Re: A very nice Aquamarine
, 09:46 PM
Thanks for your kind words ladies! (How's the baby Mira ?)
Value is a funny thing. Many times the values of custom cut stones are several times higher than you would pay for a commercially cut stone of the same material. A custom cut amethyst, for instance, could cost as much as $75 to $100 per carat, (yeah, I know, that's pushing it a bit), where a commercially cut stone can be had for well under $20 per carat. Is the higher priced stone worth the price difference ? Only if you appreciate beauty and you intend to have your jewelry last a long time. In this case the initial cost means nothing compared to the difference between owning and wearing a fine quality work of art for 40 years or wearing something of the same color, but lacking in ZING for that same period of time.
Sometimes even the custom cut pieces can be had at very reasonable prices that are far below what it would cost to get a commercially cut piece. This aqua, for instance, went for about 1/3 of what Stuller lists a similar sized aqua at. Why ? Well, I got a great deal on the rough, I had no attachment to the stone, I didn't feel like waiting and wiggling around, squeezing the last dime out of it AND most importantly my customer really wanted it. In these sort of cases you can certainly get a really great deal.
I do want to mention that I have noticed many people seem to be using E-bay prices on gems as their baseline for what they "should" cost. This is something that I would avoid, since most of the stones on E-bay, particularly in the lower price ranges, are on E-bay for a reason. Many are poorly cut, poorly colored, sometimes synthetics and often somewhat misrepresented. This is not a slam on E-bay and to be honest I will buy a stone on there, now and then, with the intention of recutting it, (if that's all that I think is wrong with it). I just think that E-bay is a bad place to use as a comparison of FINE stones, since most of them don't ever show up there.
My entire view on the idea of value is to buy the most beautiful piece that you can afford, (which usually include custom cut stones IMHO ), and not spend too much time worrying about how it stacks up price wise with everything else, since the price is forgotten very shortly after buying it, but the beauty of a nice stone lasts for a lifetime.