(Closed) We are so close to an engagement!! But now I feel TERRIBLE

posted 9 years ago in Waiting
Post # 17
561 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I’m with the PPs here; a very good quality but smaller diamond is just as good as a so-so larger diamond or diamonds. Given the option, I’d buy the largest and best quality center stone (diamonds are an investment that will go on your financial portfolio later; the better the quality, the better your portfolio will look) and get the side stones later if that works. Or sub them for a couple of delicious gemstones of your choice for now so that the setting will be there.

Or…offer to kick in the extra $1K if and when the subject comes up again. I think that’s reasonable if you are both working and can afford it.

Post # 18
14987 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

It sounds like you have done your research and are pretty set on what you want.  I was the same way, and actually had the same desires for my diamond – I told him anything VS2+ and G+, though H was ok too if it made a huge difference in price.  I would not go lower than a H.  On your finger by itself, you may not be able to see the yellow tint, but if you had it side by side with a J, you can see a see a very noticible difference.  While its true you wont be doing that and comparing, to me, just knowing there such a big difference would bother me.  Keep trying to shop around, local non chain jewlers have more wiggle room for pricing.  Have you tried checking pricescope.com for loose stone?

Post # 19
1089 posts
Bumble bee

Lol.  It sounds like we have similar tastes when it comes to diamonds!  I totally agree with you on cut and wouldn’t want to sacrifice much of the cut quality (ie I would prefer ideal or very good cut).  Next is the color.  Who wouldn’t love to have a colorless diamond?  That said, colorless diamonds have a rather high price premium, and I’ve noticed that anything above an H looks good to my eye.  So I don’t discriminate. . .as long as it looks good to my eye that’s all I would care about.  Plus, G-H diamonds are considered near colorless, and very few people can tell the difference between a colorless and near colorless diamond.

SI stones can present a great bargain, and with a bit of searching, you can definitely find a beautiful SI diamond that looks totally eye-clean.  Just a word of advice. . .if you are ordering diamonds from an online vendor, be sure to verify that the diamonds are eye-clean by having a gemologist on their staff verify that for you.  If that isn’t possible, be sure they have a good return policy, invest in a jewelers loupe to inspect the diamond yourself (can be purchased online for a very reasonable price), and be prepared to pay for return shipping with insurance if the stone doesn’t meet your standards. 

Also keep in mind that a stone will look completely different set as opposed to when it’s loose.  There may be flaws that you can see from the back that will be almost impossible to see when it is set.  It is much more difficult for a jeweler to sell a lose stone as opposed to one that is already mounted because of that.  Keep in mind too, that when you see a stone in a jewelry store, the lights are meant to enhance the beauty of the stone.  Consider looking at loose diamonds in different lighting to see how they look.  Remember that if you look at a stone at home, it may not appear as “sparkly” as in the show room.  Just mentioning this in case you go the online route.

If it’s well cut, eye-clean, and near colorless, you will UNDOUBTEDLY have a GORGEOUS ring that you will enjoy and love!  It sounds like you’re really doing your homework when it comes to stones, and you should definitely be able to stay within (or VERY close to!) your budget. 

Personally, I would never want a “mind-clean” (ie ideal cut, flawless, colorless) diamond. . .I’d rather get a great deal on something that might not be perfect on paper when analyzed under 10X, 30X, etc. but is pretty darn perfect to my eye! 

Anyway, I could talk diamonds day or night, but I’ll be quiet now.  Lol.  Best of luck with your diamond search, and please keep us posted!  (P.S. . .I would love, love, love to see pics of the finished product when it arrives!  I love seeing custom designed e-rings.)

Post # 21
1089 posts
Bumble bee

@MrsT2b:  I would absolutely trust the opinion of a pricescope vendor.  They will certainly be able to verify for you that your stones are eye-clean.  In fact, I told my SO that if he decides that he wants to buy my ring without my help, he can confidently turn to pricescope to find something that would definitely meet my approval. 

Have you looked at James Allen?  They have actual photos of much of their stock, and you can even check them out with their virtual loupe!  It may be an option especially since shipping is an issue.  At the very least you may be able to show your SO what characteristics your looking for. πŸ™‚

Post # 23
1089 posts
Bumble bee

@MrsT2b:  I’m not a member of pricescope either, but I do a lot of lurking there.  Lol.  Also, the James Allen site shows their stones highly magnified (I think I read somewhere that with the virtual loupe they are being viewed at 20-30X magnification. . .a normal jewelers loupe is 10X).  Some of those inclusions will never be seen by the naked eye.

Also, I’m guessing that since you said the total carat weight of your ring will be around/under 1ct, and the side stones are .15ct (each, I’m assuming), you’re looking at a center stone around 2/3-3/4 ct?  I’m asking so that I can send you links if I find anything exciting in my browsing.  Lol.  (SO says I’m “passionate” about diamonds).  Also, what kind of stones are you looking at?  A round brilliant or a princess cut will help to mask some of the flaws, but if you’re looking at emerald cuts, for example, it may be harder to find an eye-clean SI. 

