Yes, the diamond industry leads us to believe that women around the globe deserve a ritzy rock. Others, though, say it’s just a marketing plot to get their white, rather plain-looking stone, to sell.
I have to admit that I was a member of the latter team when I got married to my husband. I first denied the desire – or need — for a diamond ring altogether, and then a couple of months after our 9 a.m. civil ceremony, I walked with my husband into a store and bought a modest three-stone ring. I didn’t put much thought into a particular style or the number of carats I “deserved,” that day. It was the second marriage for both of us, and at the time our priorities were to pay off the debts we each inherited and move on with our newly combined life and complex family.
Last year, however, around the time of our unfussy 10-year anniversary, I started wondering if the diamond industry had it right after all. I started paying more attention to comments made by women about others’ “rocks,” like the comments made by my stepdaughter about her two cousins’ engagement rings. Even my husband made brief remarks about the size of his business partner’s impressive diamond jewelry.
I wasn’t immune, either. During a business meeting I found myself completely distracted as I gazed at the diamond ring glaring in front of me. I wondered if it was a huge engagement ring, or if the woman just forgot to take her cocktail ring off from the previous night.
Eventually, I found myself wanting to have a proper ring for myself. I started looking around, and because I had to honor the title of “shopper extraordinaire,” I decided not to make an impulse decision. I spoke with my husband about what would be a reasonable “budget” for us to spend on my ring and started studying up and window shopping. I did most of the research, but I took my husband with me a couple of times so he was familiar with all the options.
In the end, we agreed that an eternity band would have more significance for our “later in life” love story, and the fact that it was an anniversary ring made it a clear choice. After 18 months of research, I have narrowed down the list to the below three options. As you’ll see, I went beyond the “Four C’s,” as they call them (carat, color, clarity and cut) and decided to invest in a tiny piece of art that I’ll wear on my finger for many days to come. Yes, I could go to one of my husband’s acquaintances on 47th street and secure a pretty large rock within our budget, but I decided that buying a “name” ring comes not only with a marvelous shopping experience, but also with a potentially bigger resale value.
Although I said wasn’t going for the Four C’s, I have to admit that I was smitten with the HOF cut. Each diamond is chosen from the top 1% of the world’s raw diamonds and then is cut and polished at 100X magnification, which is 10 times the industry standard. The company claims — and by looking at a ring you tend to believe them — that “A Hearts On Fire diamond takes up to four times longer to cut than other diamonds, and the results of the microscopic precision can be seen from across a room.” The ring is simple, but the quality of the diamonds makes it memorable. It is simple, classic, will never go out of style, and can be worn day or night.
Tiffany was an obvious option in terms of brand, and Tiffany Aria, with its triad of brilliant diamonds set in perfect harmony, is a beautiful, substantial ring. (I am tall and well built, which means I need a larger ring.) The price is significantly lower than the HOF ring, but notice the Tiffany ring is only 2.49 carats versus the four carats of HOF. If carat-wise HOF seems to be a better buy, Tiffany is a more recognizable brand and the ring itself is more romantic.
I personally think every piece of jewelry should have a story — a story that could be passed on to children, or to good friends when sipping old wine. This is the ring that would come to me with many stories. Years ago, I used to work at Piaget while pursuing my MBA. I even met Prince Albert and Monsieur Yves Piaget at a function. As far as the ring goes, to this day I remember the hypnotizing sound of the endlessly dancing sparkling bands. I have to admit to butterflies in my stomach when I put the ring on last weekend. I think it’s love, but love never comes cheap. Although the same price as HOF, the Classic Piaget Possession ring has approximately 3.5 carats of diamonds, which is less than the 4 carats the HOF ring has.
By Mirela Gluck
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