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lauracofer

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 19, 2002
Messages
9
I am pretty sure that I want a sapphire to be the center stone in my engagement ring. I am looking to spend about $1000 or so on the stone, and am hoping to get a nice stone of about 1.5 carats.
Can anyone clarify for me the terms used for grading sapphire clarity? Am I clear that "gem quality" is the best quality? I have seen other terms like "eye clean" and "loupe clean" and i''m not sure how all of these compare.
Also, I think I am going to try and make a trip to new york to find my gem- can anyone recommend jewelers in the city that have good selection/prices? If you know anything about any Atlanta jewelers as well, I would appreciate that information.
Any other sapphire knowledge is also welcome. I have done quite a bit of looking and know what looks nice, but don''t know how much I should have to pay for what I want.

Thanks!
Laura
 

lacina

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 27, 2002
Messages
146
Hi Laura,
Sapphire is gem type 2 , therefore it is graded slightly diferently than diamond witch is graded as type one. There are many more factors to consider when grading Sapphire,.. Color purity, color intensity, Color satutation , zoning. banding etc. Cut and possible method of treatment used.
Sapphire besides colored diamond is my world and I can tell you that you can get OK Sapphire at 1.5 carat size, heat treated for $1000 from origins other than Burma, Ceylon , Kashnir or today even Madagascar... However you may get decent 2carat Ceylon Sapphire set in 18 K ring with Baguette diamonds for arround $2500.
Blue and pink sapphire prices went up within the last month or so in average by 25%. True Gem Quality is selling today for $1750-$3500 USD Wholesale. Kashmir origins up to $15000 Per carat.
Or on the other hand you can buy difuzed sapphire for $50 per carat.
Itis important to but from reputable dealer . Have your purchase checked out before you pay for it.
Best
George
GLE Gem imports
 

lauracofer

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 19, 2002
Messages
9
Why the sudden increase in prices? Do you expect this trend to continue?

As far as getting my purchase checked out, how to you recommend I do that? I am hoping to take a trip to New York this summer for maybe 3 days and buy my sapphire then- should I ensure that the gem is returnable and then take it to an independent appraiser?

Any more help is appreciated!
 

lacina

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 27, 2002
Messages
146
Yes,
the thend may continue , if the shortage of Gem quality Sapphire would continue,...The matket dictates it. Fortunalely the trend of today is more colored gems than diamonds and high end Blue Sapphire wich is being traditionaly used in engagement rings is very popular today..
Colored gems do not have the same stability in price as diamonds do, due to their limited availability.
New Yourk is a great place to buy Sapphire, because of large sellection.
The prices are never the best in NY , but the quality is very good.
Again, depending who you buy from,..


Best
George
 

kathishopping

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 13, 2002
Messages
55
hi,
does the thermally enhanced sapphire vs. not thermally enhanced sapphire play a factor in price? or is one's own personal color choice make the decision when buying a sapphire?
 

diamondsman

Brilliant_Rock
Trade
Joined
Nov 11, 2002
Messages
648
there is a very nice person in atlanta that will treat you right ,their name is :
i.s.l or ivan solomon , they are very nice and you will get the right price .
Try them out.

good luck
 

Beith

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 5, 2003
Messages
21
We just custom made a Blue Sapphire Ring for my mother-in-law on her 70th birthday. See details for price breakdown for the ring.

1) 2.96 ct. Blue Ceylon Sappire Center Stone: VS quality. We bought the stone from a wholesale dealer via our jeweler for $935. It was a gorgeous cornflower blue oval shape.
2) Two round brilliant side stones: .50 ct each, Color J, clarity VS. We bought this from our jeweler for $1065.
3) Platinum setting: $700 including setting the stone.

