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Please help me select a £1000 diamond for fiance

Jefffy

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 30, 2011
Messages
11
Having just proposed with a 'dummy' ring, my fiance and I are looking to pick up a solitaire diamond ring.

She would like it to be 'silver' in colour which seems to generally mean either platinum or white gold. The extra cost of platinum is bringing us to think that she would be better with a 14ct white gold band with the extra money spent on the diamond - with the intention of possibly upgrading the band in the future if wanted. On Blue Nile there is over £100 difference between 14 and 18ct white gold. Would anyone argue that it is worth spending 100 more for the 18ct and 100 less on the diamond? Or is 14ct the right way to go considering the budget?

Moving on to the diamond, we would be interested to know what you think the best balance is to get the most sparkle for the buck so to speak!

Would I be right in thinking that round diamonds are the most brilliant. The pear and princess cuts that she also likes seem to be cheaper in £/ct terms. The amount of sparkle is important and she thinks she would prefer a bit more sparkle in a smaller ct round diamond than a duller (but larger) pear/princess cut. Any views on the trade-offs between round vs princess vs pear are appreciated :)

I am buying from the UK have VAT (and in some cases import duty) to contend with and include in the budget. We've been searching mainly on Blue Nile since after taking into account VAT (and no visible import duty) the prices seem good. We would however buy from elsewhere providing the ring can reach us fairly quickly.

Could you please advise on the search criteria I am using - and whether you think these are good figures considering the budget and other information above.
Price:
Shape: Round
Colour: G and upwards
Cut: Ideal and upwards
Clarity: VVS2 and upwards

Then I have been adjusting the carats upwards (normally around 0.43) to get a 'shortlist' and sometimes ordering by 'date' since I would imagine that the best 'deals' don't last for long on the site. Here is an example of one that came up in such a search - what do you think?:
http://www.bluenile.co.uk/build-your-own-diamond-ring?forceStep=DIAMONDS_STEP&track=tab#diamonds_forceStep=DIAMONDS_STEP|builder=BYOR|pid=LD01891557

Is girdle a significant factor in your opinion? Several have medium-thick.

I realise the most important thing is personal satisfaction, and thus what is 'best' for us is somewhat subjective... But if you had this budget to buy a diamond for a solitaire ring in the next 5 days or so - what would you be getting? Should I revise any of those factors down in favour of more carats? Do any of them need to rise? (Clarity perhaps?)

If push came to shove, we could be tempted to increase the budget from £850ish to £1000 (excluding VAT) which would it seem buy a few 0.1 of a carat should you think that it would be money well spent with the increase in size making a difference to the overall ring proportions. But perhaps a 0.1-2 of carat is effectively unnoticeable?

Any help, suggestions or recomendations to places that can better Blue Nile (remember I'm in the UK) will be very much appreciated :)

Thanks!
 

slg47

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
9,667
Hi and welcome! how special that you and your fiancee can pick out the ring together :)

I would go down on clarity...anything above VS2 should be fine. Also you might want to view colors in person to see what your preferences are...you may have no problem with H, I, or J color, or you may prefer the higher colors.

As far as rounds vs other shapes...I would get the shape that appeals most to her :)
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
Drop both Clarity and Color. You won't be able to tell the difference when set between a G and an H or even I in a round brilliant. If you want a princess easily H. And VVS is REALLY overkill. You can EASILY go down to VS2.


Since you asked me what I would be getting:

Would you consider an antique stone? The reason I ask is they are very back in vogue now and there is a seller in the UK I've been very impressed with as I have been looking for my own antique stone and he's got two beautiful antique cuts in your price range that I think are really lovely. And they are a nice price, no need to worry about VAT and other things....

Here are the two diamonds. If you are interested I recommend talking to him with the message function of ebay I've found him to be an excellent correspondent and both knowledgeable and willing to assist.

Here are the two antique diamonds he has listed... both look beautiful and if either appeals to you, it might be worth at least sending him an email to open a dialog.

Old European Diamond: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Superb-0-465-carat-OLD-EUROPEAN-Antique-diamond-G-VS1-/390333638442?pt=Loose_Gemstones&hash=item5ae1b2a72a

Transitional Diamond: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Certed-ANTIQUE-0-43ct-Transitional-cut-diamond-VVS2-/220445093446?pt=Loose_Gemstones&hash=item33538d2e46


They have different personalities both from each other and from round brilliants but when cut well (like any diamond) are lively and very bright.

Just thought I'd give you another option.

Oh and 14K white gold in my opinion is fine if you are on a budget... really fine.
 

Jefffy

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 30, 2011
Messages
11
Thanks for these replies :)

My fiance has decided that she definitely wants a round diamond, so pear/princess is now not a consideration.

I've started looking at colours down to H and dropped the clarity aspect as well. SLG47 - when you say anything above VS2 - is that including VS2 itself as Gypsey suggested? I've read that buying VS2s working only off BlueNile details can be a bit risky since they don't have photos to illustrate exactly what sort/where the inclusions are. If I want to be safe, should I stick to VS1? I see BlueNile also suggest that you can call them to determine whether inclusions on diamonds are eye visible? Perhaps if I find a VS2 that seems good, this would be the way to go. If anyone has done this I've be interested to know how quick it is? Presumably Blue Nile have to contact whoever holds the diamond to have a look at it... they don't hold the photos themselves? Time is somewhat of the essence, but it is now the weekend so the pressure is off.

