Many people believe it’s risky to buy a diamond without seeing it.
However, it is possible to buy a high-quality diamond online by making your purchase with a reputable online jeweler. These jewelers offer images, and videos, of their products, along with detailed descriptions, so you know what you’re buying. Reputable online jewelers provide certification for their diamonds.
A reputable jeweler will offer personalized customer service and a money-back guarantee. The major online retailers buy stones in higher volumes than your local jewelry stores. This allows the online retailers the ability to negotiate aggressively, according to Michael Bisceglia, the president of the catalog and online jewelry retailer, Stauer. Also, their prices are lower since they don’t have overhead costs such as a retail location and salesperson commissions.
When you shop online, you can get a great stone that fits your budget and choose the setting rather than limit yourself to what your jewelry store has in stock, according to Alastair Smith, the author of How to Buy an Engagement Ring. If you’re strategic about selecting the color, cut, clarity, and carat, you can get a bargain on an impressive diamond.
Here are some things you need to know before you buy diamonds online to get the best price:
Stick with a Reputable Retailer
The largest online diamond and jewelry retailer is Blue Nile. However, there are plenty of reputable jewelry retailers, including Whiteflash, James Allen, and B2C Jewels. Before you buy from any online jewelry retailer, the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) recommends you check out the jeweler.
You should find out how long the company’s been in business, look at the shipping and return policy, read online reviews, and see if they belong to any jewelry trade association. These associations have strict requirements when it comes to service and quality. Reputable retailers provide certification for the stones they sell. Although some independent labs provide gem analysis and grading, Smith says, GIA certification is preferred.
Consider Buying Shapes Other Than Round
Diamonds come in nine common shapes. All these shapes have a huge price saving over the round cut, according to Smith. For example, an oval diamond costs about 25 to 30 percent less than a round cut diamond. Asscher cut diamonds are 35 to 40 percent less. So, by choosing a shape other than round, you can save money without sacrificing on size.
Watch the Weight
Diamond weights are measured in carats. Smith says, most people want to buy a 1 carat engagement ring. However, if you want to save money, you can go slightly smaller. To the untrained eye, you can’t tell the difference between a 0.97 carat diamond and a 1 carat diamond, but the slightly smaller diamond will case almost 10 percent less. So, when you’re shopping online, compare the various weights.
Clarity measures the number of natural flaws or inclusions in a diamond. You pay more for an internally flawless (IF) diamond. If you opt for a diamond with a slightly lower clarity grade, such as a slightly Included (SI1) stone, Smith says, you can get a diamond that does not have obvious flaws but costs 30 percent less that the so-called flawless gem.
Compromise on Color
A diamond’s color refers to its saturation and tone. The whiter or, the clearer a diamond is, the more it costs. The color scale ranges from colorless (graded D) to brownish or yellowish in color (graded Z). You pay the most for diamonds that are graded D through F. By choosing a diamond with a G through I grade, you’ll save money, but according to Smith, you won’t see a noticeable difference in the color.
Don’t Skimp on Cut
You can save if you opt for a lower color grade, lower clarity grade, and slightly lower weight. Smith says you should opt for the best cut. The cut is the diamond’s proportion. This determines how well the diamond reflects light. The cut scale can range from poor to excellent.
Some people sacrifice cut to get a larger size. According to Smith poorly cut diamonds will appear dull. After all, the whole point of having a diamond is to have sparkle.
Buying a man’s wedding band is not the same as buying his engagement ring.
In fact, it’s a whole different ball game. It may surprise you to know the options available for groom’s rings, especially when it comes to styles and materials.
There’s no reason to fear the unknown. However, trying to determine which ring to choose is a matter of learning the basics of men’s jewelry. Here’s a quick guide to choosing a man’s wedding band.
Choose the Right Men’s Wedding Band Material
Women’s engagement rings and unique mens wedding bands are usually made from traditional metals like platinum or gold. However, men’s wedding bands can be somewhat more adventurous. Some of the enduring options are precious metals like palladium, platinum, and gold. You might also choose contemporary materials like ceramics, cobalt chrome, tungsten, and titanium. These materials are increasingly affordable and popular choices.
Men’s gold wedding bands are commonly found in white, yellow, and rose-colored 10K, 14K, and 18K gold. The more expensive the band, the higher the karat purity, which means that it contains a higher percentage of pure gold.
Platinum wedding rings are the height of luxury. Because of the rarity of the metal, this is the most expensive option. Platinum offers a lustrous white metal, a classic appearance, and solid durability.
Platinum rings have a unique feature. While it’s not stretch-resistant, it will not use the surface volume when it’s scratched, the material is just moved around on the ring’s surface. Be aware that the platinum wedding ring will develop an “antiqued” patina in time.
Palladium is a precious metal that was initially used for a high-quality allow for white gold. Over the last 60-years, palladium has come into its own. This is a member of the platinum group metals (PGMs), palladium shares the gleaming white metal appearance of a significantly lower cost.
This durable, lightweight metal is an excellent choice for men who don’t like wearing jewelry. Titanium is most often seen as a natural gunmetal grey or black color. It’s available in three purity grades: aircraft grade, commercially pure, and extra-hard. Men’s wedding rings are available in all these grades and colors.
