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Where can I find a cheaper engagement ring?

(36 Posts)
BigusBumus Thu 06-Sep-12 16:07:42

DP has announced he wants to buy me an engagement ring (after 8 years together and 3 kids). Its second time around for both of us and we are very practical and not very romantic...

We have up to £1000 to spend. I love Aquamarines and saphires and white gold and have quite chunky fingers. We've been out looking today and everything we liked was £3,000+. I really can't justify that and can't even really justify the £1000 we have to spend either. TBH I would equally like a new stair carpet and a chest of drawers in DS2s room! grin

I read on here ages ago about websites that sell 18c white gold and real gemstone rings but that the "diamonds" are actually lab-created or some other semi-precious stone. Can anyone help find me a website or a ring where its prices in the £100s rather than the £1000s?

I love rings like this Deco style one or this trilogy type

StatisticallyChallenged Thu 06-Sep-12 16:16:46

I've previously used bluenile, who were excellent. I have also just ordered from purelydiamonds. Diamond-heaven also had a good range. I'm on phone so can't check what they have in terms of aquamarine.

Merrow Thu 06-Sep-12 16:16:50

Whereabouts are you? DP and I didn't have crazy amounts of money to spend, but had a fantastic weekend walking around the lanes in Brighton and going into all the ring shops there. I've got a white gold and sapphire ring from the 1920s that I absolutely adore, and it was around 600. I probably could have haggled the price down, but I was a bit overcome by how much I liked it and didn't care!

minipie Thu 06-Sep-12 16:19:02

Sounds like you have quite vintage-y taste so I'd go for something vintage/antique - can be better value than buying new and definitely nothing lab-created!

Heritage Jewellery have a big range and they also own Laurelle. I've never actually bought anything from either but they seem reputable enough from what I can tell.

BigusBumus Thu 06-Sep-12 16:41:09

Thank you for your replies, I am busy looking. I am going to look through eBay as well for something real but second-hand. (Not fussed about it being from a failed marriage!)

mrscumberbatch Thu 06-Sep-12 16:41:49

Are you talking about moissanite and other simulated stones?

link to previous mumsnet simulated stones threads

Simulated stones can be lovely, if it's a desired look that you're going for, I had a wee nose around though and can't see anything in the Edwardian style that you first linked. The trilogy, there is options, but for the difference in price I feel that maybe you'd be better off going for smaller precious stones.

Ok. Budget is £1000. Chunky fingers, sapphire/aquamarine. I'll go and have another nosey about.

AbsofAwesomeness Thu 06-Sep-12 16:42:14

I agree about looking at vintagey places, or else seeing if you could buy the stones separately, and then get someone to make a ring for you rather than going retail. I might know people, depending on where you're based.

Diamonds are ridiculously expensive at the moment, so it might be worth instead getting a ring that is aquamarine or sapphire rather than a diamond. If you'd like to stick with a diamond:
- as soon as you hit a carat, the price goes up like crazy, definitely more than it should be. You might be able to get a decent stone (in terms of clarity and colour) of a smaller size
- brilliant cut is the most difficult to do, and therefore much more expensive than other cuts, such as marquise, pear etc.

Keepthechangeyoufilthyanimal Thu 06-Sep-12 16:42:56

Have a look at Diamond Heaven
I bought my diamond set wedding ring from them which was fantastic value compared to any high street chains etc.
Having been bashed about and through the rough it still looks great 3 years later!
Very good service from the website, quick delivery of the ring and they custom made it how I wanted based on an existing style from their website.

They do have a shop (called Aspire IIRC) in the jewellery quarter in Birmingham which is worth going to if its relatively local.
My step dad recently got my mums engagement ring from the shop (not knowing my wedding ring was bought from the website) and had nothing but good things to say about the shop as well.

They don't seem to have any of your deco style as far as I can see, but plenty of trilogy set ones!

Congratulations BTW! wine

worldgonecrazy Thu 06-Sep-12 16:46:12

QVC is your friend. I have a platinum plated cubic zirconia (QVC brand it Diamonique) and everyone thinks it's real. It would have cost several grand if it was real, instead it was the bargain price of £15. We've been married 8 years and it still looks as good as new. I wear it next to a white gold wedding band and it's impossible to tell the difference.

mrscumberbatch Thu 06-Sep-12 16:50:28

art deco diamonds and sapphire £860 I really like this but it is quite unusual. Also the price seems to be excellent!

diamond and sapphire £450 I don't know this ebay seller at all sowould need to have a good look into- but on the face of it, seems a very good ring for the price. Sapphire isn't anything to write home about but isn't awful. You could always upgrade the stone later if you felt the need.

diamond and sapphire slightly over budget this is a beautiful ring. Unusual without being too out there.

mrscumberbatch Thu 06-Sep-12 16:54:35

Abso- all the gemstones have gone up in price, they're kind of index linked.
You'd probably get a better looking diamond for £1000 than you would an aquamarine or sapphire. They're rarer so the price for a decent gemstone would be higher than that of a diamond ifyswim.

