Author Topic: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds  (Read 13591 times)

Offline Catia

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 20
Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« on: December 24, 2011, 05:02:35 PM »
Ok, so here's the facts, I've digested & understand *much* of what I have learned here & on PS--enough to actually KNOW *technically* what characteristics I want my diamond to have.
I feel very comfortable, confident in the "book smart" aspect of diamond searching/shopping.

Note: though I am leaving out all of those super techie machine measurements of light things that gave me a headache. I'm just not willing to go that far into analyzing my diamond, what shows to my eye is much more important to me, than what a machine says & I TRUST my eyes).

My issue is that IN REAL LIFE, seeing a diamond in person, I have no idea what I am *really seeing* or NOT seeing--

.I.E.: READ: I don't know what brilliance, fire, scintillation etc is from a IRL perspective--I've read the definitions, but stilll don't "get" it.

What BF & I have decided to do is to review a few diamonds IRL so I can better get an idea *BEFORE* I make any *permanent* purchases.

I've reviewed many diamonds & their GIA reports & viewed their plots online.

What complicates things for me is that I want a cushion cut & a chunkier one, & cushions break many of the depth/table rules & have so many variations.

I don't want to go out in public & have to deal with sales people giving me BS, I'm a person who figures out what they want before they go shopping & I hate when people won't listen when I tell them what I'm looking for & try to push me towards what THEY want to sell me. LOL I've walked out of car dealerships more than once, I just don't have the patience for other people's sales crap.

 So in knowing this about myself, I'm gonna do my deciding from my own home, without the distraction of sales people.

So I chose a few diamonds to view, based on GIA reports & some plot info.

So being that cushions break so many rules established for brilliants, how will I know if it is too deep or too shallow?
What exactly is it that I am looking for when one says  things like fire scintillation, brilliance???
LOL this is my very expensive self tutorial, so that when I DO find THE diamond, I know what it is that I'm buying.

I have 2 diamonds on hand right now. Chosen for their GIA specs & plots.

Now I realize, I have NO CLUE what I am looking for when viewing the diamonds, so here's where my learning opportunity begins, because I will use these as comparison to the others, & i've got a couple of weeks to get it straight, cuz floating this $$ to be able to do this.

 ---LOL---this is either the smartest thing I've ever done, or the dumbest.

 Lucky for me BF trusts my crazy methods & he trusts my research--and forked me over the $$ so that I can do this crazy thing!








Offline Catia

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 20
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #1 on: December 24, 2011, 05:14:35 PM »
So, I MUST figure out how to get so pics that are viewable. UGH.
 I am working on this. I am no David--out of 20 pics, I've not gotten 1 I can post that is even in focus.

I have decided I like the one look better than the other, nothing 'wrong' with either diamond, but I found another already that I want to view based on specs & plot, so will be returning #2, for a different one. The one I'm returning already is beautiful, just doesn't "do it" for me. I am hoping the other one I will get when this one is returned has a different effect (plot has different cut--think it's a 4 main) & is a *Cushion Brilliant*

Here are the GIA specs on the one I am not sending back yet:

Diamond#1:
Cushion Modified Brilliant
6.14 x 6.02 x 4.36mm
1.20 carat
Color: J
Clarity: IF
Total Depth: 72.4%
Table Size: 53%
Girdle: thin to thick
Cutlet: none
Polish: Excellent
Symmetry: Very Good
Flourescence: None
Coments: Minor details to polish are not shown
« Last Edit: December 24, 2011, 05:16:23 PM by Catia »

Offline oldmancoyote

  • Member Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 4367
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #2 on: December 24, 2011, 07:48:01 PM »
Just two points:

1. Table and depth are included on lab reports because they aid in gem identification and are relatively easy to measure, not because they are particularly important from a light performance point of view. Pavilion angles are much more important - whether in brilliant or step cuts - but they aren't reported by GIA on anything other than classical rounds.

2. Particularly on cushions, the looks (and optics) are influenced by many factors - cutting style (true brilliant or modified brilliant? how many mains? wide vs. narrow mains? crown faceting?, ...), shape (rounded vs. straight sides; radius on corners; length/width), proportions (tall crown vs. squat crown, wide vs. narrow table, ...) and the all-critical angles.

Unfortunately, all these things have the nasty habit of interacting with each other, so any rules based on one or two of these parameters - if they are valid at all in any particular circumstances, which I doubt - fly out of the window when something else changes.

In short: ignore table and depth rules. They don't work on rounds, and they work even less on cushions. The report plot may be more valuable if GIA were accurate with it, which it isn't always - see here - and in any case it provides very approximate data.

