We write a lot about the “four Cs” of diamonds: cut, color, clarity and carat weight. And as you have learned from previous columns, larger round, white, clean diamonds are considered, in most circles, the best and the priciest. A five-carat D color, flawless clarity with excellent cut and symmetry will wholesale for around $500,000. When you add a fancy mounting and a dealer’s 20%-or-so markup, you are nearing the $750,000 range! Add the name Tiffany or Cartier and a price of $1,000,000 is not out of the question.
But most people can live with an ultra clean, VS clarity stone – or even an SI (slightly imperfect) – and only a good or very good cut, or a different shape than round, and save literally hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Today we will highlight a couple of recent purchases, both for sale in our stores, that typify (and at the same time defy) the norms.
First up is the Cartier Adele ring. It is the popular radiant cut – kind of a brilliant-faceted emerald-style cut with lots of faceting on the bottom of the stone (the pavilion). It is D color, internally flawless clarity, and with the Cartier name and superior mounting, the original owner paid $319,000 for it 12 years ago. Today it would appraise for likely around $400,000 or more. This is the new price direct from Cartier. We bought it from a retired Orange County, California jeweler for $100,000. It is for sale (or trade) in our store for under $150,000. Radiant cut is usually rated in the top five of favored cuts after round, emerald, and cushion. (Please note you will almost always see internally flawless stones well above one-, two-, three-, four- or five-carats, because diamonds get little nicks from time to time, and a stone for 10 to 20 points OVER an even size is desirable, so you can re-polish it if it gets a tiny nick.)
The three least-favored cuts are the once very popular princess cut, the heart shape and the marquise. We actually LOVE marquise and recently bought this 3.02 carat GIA D color SI2 (slightly imperfect) ring at $20,000. Retail value would be around $55,000, but it is for sale in our store for under $35,000.
We love all cuts and are currently looking for large round, old European cut and marquise stones.
Can we help you find that perfect diamond for your next occasion? Or do you want to find a new home for a nice diamond? Contact Katrina Hess, Graduate Gemologist, in our St. Petersburg store or Bill Essex in our Hyde Park store. We are short on glitz but very long on education!
WE ARE ALWAYS BUYING! If you have fine diamonds or jewelry to sell, contact us.
If you need an appointment in St. Petersburg or Tampa, give us a call. We are former sothebys.com associates. We make house calls statewide.
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