Find your diamond
Find your jewelry
shape
carat
color
clarity

Poor Grad Student & $1000 Engagement Diamond Help

123ducklings

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jun 10, 2020
Messages
313
When you ask a jeweler about the setting make sure you choose it to fit the diamond you buy (the link goes to the 1.5ct setting but you can change that on the drop down menu).



94BCEA79-8159-4F4F-81E2-DC20E394D773.jpeg
 

kgizo

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Dec 14, 2009
Messages
1,752
So if I went with Lightbox's diamond and this setting: https://www.stuller.com/products/150309/?groupId=7717&recommendationSource=SiteSearch ; how does that seem like it works?

Also, difference between "light, heavy, comfort fit, etc." for this same style?
That will be very pretty and classic. Is this going to be a surprise for your SO? If not, perhaps you can find a local jeweler who has this setting in stock and have her try it on to make sure it is comforable. I’m sure it will be.
 

Ladygrey

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Apr 12, 2017
Messages
156
That seems like a fantastic, classic option that will give you really superb value for your money.
 

kipari

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 9, 2015
Messages
2,324
@SamuelS you've gotten great advice already.

I especially second @AllAboardTheBlingTrain 's questions: What does your fiancée like? What does does she prioritize? Size? Colour? Clarity? Ornate setting? Open to antiques? Is she ok with lab grown?

And yeah, don't ever walk into a jewelry store and ask about a diamond you bought elsewhere. You won't get unbiased advice (which is logical. They want sell you their diamond).
 

SamuelS

Rough_Rock
Joined
Aug 31, 2020
Messages
24
@SamuelS you've gotten great advice already.

I especially second @AllAboardTheBlingTrain 's questions: What does your fiancée like? What does does she prioritize? Size? Colour? Clarity? Ornate setting? Open to antiques? Is she ok with lab grown?

And yeah, don't ever walk into a jewelry store and ask about a diamond you bought elsewhere. You won't get unbiased advice (which is logical. They want sell you their diamond).
I asked and she said she doesn't really know. She doesn't wear jewelry much and is quite laid back. As long as it sparkles she is good with it haha
 

kipari

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 9, 2015
Messages
2,324
I asked and she said she doesn't really know. She doesn't wear jewelry much and is quite laid back. As long as it sparkles she is good with it haha
Uhhh, you're lucky (that's what my dh would say!). Don't let her discover PS, though!!

Sounds like the classic solitaire is perfect then. Between the light box stone and the stuller setting you are getting a beautiful, substancial, quality piece for your budget! Looking forward to pictures of the finished ring!
 

Lisag103

Rough_Rock
Joined
Feb 25, 2020
Messages
69
I asked and she said she doesn't really know. She doesn't wear jewelry much and is quite laid back. As long as it sparkles she is good with it haha
Based on that criteria I think lightbox is the way to go. You will get a great size, a great diamond, and a classic setting. I don’t think you can go wrong with that option! Best of luck with it and keep us posted!
 

AllAboardTheBlingTrain

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Apr 22, 2020
Messages
626
What should I do about a ring box?
You know a nice idea might be to check out Etsy or something (Or make it yourself if you’re handy!) to get a ring box that is evocative of a hobby or passion or something she loves or is meaningful to her. I have a friend who is a huge Harry Potter fan and her husband made a snitch box (you can buy them but they’re mad expensive, so he made one). You can also buy something off Amazon and personalise it yourself if you want by sticking stuff on it or wrapping it with a personalised paper etc.

Also I didn’t reply earlier but I think the classic 6 prong solitaire setting is a winner (though the one you linked would be too big for the stone, but any jeweler can order you the right size and you’d have to go through a jeweler anyway). It’s going to be beautiful! Good luck :)
 

kgizo

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Dec 14, 2009
Messages
1,752
it is going to be a surprise haha
That setting is classic and I’m sure she will find it comfortable. As others have mentioned, etsy has some nice ring boxes. Between now and May you have plenty of time to keep an eye on Lightbox sales. Sign up for their emails. Lately, Bloomingdales has had some of the Lightbox stock on sale and you can get a coupon for more off if you sign up for emails. The items can sell out fast so if you know you want the 1ct jump on it once you see it on sale. A 1ct diamond will look great on her finger size.
Save the pendant setting once the jeweler removes the diamond. Depending on what she likes you could add an amethyst, garnet or lab sapphire and have a nice gift.
 
Last edited:

SamuelS

Rough_Rock
Joined
Aug 31, 2020
Messages
24
That setting is classic and I’m sure she will find it comfortable. As others have mentioned, etsy has some nice ring boxes. Between now and May you have plenty of time to keep an eye on Lightbox sales. Sign up for their emails. Lately, Bloomingdales has had some of the Lightbox stock on sale and you can get a coupon for more off if you sign up for emails. The items can sell out fast so if you know you want the 1ct jump on it once you see it on sale. A 1ct diamond will look great on her finger size.
Save the pendant setting once the jeweler removes the diamond. Depending on what she likes you could add an amethyst, garnet or lab sapphire and have a nice gift.
Does lightbox have deals around the holidays?
 

kgizo

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Dec 14, 2009
Messages
1,752
Does lightbox have deals around the holidays?
Lightbox has been less than predictable in their marketing so I’m not sure what, if any, sales they will have around the holidays. Especially this year because it is a strange one. Sometimes their sales have been to their email list only so that’s why you need to sign up. As long as you order by 3/15 you should be set for a May proposal. It shouldn’t take that long, but give yourself a buffer so you aren’t stressing and can enjoy the proposal.
 