Unfortunately, the only way to know whether you like a particular cushion is to see it. Choose vendors that can see the stones for you and provide good quality photos - even video - and stick to those vendors. Otherwise you are in for a lifetime of frustration.

As to what you are looking at - there's four aspects that are relevant:

1. Brilliance. AKA reflected light. A (well silvered) bathroom mirror is pure brilliance. Not very interesting but bright.
2. Scintillation. AKA sparkliness. One of those disco mirror revolving spheres is almost pure scintillation. Interesting (?) but not very bright.
3. Fire. AKA diffraction or "rainbow light". A triangular prism breaking up a beam of white light into a rainbow is pure fire. Beautiful, but awkward to look at (the rainbow is never coming out in the same direction as the beam, so you can see reflection OR diffraction in a triangular glass prism, but not both).
4. Contrast and pattern. No explanation required, I think.

what you are looking for is a blend and balance of these four. What the balance is depends on your personal preferences and on what you are trying to achieve.

I normally like fiery stones more than bright ones, but once I picked deliberately a very bright and contrasted (but not fiery) stone for a ring where I wanted the centre with a "black and white" look and the sides to add the colour. This is the result...

« Last Edit: December 24, 2011, 07:54:44 PM by oldmancoyote »

Offline Catia

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 20
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #3 on: December 24, 2011, 10:10:34 PM »
Here are some pics--this is the best I can do thus far out of over 100 pics-I do not envy David!!!
--IMHO taking pics of diamonds is a miserable experience LOL
OK this is:
Diamond#1:
Cushion Modified Brilliant
6.14 x 6.02 x 4.36mm
1.20 carat
Color: J
Clarity: IF
Total Depth: 72.4%
Table Size: 53%
Girdle: thin to thick
Cutlet: none
Polish: Excellent
Symmetry: Very Good
Flourescence: None
Coments: Minor details to polish are not shown

How do I tell if it has fire, scintillation, brilliance?
How could I tell if it is too deep?

It looks like a diamond to me...it's purdy...are there any comparison pics from a too deep diamond & a good one? Is there ANY way to tell from a pic?

Just want to note--unlike most of you--I'm not so much enjoying this diamond shopping thing, so hopefully this will be the ONLY time I ever have to do it!

Taking the pics, everything that keeps reflecting from the diamond makes the pics horrible--how do you all get pics of the inside so clear?
« Last Edit: December 24, 2011, 10:19:24 PM by Catia »

Offline firegypsy

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 231
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #4 on: December 24, 2011, 11:08:24 PM »
pretty!

I am like you.  I don't feel that I know enough to truly enjoy the process.  That being the case I turned it over to David and allowed him to select a diamond for me.  This gave me a lot of confidence.  He has amazing taste and a great eye for details.  I knew whatever he chose would be perfection.  And as someone told me, he KNOWS diamonds and wouldn't have a dud on hand. 

I was not disappointed!  I do hope one day to know enough and have the funds to go searching for something wonderous where I feel a complete part of the process.  Until then I'm going to hang out and learn what I can!

I hope folks more knowledgeable than I can lend you a hand.  Best of luck.

Offline oldmancoyote

  • Member Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 4367
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #5 on: December 25, 2011, 05:49:09 AM »
[snip]
How do I tell if it has fire, scintillation, brilliance?
Have you read my response above? Does it look bright, does it sparkle, does it show rainbow colours? From the photos, the answers seem to be yes to the first two; fire is difficult to capture in a photo, and it's possible to "trick" an appearance of brilliance and scintillation through lighting (see below for some tips on photography). If the photos other than being pretty look like the diamond, I think it's a pretty bright and sparkly stone; not what I would call chunky (and possibly not fiery), though.

The question is whether it has the right combination of sparkle, brightness and colour refraction for you, and whether you prefer that balance to another one.

Quote
How could I tell if it is too deep?
It looks like a diamond to me...it's purdy...are there any comparison pics from a too deep diamond & a good one? Is there ANY way to tell from a pic?
Stop obsessing over depth. A diamond that is "too deep" generally shows a dark zone in the centre when observed - which is nothing but the shadow of the head of the observer reflected back. If it looks dark and not nice when you look at it, it's "too" deep or in any way a poor stone.

The other effect of depth is that a deeper diamond, beautiful as it may be, will also look smaller than a less deep one. But you can see this quite easily on the report and in real life. However, note again that obsessing over hundredths of mm is rather pointless, when the human eye's resolution is somewhere above 0.1 mm close by and 0.5 mm at normal viewing distance.
 