I have a .41ct SI2 H princess cut that was a gift from SO that is eye-clean.  From the side, if you look very very closely (holding the stone ~5cm from your eye) you can see the inclusion, but looking at it straight on about 20cm from your eye, it looks flawless.  You can see some inclusions with the 10X jewelers loupe, but who will be looking at my diamond with a loupe? 

I finally checked out your post with the ring design, and I LOVE IT!  When I saw the detail of the prongs with the trellis/x-prong/lucida I did a little happy dance (my dream ring is a solitaire in that setting)!  It’s simple yet elegant and very classy!!! 


Post # 25
281 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

If size is more important to you than quality, then that’s where you can find some savings. I paid for my $3K engagement ring beause my Fiance is still in school. I have a pear-shaped diamond, so the colour had to be close to perfect otherwise you really can see the yellow. If you’re going with a round or princess cut, then you might not need a flawless/colourless diamond.

Post # 26
1089 posts
Bumble bee

@MrsT2b:  I absolutely know what you mean about having the knowledge and wanting to get the best deal possible but also wanting to let him take charge.  SO and I have a while before getting engaged, but we both (more like I) go back and forth on having me pick out the ring.  (He prefers to let me pick it out so that he knows I love it and feel good about him not over paying. . .I’m a bit of a control freak and a bargain hunter.  Hehe.)

I’m getting the feeling that you would feel MUCH better about your ring if you were able to pick out your center stone.  In My Humble Opinion, you have already picked out your ring, and if choosing the diamond will make you feel better, and he’s ok with it, go for it!  You can pick everything out and have him make all the calls and whatnot without you knowing the production timeline.  I don’t know about you, but that would really be enough of a surprise for me.  You’re not going to see the final product until the proposal, and the proposal in itself will be a BIG surprise.

I’m not trying to sway you one way or another, but I can definitely sense you are a bit uneasy leaving the responsibility of choosing a diamond entirely up to him.  Maybe you could talk to him about what he would prefer in terms of how involved you will be and go from there.  Afterall, this is very much unchartered territory for most men, and it may be intimidating (especially because he knows that you’re educated about diamonds AND a designer and have, in all likelihood, an eye for detail).

I know the idea of the man choosing the perfect engagement ring is incredibly romantic, but in a sense, if both parties agree, working together on the ring can be a great forshadowing of future teamwork as husband and wife.  Not to mention it would give you a GREAT peace of mind knowing that your ring is everything you’d hoped it would be and more!



Post # 28
43 posts


I suffered the same dilemas.  Our budget was ‘x’ at the beginning but I know The Canadian would ideally like to get it for 1k less as he is now on shaky ground workwise.

My ring that is being made at the moment sounds spookily similar to yours! Great taste, MrsT2b πŸ˜›

Ok, we looked on blue nile (ireland and uk site as well as us) and went around a few jewellers – even the allegedly ‘wholesale’ ones.  They could not match the price that my bosses friend was doing this for us.

I dropped down .20 carats from a 1 to a .80 centre stone and I really got used to the idea when I did my homework (as much as you, I am now a diamond expert ha) it was too pricey so I just dealt with it.

An SI is fine ONCE it is eye clean.  An SI1 is the lowest I would go in terms of clarity.  The rest is negotiable as far as I’m concerned.

Also, there is a tax incentive re vat which you might avail of if you go to an actual jeweller which would save a few hundred.  Have you tried finding someone who knows a decent jeweller who can help you out and have it made?

I too didn’t want to opt for a temporary ring or upgrade as the ring I am proposed to with is the one that I want on my finger when I am 80 years old. It just doesn’t appeal to me this upgrade thing.

Also, auctions do amazing deals on mixed metal, three stone i.e. 1960s style rings.  if you can source one that comes with a cert then you are in business.  we tried but to no avail. i have no problem wearing a vintage ring, it adds character but you need to be careful. If you google O’reilly’s auctioneers in dublin, you will see plenty of three stone mixed metal rings which you might enjoy looking at. I found my dream ring there but they’d no certs so we backed out of the auction the day before.

Post # 30
43 posts

@MrsT2b: Ah, I am delighted for you! It is all coming along and the wheels are in motion.  I simply cannot WAIT to see your ring – I reckon ours will look practically identical.  My diamonds are actually going to be at the same level and not graduated, is this your plan also? I know that is very rare these days but when I tried on the auction ring, it just looked so good that way especially as the shoulders at the side are white gold.

I read your post while at work and laughed out loud at ‘the pole’ comment!!  No, I don’t think that would sound to good hahaha πŸ˜› It could be worse, my dad, being Irish and hilarious, loves the rhyming slang so he calls my SO the ‘wooden plank’ i.e. the yank!  (Few people in Europe can distinguish between an American accent and Canadian).  The Canadian thinks it’s funny, thankfully!

Well MrsT2b, I will upload a pic of my ring when I get it for you to see and I hope you’ll do likewise an we can play spot the difference! x

I am going to post re small weddings shortly so I would be interested in your view…

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