Buying a diamond in a boutique is like burning your money It is difficult to imagine a less rational act than buying diamond jewelry from a regular collection in a fashion boutique of a famous jewelry house. For me it’s the same as carefully stacking packs of dollars on the pavement, pouring gas on it and burning it. Why?
Gold price per gram is 39.54 Euro. To begin with, let’s understand why a rich layman goes to a boutique of the world-famous company. As a rule, this is done in order to make a gift, for example, to your woman. It is wonderful to delight a loved one. About twenty years ago, when famous jewelry houses made handmade jewelry, a trip to a world-famous boutique was justified: it was really possible to buy exclusive luxury goods there. But since then, the world has changed a lot – and in a chic boutique in the center of Moscow or London, jewelry is sold from regular collections with solitaire diamonds (that is, large stones, in a separate frame), the real price of which is sometimes five or more times lower than the stated boutique. And if we are talking about fine jewelry (the so-called diamond dusting), then their cost can be overstated by 15-20 times.
This is because in the modern world there is no longer the profession of a jeweler, in the sense that it was 20 years ago. Today, the work of the jeweler is only in the final processing of the model after casting. Of course, old-school professionals still work in companies with history, but their function is also reduced to planning and, possibly, final processing of the product. And creating a model is now the task of the designer. So it turns out that most of the rings, bracelets, and earrings from the regular collections that people buy in chic stores are produced at large jewelry factories located in different countries of the world.
How was a work of art from a well-known jewelry company created before? Twenty years ago, tremendous experience was required to create truly impeccable quality jewelry, and there were only a few high-class jewelers around the world. Now, cars are responsible for the quality of the product, and for the beauty – the 3D designer, who is very familiar with jewelry business (often he only needs to correctly build the model).
Previously, an elderly craftsman, who had studied jewelry since his youth, thought for a few weeks, tried, and then turned it out of wax, for example, a ring model. Next, the model was placed in plaster, and then “spilled” in gold. The molten gold displaced the wax and solidified in a plaster form. How is a supposed masterpiece of jewelry art being created for which some top manager spends $ 20,000 – 30,000? The designer on the computer draws a 3D model. Next, the 3D printer creates this model from wax – and it goes to production, where the machine will create any number of “unique” jewelry. Jewelers of the new school are only engaged in grinding products, combine elements and fix stones. Therefore, the cost of the same ring from a well-known company with a long history can be (together with the work of the master and overhead) $ 1500 – 2000.
In order not to be unfounded, we take jewelry from a well-known company – this is a ring of white 18-carat gold with the head of an animal sprinkled with small diamonds and two emeralds – and try to make an estimate of it. The price of this product in the official boutique is 1.7 million rubles (that is, about $ 26,600). In the certificate of the jewelry house, we see the following characteristics: 1.15 carats of diamonds, a pair of small emeralds, onyx and 13 grams of gold. The cost of diamonds in this size, even of the highest quality, is no more than $ 700 per carat – a total of $ 805. Gold 750 – $ 34 per gram, total $ 442. Two small emeralds in the eyes of an animal and onyx – no more than $ 100. Thus, the cost of materials is $ 1,347. Decoration still needs to be made. How much will we pay for a jeweler in a private workshop without a big name? In Tel Aviv or Hong Kong, you can easily find a company that will fix you 137 stones for $ 2 per stone (total $ 274). Casting and metal processing will cost $ 10 per gram (totaling $ 130). For the final processing of the product, they will take another $ 40. Total for the work, we will pay $ 444, plus $ 1347 for materials. In total, $ 1791 is obtained. If you order a single exclusive product, the cost of design development will be added – about $ 100 – 300. But anyway – this is not $ 26,600. In total, $ 1791 is obtained. If you order a single exclusive product, the cost of design development will be added – about $ 100 – 300. But anyway – this is not $ 26,600. In total, $ 1791 is obtained. If you order a single exclusive product, the cost of design development will be added – about $ 100 – 300. But anyway – this is not $ 26,600.
Why does a consumer pay 14 times more for a regular collection item worn by thousands more around the world? Of course, we can assume that this is the intellectual work of a company with a long history. And this cost also includes the cost of renting luxury boutiques, huge salaries of employees of a respected jewelry house, expensive advertising, etc.
This is a personal choice for everyone, but I believe that a reasonable person will not pay fourteen times more than necessary. He can turn to small workshop designers who make jewelry often better than famous companies. There, for the money, they will make a ring with a diamond of 1.5 carats with high characteristics or 2 carats with medium. By the way, rich people are increasingly doing this. Note that in the regular collections of famous jewelry houses there is almost no jewelry with large diamonds. They mainly produce products with fine diamond scattering. This is because wealthy people are increasingly ordering jewelry with large solitaires in private workshops.
Even jewelry companies, as an excuse for the enormous price of their products, love to talk about the uniqueness of their diamonds, supposedly made from special diamonds with a unique structure. When the seller in the boutique, taking me for an ordinary coot with money, proudly declares to me that there are no such stones anywhere else, I turn around and leave – I just can’t hear this nonsense. Diamonds are minerals that were created by nature millions of years ago, and not by jewelry houses specifically for the new collection. They come in different characteristics (stones vary in color, clarity, faceting, fluorescence), but the physicomechanical properties of diamonds and the structure of their crystal lattice are the same everywhere and does not depend on the place of extraction or sale. The same applies to precious metals.
The consumer should bear in mind that to confirm the characteristics of the stone, the store must provide a GIA certificate (Gemological Institute of America). The characteristics of a diamond certified only by this independent laboratory are not called into question in the professional community. Any other certificate other than the GIA, and even more so the decoration tag, is nothing more than a filkin letter. If a diamond weighing more than one carat does not have a GIA certificate, you can immediately interrupt the conversation. Otherwise, you run the risk of buying a stone with characteristics several indicators lower than stated in the “certificate”. In Russia, as I already wrote ( almost 95% of diamonds on the official market are sold without GIA certificates. So, with a high probability, almost all stones in Russia do not correspond to the declared characteristics and the international price for these diamonds. Simply put, almost all buyers of diamonds in Russia are misleading. The exception in terms of certificates are world-famous jewelry houses, with an unjustifiably high price tag. They sell all their jewelry with a diamond weight of half a carat exclusively with GIA certificates.
How and where is the best place to buy diamond jewelry? Firstly, it’s worth going outside of Russia and heading to one of the world jewelry centers in the world – in Tel Aviv, Hong Kong or Antwerp. Search the Internet for offers from private workshops. You will definitely see a huge number of wonderful jewelry created by talented designers, the only drawback of which is the lack of worldwide fame. Choose a company with your favorite portfolio and start negotiations (after making sure that all diamonds have GIA certificates). In the end, the workshop should provide you with an estimate for the manufacture of the product. The cost of design is usually around $ 100-300, the price per gram of gold already in casting with processing is about $ 44, a small diamond solitaire of medium characteristics, say, half a carat, will cost $ 1,500 – 2,000, the work to consolidate it – no more than $ 10. Thus, you will pay for the ring, completely made according to your preferences with real diamond characteristics, confirmed by the GIA certificate, about $ 2,000 – 2,500.