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1 post from November 2008

Mickey Mouse Rules of Diamond Shopping

DSCN7093 Anne brought home this cute figurine this weekend and we commented how much Mickey and Minnie reflect the emotions that occur when diamond shopping.  I thought this was a good opportunity to mention some of the diamond shopping rules that are illustrated by Mickey and Minnie.

1) Get input from the one who is going to be wearing the diamond ring.  Shopping together like Mickey and Minnie is a good way to communicate.  The most important piece of information is what shape she wants.  If a girl thinks she might have a proposal in her future, she should do some shopping and determine what shape she likes best on her finger.  A subtle comment when shopping can tell the guy what shape and save him a lot of worry and a possible expensive mistake.

2) If the guy is trying to keep the purchase a surprise, they might not know what type of mounting their girlfriend wants.  The reality is that she probably does not know yet.  Buying a mounting that she does not like or is not comfortable on her finger, can be a very expensive mistake so a good strategy when in doubt is to put the diamond in a simple mounting, propose, and let her help shop for the mounting.

3) A word of caution to guys and gals when shopping.  Guys, be careful and understand that just because a girl says something looks nice, does not mean she wants that on her finger.  Girls like to shop and often provide a commentary on their “sport.”  Not every comment about a ring or diamond should be taken as their ultimate decision.  Girls, be careful and understand that your boyfriend is looking for every clue he can get and will take you comments as fact.  If you say you really do not need a big diamond, he just might take you at your word.

4) While the beads of sweat on Mickey’s brow might be from apprehension of having to buy a diamond, the usual worry we see in shoppers is the fear of making a mistake.  The solution is to do some homework and learn about diamonds and ring.  Diamond source of Virginia has excellent education information and shopping advice on their website.  You do not have become a gemologist but you should learn the basics.

5) There is something between Mickey and Minnie that you should be wary of and that is the SALE sign.  Just because a jewelry store has a sale or the price shows a big discount, does not mean the item is a good value.  If you start with inflated prices, the amount of discount is meaningless.  Research online retailers to find out what the prices should be and do not pay more than you need to for a beautiful diamond.  This advice is especially pertinent if you are shopping out of town while on vacation, on a cruise, or at some “gem show.”  Impulse buying is the way shops get tourists to buy something without doing the research they normally would and then are stuck with their purchase when they go home.

6) While there is no way to know what documentation goes with the diamond ring Minnie is pointing to, it is unlikely they will find a GIA graded diamond in a jewelry store.  Do not confuse GIA grading, which means it has a Diamond Grading Report from the GIA Laboratory, with someone in the store having taken some classes at the GIA and writing an appraisal or giving an opinion on the quality.  Not all grading laboratories are as accurate as the GIA so if a retailer is trying to sell you EGL, IGI, or some other documented diamond, learn about the Certification Game they play.

7) When I see Mickey holding shopping bags, it reminds me that buying an engagement ring often comes at one of the most financially difficult times for a couple.  Often the couple is still paying off school loans, has been working but not that many years, and they have to start planning for a wedding and honeymoon as soon as they engaged.  Good financial planning and decision making means knowing your budget and seeking the best values possible.  The lowest price might not always be the best value, sometimes the cheap price is due to cheap quality.

8) Mickey and Minnie ended up in the office of Diamond Source of Virginia and if you are reading this article, you might be lucky to do the same.  If you have any questions, give us a call at 888-477-8385 and we will be happy to assist you.  We help clients all over the country every day, many of them who have already purchase somewhere else or are just starting shopping.  Since we do not own inventory and search for the best diamonds in the country for our clients, we can tell you the truth and give you unbiased advice.  Discover the better way to buy diamonds.