Author Topic: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!  (Read 5657 times)

Offline dovesgate

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Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« on: November 05, 2011, 11:49:35 PM »
I was invited to a restyle show and another sale event at two jewelry stores in the mall half an hour away; silly me, I signed up for email alerts right before I found DBL so I get lots of lovely notices in my email now.  ::)

I talked my stepmother into going with me. She's still talking about a Crown-something diamond she saw while on a cruise with my dad and about getting a wrap/ring guard/enhancer for her RB solitaire. I really, really wanted to see what style enhancer she likes because Dad always asks us children what she wants for Christmas.

We get to the first one and right off the bat, I can tell I'm going to have some issues. Oh... a little backstory. Hubs gave me a plain ol' WG solitaire setting and told me he's taken care of my upgrade but I have to wait a few more weeks. He said 30 days so.. I don't know. I asked if its from here and he said no so I don't even know if I want the details.  :'(

Anyway, I told the jeweler I just wanted to look at settings and enhancers. Do you know what is horrible about looking at rings in stores after seeing David's pictures? Nothing is nice enough! LOL no, really. I looked at halos that seemed kind of insubstantial. I looked at some that had diamonds under the crown - really dinky, barely visible diamonds. I only knew they were there because the sales people told me so and because if I turned it a certain way, I caught a teensy little flash. I attempted to discuss the merits of bezel vs prong. This store wouldn't even consider a bezel! Maybe I'm not being exactly fair though because apparently the people who took over the store were apparently from the wholesaler. But, that still makes little to no sense to me because if they had someone there who could do sizing and setting of a stone, why wouldn't they be able to bezel a stone into their own setting even if they had to send it off to the factory to be done?

Oh and I didn't mention that I took the setting I have with me and told them that all I know is that my stone fits into it and its round. Dear God I hope it isn't a RB (no offense to those of you who love them, that cut just isn't for me). After the fourth or fifth setting I tried on, I asked for my own setting back. It took them HALF AN HOUR to get it back to me! They lost it!! How the HECK does that happen?!

So, after having to hear the high-pressured sales pitches for every single thing I looked at, I asked them to just write down the numbers of the ones I kind of liked so I could look it all up later and decide if any really work for me (can you tell I wasn't really impressed?). Then they really laid it on thick - how this show was that night only, that they could not guarantee they would have these specific items after this night. How I should just open a store card in my name instead of discussing such a large purchase with my husband - which really gets me. Hubs and I simply don't have the kind of budget where I can blow enough for a decent used car without discussing it with him first. I feel it would be disrespectful of me to come home and casually announce I just spent 3-4 months worth of our mortgage on something I don't even know would fit the stone he is giving me. I find it EXTREMELY disrespectful of them to even suggest I do something like that behind my husband's back.

Needless to say, I should have just left at that point. Instead I laughed it off like it was a joke. Then of course, I mention something about maybe looking for something with colored diamonds instead. Which, for once, I GOT TO SEE IN PERSON! The best part of the whole night as a matter of fact!  I got to see up close and personal the difference between a treated yellow and a natural yellow, a treated green, and a fairly large selection of fancy browns. Of course, I won't be buying one anywhere other than DBL especially after I got a look at the prices they wanted for theirs and they were all TINY. Thank God for David because if not, I'd never be able to afford pretty, natural colored stones. Heck, I haven't even bought one yet and I'm already composing my reviews for DBL! LOL

Anyway, we left this store right after I got to see the colored diamonds (and the sales people started ignoring me since I made it clear I had no intention of making a purchase) and headed to the next one. My stepmom made the comment that she didn't like any of their enhancers and we had a good little b****-fest about their attempted arm-twisting while walking over to the next one.

The next mall store just made me giggle. Fairly young sales associates who just wanted to chirp about their "IDEAL cut diamonds" - as if that is all anyone ever cared about. Seriously, the way these girls went on and on about the ideal cut, I hated to burst their bubbles and tell them their precious ideal cuts were really, really ugly what with the visible carbon and clouds that were so huge it would take up a good chunk of diamond. I really behaved myself though - I confined myself to merely asking if the diamonds were upgradable to a VS2-eye clean SI. The ladies were really sweet though they didn't seem to know much about diamonds.

I did get to talk about old euro cut diamonds with the sales girl. She admired my wedding ring before offering to clean it. She said she has one from her aunt but her mother won't let her wear it, which I thought was a total shame. 

