 2013
    J and K are not too tinted in rounds with ideal light return.

    If they have great light return (idealscope) they can and ARE very white, in fact, face up when set.

    I have sat in Brian Gavin's office and played with the 15 plus diamonds he pulled for me, and I can tell you face up you cannot tell an H from J-- especially under 7.5mm-- side by side and UNSET. And when set, with the prongs obstructing the side, you really can't tell.

    Furthermore, I have seen Mara's OLD J an numerous occasions (over 7.5mm) and I can tell you I thought it was an H. I've seen many other J's and K's at GTG's over the last EIGHT YEARS, and I can tell you flat out that J is not too tinted.

    I have SEVERAL friends who have J and K studs, again... you can't tell.

    her budget is 3k. INCLUDING THE SETTING. Telling her to spend 300 over her budget ON JUST THE STONE because you, after a few months of posting here, think that J is too tinted is flat out bad advice.

    MAKE SURE ANY J or K diamond you are seeing to determine your own color tolerances IS GRADED BY THE GIA (or AGS).

    FURTHERMORE, just because you can SEE color doesn't mean you are color sensitive. It just means your eyes work. Being color sensitive means you can see it AND you let it bother you. In fact, many people prefer slightly warmer tones, and find it more flattering to their eyes on on their hands.

    And don't compare color tolerances for rounds by any other shape. EVERY other shape will look more tinted than a round with ideal light return, even at the same GIA color grade.
     
  25. soxfan
    Ideal_Rock

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    by soxfan » Aug 15, 2013
    +1 best advice you can get.....
     
  26. Gypsy
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by Gypsy » Aug 15, 2013
    Thank you sox fan. 8)
     
  27. soxfan
    Ideal_Rock

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    by soxfan » Aug 15, 2013
    ;-) ESPECIALLY about the J being too tinted. But then again, I am "best bang for the buck" kind of girl.
     
  28. Gypsy
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by Gypsy » Aug 15, 2013
    I am too. Heck, I don't even buy new anymore. I buy pre-owned stuff unless there is something I really must have, and there is no pre-owned available.
     
  29. soxfan
    Ideal_Rock

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    by soxfan » Aug 15, 2013
    My next upgrade will probably be pre-owned. There's plenty to go around! :lol:
     
  30. Tekate
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Tekate » Aug 15, 2013
    My son was looking for stones a while back and his girlfriend wanted Jared's - I have never seen such horrid reviews of a company aside from Time Warner cable.. I know you were just suggesting a look/see not buy.. but seriously their reviews were scads of pages of angry, felt ripped off customers.. sad.. :shock:
     

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