The total bill for the ring was $2700. It was very striking and made my mother-in-law a very happy lady. She took it back home to the Orient. I wished I could post the picture so everyone can see how beautiful that ring turned out. I truely regretted to have given the ring away as a gift.
I could not back out since we brought her along to see first hand the final product
It was worth it though to see the big contended smile on her face. We've always loved her and the ring shows in a small way our appreciation for everything she has done for us and our family.
 

lacina

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 27, 2002
Messages
146
Hi Beith,
Just want to comment on the price of Ceylon Sapphire. There is no way almost 3 carat ceylon can be sold for under $1000 unless it is of very undesirable quality or different origin. "Cornflower blue" is often used by sellers and it is supposed to describe the most attractive blue. However this color can not have too much of violet overtones , if it does, it would be inexpensive and the $300/ per carat is right price for it.
Attached picture shows great quality untreated Ceylon Blue Sapphire. Many dealers may call it cornfower ,.. however this gem would cost $3000+/carat wholesale.
Best
George
GLE imports

Resize of 207Ceylon.JPG
 

lauracofer

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 19, 2002
Messages
9
I was wondering if anyone can give me an estimate of the rough dimensions of a well-cut sapphire at 1 ct, 1.25ct and 1.5ct (mostly I am interested in oval or cushion cuts)? I am estimating that the top dimensions would be about 6mmx8mm for 1.25ct from what I have seen.

Also, I have heard that since sapphires are less dense than diamonds that they are actually a bit bigger in dimensions for the same carat weight in diamonds- is this true? Is there a significant difference? I also saw one website recently that said that sapphires are smaller per carat... so now i'm confused.

Here is a picture that I made of what I am thinking of trying for- just an amalgamation of existing ring designs that I have seen.
 

lacina

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 27, 2002
Messages
146
Hi Lauracofer,
Sapphire is heavier than diamond so it will look smaler thann diamond. Plus Sapphires are seldom cut the same way as diamond . The "Native" Cuts are cut for carat weight and everything else is secondary. Ceylon Sapphire often appears smaller than it is,... Some are cut with heawy bottom , some ate cut too shallow. Your 8X6 1.25 carat will most likely not have mych of brilliance , since it may be too shallow,or crown is too low... You may also be able to see large "window" witch appears lighter in centre of the stone. Tis not desirable for nice piece of jewelry. It is important to see the stone before you can judge it. The brilliance is very important. True, some 1.5 carat stones would look like 2 ct. and vice versa.
Very educational site on great Sapphire is www.cherrypicked.com . You will find all info you need I believe they are located in NY so you may get lucky to get a decent stone in your budget. If not Let me know
Best
George
 

Beith

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 5, 2003
Messages
21
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Attached picture shows great quality untreated Ceylon Blue Sapphire. Many dealers may call it cornfower ,.. however this gem would cost $3000+/carat wholesale.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hi George,
The color of the 2.96 ct Sapphire that we bought was very intense blue, no hints of purple hue; it is not far from the color in the picture that you posted. In order to develope an eye for a good colored sapphire, I spent a couple of days in the LA Jewelry District. I am pretty confident that I can spot the bad (lighter blues, purple hues, dead) from the good. However, I am the first to admit that I could not tell the very good from the very best since I could not consistently pick out the most expensive piece from the trays. The price range was between $600 to $1500 per carat from the semi retail-wholesale booths.

I could not tell if the stone is heat treated either but I assumed they all are. I believe heat treated is a widely used and general acceptable process in the industry and the color is permanant. I don't know the price difference between heat treated and unheated stone and I imagine it must be substantial.

After getting some limited experience in the semi retail booths, I went to a jeweler who specialized in diamonds brokerage and custom design. We've been doing business with him for a few years. He contacted his vendor sources and prescreened down to a dozen of stones and then we chose this one from the lot. I was very surprised at the price tag since I was expecting to pay a lot more for it. He was the one that used the term "cornflower" to describe the color of the stone.

The ring turned out to be gorgeous. I did not take the sapphire to an independent appraiser. I did not think it was worth the effort since the price was only $935.

