I2-I3 stones in wedding band?

posted 3 years ago in Rings
Post # 3
1261 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

I would see the band you are going to buy in person first before buying….sometimes that clarity can be ok because the diamonds are small. I would never buy them online though. My RHR has small pave set diamonds on the halo and band that are I1 and they look great, so for a wedding band I think you would be fine, but see them in person first..just my suggestion.


Post # 4
236 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

You really shouldn’t have to sacrifice quality on the smaller diamonds – just to be totally honest – the “melee” or small diamonds they use on most of the wedding bands as accent are not particularly valuable. With the prices they put on these bands it makes it appear the diamonds are the reason for the price, but that’s not true. The gold used in the bands is more costly than the small diamonds.

Looking up currently buying rates for melee diamonds (Go here to see full page: http://gemstoneworld.com/jewlshop/diamonds/diamurnd.htm)You can see you are basically paying $10 a pop for each small diamond – unless they start climbing in size but still the price isn’t huge and these are not ‘wholesale rates” that jewlers get – they get them even cheaper than this. You can be the judge and compare what you are looking at to the prices listed.

I say all this just to point out you shouldn’t be paying a significantly higher prices for good quality melee diamonds in a setting.  It’s usually a marketing gimic of the chain stores.  You might be better off looking other places, I don’t generally trust the mall chain jewelry stores.  It seems so many of their stones – even center stones – are I2-3 or worse. If you ask them about it they try to tell you “clarity is not that big of a deal as long as its a good cut” (Ha. that’s a lie. Take a poor clarity stone to sell to the same jeweler and see how the tune changes on the clarity issue.)

All that said, when the stones go below a certain size its pretty much a moot point. If they look good to you in person then that’s all that matters.

ROUND BRILLIANT CUT to .33 carats.

Round Brilliant Diamonds to .33 carats, Top White, VS Clarity, G – I Color.

CutAppx. WeightClarityAvg Size MMPrice Each


.005 ct



US $6.50


.008 ct



US $10.50


.011 ct



US $14.50


.015 ct



US $19.50

Post # 5
298 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

@jenniferleighh:  I actually ordered this ring from Zales a while back as a stacking band. However the diamonds were cloudy, yellow and some were dead. I promptly returned it. I would highly advise spending a bit more money and getting higher quality stones for your wedding bands. Or for $300 you could get something decent online. For example Lord of Gem Rings on ebay has great prices and good quality. Many bees have used them for wedding bands. I ordered a stacking band and upgraded the stone quality, it is very nice. They have some thin rose gold bands for around $300. Good Luck!!

Post # 6
528 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

@jenniferleighh:  I am of the mind set that you’re engagement and wedding rings are something you’ll wear forever and taking the discount in price now may not always pay off in the end. Cheaper quality jewelry won’t always hold up for 10, 20, 40 years. I’m not saying to break the bank, but I think quality wins over quantity every time, especially in fine jewelry. 

If you are concerned about the quality of a diamond make sure it is independently certified. GIA and EGL are the most reliable diamond labs. Diamonds that are graded in-house (at Kay and Jared, especially) will use the same terminology as other diamond labs (H color, VVS1 clarity, etc), but they fudge the results basically. In other words, they can sell diamonds that they rank as say an H color, SI1 clarity that the GIA (most reputable) would rank as K color and I2 clarity. It sounds sketchy, but I’ve seen it happen.

I2 and I3 diamonds can easily have visible flaws. I am not saying not to buy them, just to carefully inspect the stones yourself and make sure you are satisfied with their quality before purchasing. After all, it is your ring and you are the one who should be happy with it. 🙂

I think if you can afford one nice quality band or two lesser quality bands, go with quality, but that’s me. I think you should do what you’re most comfortable with. Plus, no one is going to be looking at your ring under magnification so if one of your small diamonds has a flaw, no one will notice. 

Post # 7
2738 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

I bought this band, with I2/I3 clarity, and the stones look grey! It’s not my wedding band but I stack it with other rings. I got a different rose gold band at another jeweler’s for $500 and it’s much whiter!!

I would save up for something better but perhaps shop for something less than $950. 🙂

It looks fine in pics but it’s a dark diamond band:

My higher quality band:

Post # 9
5391 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2014

@MirnaMinkoff:  This.

OP: At those sizes, diamonds cost next to nothing. I have a 0.66TCW cluster and the difference in cost between F-G VS2s and D-E VVS1s was just $410; so, negligible. It isn’t like larger stones where the difference can be quite considerable.

I’m in the UK, so this may not apply (though from looking at posts on here it seems jewellery is much more expensive in the UK than it is in the States), but I’m having a custom-made minimum 0.25tcw band with D VVS1 stones in platinum, which looks to be thicker and heavier than the rings you linked to, for £950/$1400. Now obviously that is way more but a) it is custom-made b) it is thick and heavy c) the stones are very good quality and d) it is platinum which is pretty expensive. So, I’d consider either shopping around, or contacting an indpendent jeweller and seeing what they can do for you.

Post # 10
201 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

@jenniferleighh:  I know I’m late coming to this post, but I thought I’d still volunteer my 2 cents! Unfortunately, your link just takes me to the general Zales site, so I can’t see the band you were looking at. My wedding band has i1-i2 stones. It was less than $400, 14k rose gold, approx. 1.8mm thick, 0.53 carats, G/H color. Personally, I love it, and I would not hesitate to get another band with the same stats. There is one diamond that is visibly “grayer” than the rest but since it’s a full eternity band (diamonds go all the way around) I just make sure that one is toward my palm. 

You can see the dark stone near the right. Weird lighting, but it normally sparkles more… it was the only halfway decent shot of the darker stone I could get. (Also could be because this is the side that normally faces my palm, and I need to clean it.)

Post # 11
2782 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

@jenniferleighh:  Here’s my take on wedding band stones- once they get to be a certain size- I’d be a little more picky about clarity.  But as long as they are cut well and don’t look like salt rocks- they should still be beautiful.  I have I1 stones in my band (you can even see a small carbon spot- and long story short I still love this band so much I went chasing it all over town and getting one without a carbon spot)- no one else will be able to see my carbon spot though- and it still sparkles.  My band is 1/5 tcw- because it was truly the ONLY band I fell in love with- I wanted it.  I figure if I wanted to- I could always get the diamonds replaced later.  But I don’t see why I’d want to do that.

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