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newbie discouraged in search of untreated sapphire

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sevilla

Rough_Rock
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Apr 16, 2009
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1
Hi all,

I been reading this forum for a couple of weeks now and I''ve found it really interesting.. but I seem to need more help than reading posts can provide.

I am looking for a sapphire for my engagement ring and it has proven to be an endeavor that is beating my fiancee and I down.


I am looking for a
- 9x7mm oval
- royal to medium dark blue
- nearly flawless (few insignificant inclusions at 10x)
- no enhancements (unheated untreated)

I found a sapphire on NSC that is way out of our price range. I tried looking at 15 of the websites that were listed on the forum specifically for colored gemstones, but I have not had any luck. The thought of looking through all 60 websites is overwhelming. Can someone direct me?

Thank you!
 

innerkitten

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 1, 2003
Messages
5,623
Sometimes it takes time to find the perfect stone. Have you tried contacting the vendors by email? You never know they might have what you''re looking for but not have it posted on their site. Or maybe someone can cut one for you. Are you dead set against heat?
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 20, 2008
Messages
23,282
What is your price range? That will tell us if there''s anything even possible to get with those characteristics for that budget. Unheated royal blue eye clean sapphires are very expensive.
 

LostSapphire

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 4, 2007
Messages
3,336
Date: 4/16/2009 5:44:04 PM
Author:sevilla
Hi all,

I been reading this forum for a couple of weeks now and I've found it really interesting.. but I seem to need more help than reading posts can provide.

I am looking for a sapphire for my engagement ring and it has proven to be an endeavor that is beating my fiancee and I down.


I am looking for a
- 9x7mm oval
- royal to medium dark blue
- nearly flawless (few insignificant inclusions at 10x)
- no enhancements (unheated untreated)

I found a sapphire on NSC that is way out of our price range. I tried looking at 15 of the websites that were listed on the forum specifically for colored gemstones, but I have not had any luck. The thought of looking through all 60 websites is overwhelming. Can someone direct me?

Thank you!
Welcome here Sevilla!

It takes time to find the 'right one' because sapphires aren't bought like diamonds! (ie: they're "special!"). There are a lot of really good, reputable vendors (see the thread at the top of the coloured stones section). Have a look. Contact a few of the cutters (Jeff White cut mine, he's great).

Another way is to look through the eyecandy thread: you may see something you like. Then do a 'call out' to that member, and you'll get good feedback.

Or, have a look in the "vendor pics" thread at the top of this page: those are all quite recent pics, and it might give you an idea of the style of cutting you like the best.

But above all else, relax and enjoy the search: it is worth it to get just the right one for you!

It might be an idea to post your budget range...that will narrow things down a bit, most likely.

Don't hesitate to ask lots of questions: there are many experts in this section to give you good advice. I'm sorry you are frustrated right now but am sure it will all work out in the end.

LS
 

movie zombie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 20, 2005
Messages
11,879
welcome....and everything everyone else has already said. take your time and the right stone will find you.....

mz
 

Spirit

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 13, 2007
Messages
279
I am also having a hard time finding the right sapphire at the right price! Even had one of the vendors on here opt out saying he is too busy... anyone hear of a recession? Whatever.
Lostsapphire- your stone and setting are stunning! I have enjoyed reading about your journey and am wondering how long it actually took from the time you started looking ? You sound totally thrilled with Jeff White and the service he provided for you. Any advice? Pricewise was he competitive? You paid PST and Gst or just GST? Lucky no duty thanks to Free Trade agreement!
 

LostSapphire

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 4, 2007
Messages
3,336
Date: 4/16/2009 8:56:47 PM
Author: Spirit
I am also having a hard time finding the right sapphire at the right price! Even had one of the vendors on here opt out saying he is too busy... anyone hear of a recession? Whatever.
Lostsapphire- your stone and setting are stunning! I have enjoyed reading about your journey and am wondering how long it actually took from the time you started looking ? You sound totally thrilled with Jeff White and the service he provided for you. Any advice? Pricewise was he competitive? You paid PST and Gst or just GST? Lucky no duty thanks to Free Trade agreement!
Thank you Spirit, for the compliment.

It took close to about 5 months to find the ''one''. Jeff White was really wonderful to work with. What took some adjustment, was my thinking that if I just told him what I wanted, he''d go look into his "store" and find it for me....it''s not like he''s got 1000s sitting there on the shelf waiting for buyers!

Then, the first time he had something in hand that he could recommend, we went back and forth a few times and decided it still wasn''t right. So we started again....

Yes, his prices are competitive. If you e-mail him and tell him what you''re looking for, he''ll give you a range of $$ per carat to see if he''s close to your budget. And you start from there....I ended up paying maybe 40% more for the stone than what we originally started out with...but we had narrowed down the search to a specific range of blue, plus, a minimum size. Plus I then went with an untreated stone, which is more $$ of course.

I purchased the stone without seeing it in person, because I didn''t want to ship it through Customs, look at it, then ship down to Whiteflash.