I was never a big fan of gem stone especially sapphire. I have always liked diamonds and now, I have my eyes set on the fancy yellow. In that case, I wouldn't want the color the be enhanced or processed via HPHT. I appreciate that you answered both of my posts concerning the sapphires and the fancy yellow diamonds. Would you mind if I e-mail you concerning the fancy yellow diamonds? My local jeweler does not have any resource concerning these beauties.
 

niceice

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jan 29, 2003
Messages
1,792
Given your desired price range, another option you might consider is a Chatham Laboratory Grown Sapphire... We think that they are quite pretty and sell quite a few of them... In the Fine and Gem Quality they are quite beautiful and very affordable! Here's a picture of one that we recently set in a platinum knife edge setting with pear shape accents weighing about 0.30 carats total weight... The color is intense and beautiful... It will look a little different on your monitor than it will in-person because of variances in calibration and the lighting used to take the photograph but you get the idea... This ring is beyond the budget you have specified so please just focus on the color...

 

lacina

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 27, 2002
Messages
146
Hi Beith,
Let's say you were just lucky to get Sapphire close to my picture for $300 per carat,.. I wish I can buy it my self at at the same price!
Of course you can Email me in regards any colored stone,.. I would be more than Happy to help,..
Best Regards,
George
 

lauracofer

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 19, 2002
Messages
9
Well, looks like I may have to invest in the stone now and the setting later, if these are the prices for the size/quality I am hoping for. I am going to continue keeping my eye on cherrypicked.com as they looked to have some quite nice stones.

Another question: I have read that sapphires need to be deeper to have the same brilliance as a diamond because of the difference in their index of refraction. I have also read that this can cause problems if one wishes to set the sapphire in a setting made for diamonds. I have had my eye on some of the vatche settins (particularly the 3-stone truffle setting for a solitaire and the x-prong with channel set diamonds) Does anyone have any experience in setting sapphires in any of these settings?

--Laura
 

lacina

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 27, 2002
Messages
146
Hi Laura,

Just wanted to show you this stunning piece ,...
It is fresh out of our shop we used Trapezoid cut matching pair of yellow Ceylon Sapphire and Med / Strong Ceylon Blue Sapphire Radiant cut combination. Set in 19K white gold ,... You should see how it looks in person! Stunning! The stones are superbly cut . Cthe blue is 1.8 ct and the sides are .50 ct each.
Diamonds are always popular , in any color, however the Yellow sapphire brings the cost down for the setting and you still have a substantial side stones. This ring is of very good quality , ordered by local high end store Do you know how much they are selling them at retail?
$5800. Yu can have this one for $1900 + shipping
Best George

Resize of DSCN0233.JPG
 

innerkitten

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 1, 2003
Messages
5,623
I know I'm responding to this late but for a heat treated gem I don't think it would be as much right.
 

dimonbob

Brilliant_Rock
Trade
Joined
Dec 12, 2000
Messages
670
Sapphire buying can get very tricky. Just to list a few:
1) Sapphire and syn. sapphire doublets
2) Heat treated
3) Diffusion treated
4) Beryllium-Diffusion treated
5) Synthetic sapphires
6) Natural untreated sapphires
7) Location of mine
After you deal with all of the above then you have to know about the many subtle differences in color. The price of a 2ct blue sapphire (not Kashmir) can go from under $100/ct to over $4000/ct on color alone.

Someone asked what is Diffusion-Treatment. A near colorless, and near worthless, already faceted sapphire is heated above 1900 degrees C with a little coloring chemical. This results in a blue sapphire where the color is just in the thin outer layer of the stone. If it is chipped it will reveal the colorless nature of the inside of the stone. Diffusion-treatment is a stable treatment but it causes the sapphire to become brittle which will result in abraded facet junctions from everyday wear.
Be very careful when buying sapphires. You might need a little help!
 

Fancy

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 13, 2003
Messages
146
George/lacina

Do you have a web site?

I am looking to have stack rings made, very thin, 2mm each, with the colored saphires either channel set or prong set, one ring in blue, one in pink, one in yellow. Do you know anyone who makes this? Do you? Since the saphires will be so small, do I have to educate myself about saphires in depth, or am I just looking for something that sparkles?
 
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