Quote
Just want to note--unlike most of you--I'm not so much enjoying this diamond shopping thing, so hopefully this will be the ONLY time I ever have to do it!
Perhaps it's because you are doing it wrong. You don't like "being sold". Fair enough. However, when you are buying something which is expensive (check), unique (check - unlike a car or any other industrial product), and on which you have little education, training and information (check), the seller can be your ally, not your enemy. Not all diamond sellers are pushy money grabbers, and quite a few have a real passion for what they deal in. Pick the seller first, then ask them to help you finding the right diamond for you.

Quote
Taking the pics, everything that keeps reflecting from the diamond makes the pics horrible--how do you all get pics of the inside so clear?
Some tips for diamond photography:

1. Use a camera with "Macro" mode (usually a little flower symbol on the menu). Do NOT use a cell phone camera - the fixed focus optics does not allow proper focusing on small objects at a close distance.

2. Don't zoom in - get the camera close to the diamond. And don't be afraid to get a big picture of the diamond - that's what you want, not something that shows it in proportion to the rest of the world (where it is after all a very small object).

4. Use natural light. Lots of it, ideally diffused (avoid direct sunlight). If natural light is not available, use strong, diffused, indoor lighting. It is difficult to get good results with spotlights and flash - the diamond reflects back a lot of it!

5. Use a neutral, light background. A dark background screws up the camera software and results in overexposure of the diamond/jewel.

6. Set up the scene so that the diamond faces a window or a ceiling - this avoids the reflection of everything around showing up in the photo; at most, you'll get the camera lens!

7. If you can set the camera's white balance, do so on a piece of white paper exposed to the same light as the diamond.
« Last Edit: December 25, 2011, 05:55:36 AM by oldmancoyote »

Offline lovecolor

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1104
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #6 on: December 25, 2011, 10:33:32 AM »
OMC...you are good!   I might even say a "forum" angel...I believe there are angels amongst us...I think you fit the bill...  :angel:  
« Last Edit: December 25, 2011, 11:29:06 AM by lovecolor »

Offline Diamondsbylauren

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9078
    • Diamonds By Lauren
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #7 on: December 25, 2011, 12:52:42 PM »
Hi Catia,
it would not be fair for me to critique a diamond bought elsewhere- but I can say that the best advice I can give to consumers is to choose their diamond vendor- as opposed to trying to become a diamond expert.

Thanks to our amazing community, you're in very capable hands here!
David
Check out our YouTube Channel

Offline dovesgate

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 729
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #8 on: December 25, 2011, 01:31:38 PM »
Have you looked at Daussi cushions? David has a few of them and some look like lovely combinations of an Old European with emerald cuts. Gorgeous chunky facets and flashes. I love them so!

Diamonds are, for me, an emotional purchase. It doesn't really matter to me if the stone I love follows all the rules of ratios or not. That is too technical for me. It is more of a gut feeling and a "YES! That is the ONE!"You could have a stone on one hand that meets all those technical requirements and one on the other hand that doesn't but you can love the second one more. Maybe it has more fire or more sparkle or maybe less.

Offline Diamondsbylauren

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9078
    • Diamonds By Lauren
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #9 on: December 25, 2011, 03:28:28 PM »
One thing to add...
I am also one for using tried and true visual methods for assessing a diamond's cut.
Just curious Catia- but how did you select the diamonds you got?
Were there any photos?
David
Check out our YouTube Channel

Offline Catia

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 20
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #10 on: December 25, 2011, 03:50:26 PM »
Just wanted to note, I'm not purchasing these diamonds for my E-ring!!!

I'm a "Hands On" person, so this is part of a process that's necessary for me.

--I got them to observe & understand so I can learn & see what it is that I like/dislike, & be able to see in person, in regular daily light so I will know for sure what I AM going to purchase. That way I won't have remorse later.

 It will help me to know how to properly describe the look I am trying to achieve, & know for sure.

I don't really know what diamonds should look like IRL, meaning the effect of light or fire or brilliance with the different styles of cushions. I needed to be able to have something in my hands for longer than a trip to the jewelry store to know.

I also am trying to compare the effects of different cut styles of cushions.
 I KNOW I do not like the *crushed ice* appearance for me, but on the same token, I also am not entirely certain I want some of those super chunky types either.
 Some of the "new" old cuts I really like--& some of them I don't, at this point, I am still trying to figure out what degree of chunkiness I really want.

I also wanted to play around with more extreme differences in cushions, depth, chunkiness, modified cushion brilliant vs cushion brilliant, & I wanted to also see how the lower colors *feel* IRL.

