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Where do you buy your stones?

Hi all!

I am a jeweler from the Hudson Valley in New York. I am only about an hour from NYC. Does anyone have any places they recommend for purchasing stones? I would prefer to go in person but obviously with the COVID limitations I cannot. Does anyone have a good place they trust to buy their gems online? Or does anyone have a good place in NY state they recommend where I can go when things open up again?

Thanks!
Ava

Dikra Gem Inc New York NY !!!

Peru Blue Opal Ltd
Miners-Cutters

Does anyone have a good place they trust to buy their gems online?

I have received nice stones and excellent service from:

https://www.stachurawholesalegemstones.com/

https://www.riogrande.com/

https://www.ottofrei.com/

Selection varies from site to site, and combined they have quite a variety available.

Neil A

Hi
What is your requirement please send on info@kapiljainjewelry.com

While I am a lapidary and cut a lot of my own stones, I enjoy going to gem and mineral shows where you will typically find a very wide selection of semi precious and precious gem and mineral material both rough and finished. Do a search on gem and mineral or rock clubs and you will likely find a show near you. I live near Syracuse NY and we have a big show in the summer. Yes, the virus has closed some down right now, but we will eventually get to where they can be held again. Otherwise, try the commercial sites previously suggested if you are in a hurry. Clubs are also a great way to get involved in cutting and polishing your own material. Good luck…Rob

I second the Dikra Gems recommendation; they’re on 45th St. between 5th and 6th Aves. here in NYC. I do think it’s better to go there in person. The place and its owners are a bit quirky: it’s in an unmarked office building, and when you get there, it’s basically and 3’ or 4’ x 10’ space with a counter. Diane, one of the owners will stand there with you and show you anything you like, but it’s usually a good idea to know roughly what you’d like to see, stone-wise and size-wise. That said, they have a huge selection and do a lot of wholesale volume, but Diane will warm up to you and she is pretty patient. I went there many times as a student when my head was still spinning with options. :wink:
I also like R Gems, which, like Dikra, probably also gets a lot of volume business, but it’s a bigger space and you can move around a lot better. They’re also in the diamond district. The help behind the counters can be iffy, but they will show you trays and trays of all manner of stones. I have seen people picking through 2mm sapphires painstakingly picking exactly the right 50 stones for their pieces. I’ve had great service and terrible service there.
I’ve bought stones from Rio with very good success; with Rio, too, they are very clear about stone sources (like if it was mined in America or Australia or …).
I think I have a list from one of my jewelry classes of stone sources; if I manage to dig it up, i’ll add it here.

Ava,
A few words of advice. While some of the standard jewelry supply places also carry stones, they are not necessarily the best place to buy them. First, they are likely to carry a limited range of commercial quality and commercially in demand cuts rather than custom cuts or gems that are rarer or finer in quality. Let me put in a pitch here for American custom cutters and for gem dealers closer to the sources in Africa, Thailand and Sri Lanka. It is a lot like picking someone for home improvement. I look for a single craftsman who works alone or with an assistant who comes in an old truck. The minute you call a business, there is a fleet of trucks, employee benefits to pay and an owner taking a cut, sometimes a big one, and often abusing the employees. You do get a guarantee, but at a cost. If you find a craftsman with a good reputation, he will also make good on his work and often won’t have to, because it will be done right the first time.
The same thing applies to the stone business. Everyone who handles the stone has to have a cut…so if you can find a cutting house near the source or, say in Thailand, with buyers who go to Africa and buy in bulk, or a custom cutter in America who has good sources, you are cutting down on the number of people who have to have a cut. Likely you will get better merchandise, which showcases your metalwork and sells better, often for the same price or not that much more than the commercial stuff. If you are looking for agate and such cabs, I would also attend local gem shows and also attend a few meetings of the local gem and mineral club and ask around…you will likely find more than one person who has cabs for sale or even rough from which they will cut for you. Often these are retired folks who are cutting stock which they got years ago cheap and the price may reflect that rather than the replacement cost of inventory.
The American stone cutting world is a pretty small one and many of the cutters are gemologists who value their reputations above all, so you are unlikely to get cheated. You might also try some of the Facebook groups (there are several) where stones are sold. Custom cutters often hang out there and an inquriy might produce what you want.
If you message me privately, I may be able to make suggestions for your particular needs. You don’t say whether you’re looking for $10 agates or $1000/ct emeralds…HTH, -royjohn

1 Like

I would like to reinforce the Dikra Gem recommendation. Lovely people. Great assortment of stones. Not a lot of “regular” stuff, but for bullets, drops and beautiful patterned stones in whatever shapes you’d like, they can’t be beat.

I also like Dikra. Nice stones, reasonable prices.