You are sort of right when it comes to the carat pricing. I often recommend people to go for between .75 and a carat as there's barely any difference in the stone itself but the difference in price is extremely reasonable.

mrscumberbatch Thu 06-Sep-12 16:57:09

similar to the first ring you posted op but £810 and cushioned rather than round. The setting looks quite modern and robust, so could suit a 'chunkier' finger.

mrscumberbatch Thu 06-Sep-12 17:01:25

In Aquamarine, I'm really struggling to find anything around £1000 as the stones are all really pale and not what I'd be looking for. You're talking serious money to get a stone of a decent size and nice colour.

(Maybe that can be your eternity ring later on wink)

This is probably the best tone of aquamarine that I have found closest to your budget and it's £1600.

BonnyDay Thu 06-Sep-12 17:09:57

If I had my time again I'd get a fake one. Huge. No one knows what the bloody vvvq thing or what ever it is

StatisticallyChallenged Thu 06-Sep-12 17:56:49

I think sapphires might be easier - what about

or this?

mrscumberbatch Thu 06-Sep-12 18:05:21

Good find on the first one Statistically!

thisthreadwilloutme Thu 06-Sep-12 19:40:38

What about [ this] or anything on [,pd.postTime,pd.lastUpdatedTime&sortDirectionStr=1,-1,-1&antiCache=1346956679860087B13406622C184182B93973D54DDA5&prefill=true&viewAll=1 this page]

thisthreadwilloutme Thu 06-Sep-12 19:41:40

whoops! this or this page

HeartOfDixie Thu 06-Sep-12 20:03:44

hello, We went to Brighton and looked in the lanes. we got my engagement ring, solitaire diamond and wedding bands, plain gold. Was great value and I made DH propose again on Brighton beach. you do have to get over the whole second hand thing i.e. the rings could be from horrid people, be from divorced people and therefore possibly a bad omen or from dead people. friends of mine recently got their rings from a pawn (apologies if wrong spelling!) shop. Downside of the recession is they have some amazing stuff and cheap prices.

Chubfuddler Thu 06-Sep-12 20:06:32

Burlington arcade in st James, London has several good antique dealer jewellers, you get a lot more ring for your mooney second hand.

ATruthUniversallyAcknowledged Thu 06-Sep-12 20:14:36

Where are you OP? The Jewelry Quarter UN Birmingham is worth a visit if you're nearby.

flygoldfish Fri 19-Sep-14 09:41:50

Sorry for coming to this late, but I've been researching this myself and thought I might able to help.

My advice for getting a cheap engagement ring:

1. Buying online is generally better for rings under £1000. Hatton Garden and similar places are good, but generally for more expensive rings.

2. 9 carat gold is obviously much cheaper than 18 carat or platinum. The main downside is that it tarnishes more, but a replating is about £20-£30, so probably cheaper overall.

3. Some places grade their own diamonds rather than paying for an external certificate, which keeps costs down. The certificate alone can be £50-£100 of the price.

4. If you don't mind second hand, there are bargains on eBay (and preloved, gumtree etc). I've seen £1000 rings going for £200 after one week's wear.

5. Decide which of the 4Cs matter most to you if you are on a tight budget (cut, clarity, colour, carat). Would you rather have a larger diamond that has imperfections under a microscope or a smaller diamond that is higher quality?

6. Search for discount codes!

Source: The Cheap Engagement Rings Guide

ivanhines19 Wed 04-Jan-17 11:47:26

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

imjessie Wed 04-Jan-17 12:47:10

Second Brighton lanes . There is a shop called whibleys in Worthing too which sells second hand rings . My engagement ring is from there and it's beautiful . It's nearly 20 years old but people always comment on it .. I don't like the shininess of some new rings ( not the diamonds , just the overall effect can look cheap )

MrsMarigold Wed 04-Jan-17 14:35:33

pawn shops?

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