All in all, it was a total bust at the mall. Funny - I feel the same way about the clothes there too so I am finding myself with little to no reason to go there at all now. I will just have to keep on drooling over DBL diamonds and plotting my first purchase here.  :heart2:

Offline lovecolor

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #1 on: November 06, 2011, 10:57:33 AM »
I think I gave up Mall jewelry stores around 9 years ago.  I might have become a bit of a "jewelry snob" :-\  ...but quality diamonds were hard to find there and their colorful gemstones were never the right colors to me.   I use to think it was fun to window shop the pretty sparkly diamond pieces that they showcased, but the pieces eventually stopped looking pretty to me.    :dontknow:   

Offline firegypsy

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2011, 11:23:56 AM »
That kind of environment totally burns me!  I've been to many and I'll tell you, all the ones that have impressive and worth their salt were NO pressure. They knew how many outstanding pieces they had and let them speak for themselves.   I have no problem telling high pressure sales people that their approach is why I'm not buying.  My husband is in a job where he sells high end pieces and works on commission.  He has never pressured anyone and will at times, steer them towards a different company if they have things that better fit the client's needs.  That's why people love him-they feel comfortable buying from him because they can tell they're not being sold a line.

I can't believe they LOST your ring!  I mean, mistakes happen, but that's especially frightening at a restyling event where there's eleventy semi mounts floating around!  YIKES!  I also find the attempt to drive a wedge between you and your dh particularly abominable.

I've also got some awesome (tongue in cheek) "education" from mall stores.  It took everything I had not to laugh in their faces!  But, because I'm a true junkie I keep going back just to look!  And even then, it's more just to compare to things I see online at ACTUAL fine jewelers sites.  Then the mall pieces are weighed in the balance and found wanting.   >:D

Offline DiamondsAreForever

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2011, 03:02:39 PM »
OMG!  They LOST your setting?  Ummm, I don't know if there were any significant stones in your setting, but I'd be concerned if there were.  When I take my ER to my jeweler for its annual insurance inspection, he replates it for me because I'm rough on the bottom of the ring (it's 18K white).  He makes me stand there while his guy checks all the prongs - all 57 of them - and replates the ring.  I have to qualify this by saying that there are may jewelers in this building and a few repairmen - all the work goes to them. HE told me never let your diamond out of your sight.

I've lost interest in Mall stores, it's all mass produced.  Since purchasing a few DBL pieces, I've really come to appreciate making the piece of jewelry fit the stone.  I've seen soooo many pieces of jewelry where the stone was either too big or small for the setting.  And prongs... UGH!!!!! Don't get me started.

On a lighter note...we were on vacation last week and while visiting one of my favorite pawn shops in South Carolina, my ER received the ultimate compliment.  It's a 2.21 ct RB microset with an additional 1.8 cts of RBs on three sides.  There is a weird phenomenon with this stone whereby in some lighting, it looks small, and others it looks way big.  Soooo, I asked to see an opal pendant in the jewelry case and was pointing at the item with my left index finger when the salesperson said, "OMG, is that a three carat stone?"  I looked at him with a puzzled expression and then looked down at my ring and saw that it looked HUGE.  I guess it's all in the lighting.  Sorry for the thread jack, but I was tickled and wanted to share the story. 

Offline DiamondsAreForever

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2011, 03:03:33 PM »
OMG!  They LOST your setting?  Ummm, I don't know if there were any significant stones in your setting, but I'd be concerned if there were.  When I take my ER to my jeweler for its annual insurance inspection, he replates it for me because I'm rough on the bottom of the ring (it's 18K white).  He makes me stand there while his guy checks all the prongs - all 57 of them - and replates the ring.  I have to qualify this by saying that there are may jewelers in this building and a few repairmen - all the work goes to them. HE told me never let your diamond out of your sight.

I've lost interest in Mall stores, it's all mass produced.  Since purchasing a few DBL pieces, I've really come to appreciate making the piece of jewelry fit the stone.  I've seen soooo many pieces of jewelry where the stone was either too big or small for the setting.  And prongs... UGH!!!!! Don't get me started.