Thanks for the suggestions on the ebay front. To tell the truth I am shying away from second hand unless there is a top flight certificate that accompanies the diamond and I dare say there be a (tiny) element of 'wanting new' - however irrational that might be. From the limited reading I've done on those old cuts I think we prefer the qualities of the current style of cutting.

Would anyone have suggestions about flourescence in a diamond of this type? (Round 0.45ct ish)? Go for as little as possible? Or does this size stone benefit from a little?

Thanks for the advice. Seems to be a never ending stream of things 'worth knowing' when it comes to diamonds!
 

slg47

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
9,667
Jefffy|1317513628|3030848 said:
Thanks for these replies :)

My fiance has decided that she definitely wants a round diamond, so pear/princess is now not a consideration.

I've started looking at colours down to H and dropped the clarity aspect as well. SLG47 - when you say anything above VS2 - is that including VS2 itself as Gypsey suggested? I've read that buying VS2s working only off BlueNile details can be a bit risky since they don't have photos to illustrate exactly what sort/where the inclusions are. If I want to be safe, should I stick to VS1? I see BlueNile also suggest that you can call them to determine whether inclusions on diamonds are eye visible? Perhaps if I find a VS2 that seems good, this would be the way to go. If anyone has done this I've be interested to know how quick it is? Presumably Blue Nile have to contact whoever holds the diamond to have a look at it... they don't hold the photos themselves? Time is somewhat of the essence, but it is now the weekend so the pressure is off.

Thanks for the suggestions on the ebay front. To tell the truth I am shying away from second hand unless there is a top flight certificate that accompanies the diamond and I dare say there be a (tiny) element of 'wanting new' - however irrational that might be. From the limited reading I've done on those old cuts I think we prefer the qualities of the current style of cutting.

Would anyone have suggestions about flourescence in a diamond of this type? (Round 0.45ct ish)? Go for as little as possible? Or does this size stone benefit from a little?

Thanks for the advice. Seems to be a never ending stream of things 'worth knowing' when it comes to diamonds!
yes I would definitely include VS2. there should not be eye-visible inclusions with round VS2s of this size.
 

Jefffy

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 30, 2011
Messages
11
Thanks. I've been continuing looking and this time including VS2 in the searches. We've also raised the budget just a little.

There are a couple that we quite like - there is a 0.49, Ideal Cut, VS2, Colour F that is almost the same price as a 0.51, Ideal Cut, VS2, Colour H for nearly identical prices.

Our hunch it to go with the ever so slightly smaller F colour since the difference in size is so small and in most of the colour charts we have seen the Fs really do have a noticably whiter look that makes up for the 0.02 difference in clarity. The larger H colour has a med-blue flourescence too, although perhaps it will be thought that this will balance out the yellow?

Both of these stones have a polish and symmetry rating of "very good" - is this not being 'excellent' a concern? Enough of a concern to look for something else in your opinions?

Similarly the F stone has in the notes that that clarity characteristics are 'feather/cloud' - I understand that this shouldn't be an issue at the VS2 clarity level. Am I correct in thinking this?

Thanks for all the help and advice you have give us! It is most appreciated :)
 

slg47

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
9,667
Jefffy|1317645350|3031912 said:
Thanks. I've been continuing looking and this time including VS2 in the searches. We've also raised the budget just a little.

There are a couple that we quite like - there is a 0.49, Ideal Cut, VS2, Colour F that is almost the same price as a 0.51, Ideal Cut, VS2, Colour H for nearly identical prices.

Our hunch it to go with the ever so slightly smaller F colour since the difference in size is so small and in most of the colour charts we have seen the Fs really do have a noticably whiter look that makes up for the 0.02 difference in clarity. The larger H colour has a med-blue flourescence too, although perhaps it will be thought that this will balance out the yellow?

Both of these stones have a polish and symmetry rating of "very good" - is this not being 'excellent' a concern? Enough of a concern to look for something else in your opinions?

Similarly the F stone has in the notes that that clarity characteristics are 'feather/cloud' - I understand that this shouldn't be an issue at the VS2 clarity level. Am I correct in thinking this?

Thanks for all the help and advice you have give us! It is most appreciated :)
Do you have links to these two diamonds?

and yes you are correct that there is nothing to worry about with VS2 inclusions. also VG polish/symmetry should be fine.
 

Jefffy

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 30, 2011
Messages
11
On the subject of notes regarding inclusions/finish on a VS2 - while it shouldn't be an issue, is there a reason why some GIA certificates have notes about the type of inclusions/clarity/finish on the certificate and others don't? Premumably every VS2 has some inclusions of some sort - yet only sometimes do them seem to be specified - and when they are specified they are nothing to worry about.

I have links, this is the 0.49 (but it seems that it is now not available... guess it is sold, but am in the midst of travelling back home to confirm with BN.)
http://www.bluenile.co.uk/build-your-own-diamond-ring?forceStep=DIAMONDS_STEP&track=tab#diamonds_forceStep=DIAMONDS_STEP|builder=BYOR|pid=LD02271489

This is the 0.51:
http://www.bluenile.co.uk/build-your-own-diamond-ring?forceStep=DIAMONDS_STEP&track=tab#diamonds_forceStep=DIAMONDS_STEP|builder=BYOR|pid=LD02270775

I ran them both through the HCA tool. The 0.49ct scored 2.0:
Light Return Excellent
Fire Very Good
Scintillation Very Good
Spread
or diameter for weight Excellent

The 0.51 scored 2.5:
Light Return Very Good
Fire Very Good
Scintillation Very Good
Spread
or diameter for weight Very Good

Thanks for any input!

(incase anyone has suggestions, these stones are at the very top of my budget).
 
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