Monday, January 23, 2006

DeBeers Musings and Semi-Mounts

I can't decide what the hell to do with "Lemon Drop" my light yellow 1 ct. oval diamond.

As an aside, I can't believe I own a diamond since I know quite well these things aren't exactly rare. I told myself multiple times that if I were to ever get one, I'd get a man-made version like the ones Takara grows because the process of mining natural ones is detrimental to the environment and the working conditions for those who do mine diamonds is close to slave labor. Even though DeBeers doesn't have a 100% monopoly as the rumor claims, they still own a majority of the diamonds in the world. Therefore, they can keep prices artificially inflated. You know those pretty commercials with the shadows dancing romantically to music by Karl Jenkins that deBeers creates? Well, this all started way back before television marketing. Back in the 40's they ingeniously worked with Hollywood to insert images of diamonds engagement rings in movies so that the American people would believe that it was part of the marriage process. These are the guys who created the whole "2 months salary" rule.

Amazing eh? This is an example of a marketing campaign that worked--and worked well! So, I, a trained gemologist, a lapidary and certified jeweler, am coming to grips with all this all over again. Oy!

Now that I have Ms. Lemon Drop, I have to figure out how to set her properly because if I'm going to own a diamond, it ought to at least look unique. I went with an oval. That's a good start because these days everyone wants a round "super ideal cut" (which is a crock of shit, by the way, and another marketing ploy. There are many cuts that return better brilliance.) Secondly, I'm not going to go with platinum since EVERYONE is wearing platinum today.

Here are the contenders:

Scott Kay triple stone mounting in 19k white and yellow gold. I like the cute peek-a-boo diamonds on the side. If can switch those out for a rubies, it would be perfect. The only issue is that I'm not sure if it can accommodate an oval stone and I'm annoyed about the fact that it is a name brand.

Another Scott Kay mounting. This one is a solitaire. The website says "call for price" which equates to "expensive"

Verragio solitaire. This one can be ordered in 18k yellow gold, is fairly affordable, but again, I'm not sure if it can accommodate an oval stone.

I saw a two toned version of this one in person that I loved (and almost got) but the little diamonds on the lower ring portion is almost too much. Supposedly it can be modified to hold an oval, but I don't want to compromise security.

Again Verragio. This is an interesting variation with less diamonds.

Neat looking non-branded setting specifically for a 1ct. Oval. I can order this in 18k yellow gold. The drawback is that that design will make the center stone looks smaller and won't fit flush against my wedding band.

Another non-banded setting that I like. The problem is that the head may not be modifiable to hold an oval stone. Although these non-branded versions are cheaper, I'm not sure of the construction.

For a while this was the top contender, but it is so ridiculously overpriced. The yellow diamonds are not in the fancy color grade range, BTW. It is 6 times the amount of the one above and yet the website refuses to send me additional pictures of the underside which makes me wonder if it is hollow.

Overall, although I love the look, I am worried that pave' work is going to look rediculously out-dated ina few years. Furthermore, if a diamond falls out, its a pain to find a matching one to fix which is why I'm learning towards the smoother designs at the moment.

So, there you have it. After my momentary guilt trip on diamonds, I am now contemplating semi-mounts!


Blogger heavy metal mom said...

I like # 1 and the two braided ones 6 & 7!!!

Decisions, decisions.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006  
Blogger sarah said...

my favorite is #6 and then #3.

we're not so helpful, are we, if we like them all? at least there's consensus on #6. :)

Thursday, January 26, 2006  
Blogger cchang said...

Its that whole issue with not being able to see some of these in person.

I posted a few in a bench jeweler's forum and the guy shot down a lot of the mountings due to "structural issues." #6 does seem to be a good contender. I just don't know if it'll fit flush with my band.

Thursday, January 26, 2006  

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