I'm not trying to replace getting a vendor. I'll get to that in time.
 I just want to KNOW what to ask them to look for.
 I have a horrible mandatory overtime ridiculous schedule with work & I do not have the time (nor patience) to keep going out & looking for stones that are rarely in stock around me, so this method is my solution.
 I also won't have to feel guilty or make excuses for not purchasing, I can critique what I've got, learn about the effect the various cuts have in my own eyes & come away knowing what I do want, & once I do know, I can say for SURE.

I know I LOVE most cushions, also I love Old mine cuts, the more squarish rounds, but I also love the square emeralds and asschers.

Several years ago, I bought an E-ring setting I loved, however it doesn't "fit" ME--I loved the effect it had, but in person, on my hand, it isn't what I want for an e-ring. I kept it, since it IS pretty, & didn't break the bank. Probably will use it for a right hand ring someday.
 For my E-ring, I want something I won't tire from. Sometimes styles come & go, & that goes for e-ring diamonds too, so this is also part of me working that out also.
  Everyone has a different way of learning, & this is just part of my process & it removes the pressure of me having to make a decision before KNOWING what it is that I want.
  There's quite a few women at work who initially LOVED their e-rings & now they don't. I hear a lot of "oh if I saw that before I got mine I'd have chosesn that--maybe *someday* I can change/upgrade".

I've noticed a lot of women get TIRED of their original cut choice if they bought it based on what was "in" at the time.  Or their BF purchased it without their input--
A lot of *ring envy* at my work especially with the younger women-LOL!!!!
 & I just don't understand why they didn't think about it more in the 1st place, or tell their BF what they wanted or liked from the beginning.
but I guess in the thrill of the moment of being proposed to, there's a bit of pressure & rush.

I'm 40 & BF & I have been together for 12-14 years, & I don't feel that pressure, so I can take my time & get what I really want--but most of that hurdle is actually KNOWING what I do want. Hope this explains why I am doing it this way!!!!


Offline Catia

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 20
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #11 on: December 25, 2011, 04:21:45 PM »
David--I posted that above while you were posting.

So to answer your question on how I chose the diamonds I did--well, I took a lot of what I read here & on PS. The videos & lengthy topics have helped me tremendously!!!

I narrowed it down to what I learned I should look for or consider--And decided to only view GIA while doing this experiment, so that I have a true reference point for training my own eyes. Honestly, once I know what I want, & what it looks like, that's not as important to me--But for learning purposes it IS necessary.

1st was choosing the shape I liked best--the cushions-and then chosing ratios & understanding that ct wt & mm are a bit different in cushions as opposed to rounds, & I want something that faces up at about 1.25ct  range & converted to mm...

2nd was cut quality--I want a good cut--you've proven here even a not so nice diamond clarity-wise can escape being a total dud if the cut is great!--I viewed that one brilliant you have wayyy cheap & saw that while it could've been a total loss, the cut saved it, & someone can get a nice sized rock that really sparkles in a price range they can afford, IF they understand to go for CUT quality.

3rd was color-wanted to start with J as my middle ground after understanding what color is really about.
( I also needed to see a J graded by GIA, as I've seen plenty of NON GIA "H"'s--a while back, in person and I have learned what I saw previously was condiderably darker than what an actual GIA "J" with no flouro actually looks like-i thought I would get a yellow or brown stone--nope!)

4th was understanding the plot (& taking the chance it was the correctly listed lol)as far as the underneath cuts effects since this affects the over-all look of the cushion. This part is really important to me--I needed a visual, *IRL* , & I fully understand what the GIA plot pic is might not really be what it is...but atleast I tried!

5th was clarity--I just happened to get lucky on that one pictured above and find an IF to look at. It isn't as important to me, but great for reference!!!


I viewed probably 100+ GIA reports to see the plot & did a LOT of reading about cushion & different cuts etc.

I understand my learning curve method isn't for everyone, this is just how I do things, I enjoy the learning process & like to know how things work--I'm very analytical that way.

***EDITED TO ADD***Sorry -forgot to answer that one main question for David--No, I DID NOT view ANY photos--there were NONE. That part was left up to a bit of *chance* but I figured it'd be *less* chance if I went with lowest acceptible cut Polish as VG or EX & symmetry as EX or VG.
« Last Edit: December 25, 2011, 04:43:08 PM by Catia »

Offline clgwli

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4491
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #12 on: December 26, 2011, 09:17:07 AM »
I totally appreciate wanting to make sure you get exactly what you want.  I spent a lot of time looking at shapes and cuts before I decided on what I wanted.

I couldn't look at color near as much because colored diamonds are hard to find in person in general.

I do think it is wise to look at GIA/AGS graded diamonds to see what color you are happy with.

