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The Battle Royale- PLEASE PROVIDE INPUTS!

Marshalls

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 2, 2011
Messages
51
Mark called and introduced a new stone to me:
1.51 ct G VS2 Antique Cushion
Depth: 68%, Table 50%, Polish/Symmetry = Excellent/Excellent, Florescence = none, Culet= Large, Ratio = 1.00
Price: $10,350 for stone + $2600 for setting = $12,950 Total

Pro: G Colored, double Excellent on polish/symmetry, and perfect 1.0 ratio.
Con: Stone is slightly pricier which would force me to go with Mark on the setting too if I wanted Mark's stone when I like Leon's setting more.

Heres is a picture and video of the stone:

1.51GVS2.jpg

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7KHaMOZXWD0

How do you think this ring compares to Leon's stone + setting? Its down to the last 2, LEON VS MARK! :errrr:

By the way, I have not seen this stone in person but from the picture, it looks decent.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
58,233
Now how are we going to compare this stone to Leon's when we don't have a picture of it? Is the Leon stone on his site?

This stone is gorgeous and I love it, but I'd rather have a Leon or Steven setting.
 

slg47

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
9,667
since you saw the Leon stone in person and liked it, that would be my choice.
 

Marshalls

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 2, 2011
Messages
51
slg47|1305670047|2924250 said:
since you saw the Leon stone in person and liked it, that would be my choice.

I like this and I think we're going to try to do it the safe way and go with Leon's stone plus setting... although this stone is better, the setting still plays a big part and its impossible get the best of both worlds... theres always a better stone out there at a higher price.
 

Marshalls

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 2, 2011
Messages
51
Has anyone actually bought Mark's micropave e-ring? How good is his work? He really wants to win my business... he just offered me full lifetime upgrade for both the diamond AND the setting so long as the next item bought is over 40% of the previous price.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
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Jan 11, 2006
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58,233
I can't imagine wanting to trade in this ring. I can see wanting to get another ring, but won't this one be an heirloom? It certainly will be a special ring!

I think you need to decide whether this diamond is better than the other one. I think it is a great diamond, but I am not so sure whether I would like it in a halo setting with the super high crown. It won't really have a Harry Winston look. I'd probably put that stone in one of the Jewels by Erica Grace settings or one like Haven just had made. It would be great in a Van Craeynest setting, too. I think it needs an antique style setting, personally. Of course, I haven't seen Leon's diamond, so it is hard to comment on which one would be best for the setting you want.
 

slg47

Ideal_Rock
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Apr 4, 2010
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9,667
my vote is still for the Leon--your GF saw it and liked it the best!
 

Laila619

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Apr 28, 2008
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11,676
From what I've seen on PS, Mark's settings are gorgeous!
 

CharmyPoo

Ideal_Rock
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Dec 10, 2004
Messages
7,007
If it were me, I would get the ERD cushion - better color and specs. But the setting is also important so I would be getting either the Leon Mege or Steven Kirsch setting. Unless you can work something out with Mark - ask him to use his best bench that does hand forged work - he has a person that used to work for Van Craeynest. See what the price is. I personally do not believe that Mark's standard CAD/CAST can be compared to Leon.
 

Marshalls

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 2, 2011
Messages
51
Mark has already told me this ring would not be cast and would definitely be handmade from the ground up! However, its just a tossup between Leon's setting and Mark's stone. Which one would outweigh the other? It is impossible to have both because it is out of my budget and also Mark does not want to sell this particular stone to Leon. He is giving me this deal to work with him alone. I believe the same goes for Leon too.
 

jsb1976

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 7, 2011
Messages
53
Just a quick question, does your price quoted from LM include the 10% sale he is offering on his website? If not, this may knock a bit more off your total.
 

Marshalls

Rough_Rock
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May 2, 2011
Messages
51
It does include the sale discount already. That is why its lower than the normal $4000. Leon does play games and he is pretty strict on his prices, negotiation was really difficult but I appreciate the prices he has given me already.
 

Marshalls

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 2, 2011
Messages
51
Here is the pavework Mark sent me:


My gf has several concerns about the setting:
1) Although Mark tells me its handmade, I am not sure it is since everyone on PS tells me ERD uses CAD/Cast.
2) GF wants micropave that doesn't stick out(but not all the way around the ring) with fishtail/cutdown/v cut style
3) The Box/Basket below the halo needs to be curved inwards.
4) Thinner band- approximately 1.5-1.6mm or so.


ERD%201.jpg

ERD%202.jpg

ERD%203.jpg


By the way, I do believe Mark or someone from ERD is also following this thread... I'm not sure if Leon is though... Its a bit awkward knowing they are reading this too...
 

mrssalvo

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Messages
19,132
I'd still go with the Leon stone and setting. Your GF saw it and loved it. Pricing is all about the same so just go with the one she wants :))
 

CharmyPoo

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 10, 2004
Messages
7,007
Images are not showing up. Mark/Chris may be reading this but I am sure other vendors are too.

1. His work shown on PS has been CAD/CAST but this doesn't mean he can't use a handmade bench too. However, as it seems there are different interpretations to the definition of handmade. Is it cast and then hand finished therefore handmade? Or is it fully hand forged a la Victor C. I mean afterall even Leon and Steven Kirsch has been called to question whether or not they are fully handmade.

2. What does it mean to have micropave that doesn't stick out? Cutdown and V-Cut is different. Cutdown creates little Us and V-Cut have deep Vs that take away more metal. My Leon ring is cutdown but my Maytal ring is v-cut. Fishtail is like v-cut. Harry Winston uses v-cut but I think I like cutdown better.