On a lighter note...we were on vacation last week and while visiting one of my favorite pawn shops in South Carolina, my ER received the ultimate compliment.  It's a 2.21 ct RB microset with an additional 1.8 cts of RBs on three sides.  There is a weird phenomenon with this stone whereby in some lighting, it looks small, and others it looks way big.  Soooo, I asked to see an opal pendant in the jewelry case and was pointing at the item with my left index finger when the salesperson said, "OMG, is that a three carat stone?"  I looked at him with a puzzled expression and then looked down at my ring and saw that it looked HUGE.  I guess it's all in the lighting.  Sorry for the thread jack, but I was tickled and wanted to share the story. 

Offline Trinkette

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2011, 03:16:08 PM »
Once you've traveled down the DBL shopping path, there is no going back. Ruined for life.  :troll:

Offline Piglette

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #6 on: November 06, 2011, 04:29:03 PM »
Ugggghhhhh!  Mall stores!  Shiver, shudder, shake!

Here's what happened with David a few years ago.  (This goes to the issue of high pressure sales.)  I am hard on rings.  I have a couple of very upscale DBL pieces, but I wanted a ring to wear every day:  nice enough to "stand in" for my engagement ring, but not so expensive that I felt I had to insure it.  (Had been exceedingly disappointed in an insurance settlement on an expensive, well-insured ring, and decided it was better to "go bare" -- no insurance -- with a center stone that I could stand to lose, if it came to that.)  David -- of course! -- worked with me and we quickly came up with a three-stone ring that would be beautiful and distinctive, but not absurdly expensive. Toward the end of the process, I wavered a bit, and asked him (during a telephone conversation) if maybe I should upgrade the center stone just a bit:  go to a higher color.  David's IMMEDIATE response was a very pleasant and professional question:  "Didn't you want to keep it under $5000?" he asked.  Then he added, "I think you'll be very happy with the 'K' stone, and it will fit your original idea."  !!!!!  (True story!)

Addendum to the tale above:  The ring is/was just as lovely and serviceable as David had said it would be.  And, of course, with a DBL setting, the center stone never came loose, even though I am so hard on rings.  I enjoyed it for three or four years.  And then I went back to low-pressure David (who had, in effect, "down"-sold me rather than "up-selling" me!).  I traded in that ring for another that was more than twice the cost.  That's the kind of business that David does!  Too bad that the flibbertigibbet mall girls won't even be around in three-four years, and so they care nothing for customer satisfaction, customer loyalty, and long-term (repeat) business.  I will keep going back to David, who sells me what I really want and can afford.  (True story.)

LOST your setting????  UN-believable!!!
« Last Edit: November 06, 2011, 04:30:13 PM by Piglette »

Offline dovesgate

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #7 on: November 06, 2011, 05:02:51 PM »
Don't worry, I got my setting back in the end. There were 2 people looking for it while one salesperson stuck with me, trying to distract me with other items. No stones in it, just a plain WG six prong setting.

I kept my wedding ring on my right hand the whole time. Nobody gets to walk off with my OEC unless I know and trust them - which means no sales person from a mall store is getting their mitts on it! Why do they attempt to take your original setting from you anyway? It isn't more likely to make me buy one of theirs, there were no stones they could steal, and if it had disappeared for good I would have been raising hell right then and there. Which, in a crowded mall, would have been very bad for them.

Offline firegypsy

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #8 on: November 06, 2011, 07:04:08 PM »
Once you've traveled down the DBL shopping path, there is no going back. Ruined for life.  :troll:

so true.  so very, very true.  and the only jewelers I'll even talk to now are the ones that appreciate the amazing work he does.  One took the ring from me (he asked) and just kept turning it around and around under a loupe exclaiming the entire time how extraordinary it was.  How wonderful the details were etc.  For him, I have great respect (I did anyway, but that confirmed it.)  He offered to buy it off me were I to ever sell it.  That's a man that knows his stuff!  He also guessed that it cost much more than it originally did (because David's prices are fantastic.)

Another jeweler looking at a different ring (the pear I just had reset) told me that the setting was not worth saving, that it was a "cheap" setting.  Them?  I'll never go back to.  EVER.  The ring is sheer perfection, not some dinky setting from China.  She actually said for $2-300 I could get a replacement and that was only because gold is so pricey right now.  Ummm, try $2-3 THOUSAND you horrid woman!

Point is, DBL settings are top notch.  I can't imagine spending my money elsewhere and my jewelry has become a litmus test for whether or not a particular tradesperson is worth speaking to!

