Differing prices of gemstones
I'm looking to buy gemstones, but am finding that the prices for the same sized stone vary so much between 3 or 4 reputable suppliers. E.g. the same sized stone ranges from £15, to £40 to £65 depending on where I look.
As a general rule, does this mean than the higher price you pay from a reputable supplier, the better quality the stone?
Not really sure whether to go for the most I can afford or find the best bargain?
Obviously the better quality stones will be higher priced , but paying a higher price will not guarantee a better stone. All dealers are in this game to make money and the more they make the better for them. The best way to buy stones is to use your eyes and compare what you are being offered. I like to go to Rock N Gem shows and then the stones are all laid out in front of you to compare.
Don't discount lab grown gemstones as they can have good colours and good facetting. I bought a lot of lab grown stones from Channel Island Gems on eBay, the seller is clearing out his stock so they can be nice and cheap, see; http://stores.ebay.co.uk/CHANNEL-ISL...4.l1513&_pgn=1
These are couple of rings I made for my daughter one has a lab grown pink sapphire from Channel Island Gems and the other has an oval agate cab from Manchester Minerals.
Last edited by Goldsmith; 21-03-2012 at 12:08 PM.
I agree with buying first hand and using your eyes, but as there seem to be so few gem shops around, that leaves me with about 1 supplier to visit.
I like the sound of Rock N Gem though, where you can compare.. Thanks for the info
This stock clearance has been going on for some years now! I notice that they're doing more CZs than lab grown stones now, which is a shame (particularly since I wanted to restock on small pink sapphires after my eternity ring work).
Originally Posted by Goldsmith
Peter, have you tried contacting them direct. I did and asked them to send me a mixed package of stones, I just told them how much I wanted to spend and the colours, sizes and shapes that I wanted. They kindly sent me a good selection of stones to add to my collection.
That's a very useful suggestion, thank you James - I despair of picking through the reams of listings at times. I think I need to make a shopping list...
They are just colourful rocks and to some extent the prices are arbitrary. That said, some dealers maintain a reputation for moderate prices by offering stones which have been poorly cut, or have a dull appearance. You get to know where to look and I generally go to Marcia Lanyon, Or Marcus McCallum.
As James says, you can get a good selection at Rock 'N' Gem shows, and also at annual jewellery fairs where you can more readily compare quality and prices. Sometimes you can accept inclusions, which reduce the price, but at other times there are fracture planes which could let you down later. So don't expect a refund.
Thank you Dennis, I'm closest to London so will look at the two you mentioned- thank you.
Both Marcia Lanyon and Marcus McCallum are good quality suppliers as Dennis suggests and they sometimes exhibit at the Kempton Park Rock N Gem shows. There is another good supplier of gemstones in London and that is A E Ward, see; http://www.aewgems.co.uk/contents/about%20us.htm
Originally Posted by newbie2012
The next Rock N Gem at Kempton Park is in June, see; http://www.rockngem.co.uk/show-dates.html
I've bought quite a few from Channel Island Gems too, very reasonably priced. The seller's eBay id is sstringo.