Post # 1
I’ve posted about this before, but I’m lucky enough to be with someone who has a large family diamond, purchased in the 1930s by his great-grandmother from family friends who had fallen on hard times during the Great Depression. The diamond itself is a 1.6 carat “transitional cut” (so not an OEC, but not quite a modern round brilliant either, but something in between) and it’s in great shape, no scratches or large inclusions, although colorwise it’s pretty far down the scale (as is typical with older diamonds — I don’t care, and love it character and history.) It’s currently in six prong, knife edge solitiaire setting, which is not to my taste, so we are looking to have it reset.
Anyway, my question is this: is there anything I should be mindful of in selecting a setting? I know I want a solitiare (the stone is big enough that I think a halo would overwhelm my size 5.5 finger.) I don’t want to leave the diamond “exposed.” I’d hate to be the one after nearly 100 years who chips it! Am I just being overly paranoid? Or should I look for something with more metalwork or basket embelishment to keep the diamond protected?
Here’s the stone in it’s current setting:
Post # 2
it’s beautiful!! As long as there arnt any chips or cracks then it’s no more at risk then a diamond that was cut more recently. So do whatever you want with it, just make sure you find a trusted jeweler that will guarantee in writing the replacement of the stone if it were to crack upon setting (this can happen to any diamond but is not likely) some jewelers will only set a stone at the customers risk. Goodluck in finding a setting for your beautiful stone!
Post # 3
- Wedding: October 2015 - Ruby Princess
Check out Lang Antiques ring section. They have probably the most beautiful settings of old vintage diamonds I have ever seen. At least you could get some ideas.
Post # 4
I have an heirloom diamond, and our family tradition has been to have it re-set for each wearer. My mama and I both chose 6 prongs, and I think at one point it was a cocktail ring, haha. I really don’t think you need to worry! It’s a diamond, it’s pretty hard. 🙂
Post # 5
I also have an heirloom diamond, but it was set in my great grandmother’s hat pin and changed throughout the years. As long as the diamond is not scratched or chipped, there is no risk in you breaking it. Make sure you get insurance on it asap though. I went through Jewelers Mutual and for a zero deductible and $20,000 coverage (for the appraised value of the set) it was $240 for the year. Make sure you research Jewelers and go to them with a lot of images of possible new settings. I will be keeping mine in the setting it’s currently in, but having a completely new wedding band made.
Post # 6
Wow, congratulations! Lucky girl indeed 😉 It’s a good problem to have.
Basket embelishment isn’t really going to help protect the stone, the most easily chipped parts are the girdle (where the crown meets the pavillion, where the prongs are holding the stone down), and the edge of the table.
I’d stick with 6 to 8 prongs to protect the girdle of the stone, and from there, a lower set stone will bump in to less stuff (depending on how much you work with your hands).
Other than that, I say get whatever type of setting makes your heart go pitter-patter. 😀
Post # 7
i have a ring of 3 heirloom diamonds, 2 being much older than the third. my two oldest are bezel set in my ring, to guard against chips, wear, and tear. i wear my ring easily everyday, knowing that my stones are snug and safe.
my setting was custom designed and made with a jeweler i found on custommade.com.
Post # 8
The great thing about diamonds and gemstones is that they dont get more fragile with time so the fact that it’s 100 years old is irrelvant to how well it’ll hold up. And the great thing about diamonds is that they are pretty tough. I don’t have a stone quite that big (1.3 ct) set in a 4 prong setting worn everyday and it seems fine. Day to day, the likelyhood of damaging the stone is just so low imo unless you have a very manual job that involves heavy machinery where your hands are at risk, in which case I’d be more worried about my fingers than my ring.
Post # 9
I love it as is! It’s gorgeous that way. It looks significant already on your hand, so I couldn’t imagine another cut that you would like or setting that wouldn’t make it overwhelming.
Post # 10
i too have an early transitional cut for my engagment ring, I love it! Old stones are so beautifully cut and before we were given an heirloom diamond I was on the hunt for one. It was a good education.
I’m going to disagree with some of the other posters…older cut rings while still the same material were cut differently, and some, especially the old euros (the cut style before the transitional) have extremely thin girdles, making them more prone to chipping and such. My tranny has a thin to thick girdle so I didn’t need to worry as much but I still chose to have it set in a miligrained bezel on a vitnage setting to protect it and so I didn’t have to baby it as much.
I love the setting its in, but it would be fun to find or design your own setting so it feels more like yours. What’s your budget?
Post # 11
Diamonds are ooooold 🙂 They form over millions of years! Relax, and go with a setting you love.
Post # 12
Here’s my 1.5 in my vintage platinum (1930’s) setting I had modified a bit. probaby more ornate than you are looking for but totally unique and fits my style completely.
Post # 13
Thanks! I probably should have mentioned this, but I was advised by the gemologist who appriased the ring that the girdle is on the thin side and therefore likely to be a bit more prone to chipping, which is why I am so nervous about the setting.
Post # 14
Thats where I got my engagement ring, Lang Antiques! I was in LOVE with this one for some long. But ultimately decided on just a plain solitaire. Heres a link…this setting is custom made for Langs:
And yes, they custom make all sorts of vintage style settings. Or at least they have someone who makes them for their loose diamonds. Some of their rings are vintage otheres are vintage style.
Also, I found this site for vintage style settings while I was on the hunt for “the one”.
NOt that you said you wanted vintage. But for your 100 year old diamond maybe you do:)
And btw, I would want to be there when the jeweler removed and at the stone from the original setting. On this site I’ve read several times of someone saying their jeweler found a chip hidden under one of the prongs. One can never discount human error in this instance. So ere on the side of caution. Especially with something so sentimental and valuable to your family.
Post # 15
I would bezel set it. My great grandmothers ring (one on the right before i had it cleaned for the first time in 30 years) is from the 1930’s and its bezel set. The bezel is 18ct white gold the rest of the ring is rose gold. That’s the original setting and this ring has been worn by four generations and that setting has held up brilliantly the diamonds are perfect its a setting that lasts and it protects the diamonds.