Hi. I am a fourth-generation jeweler in Los Angeles, and my Dad,
Grandfather, and Great-Grandfather were all diamond cutters. The best
advice that I can give to a non-professional, when buying a diamond,
is to NOT take the word of the seller Re: quality. If you are not
qualified (i.e. gemologist OR lots of experience) to judge it yourself,
find someone you can trust to give you an honest evaluation.
Preferably, NOT someone who sells diamonds (hard to find, but there’s
a conflict of interest.)
I will put in a plug here for my friend, Charles Carmona, at Guild
Labs in L.A. He will give you the you need, and that is
his only business. He’s VERY good at it. Standard disclaimer–I have
no financial connection, etc.
With regards to the difference between old mine, old European, etc.
and modern brilliant cut, it is a really a matter of personal taste.
The demand today is for the modern cut, but that is not to say it is
"better." More important is whether the stone pleases YOU, and whether
it is priced fairly. AS important as that, is to educate yourself
about the proportions to which diamonds are cut, since it makes a huge
difference in the ‘look’ of the stone. I would NEVER buy a 'spread’
cut, because I think they’re ugly. I absolutely refuse to sell them
in my business, even if that’s what a customer THINKS they want. (One
of the joys of owning one’s own business is the right to make rules
that are counter-productive, but feel good!) If you decide to go with
the modern cut, I would caution you to find one with good proportions,
as it will make all the difference over the many years that you will
Feel free to contact me offline if you have further questions. David
Barzilay, Lord of the Rings (213) 488 5100. In So Cal, where the “Santa
Ana Conditions” have the temp. up to 90 degrees F.