Often, what appears to be a “deal” is often just a diamond that has hidden challenges.
Factors that determine a diamonds price.
With MINED diamonds, there are levels that add to the cost:
- Diamonds are mined (dug out of the ground)
- Then the rough is forwarded to cutters (sometimes referred to as sight holders)
- Then the cut diamonds are sent to dealers.
- Then the diamonds are sorted and priced and sent to wholesalers.
- The wholesalers sell to manufacturers or retailers.
- The manufacturer’s set them into jewelry and the retailers mark them up
In the above scenario, we skip steps 3-6! We hand select the diamonds from the cutters, and bring them directly to YOU. 80% of our jewelry is designed and manufactured in our OWN facilities. Doing this work means we sort the very best diamonds, and reject the rest. Unlike large chains, we are not tied to certain inventory requirements. If the diamonds are beautiful or great values and preferably BOTH, we select them for you! I don’t have basic inventory levels to fill!
Where you buy your diamond is critical.
- Most of the chain stores are tied to basic inventory levels. Imagine a buyer needing 3000 ½ carat diamonds? Can you imagine EACH one is examined for quality, brilliance and value? It’s impossible. They simply order the diamonds from a wholesaler who chooses the diamonds that HE most profits on.
- The average Mall store costs $50,000 a month to just keep the doors open! Before they do a penny of business. That means they need to really mark up their merchandise to cover expenses.
- The average mall store is part of a giant conglomerate. They have over 5500 people in management positions, most making six figure salaries. This is a lot of profit that needs to be made to simply cover mid management salaries.
At DWD, we operate in a professional office building. Nice, but VERY inexpensive. Working with clients BY APPOINTMENT assures you that we have only the team we need in place to help you. We don’t have 12 sales people standing around 12 hours a day hoping someone comes in. We don’t have middle managers, CEOS or stock holders to whom high profits must be provided. We operate as lean as we can to be able to sell to you at the lowest possible price.
The right diamond based on beauty.
Now that you know some of the operational challenges that drive up prices at other retailers, here’s some keys to finding the right diamond based on BEAUTY.
- There’s always the discussion of the four C’s.
- C #1: Carat. This is simply the WEIGHT of the diamond.
- C #2: Color. How white or how yellow the diamond appears (sometimes also brownish or gray). A standard rule of thumb is to select K or higher. Depending on the particular diamond, it’s inclusions etc. Diamonds of the same color CAN appear differently. Some G colors will look whiter than others. It’s important to have a side by side comparison to see for yourself.
- C #3: Clarity. How many, the location and the nature of the inclusions (internal characteristics) of the diamond. This is really a personal preference which guides the price. We generally suggest I1 and higher (most mall stores offer I2-I3…the lowest there is and often cloudy or shattered looking once away from the sparkly jewelry store lights). In a true (and well selected) I1, often, an inclusion is impossible to see. When you move up the scale to SI1, the inclusions should be impossible to see without a loupe (jewelers 10x eye piece). Above SI1, the inclusions just become smaller and smaller. Many “high end” jewelers will push VS1 or higher. While beautiful, this ftens drives the price up significantly, while not affecting the beauty at all.
- C #4: Cut. Often, people think this is the shape. It’s actually how well the diamond is proportioned and finished. Most “deals” are just poorly cut diamonds. There are certain percentages and ratings to seek when looking at the cut.,
At DWD, we’ve been doing this our whole lives, and we’re 4 generations into this industry. We use our in depth knowledge of the markets, the cutters and the way diamonds are cut to find you only the best appearing diamonds, in EVERY price range. Again, we can select the best in EVERY color, clarity and carat category to give you the most for your money. We know what makes a well cut diamond, what inclusions bring the price down without affecting the brilliance and how to judge a diamond based on these factors.
Most of the better diamonds over .50 carats should have been sent to an independent lab for certification. Many try to push certain labs, because they can charge more. We use the certificates to verify our opinion. But all diamond grading is subjective to a certain degree. So while an independent opinion, or certificate is critical, it’s the DIAMOND that counts. We always choose the diamond based on it’s beauty, and then use the report to back up our opinion. We test the labs regularly and for the most part, they are very consistent with one another based on the standard variation of grading.
Real life examples for savings!
We had a lady find a necklace on EL Paseo. It was $155,000! We went and looked at it and were told the diamonds of this size had “no grade”. No grade?!?! All diamonds can be graded no matter the size. And they are selling something for $155,000 and are not sharing the 4 c’s? We made the exact same thing for $44,000! Saved this client over $110,000!
We had a client find us AFTER he spent $90,000 on a ring on El Paseo. He needed out of the ring and was told we’d be able to help him (after the WELL KNOWN store refused to help him in any way). Upon inspection of the paperwork, we had to sadly inform him that not only would we not sell a diamond of that poor quality, IF we did, it would have been less than $25,000!
We had a client from LA come to us after A. Being told he couldn’t come see a jeweler over there unless he committed to spending $15,000 or MORE before seeing what they had. HE came to us and we custom made him a ring for less than $12,000 exactly like one she had found in LA for $26,000!
We had a client find a ring in Las Vegas for $45,000. We got the specs and made the exact same ring for $22,000!
We had some clients find rings at the mall. The SALE price was $6,000 for the his and hers combo. We upgraded the diamonds by 3 grades, upgraded the gold from 10kt to 14kt AND saved them $2000!
Why go any where else?
We know these are bigger pieces, but we can do this in ANY price range. If you are looking for savings AND quality, there’s no combination better than our 4th generation connections, hand selecting diamonds, in house manufacturing and extremely low overhead that’s better!