shape
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Opinions on ring / setting $20k to $30k budget

starbuk

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 24, 2015
Messages
15
Hello - I am (hopefully) a couple/few months away from purchase but I am a planner and would like your guidance.

About her: she likes nice things, has good taste in designer clothes but is simple in many ways. Doesn't like chips with different flavorings, likes plain hummus, etc. We talked about the ring and she wants a round solitaire with a pave crown 4 or 6 prong setting. We would like an eye-clean (SI1) diamond that appears as white as possible in my budget (thinking H or most likely I), carat weight in her mind will be about 2 but I would like to get her a bit more, likely closer to 2.5 or at least 2.25. The cut must be excellent.

Here are some stones and settings I am considering:
http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-3227653.htm
http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-3137122.htm

Settings:
http://www.jamesallen.com/engagemen...ave-basket-diamond-engagement-ring-item-53023
http://www.jamesallen.com/engagemen...h-cut-pave-diamond-engagement-ring--item-1301

For the stones, I like how the 2.5ct is eye clean and has hearts and arrows but do I need this pattern? The smaller stone is not eye clean but is A Cut Above stone, so I am guessing it will have a superior look to it in terms of "sparkle" yet have markings that she will be able to see? I think this is where I can go for a bigger stone because I am don't think she is concerned over having a H&A stone.. we just want the cut to be excellent and the stone to sparkle accordingly.

For the settings I like the first one more but in my opinion almost $2k is a lot to spend on a setting.. what are your thoughts? She wants a thing ring but we were told that it can't be too thin with a 2ct+ stone for some reason.

My concern is that with the $25k 2.5ct eye clean I stone, I am overpaying because I could have gotten something without H&A that would appear just as nice or close to it for less. Gypsy I've been reading your posts and your cat avatar makes me remember you, hope to hear from you as well as others.
 

Andelain

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 10, 2010
Messages
3,524
I'd get the 2.5. You'll never notice the tiny differences in that and a true H&A.
 

starbuk

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 24, 2015
Messages
15
Andelain|1451334580|3967487 said:
I'd get the 2.5. You'll never notice the tiny differences in that and a true H&A.

Do you think I can find a high quality diamond that appears white and is eye-clean in the 2.5ct range but paying $20k instead? I am starting to see that $25k is about the range for what I am looking for.
 

Andelain

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 10, 2010
Messages
3,524
starbuk|1451334722|3967490 said:
Andelain|1451334580|3967487 said:
I'd get the 2.5. You'll never notice the tiny differences in that and a true H&A.

Do you think I can find a high quality diamond that appears white and is eye-clean in the 2.5ct range but paying $20k instead? I am starting to see that $25k is about the range for what I am looking for.

Not likely, at least it wouldn't be so beautifully cut. You're in the top tier here, nowhere to go but down if you try to spend less for the size.
 

starbuk

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 24, 2015
Messages
15
Andelain|1451335578|3967503 said:
starbuk|1451334722|3967490 said:
Andelain|1451334580|3967487 said:
I'd get the 2.5. You'll never notice the tiny differences in that and a true H&A.

Do you think I can find a high quality diamond that appears white and is eye-clean in the 2.5ct range but paying $20k instead? I am starting to see that $25k is about the range for what I am looking for.

Not likely, at least it wouldn't be so beautifully cut. You're in the top tier here, nowhere to go but down if you try to spend less for the size.

Roger that, thanks for your advice.

Do most on here recommend buying the loose stone online along with the setting but getting it set by a local jeweler? The rings I like are from James Allen but the stones are from WhiteFlash.
 

JDDN

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 2, 2015
Messages
2,339
starbuk said:
Andelain|1451335578|3967503 said:
starbuk|1451334722|3967490 said:
Andelain|1451334580|3967487 said:
I'd get the 2.5. You'll never notice the tiny differences in that and a true H&A.

Do you think I can find a high quality diamond that appears white and is eye-clean in the 2.5ct range but paying $20k instead? I am starting to see that $25k is about the range for what I am looking for.

Not likely, at least it wouldn't be so beautifully cut. You're in the top tier here, nowhere to go but down if you try to spend less for the size.

Roger that, thanks for your advice.

Do most on here recommend buying the loose stone online along with the setting but getting it set by a local jeweler? The rings I like are from James Allen but the stones are from WhiteFlash.

Get the setting from WF too then. Show them the setting you like from JA and they can make it for you. The stone will be insured during the setting process and the quality of the setting will be better from WF than from JA.
 

solgen

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Apr 10, 2015
Messages
563
Light performance between WF's expert selection and ACA are going to be pretty similar. The ACA won't have significantly more sparkle. You question whether you need the Hearts and Arrow cut. Some here are quite picky and would say that the 1.5 isn't a true H&A cut.