One of the advantages of how long it took, was I learned to trust Jeff''s eye completely. (and would do so again in a heartbeat). We did a lot of communicating and at some point I was comfortable with his ''eye''. He then shipped the stone to WF in Houston. Once the ring was made, it was shipped through Canada Customs. I was charged pst, gst but no duty.

Hope this helps. Sorry for the threadjack Sevilla!


LS
 

jjdav

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Nov 16, 2008
Messages
180
Don't be discouraged, I was also looking for a sapphire and found it on Jeff's website. My fiance and I stumbled onto this site, and Jeff's was the last website I looked at (we were searching alphabetically)
 

Spirit

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 13, 2007
Messages
279
See Sevilla you are not the only one who is frustrated. Looks like we should be giving Jeff White a chance to find our sapphires! Thanks to LS and jjdav for your referrals.
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 22, 2004
Messages
37,507
Please be patient. It took me 3 years to find the right cobalt blue spinel.
It''s also a good idea if you can share your budget range to see if what you are looking for is even realistic. Trying to get everything that you listed in one tall order and searching around on the www might not net you anything for a while Since you know exactly what you want, I''d go the route of asking specific vendors:
www.winkjones.com is highly recommended.
 

ma re

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 10, 2008
Messages
2,698
Agree with pretty much everything said. BTW, what you described (a practically perfect 3 ct sapphire) sounds like something usually sold at auctions for quite a lot of $, so be prepared to either lower your criteria or increase the budget. I certainly hope I''m wrong and that you''ll find that perfect one, but just wanted to warn you about what might happen.
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 20, 2008
Messages
23,282
That one that LD posted is a Thai sapphire, which isn''t as good in color as a Ceylon or Madagascar sapphire (typically). If you want a really good color, it''s at least $2000 to $3000/ct for an unheated stone. For top stones, the sky is the limit.
 

Spirit

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 13, 2007
Messages
279
What about the blue sapphires from Sri Lanka? How do they rank next to Ceylon and Madagascar?
Also- how is the quality and service from Simply Sapphires?
 

LD

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 29, 2008
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9,682
Date: 4/17/2009 3:03:23 PM
Author: tourmaline_lover
That one that LD posted is a Thai sapphire, which isn''t as good in color as a Ceylon or Madagascar sapphire (typically). If you want a really good color, it''s at least $2000 to $3000/ct for an unheated stone. For top stones, the sky is the limit.
I wasn''t sure whether origin was a "must have" for the OP cos it wasn''t on the list. Just trying to find an oval cut sapphire is a challenge in itself!
I totally agree about cost.
 

oldmancoyote

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 22, 2008
Messages
755
One and the same. For some strange reason, this has never caught on with Myanmar, which is still called Burma when mentioned as origin.
 

Pandora II

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 3, 2006
Messages
9,613
Weirdly enough, even in Sri Lanka they don''t seem to be able to decide which name to use - loads of companies and even some government agencies still use ''Ceylon'' rather than ''Sri Lanka''...

Burma has the added problem that Myanmar was a name chosen undemocratically by the junta. For that reason many people and countries including the UK officially still use the old name ''Burma''. I believe the US government is another that recognises the name ''Burma'' rather than ''Myanmar''.


Sevilla, is there a particular reason that you are after unheated or need a stone that is loupe clean? For the colour and size you are after I would consider making the compromise in these areas.
 

ma re

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 10, 2008
Messages
2,698
It''s slightly included, but THIS one fits all the other criteria.
 

Sagebrush

Brilliant_Rock
Trade
Joined
Nov 16, 2003
Messages
645
Sevilla,

Two suggestions that may help:

1. Must the stone be exactly 9x7? That is a calibrated or standard size. Rare fine gems like sapphire are rarely, should I say never cut to standard sizes. If its a 9x7 its because the rough was the right size and it just came out that way. Usually there is a fudge factor even with standard settings and working with a goldsmith can get you around that. Savvy buyers find the stone then design the setting around it.

2. Sapphires are graded by eye not with a loupe. Eye-clean or my term eye-flawless is the highest grade. I would never buy a loupe clean sapphire as it would be impossible to determine if it was natural. Inclusions are your friend. An inclusion becomes a flaw only if it materially effects the beauty and/or the durability of the gem.

Best,
 

Sagebrush

Brilliant_Rock
Trade
Joined
Nov 16, 2003
Messages
645
Sevilla,

One additional point:

A perfectly cut 9x7mm sapphire would weigh approximately 2.61 carats. A stone below that weight would probably have reduced brilliance, light leakage beneath the table.

However, most sapphire is cut a bit bulbous and deep. Some inexperienced folks would say that is a fault. Well, yes and no! I have seen many "perfectly cut" stones that are dark and lifeless toward the center and wink out, that is loose their brilliance a mere 5 degrees off the perpendicular and I have seen bulbous stones with 95% plus brilliance that you can tilt 10 degrees either side of the perpendicular and still get life.

I often find myself selecting sapphire and ruby that are 10-12% heavier than what is mathematically considered "perfect". They also have 30% more brilliance in CinemaScope, i.e. brilliance 10% either side of a straight on perpendicular view. That means that a 9x7mm could easily go over 3 carats.
 
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