123ducklings

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jun 10, 2020
Messages
313
Lightbox has been less than predictable in their marketing so I’m not sure what, if any, sales they will have around the holidays. Especially this year because it is a strange one. Sometimes their sales have been to their email list only so that’s why you need to sign up. As long as you order by 3/15 you should be set for a May proposal. It shouldn’t take that long, but give yourself a buffer so you aren’t stressing and can enjoy the proposal.
Yes, and since you have a big window to watch sales I would keep an eye on Bloomingdales and Reed’s too. They carry Lightbox and have been having more frequent sales than Lightbox directly. Bloomingdales specifically has been having some great deals but you have to watch for the 1ct pendant and then jump on it when it shows up because it’s a popular item.

But honestly, $1,000 is a great price for a 1ct round, so even if you don’t fuss watching sales and just pay full price at Lightbox you’ll be doing well.
 

SamuelS

Rough_Rock
Joined
Aug 31, 2020
Messages
24
I got quoted at $757 for platinum setting, $515 for WG/platinum, and $475 for WG (includes labor)

Any advice on if this is a good price?

Also WG over Platinum or vice versa?
 

m-cubed

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 20, 2020
Messages
47
I got quoted at $757 for platinum setting, $515 for WG/platinum, and $475 for WG (includes labor)

Any advice on if this is a good price?

Also WG over Platinum or vice versa?
I don't purchase enough custom jewelry to comment on price, although based on what I just paid for some platinum earring findings, it seems good to me.

I personally buy platinum because I have sensitive skin and can have issues with other metals. I believe white gold needs to be replated frequently. Platinum is softer than gold and can scratch more easily. I don't mind the patina, but it can be burnished up on a regular basis if you don't like it.
 

AllAboardTheBlingTrain

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Apr 22, 2020
Messages
626
I got quoted at $757 for platinum setting, $515 for WG/platinum, and $475 for WG (includes labor)

Any advice on if this is a good price?

Also WG over Platinum or vice versa?
I’ll leave it to someone from the US to comment on price since it will differ widely based on where you live, weight and purity of setting etc. If you want to tease out how much of the quote is attributed to labor you can take the weight of the setting as per quote (if that is stated), calculate the amount of precious metal in the setting using the metal purity that should’ve been quoted to you, and check out the spot price of that quantity of precious metal. So you’ll have an idea of how much you’re paying for the labor if it’ll help you make a more considered decision.

Personally I prefer WG > Plat, I like the bright white shininess of the rhodium plating and I don’t like the patina that platinum develops over time, especially since repolishing it will cause you to lose a small fraction of the plat every time. I’ve never noticed the plating wearing off any of my WG jewelry, some people have skin that can wear the plating faster than others but replating (dipping) is inexpensive and easy (at a jeweler’s) and you shouldn’t need to do it sooner than every few years or so on average. I also like that they look super similar but WG is so much cheaper than platinum (since you need more plat to make the same ring given higher density and higher purity). However, if your SO has a nickel allergy, def go for plat or maybe palladium.
 

mrsthirdcharms

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 19, 2018
Messages
147
I got quoted at $757 for platinum setting, $515 for WG/platinum, and $475 for WG (includes labor)

Any advice on if this is a good price?

Also WG over Platinum or vice versa?
Those prices sound fair. Idk where you live, but on the US east coast, that’s a decent deal. Going with a local jeweler also means that she can bring it in for regular maintenance like tightening prongs & cleaning without a hassle.

Personally, I prefer WG. I even like unplated white gold, with its subtle, mellow color. I don’t own platinum. Check to see if she’s got a nickel allergy. Some jewelers offer palladium white gold, without nickel, that doesn’t require rhodium dipping.
 

kgizo

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Dec 14, 2009
Messages
1,752
Since she doesn’t wear much jewelry I recommend WG as it is lighter. Also, if she needs any sizing or repairs down the road WG will be less expensive. That price seems reasonable.
 

glitterata

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 17, 2002
Messages
3,678
I much prefer platinum. It looks richer to me. It develops a lovely matte patina. It doesn't need to be plated with rhodium, which can look fake/cheap to me, and replating is an ongoing expense. Unplated white gold is yellowish, so the color can look uneven as the plating wears off. Many people are allergic to white gold, or can develop allergies. Platinum is weighty and strong. This is a bad time to buy gold, but an okay time to buy platinum, which is why the prices quoted are so similar. (I bought a similar Stuller solitaire setting for like $80 a decade or so ago, when gold prices were more reasonable.) However, they are pretty similar, and either one will probably be fine.
 

SamuelS

Rough_Rock
Joined
Aug 31, 2020
Messages
24
Does anyone know if the Lightbox diamond is a typical 1 ct. size? I keep getting asked by jewelers if it is.
 
Be a part of the community It's free, join today!
    What is White Gold?
    What is White Gold?
    Push Present: Engagement Ring Upgrade
    Push Present: Engagement Ring Upgrade
    20th Anniversary Upgrade
    20th Anniversary Upgrade

Need Something Special?

Get a quote from multiple trusted and vetted jewelers.

Holloway Cut Advisor



Diamond Eye Candy

Click to view full-size image.
Top