I think spending so much time looking at plots is not going to be as helpful as you may think.  Why do I say that?  Because I've seen diamonds with the exact same GIA diagram and they look *nothing* alike.  The other forum you are looking at spends a lot of time pushing specific types of diamonds with specific numbers.  However past a round brilliant numbers are no where near as important as how the look is in general.  In fact David just had a thread about this exact thing.  Check out this thread

http://coloreddiamond.info/gia-reports/we-all-know-cut-is-important-can-a-poorly-cut-diamond-look-good/0/

Fancy cuts are a totally different beast than round brilliants.

I really think once you get past the color and shape issues (which seeing in person can help) you need to focus more on what you like the look of and less on plots and all that.

Randomly picking diamonds based on plots & all that from a GIA report will not help you find something IMO.  By doing that with a cushion you will find random diamonds and not specific looks you might want.  I really would start with a place that has a least one photo or movie of the diamond and go from there.  Otherwise really you aren't going to have much luck finding different types consistently.

Watch videos... lots of videos and look at lots of photos.  Ask for videos if you see a diamond you like in photos but want to see in action.

As for the clarity and GIA plots, let me tell you that's another it is impossible to tell what you will get based on a clarity plot.

I want to use a diamond I own that has a clarity plot as an example
http://rockdiamond.com/index.php/jewelry/flower-diamond-ring-26ct-light-pink-round-diamond-gia-in-daisy-ring-r2985

If you look at that GIA report you will see a ton of little imperfections.  Under the loupe only a few of the darker brown ones are very quickly noticeable (you can spot them in the photos) however absolutely none are visible with the naked eye.  They really are impossible to find even for me who notices little itty bitty imperfections quickly.  How they blend into the sparkle is key for these I do personally think.  I've seen smaller black carbon spots or white pinpoints that I can see in a diamond because of where they are in the stone.  A GIA plot tells you what you have and where they are, not how noticeable they will be.

For you I really think you should take some of the numbers out of hunting for a diamond because I do worry that is making you more miserable.  Again numbers and "science" in fancy cuts is really hard to use to help you find a good diamond.  Since I can't comment on other seller's diamonds really, I will suggest you look at the videos of the precision cut OMBs on DBL to see what a well cut chunky diamond looks like.  Get your eyes used to what is a good cut visually and you will find that your eyes are drawn to a similar cut over and over again.  Here's a link to the DBL cushions http://rockdiamond.com/index.php/categories/dbl-antique-cushions

As for the terms "fire" "scintillation" "brilliance"  I will say this, the definitions of what they are is one thing but what is "best" will vary based on preference alone.  Do you like big bright flashes of white light?  Or do you go for rainbows in diamonds that can blind you?  Do you like having both equally?  To me that's all you need.  If you keep to looking at videos of well cut stones which is important to you, then you can see what type you like best.  

Take a breath, take a step back and find the beauty in the stones and don't try so hard to interpret plots and drawings on a GIA report because they really don't tell you much about how the diamond will look in person.

I hope all that made sense to you :)  I do think the looking for shapes and color is wise though and something only can be done in person.  The rest is much harder.  Once you find exactly what type you like (ie square cushion with antique vibes to it and  H-K in color - for example) then take it to a seller and have them show you what they have or source a few choices for you.  I highly suggest that for a fancy shape diamond.  I really do feel trying to use numbers in a fancy cut is much harder and I know those on the other forum will say the same.  It really is tough to follow rules for non round brilliant diamond.

Good luck and I hope my advice helped :)
« Last Edit: December 26, 2011, 07:46:12 PM by clgwli »
Squiggly

Offline Diamondsbylauren

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9078
    • Diamonds By Lauren
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #13 on: December 26, 2011, 11:24:41 AM »
Hi all!
Catia- I'll be completely honest here- as usual- your posts make me feel as though I've failed to give you enough info- at least based on what you've written.
Lets' compare internet diamond sellers, and computer dating- just for a minute.
Having been single for a while back i the early 2000's, I can say ,with experience, internet dating is not a lot of fun.....
But my  point revolves around photos.
Why would someone not put a photo?
They're too good looking?
Unfortunately, that was never my experience.
Then you have the ones with photos that are too nice- glamour shots.
Again, usually a bad omen.

How does this relate to diamond shopping?
If a seller does not publish photos, the same reasons may apply- they don't want you to see what they are selling.
Another good reason is that they don;t possess the diamond- instead they're selling off a list of diamonds they've never seen- and may never see, as the shipping may be done by a third party.
This is absolutely the cheapest way to sell- these sellers can't evaluate the stones. They never offer trade up policies.
Basically they sell, then run away.
This may work for some- but from my perspective, it's a horrible way to buy.