Offline saqsay1

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #9 on: November 11, 2011, 06:15:52 AM »
Wow. Where to start here.... I use to work for a chain jewelry store (2) in the mall and had the dubious pleasure of working a so called 'remount event'. First off, the prices are outrageous. Mall jewelry stores have a 600% mark up. The remount events are usually better quality then what MY store normally carried, but the mark up was even higher. In their defense, I think it is due to the moving around (2 day event) and extra security (they hired off duty cops to escort them when they move there stuff in and take it out again). Having said all that, I stopped buying from mall jewelry stores when I found DBL too. You just can't get David's goods in a retail setting without paying inflated prices.

The first store I worked at was in a poorer area and carried mostly I1 quality stones. In fact, if I remember correctly, we only had 2 SI clarity stones in the whole store (I kid you not folks). The other store was much better quality stuff, but only because they were a high volume store. Apparently the more stuff you sell, the better the quality merchandise you get. Go figure...........

Also, be aware of jewelry repairs at a mall type place, we never had a problem with customers stuff, but repair prices are 2 -3 x's what you would pay at a fast fix it kind of place.

Cleaning your jewelry, be aware of pave' set diamonds and the sonic cleaner. I believe we have discussed this in the jewelry care thread.......... but several times diamonds vibrated loose. Including my own pieces.

Dovesgate, sorry you were disappointed with the experience. But at least you got to look at sparklies.  ;) and get a better appreciation of D's stuff. I'll take sitting in DBL's office and sipping coffee over the mall anyday.

I also wonder if malls are going to be a thing of the past in the not to distant future.
"If the US government were placed in control of the Sahara Desert, it would run out of sand in 25 years."

Offline dovesgate

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #10 on: November 11, 2011, 12:49:09 PM »
I was invited a couple days ago to the restyle show at the second store. I guess the first invitation from them was just a sale, which would explain why they didn't have much. Needless to say, I didn't bother going. I either need to find a gorgeous antique setting or save my pennies to have DBL create a copy of one I love. I think that would be my best option actually. 3 more weeks until I get to see what I am working with. Hubby did one thing absolutely right - he sent it to GIA in my name. All I get to see with them is "customer stated .96 R" though and I think it may be driving me nuts in a good way!

Offline ah2bqat

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #11 on: November 11, 2011, 02:23:15 PM »
 :devildance:  Three weeks to keep you going crazy!  Doncha just love guys like that?  How incredibly exciting, dovesgate!
Auntie Dammit :Heart: DBL!

Offline Debangel

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #12 on: November 11, 2011, 02:33:56 PM »
I was invited a couple days ago to the restyle show at the second store. I guess the first invitation from them was just a sale, which would explain why they didn't have much. Needless to say, I didn't bother going. I either need to find a gorgeous antique setting or save my pennies to have DBL create a copy of one I love. I think that would be my best option actually. 3 more weeks until I get to see what I am working with. Hubby did one thing absolutely right - he sent it to GIA in my name. All I get to see with them is "customer stated .96 R" though and I think it may be driving me nuts in a good way!

Dove, re: the antique setting?  Have DBL do it!  I got incredibly lucky with the ring my ex-fiance and I found an an antique store a few years ago, and even with the great condition it was in, it still required a few hundred dollars' worth of repairs before I felt that all the stones were safe and secure for daily wear.  (I paid for all the repairs, and I now still wear the ring as a "mother's" ring of sorts. I'll have to post photos once I borrow the macro lens for my new camera- it's modest yet very nifty.) In any case, lots of antique ERs are made of platinum, but were repaired and/or sized in white gold, so when you go to resize/repair them, guess what?  All that gold solder has to come off! Plus, even with a gold ring, you don't know what it's been through, or the provenance to know that it's genuine in the first place!  My advice to you is to come up with a compilation of settings that you like, and what you like about each piece, and have DBL make something original that only YOU have.  Something old, something new ;)  I'm so excited for you!

Offline dovesgate

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #13 on: November 11, 2011, 03:41:08 PM »
Ah2bqat - Oddly enough, yes I do love it! Lol. I wish he would do stiff like this more often.

Deb - That is a fantastic idea.

Offline ah2bqat

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Re: Mall Stores :( Warning - extremely long!
« Reply #14 on: November 11, 2011, 10:24:38 PM »
I'm odd the same way, dovesgate.  That's a best in show sort of crazy, and I'd take it any day.
Auntie Dammit :Heart: DBL!