You don't need a diamond that has a H&A cut to have great light performance but a lot are cut towards certain proportions so it's easier to stick with them. Precision of cut affects light performance so you do need it to have good symmetry.

With diamonds this size you can see the arrow patterning easier so some imbalance in symmetry can be noticed. I tend to pay attention to these details but others that I've shown some diamonds to haven't noticed it. If it's something that could irk you then I would probably stick with the ACA. Otherwise the ES line will be more than enough.
 

starbuk

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 24, 2015
Messages
15
solgen said:
Light performance between WF's expert selection and ACA are going to be pretty similar. The ACA won't have significantly more sparkle. You question whether you need the Hearts and Arrow cut. Some here are quite picky and would say that the 1.5 isn't a true H&A cut.

You don't need a diamond that has a H&A cut to have great light performance but a lot are cut towards certain proportions so it's easier to stick with them. Precision of cut affects light performance so you do need it to have good symmetry.

With diamonds this size you can see the arrow patterning easier so some imbalance in symmetry can be noticed. I tend to pay attention to these details but others that I've shown some diamonds to haven't noticed it. If it's something that could irk you then I would probably stick with the ACA. Otherwise the ES line will be more than enough.
Thanks sol. I don't think it's necessary but if a nice diamond has the pattern, it won't deter me from getting it. But the premium is likely not worth it for us. I see what you mean - the 2.5ct $26k stone has one of the "V" patterns that is not quite perfect. WF should not call this H&A, but they do. For me it doesn't matter too much because I know she will not be able to tell, and she does not care. Would prefer more carat weight or better color for same $ spent.

JDDN|1451349698|3967622 said:
starbuk said:
Andelain|1451335578|3967503 said:
starbuk|1451334722|3967490 said:
Andelain|1451334580|3967487 said:
I'd get the 2.5. You'll never notice the tiny differences in that and a true H&A.

Do you think I can find a high quality diamond that appears white and is eye-clean in the 2.5ct range but paying $20k instead? I am starting to see that $25k is about the range for what I am looking for.

Not likely, at least it wouldn't be so beautifully cut. You're in the top tier here, nowhere to go but down if you try to spend less for the size.

Roger that, thanks for your advice.

Do most on here recommend buying the loose stone online along with the setting but getting it set by a local jeweler? The rings I like are from James Allen but the stones are from WhiteFlash.

Get the setting from WF too then. Show them the setting you like from JA and they can make it for you. The stone will be insured during the setting process and the quality of the setting will be better from WF than from JA.
I hadn't thought of this, thanks. Hopefully they don't charge much more for a similar setting.

Sphene said:
Wow these are certainly more affordable. Did not consider going down in cut quality. I think it's something I need to see in real life to determine if it is worth the extra half carat or few thousand $. Suggestions or thoughts around this are always welcome but I think if I go up to 3ct at I color, the yellow may be too visible.

Appreciate all the advice.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
58,547
I love Whiteflash diamonds but I would go with H color instead of I color. I also wouldn't even consider a stock setting (like from JA) with that kind of budget. Get a really nice setting such as Victor Canera or Steven Kirsch.

http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-3602749.htm

https://www.victorcanera.com/diamonds/n15rt1-2.070-h-si1-ideal-hearts-arrows-roun

This is an outstanding setting:

https://www.victorcanera.com/rings/engagement/the-jocelyn-with-scalloped-basket (the only change I'd make is ask him to have a doughnut at the base of the prongs)

Victor gives a discount on the setting when you buy the diamond from him.
 

starbuk

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 24, 2015
Messages
15
diamondseeker2006|1451405835|3967881 said:
I love Whiteflash diamonds but I would go with H color instead of I color. I also wouldn't even consider a stock setting (like from JA) with that kind of budget. Get a really nice setting such as Victor Canera or Steven Kirsch.

http://www.whiteflash.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut-loose-diamond-3602749.htm

https://www.victorcanera.com/diamonds/n15rt1-2.070-h-si1-ideal-hearts-arrows-roun

This is an outstanding setting:

https://www.victorcanera.com/rings/engagement/the-jocelyn-with-scalloped-basket (the only change I'd make is ask him to have a doughnut at the base of the prongs)

Victor gives a discount on the setting when you buy the diamond from him.
Thanks seeker. That setting is really pretty, I will show her and ask if she likes something a bit "fancier". Do you think the I to H move in that size will make a difference? Would you trade half a carat or so to get the I color instead? I know you said yes, you would. But I am trying to understand why because some of what I have read says that I will not be yellow when mounted on platinum or not side by side. Curious to hear about your thinking on the subject.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
58,547
Let me just say that I have G, H and I color diamonds. My current (anniversary, not the original) e-ring diamond is 2.3 ct I color. It is a beautiful cut as you can see in my avatar picture. But it will take on environmental color as all diamonds will do, and it can look more tinted, for example, in a car with tinted windows. If I could change the color, I would. I'd rather have a 2 ct G or H. But at the time and even now, they did not have a higher color than I with VS clarity. So I cannot trade for a higher color.