Why?

Well, I have access to lists with hundreds of thousands of wholesale diamonds- the same ones you see on the sites selling without photos ( and even a few that do)- so I can actually "shop" wholesale diamonds using a similar type of search

Experience has taught me that the GIA report- plot and all - omit the most vital aspects of what I consider desirable in a diamond's cut.
Therefore picking a stone off a list blind is akin to a nice game of Russian Roulette.
Two stones that are virtually identical based on GIA color, clarity, depth table, and even plot- can look totally different. One is a winner,  and the other is the loser in the game of Russian Roulette ( wait, how do you win that game?)

It's true that great advice is to only consider stones with GIA reports- however it's just as important to advise folks not to pick a diamond based solely on that GIA report.
Basically, no matter how much anyone studies Table/Depth - or even CA and PA- ( not listed on a GIA report for a cushion) they'll not be able to accurately relate the GIA to the actual diamond's appearance- and desirability.
This means you can look at a million plots- and have no more information than someone who's looked at not a one. ( plus you'd have a huge headache:)

ETA- sticking with Polish and Symmetry of VG or EX: does that help your chances of getting a great stone?
NOT THE LEAST LITTLE BIT- plus you'll eliminate some amazing candidates. In this specific aspect, shoppers can easily mistake things they cant see, with the far more important aspects like corner shape, and facet placement- neither if which are indicated anywhere on a GIA report



This one really is a subject from your earlier post that needs addressing:
Quote
I KNOW I do not like the *crushed ice* appearance for me, but on the same token, I also am not entirely certain I want some of those super chunky types either.

Here's what I've found- there's a vendor who HATES crushed ice- and in fact does not even really know what it is ( based on their videos)
These videos are recommended to others on PS ad infinitum till "crushed ice" gets a bad name on that site.
So- I ask with all earnestness- if you're not sure what you DO want, how can you be sure what you DON'T want?


Another vital aspect is the ring: I advise shoppers to consider both ring and diamond together, and for many reasons.
First and foremost- if one buys a diamond from vendor A, and a setting from vendor B, who's responsible for the final result.
If it does not look correct, each can blame the other- although it's really not an issue because the consumer can't possibly have a money back guarantee on both items, purchased from different vendors- this removes accountability from each.
Second of all, certain stones look Way better in certain rings- so it's smart to consider both together.


The good thing here is that this is an experiment- and I assume you're still within your money back period....



PS: +10000 to Squiggies excellent post above.
« Last Edit: December 26, 2011, 11:28:16 AM by Diamondsbylauren »
David
Check out our YouTube Channel

Offline sherylsbuys

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 453
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #14 on: December 26, 2011, 12:25:06 PM »
In my opinion, you have come to the BEST place in the world for IRL help on diamonds!  I  wish I would have found DBL and the Forum many years earlier than I did, but it's probably best that I didn't, because it would have been too tempting to change my children's college fund investment from equities to diamonds.  However, they are graduating from the University this May....

Offline dovesgate

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 729
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #15 on: December 26, 2011, 03:49:08 PM »
I have to say thanks for this thread. I finally understand the difference between fiery and sparkly. I need to play with my stone more in brighter lighting to see if she has any fire. My little OEC has it in spades in some lighting but not in others and the single cuts next to her have only brilliance, no fire. So now I have an excellent reference point!

I know what you mean about finding exactly the right stone and setting that will last forever without the dreaded ring envy. I have found that I, too, can heap mounds of pressure on myself to find a setting that will please me for a very long time. It is a daunting task because really, how can you know the future? I have mostly decided that if I have doubts then I need to pass because I really don't want to be in the position to regret my choice.

Offline sherylsbuys

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 453
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #16 on: December 26, 2011, 10:28:04 PM »
I have to say thanks for this thread. I finally understand the difference between fiery and sparkly. I need to play with my stone more in brighter lighting to see if she has any fire. My little OEC has it in spades in some lighting but not in others and the single cuts next to her have only brilliance, no fire. So now I have an excellent reference point!


After reading this thread, I realize that I only like 2 kinds of diamonds - fiery and sparkly!  Is there a cure for my addiction to DBL?  Do I want a cure???

Offline Diamondsbylauren

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9078
    • Diamonds By Lauren
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #17 on: December 26, 2011, 10:46:33 PM »
Another aspect to consider- when we delve into optics- different diamond designs are better in different lighting scenarios.
The classic example is an older cut- presumably cut when indoor lighting was not all that great- so that the resultant stones do particularly well in low lighting.
A well cut radiant cut gathers light differently than a Round Brilliant.
Point is, the terminology of brilliance, pattering, and scintillation, while agreed upon gemologically- by GIA and AGSL- to me, is still inadequate to really describe what I see, in varying lighting scenarios.