Tungsten, like titanium, is commonly seen in the natural industrial gunmetal grey color, but that where the similarities end. Tungsten, or more accurately tungsten carbide, is weighty and extremely hard, scratch resistant metal. It is also available in white and black. It’s important to note that tungsten rings can crack if it is slammed against a “hard enough” surface. So, this metal is not a good choice for a man who works with his hands.
This metal, an allow of cobalt and chromium, is one of the fastest rising stars in the materials market. Cobalt chrome offers many of the benefits of modern material including a classic white metal appearance that comparable to white gold or platinum. Cobalt chrome is hypoallergenic and durable. Unlike many other contemporary materials, cobalt chrome is resizable.
Most ceramic men’s wedding bands are black and have an alternative look. Don’t let the name ceramic, fool you. Ceramic jewelry is made from titanium carbide. This is incredibly hardy despite its light weight.
Men’s Wedding Band Style
Men’s wedding bands are available in a myriad of styles. However, there are two basic designations when it comes to wedding bands: contemporary and traditional. Each of these two styles offers many designs, so it’s a good idea to determine which styles suit your tastes best. Bear in mind, traditional rings offer a classic look while a contemporary ring is more modern.
To narrow your search, you want to think about the type of finish you prefer for a wedding band. The surface treatment of the ring is the finish. The most common finishes are polished, brushed, and satin. Some of the less frequently seen finishes are swirled, sandblasted, and hammered.
The Fit of a Man’s Wedding Band
A man’s wedding ring is found in two interior fits: comfort and traditional. The tradition is based on the older type of fit, which has a squared off the interior. The comfort fit was most recently developed using the additional material on the interior band for a rounded fit that puts less pressure on the man’s finger. Most men will prefer the fit of a comfort band. However, this type of band is more expensive. The tradition band is generally less expensive because it uses less material.
While there are several options available when it comes to men’s wedding bands. This may make choosing a ring seems like a daunting task. But it doesn’t need to be difficult. All you need to do is take a logical approach to select your wedding band which will greatly help in thinning out the field.
Your first step needs to be setting a budget. Then you will be able to see which materials are available within your price range. Next, you can determine which materials, styles, fits, and finishes you prefer. After you narrow down your choices, you need to let your heart lead you to the perfect wedding band.
Pear Dhaped Diamond Earrings Fetch $17.6M In Christie’s Auction
On Tuesday, a pair of diamond earrings fetched 17.57 million Swiss francs (17.6 million dollars including fees) at auction at Christie’s. The pear-shaped earrings were assessed an even higher value before sale; this suggests that the famous auction house might have erred in reading the sales potential of the jewelry.
The magnificent earrings made up one of the most attractive lots in the “Magnificent Jewels” auction in Geneva. Total sales equaled roughly $97 million, which was at the upper limit of the expected return despite a few individually-disappointing sales.
The earrings were known as the “Miroir de l’Amour” or “Mirror of Love” set. According to the 250-year-old Christie’s, these earrings contained the world’s largest, highest-quality (D / Flawless) pear-shaped diamonds. Each stone weighed over 50 karats.
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The hammer price for the white diamond earrings was 15.5 million Swiss francs. Pre-auction estimates pegged the set’s likely sale price at 20 to 30 million francs. While the buyer was stated to be a “collector,” his or her identity was not revealed.
Several of the lots in the sale fell short of the minimum price set by Christie’s. Rahul Kadakia, the auctioneer in charge, announced each of these items as “passed” when he brought the hammer down.
According to Kadakia, the overall pre-sale estimate for the “Magnificent Jewels” sale was 80 to 100 million francs, and Christie’s was happy with the results. Kadakia said he was pleased to see some of the sale’s best pieces – colored stones, a large pink diamond, a big necklace, and assorted emeralds, rubies, and pearls – bring excellent prices.
While the final sale price of the earrings was below Christie’s estimate, Kadakia noted that the price per karat was “exceptionally healthy” and in line with current market values.
A diamond ring featuring a pink, pear-shaped stone of 9.14 karats sold for $18.2 million. The hammer price of the piece was $16 million with the additional cost being the result of fees. This price was within the pre-sale estimate.
According to Christie’s the distinctive coloration of the gem was its key selling point. The vibrant pink color was graded as “Fancy Vivid” by the Gemological Institute of America. The GIA bestows the “fancy” classification on only one out of every 100,000 diamonds.
The ring went to a private collector in Asia according to Kadakia.
Other highlights of the auction included a Van Cleef and Arpels bracelet featuring rubies and diamonds that sold for nearly $1.31 million. This was more than twice what the auction house estimated it would sell for, drawing applause from the attendant crowd when the sale was closed.
Beverly Clark loves diamonds! Her signature style makes her an expert in jewelry. If you want to know the who, what, were, why and how of all things diamond and jewelry, then read on! Barbara Clark reviews diamond and jewelry online. Follow her recommendations for consumer guidance when looking to buy engagement rings, wedding sets and anniversary jewelry.