But if she really cares a lot more about size than color, then go for I color.

Victor and Steven custom make their settings, so they can put as much or little diamonds as you want in the settings. I just recommend them for their very fine quality hand forged settings.
 

starbuk

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 24, 2015
Messages
15
diamondseeker2006|1451406861|3967889 said:
This is one of my favorite settings from Victor, too:

https://www.victorcanera.com/rings/engagement/the-trueste-with-pave
His offerings and reviews are pretty spectacular. I never thought too much about spending a bit more on the setting and band, just figured spend more on the diamond. But I think a nice setting can really add a but more to the whole ensemble to the point where it is not such a big deal we don't have a 2.5ct ring.

His pricing appears to be close to WF for the stone so I don't think I am leaving much on the table. What his inventory won't let me do is compromise on the quality to get a bigger stone, but if this is something that is important to me, I am sure he can help me find such a stone. Need to have a conversation with the lady to make those decisions. If it were up to me I would get the 2ct in the Jocelyn. She likes the ring to not curl up towards the stone like your second suggestion, but I will show her the alternative to make sure.

edit: just noticed that nice outline of small stones underneath the center stone.. looks really cool kind of like a subtle halo.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
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Oh, yes, Victor absolutely can order you a GIA Excellent cut stone instead of buying one of his hearts and arrows ideal cuts. I have no problem with that idea. He can access the same stones as most other vendors can. Look through vendors such as JA as he can access some of those if they are in the US.
 

LLJsmom

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Oct 24, 2012
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12,655
Since you are considering Victor's settings, I thought I would add my 2 cents. He's great to work with, easy going, responsive and professional. Although he does have a good idea of what he believes to work best and with each type of setting and stone, you can customize certain aspects of your ring. Just talk to Victor about what you want.

When I first bought my 2.59, I thought I would get whatever simple setting. Over time, I learned how much a well matched, beautiful setting can add to a beautiful stone. I do know that everyone is different and it doesn't matter to some people. I found, after wasting money, that it did matter to me. It made the WHOLE ring for me.

I'll link my setting from Victor, and also a thread which shows all his settings. Here is a quick before, and much, much after.

Original setting 6 prong platinum
pj40a.jpg
Side view
all_3_side_view.jpg

Reset by Victor Canera Jocelyn with scalloped basket
_1129_0.jpg
dsc_0289.jpg
dsc_0080.jpg

And in case you haven't already seen this, this thread will also link you to the SMTB for each ring.
https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/post-your-victor-canera-beauties-here.175281/
 

cinnamonstick

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 14, 2009
Messages
572
What a setting LLJmom! SaI'd it before, and again! LOVE your ring! Wow!


Not sure what I can chime in here, but I'll give you my two phones for what it's worth.

My original ER is an "I". Never had a problem with its color. The cut isn't so great. My new upgrade (of sorts) is an "H" with "G" sides. Holy smoke! :) But more important are the cuts. I never realized how much my old diamond didn't quite sparkle compared to my new one. Day and night. Apples oranges
New are GIA 3x (kept all stones under 2 HCA). I couldn't afford two hearts & arrows...loved the idea! I'm not sure how much of a difference it would make visually. I can't comment on that extra $ for H/A. Never saw one IRL.

I can just say that there is one incredible difference between my old diamond and my new one based on CUT alone. Period.

Your budget seems go reasonable for what you are desiring...it would be a matter of finding the balance to stay on budget.

Based on the experience I just went through I am guessing and that lower to mid $20s seems reasonable. Of course depending on what clarity you would go with and what color (assuming you stay with excellent cuts). Big price jumps from "I" to "G" colors.

It will all come together for you. :)

The comical part is associate shopping for a ring much like my experiences with cars & houses. I started off with a specific budget in mind & s l o w l y it crept up and up and up. I realized that my budget wasn't even close to reasonable for a 2ct. Nope.

Best of luck! Your budget range should get you what you desire based on your title. Shop around. I strongly recent IDJ.
 

starbuk

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 24, 2015
Messages
15
Thank you all very much. Victor's diamonds are definitely nicer cute but I need to balance it out with carat size. Your links all help. It's gonna cost me about 5k for just the setting and band so it's looking like I'll be at the upper end of my budget. My big concern is Victor not wanting to deal with diamonds I bought elsewhere but after thinking about it I realize that's silly. I'll keep you all posted. We are gonna go look at some different stones so I can decide on size and color.. Then just have to execute.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
58,547
Like I said, Victor can order stones just like you are looking at on other sites. Many sites list the same diamonds other than the ones they have in house. If you see a good one on another site (such as JA), show it to Victor and see if he can get it for you! Better yet, choose about 3 possibilities and give him the info and he can see if he can access them from the suppliers.
 
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