BTW-Catia- thank you so much for starting an interesting discussion!
David
Check out our YouTube Channel

Offline firegypsy

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 231
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #18 on: December 26, 2011, 11:16:47 PM »
I love this thread SOOOOO much.

David, so excuse me because I think I know the answer, but I want to clarify.  Is one of the big differences working with you that you own all your diamonds?  Or at least have them on site?  I think I remember this being said somewhere. 

That being the case, you are basically handpicking what you consider to be the most interesting or appealing stones?

I know a lovely lady told me that working with you it's impossible to get anything that wasn't completely awesome.  It kind of went over my head, but it did register.  So you are kind of like our pre-screener....bringing only the best to the table.  That's pretty incredible given what I'm starting to understand.

Offline Catia

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 20
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #19 on: December 27, 2011, 06:31:12 AM »
i believe i saw the video david was referring to yesterday by that other company pushing chunky cuts--before i read the replies here--it was weird cuz I was thinking the one diamond did look more brilliant type than crushed ice--& I 2nd guesed myself--

I am not a fan of cushed ice appearance, I have seen them in person, not for me, it doesn't have the feel i want. That I DO know--doesn't feel the same to me for going with a more old school art deco type of setting.

On the same token, while I HAVE seen some tremendous chunky cuts, some of the newer chunky cuts are fantastic & then some aren't so much for me--some are too chunky or same looking to me & some have shapes in the center that remind me of symbols I don't want in a diamond & they all look just the same, but I guess that's their hallmark cut. I feel the same way about hearts & arrows in brilliants, I'm just not a fan.

But show me an OMB that has a pattern inside & I just get all whacky, seen some where the cutlet reflects back like dots & looks like theres a flower inside, wasn't perfectly symmetrical--but damn was it beautiful.--Can't remember where I saw it--maybe a pic here.

Yes, I'm still experimenting, I have 1 more cushion I want to look at to get an idea for color & shape (different ratio) & is a cushion brillant. I'm still not sure about the difference between fire & brilliance, I still just don't get which thing it is. I LOVE rainbows & longer flashes--have no clue what that is called though.

I can hear/read the definition of fire or brilliance or scintillation a million times stated--I just do not get what it IS when I am viewing a diamond-

-I guess I'm just dense that way, I AM HANDS ON--I need to see it, have someone tell me that is what I am looking at & then I will remember it. I watched some videos, it did not help, no arrows idiot proofing it sttating -"this is fire" then "this is brilliance", This is scintillation"---yes, I'm not a diamond person, & I really do need it broken down for me like that.


Offline clgwli

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4491
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #20 on: December 27, 2011, 08:02:41 AM »
I can hear/read the definition of fire or brilliance or scintillation a million times stated--I just do not get what it IS when I am viewing a diamond-
First of all I think you are getting a bit hung up on what words are an how important they are when finding a diamond you like.  Let me explain why

Scintillation is a dynamic type of effect.  Out of all the terms it is the least "measurable".  Scintillation is simply how much does a diamond twinkle.  It's not something you can easily point out since it deals with a diamond in motion.   You can't just have a photo and say "this is scintillation" since it requires movement.  Really simply it is when the flashes of light go from bright to darker as it moves and reflects light.  People use the work sparkle when discussing scintillation.  So people's ideas of how much a diamond sparkles and what is acceptable is totally up the the person.  Kind of like trying to get everyone to universally agree what color is best for a diamond.  It's personal if you like colorless or low colors or any color of the rainbow.

Brilliance is also something you can't just point in a photo.  It is simply how bright does a diamond seem to you.  It's not something that will be universally agreed on what is best either.

These are two words I wouldn't even worry about when trying to describe a diamond.  Why?  Because they really are not measurable in a good way.  What my eyes will see as bright, your eyes may or may not.  What I think looks all twinkling you may not agree with because the size of the flashes of light aren't what you are going for.

Fire is easy... when you see colored light or a rainbow.  There is fire!  You don't have to see a whole rainbow, just color that is different than the color of the diamond.  For example on a colorless diamond, any other color you see that is not white, that's fire.  For yellow anything that isn't yellow color coming from the diamond is fire.

This is important to some more than other.

The other term I would focus on is flash of light and the size.  Do you like huge flashes of light?  That means when looking at a colorless diamond you see areas where it looks more white than others, how big are those areas and do you want them large or small.  I am very sure you know what this means since you keep refering to chunky cuts. 