3. Leon and Steven both do this really well - the curved stems. I know Mark has also done this before as well as JbEG. From what I have seen though, the flow of Leon and Steven's work is better and more delicate. Difference is not huge.

4. My rings are both 1.5 mm but others feel it is dangerous.

5. I would seriously consider the ERD diamond as a 1.00 ratio makes a huge difference. For me, I was not even able to accept a 1.04 ratio as it looked too rectangular .. heck ... I wouldn't even accept a 1.01. Then I would still want a Leon setting but Leon is likely not going to take your work if you don't buy the diamond from him. Steven Kirsch would. I would just pay more to have it all ... throw the budget out the door :razz:
 

Marshalls

Rough_Rock
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May 2, 2011
Messages
51
CharmyPoo|1305688718|2924526 said:
I would just pay more to have it all ... throw the budget out the door :razz:

If I can do this, I would have just bought a real HW halo... haha!

We looked at the 1.06 and it looks fine because the slightly longer shape makes the ring look bigger than the complete 1.00 ratio.
Given the stone is very nice looking, we don't intend to sell/upgrade the ring in the near future so I think we're still going with Leon because we have seen his ring and we know we like it... although I trust Mark's stone picks, I am a little worried on the setting. Without such assurance, I don't know if I want to bet $13,000 on a picture that says the final product MIGHT look like the HW halo.

To be honest, if we had seen Mark's work and the stone while we were in NYC, things might be different but since we do not know, we can only go by what we have seen... to be on the safe side- aka Leon.
 

mrssalvo

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
19,132
I can see the pictures and Mark's ring looks nice. I wish there was a shot of the basket/underwires b/c that is one spot where I prefer curves over straight.

I think you made the right choice. I don't mind a cushion that not a perfect 1.00 either.
 

BHMom

Rough_Rock
Joined
Apr 21, 2011
Messages
51
Marshalls, have you contacted Victor Canera? I had him do do my ring HW inspired reset. Here's a blog post about it: https://www.pricescope.com/blog/jewel-week-harry-winston-inspired-halo-diamond-ring
Although my center is a round (maybe finances will allow for a cushion in the future;-) he did an amazing job and yes his rings are 100% "casting free" is the term he uses in his e-mails. I thought this page on his site was very informative and helped me make my decision: http://www.victorcanera.com/hand-forged
I can't really speak about the other vendors mentioned here but I have seen actual Harry Winston rings that my own ring is inspired off of. I feel that the Victor's workmanship is a step above HW. Your girlfriend is going to be one happy gal!
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
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At some point you just have to make a decision, and that is a reasonable decision considering the information you have.

I will say something on Mark's behalf, though, and that is if he says the ring will be handmade, I have no reason to think he would not be telling you the truth. I think it would have helped if you could have seen a sample ring while you were there.

And one more comment in case Mark or someone from his store is reading. Mark picks the most incredible antique cushions! I feel like all the videos we've seen in this and other threads in the last couple of days show that he has access to and can pick outstanding stones. In fact, I had only wanted an AVC before now, but I am seeing that the prices on some of Mark's are more possible. So I have benefited from seeing all these stones because now I will refer people to look at AVC's and Mark's stones if they want an antique cushion. I'd buy d. from him tomorrow if I had the spare $$$. ;(

I think Mark's real challenge is to be able to do some handmade halo settings for a PriceScoper or two so we can see if his can compete with Leon and Steven.

I have to make one more comment to you, though. Please don't make the shank less than 1.8mm. There have been problems with pave shank rings that are too thin and we have discussed this at length on here because there HAVE been some problems with some of Leon's more delicate rings. So I am forewarning you not to go too thin.
 

CharmyPoo

Ideal_Rock
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Marshalls|1305689486|2924537 said:
If I can do this, I would have just bought a real HW halo... haha!
On the contry for me, I would still go the path I have done. I feel that I can get a better ring outside than going to Harry Winston. Heck, I wouldn't be too happy with the HW design but the only thing I will have going is the brand name and the resell value.
 

CharmyPoo

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 10, 2004
Messages
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diamondseeker2006|1305690442|2924552 said:
In fact, I had only wanted an AVC before now, but I am seeing that the prices on some of Mark's are more possible. So I have benefited from seeing all these stones because now I will refer people to look at AVC's and Mark's stones if they want an antique cushion. I'd buy d. from him tomorrow if I had the spare $$$. ;(

I have been itching to get a "generic" cushion over what I have. There is just something about the look that is different but I can't go through the whole process again with yet another cushion. I still want my OEC!
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
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CharmyPoo|1305692239|2924575 said:
diamondseeker2006|1305690442|2924552 said:
In fact, I had only wanted an AVC before now, but I am seeing that the prices on some of Mark's are more possible. So I have benefited from seeing all these stones because now I will refer people to look at AVC's and Mark's stones if they want an antique cushion. I'd buy d. from him tomorrow if I had the spare $$$. ;(

I have been itching to get a "generic" cushion over what I have. There is just something about the look that is different but I can't go through the whole process again with yet another cushion. I still want my OEC!

Lol!!! I can totally relate!!! You're ahead of me, though, because you have that gorgeous AVC!!! :love: (And while I'm at it, I'll say that I like your setting better than a halo for antique style cushions, too!)
 

Marshalls

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 2, 2011
Messages
51
Conclusion:

I went with Leon's Stone/Setting and GCAL as the appraiser. This might not have been the BEST approach but it was the safest one given how we did not see Mark's setting and that specific stone. Had we seen Mark's work, the story might be different. Its obvious one of those "the path not taken" situations....

GCAL Report will be uploaded by this afternoon... please critique the results once its here!
 
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