Stacks on Stacks:
The Diamond Shop’s Guide to Stackers

Stacks on Stacks: <br>The Diamond Shop’s Guide to Stackers
Date: 31 / 01 / 2019
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Mass Produced Wedding Rings

They’re familiar, they’re convenient, and — surprise! — they’re having a sale right now. There are plenty of reasons you may be tempted to shop at mall jewellery stores. Here are 10 reasons why you deserve better.

1. Factory workers, not jewellers

Jewellery sold by large chain stores is mostly mass produced, and companies have a strong incentive to cut costs. They do this in a number of ways, including setting up factories in developing countries, where rings are machine-produced by semi-skilled workers, instead of trained jewellers.
ring

2. Hollow bands

Another cost-cutting tactic of chain stores is to reduce the amount of precious metal they use by making hollow ring bands rather than solid ones. The end result of this obsession with saving money is lighter, lower quality, less durable rings. We believe that wedding jewellery should be made to last.

3. Low brilliance

There are two reasons why diamonds sparkle the way they do. One is their extraordinary natural clarity, and the other is the skill of the diamond cutter. When a diamond is flawless, beams of light shine straight through it, without being dulled by inclusions or cloudiness. But truly flawless diamonds are both rare and very expensive; most diamonds have at least a very slight inclusion and the further down the clarity scale you move, the less clear the diamond becomes. Leading jewellers like the Diamond Shop insist on a minimum of SI2 clarity and above, and the highest possible grade of cut (Triple Excellent), for a finished diamond with exceptional sparkle.

4. Low colour

The highest quality diamonds are colourless, which is a D rating on the diamond colour grade scale used by authorities like the Gemological Institute of America or GIA. Diamond colour progresses from there all the way down to Z, which is light yellow or brown. Mall jewellery stores tend to use cheaper diamonds, with low colour.
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Colour grades. Image courtesy of GIA.

5. No independent certification

Diamonds are graded according to what experts call the Four C’s: carat, colour, clarity, and cut. Reputable jewellers sell diamonds that have been graded by an independent authority like GIA, and will provide a certificate with all GIA-graded diamonds you buy. Most mall jewellery shops don’t provide grading certificates with their diamonds, and those who do tend to use less reliable in-house assessors who may inflate the colour and clarity score, giving a misleading impression of the diamond’s true value. The Diamond Shop will provide a certificate, as well as a valuation for insurance purposes, with any GIA-graded diamond.

6. Mass produced designs

Your engagement ring means a lot, and it ought to feel unique. Nobody wants to see a clone of their ring on somebody else’s finger. But when you buy a mass produced ring from a chain store, you’re buying one of hundreds, if not thousands, of identical rings. Independent jewellers, like The Diamond Shop, produce in-house designs in very small numbers, meaning that your ring will stand out from the crowd.
“Just like home decor, art & fashion, jewellery also goes through design trends.”

7. No customisation

Mass produced rings arrive at the store pre-made, meaning that there is no option for buyers to customise their jewellery. Our customers always have the option of making design changes — in fact, we encourage it!

8. Fake sale prices

You may have noticed that chain jewellery stores seem to have a lot of sales. In fact, some of them are almost always offering spectacular discounts. The thing is, if something is always on sale, it’s actually never on sale. These stores deliberately mark up their prices, before applying a ‘discount’ that seems generous, but isn’t. We recommend shopping around, and being very wary of hefty discounts.

9. Jewellers or salespeople?

In a mall jewellery store, you may be served by a retail worker, not a jeweller. While some are excellent, salespeople typically have little, if any, gemological education, and will not be able to advise you on the finer points of selecting a diamond. The Diamond Shop is completely staffed by career jewellers, with years of experience and extensive training.

10. Higher overheads mean higher prices

We’ve talked a lot about the ways chain jewellery stores cut costs by skimping on materials and labour. However, this doesn’t necessarily translate to lower prices for you. Mall jewellery stores pay extremely high rent, and have to pay for an entire store’s worth of readymade stock. They also have large corporate structures behind the scenes, with executives, managerial teams, marketers and many more employees who need to be paid. Overheads that run well into the millions are reflected in prices that are higher than they should be, considering the quality of the jewellery.
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While at first glance mall jewellery stores may seem to offer great value, they're often the wrong place to make a costly and emotional purchase like an engagement ring. Whatever your budget, buying independent means that you really do get what you pay for.
Date: 31/01/2019
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Why Shop with Us?

Aside from providing over 24 years of exceptional service,
we proudly offer a range of unique benefits to our customers, like:

Lovingly
handmade in NZ

Our custom engagement rings are made to order by highly skilled New Zealand jewellers and diamond setters.

Fully certified
by GIA

Every diamond comes with an evaluation certificate from GIA, one of the world’s leading diamond grading laboratories.

Free lifetime
cleaning

All jewellery purchased from The Diamond Shop comes with free lifetime professional cleaning.
Just bring it into the store and our friendly staff will take care of it!

Ethical
Sourcing

Our CEO was invited to act as an industry consultant to the New Zealand government on the Kimberley Treaty, and we were proud to be the first jeweller in NZ to also sign the Rapaport Pledge for Ethical Jewellery. We conduct regular audits to ensure that our diamond suppliers keep living up to our strict ethical requirements.

Diamond Price
Guarantee

If we don't have the diamond you want in stock, we'll source it for you at a better price than any NZ competitor.

30 day money
back returns

We offer a 30 day no-cost return policy for items in their original condition with all original purchase documentation.

Insurance
Certificate

Your order includes an insurance certificate, providing a detailed description and valuation for any future claims.

The Diamond
Shop Warranty

Our generous two-year warranty covers any manufacturing defects.