Is this the OMB you were talking about?

http://rockdiamond.com/index.php/jewelry/loose-diamond-159ct-old-mine-brilliant-remarkable-color--possible-windfall-if-it-gets-vivid-yellow-r4330

The reflection of the culet around the stone is amazing in this one.  Just as a reference that is called the kozibe effect.  I absolutely love that :)
Squiggly

Offline sherylsbuys

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 453
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #21 on: December 27, 2011, 09:01:05 AM »
I love reading all these posts!!! Even though I am extremely anal retentive (and that's not all bad!), I have developed the following 3 step (greatly reduced from the previous 99 step) system for diamond selection (I used Steps 1 and 2 to find the love of my life):

Step 1) When you first look at this diamond, do you say "WOW!!!".  If yes go to Step 2, if no repeat Step 1. 

Step 2) Upon further, much closer examination do you still "WOW!!!!".  If yes go to Step 3, if no repeat Step 2. 

c) Step 3  Ask DBL if he takes MasterCard. 

Offline sherylsbuys

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 453
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #22 on: December 27, 2011, 09:05:35 AM »
I loved reading all these posts!!! Even though I am extremely anal retentive (and that's not all bad!), I have developed the following 3 step (greatly reduced from my previous 99 step) system for diamond selection (I also used Steps 1 and 2 to find the Love Of My Life -  he's not a diamond, but he is a jewel!):

Step 1) When you look at this diamond, do you say "WOW!!!".  If YES go to Step 2, if NO repeat Step 1. 

Step 2) Upon much closer examination do you say "WOW!!!!".  If YES go to Step 3, if NO repeat Step 2. 

Step 3  Ask DBL if he takes MasterCard........................................................................  :0)

Offline djm195

  • Member Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 4332
  • Man, do I have to do everything around here?
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #23 on: December 27, 2011, 09:36:59 AM »
kozibe....man I love that look too Squigs.

Catia,

You have been very diligent and earnest in your desire to learn about diamonds before making a decision to buy. Perfect! I believe you are almost there. Don't lose heart.

A small bit of advice....this is something that I did ( and still do ) when I am considering a diamond.  I cant think of anywhere else you can do this aside from DBL ... its just the nature of the beast so to speak. Having said that, I believe that this is the reason so many stick with David. Most everyone here is a repeat customer.

Go to the DBL website and look at as many videos you can. Do not concern your self with stats (with the exception of the carat weight you desire...keep this as a range instead of a number since some smaller diamonds can face up larger and vice versa).  

Keep a running list of the ones that appeal to you. After you come up with a list of half a dozen or so...look at them again. This time, look at the commonality between the diamonds you have selected. What is it in these diamonds that attracted your attention? Was it the fire, chunky flashes, sparkle factor? Chances are, the quality you love will be represented in all of the stones you selected.  

From here, take the top three and nix the others. These are the ones that you have identified as being the top performers of the quality that has drawn you to them...whatever that might be.  Now comes the fun part. Find someone that you trust on the forum...someone that has been around and has posted a lot, been here for years and truly loves diamonds. Usually they can be contacted via email which can be found in their profile. Ask if they would mind reviewing your three choices and offer feedback. For me, it has always been DJ or Trinkette...but I could think of at least ten other members that I would trust an honest opinion from...some have already responded to your thread.

Once you get their opinion...call David and have him take out the three diamonds and have him give you his opinion on each stone. This is the benefit of having the actual diamonds in stock. Ask him if he had to choose between the three diamonds which would he pick and why. One thing I know about David -- he is very careful about this part. He would never push you into a diamond that he wasn't proud to have represent the Rock brand.
I can't think of a better way to learn what you like than this.

Best wishes to you Cat. I hope you find the diamond that knocks your socks off. It's out there...we just got to reel it in.

djm

« Last Edit: December 27, 2011, 09:47:01 AM by djm195 »

Offline Catia

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 20
Re: Help! No *IRL* ( In REAL Life) experience w/diamonds
« Reply #24 on: December 28, 2011, 05:20:01 AM »
KOZIBE!!!!!!!!

No that wasn't the diamond-wasn't a yellow-but that was the basic effect!

Thanks for the new term!!!

I like the big flashes of color more than white light--I LOVE rainbow & the color flashes--that's what I want to be bigger/broader--the tiny dot just feel like glitter to me--the big colorful flashes are what feels alive--guess that's fire?

Think I'm gettin it--sittin in the bedrom with the cat, a diamond & an LED caving headlamp--the cat is chasing the reflections on the wall.