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Engagement ring purchase
Old 03-04-2017, 11:32 AM   #1
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Engagement ring purchase

Not for me, as I have been down that road before, but...

My daughter and boyfriend are wanting to shop an engagement ring for her (Yes!!). It's been a long time since I paid too much for the same and was wondering if anyone here has suggestions/experience as to where to buy a moderately priced ring? The kids have asked me for advice.

I know diamond purchases are not necessarily investments and this would not be viewed as such.

A friend recommended Costco. Thoughts?

Other avenues to explore?

Thanks!
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Old 03-04-2017, 11:35 AM   #2
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Is there any chance that there is a heirloom ring somewhere in the family that could be passed down?

Otherwise, I find it hard to go wrong with Costco. I have heard many positive discussions re: beautiful cubic zirconia that are available online as well. I think several threads over at Bogleheads.
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Old 03-04-2017, 11:39 AM   #3
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Decades ago, the DeBeers syndicate advertised heavily to convince everyone that you should spend two months salary on a diamond engagement ring. That meme worked extremely well for a long time.

Young folks today are quickly getting over that and generally don't see it as all that important any more. Something completely different is often the mark. Even a diamond in the ring isn't as important as it used to be -- another stone works just as well for many.

Costco would be about as good a place to shop as any, IMHO.
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Old 03-04-2017, 11:54 AM   #4
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We have bought several beautiful antique/vintage jewelry items from this outfit. They carry items priced from less than $1,000 to $1 million.

Of course you have to be able to deal with the fact that you're wearing some dead person's old jewelry!

www.grayandsons.com
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Old 03-04-2017, 11:57 AM   #5
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Markup is tremendously high on Diamonds. This is one of those purchases that I just had to find a comfortable number to spend in correlation with the size and clarity of the Diamond.

A 3/4 carat is significantly less than 1 Carat and you could get a setting that accents the Diamond.

I might try Blue Nile dot com and compare prices versus retail stores. Or, look up Estate Sales dot net for estate sales in the area you live. I'd contact companies that were listing the estate sales and ask them to steer you in a direction for a reasonably priced engagement ring.

Michael
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Old 03-04-2017, 11:59 AM   #6
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My son got his on the internet worked out well for him, can not remember the site but will ask him and post later
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Old 03-04-2017, 12:03 PM   #7
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Plus, synthetic [but chemically "real"] diamonds are getting better and cheaper all the time and who's to know?

WD Lab Grown Diamonds


Quote:
Originally Posted by braumeister View Post
Decades ago, the DeBeers syndicate advertised heavily to convince everyone that you should spend two months salary on a diamond engagement ring. That meme worked extremely well for a long time.

Young folks today are quickly getting over that and generally don't see it as all that important any more. Something completely different is often the mark. Even a diamond in the ring isn't as important as it used to be -- another stone works just as well for many.

Costco would be about as good a place to shop as any, IMHO.
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Old 03-04-2017, 12:23 PM   #8
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Here are my tips:

1) Don't pay for color above G
2) Buy at close to 1.00K as you can get, but not 1.00 or above. 0.99K is perfect. There is a 20% markup to get to 1.00K
3) Always, Always ask to see the "Rap sheet". Negotiate for 15-20% below Rap sheet number for your specific color/clarity. Just asking to see the rap sheet will let them know that you are an educated buyer and can't be taken advantage of. If you don't know what the rap sheet is...do some research on google
4) Never buy a mounted diamond (they hide all the flaws with the mount). Buy a loose diamond and have it mounted at a reputable jeweler.
5) Enjoy the process, hopefully it's a once in a lifetime experience.
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Old 03-04-2017, 01:02 PM   #9
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Give them the info they asked for and step back. This is a decision for them to make. And congratulations in advance on the upcoming big day.
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Old 03-04-2017, 01:57 PM   #10
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Thanks for all the tips and suggestions.

They will have lots of work to do. I believe my daughter obtained her grandmother's wedding ring set after she passed. I like the idea of using a heirloom diamond and having it reset. I'll have to see if she likes that idea.
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Old 03-04-2017, 02:10 PM   #11
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My suggestion is for them to look in pawn shops, small old jewelry stores operated by the jeweler, and similar places that might sell used rings. And go to the cheap ones first; remember some of us with stars in our eyes tend to fall in love with the first ring we see.

Back in the Dark Ages, my ex and I decided to marry. I already had a nice 1/2 carat diamond engagement ring, left to me by my grandmother in her will. My ex and I went to a pawn shop in downtown Meridian, Mississippi (where we were living at the time), and bought a couple of nice, used, gold bands. Mine had an intricate pattern on it that was very similar to what was on my engagement ring. His was plain.

We paid $20 for mine, $10 for his. So, our grand total for rings was $30.

Both rings from the pawn shop were gold of sufficient karat that we never had green fingers. Mine was fairly thin but lasted for 23 years without breaking.
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Old 03-04-2017, 02:22 PM   #12
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They won't go wrong at Costco. DS bought his fisncee's ring through https://www.bluenile.com while DD's was from a traditional jewelry store. We parents werren't told anything about it.
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Old 03-04-2017, 02:40 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amethyst View Post
Of course you have to be able to deal with the fact that you're wearing some dead person's old jewelry!
All my life I've been breathing air that was previously, (in part), exhaled by (now) dead people and long dead people......what's a little jewelry compared to that?
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Old 03-04-2017, 02:59 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aja8888 View Post
Not for me, as I have been down that road before, but...



My daughter and boyfriend are wanting to shop an engagement ring for her (Yes!!). It's been a long time since I paid too much for the same and was wondering if anyone here has suggestions/experience as to where to buy a moderately priced ring? The kids have asked me for advice.



I know diamond purchases are not necessarily investments and this would not be viewed as such.



A friend recommended Costco. Thoughts?



Other avenues to explore?



Thanks!


I recently shopped for diamonds and I find jamesallen.com to be unmatched for price, quality and service. They will send you you the diamond to look at after having an expert evaluate two or three of your selections. You get a nice 3D image of the exact diamond on line.
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Old 03-04-2017, 03:31 PM   #15
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My SO has been dropping hints and linking diamond information sites for the last few months now. I'm not the most environmentally conscious person on the planet, but that's one industry with a monopoly that's just so terrible all around that I told her I won't be getting any kind of mined diamond.

It seems that while zirconia can be initially far, far cheaper, it's porous enough that it loses that shine quickly. Also it's soft enough that it can get beat up easily.

Moissanite seems to be a really good substitute. Has very similar makeup to a diamond from color to shine to hardness. Everything I've looked at, this seems to be where the best value for money spent lies.

Synthetic diamonds are another avenue worth walking down and seeings what's available. I just haven't found anything that's appreciably less than the cost of a real diamond.

I've seen gorgeous wedding rings with gemstones.
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Old 03-04-2017, 03:42 PM   #16
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Of course you have to be able to deal with the fact that you're wearing some dead person's old jewelry!
I have a few antique pieces. I tell people they've been in the family for years. I just don't know whose family.

I've also heard Costco is good and like bluenile.com, where I've bought side diamonds for a few rings. Bluenile.com has great "sliders" that let you choose a color, cut, clarity, etc. grade and you can see how the price range shifts. Good education regardless of where you buy.

My engagement ring has a pink topaz as the center stone. I love the look of a colored center stone. It's cheaper (unless you get an emerald, which is too brittle IMO to set in a ring) and it's not like everybody else's ring.

Speaking of which...style is up to them (especially the woman who's going to wear it) but they're REALLY pushing the rings with a "halo" of tiny diamonds around the center stone and around the band. The industry cartel must have decided this was a profitable way to sell lots of the smaller ones. In a decade this is going to look dated, and I'd rather see them get a better center stone.
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Old 03-04-2017, 03:43 PM   #17
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Alternate gemstones are another option. Your daughter could consider a ruby or a sapphire instead of a diamond. These are actually rarer than diamonds, don't have the deBeers market distortion, and are probably less environmentally and ethically damaging.
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Old 03-04-2017, 03:49 PM   #18
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My own engagement ring from 1972 is a very dark blue sapphire surrounded by little diamonds in a yellow gold setting. It was much cheaper than a diamond back then. I love it for me.
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Old 03-04-2017, 03:56 PM   #19
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My own engagement ring from 1972 is a very dark blue sapphire surrounded by little diamonds in a yellow gold setting. It was much cheaper than a diamond back then. I love it for me.
My wife's engagement ring is a ruby in a white gold setting. It's lovely, it was cheaper than a diamond, it's more unusual, and most important she loves it.
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Old 03-04-2017, 04:02 PM   #20
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My son got his on the internet worked out well for him, can not remember the site but will ask him and post later
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