An increasing number of couples are choosing to buy an engagement ring at auction where prices are typically lower and the number of styles and cuts are far greater than on the high street. We also find that many brides-to-be are drawn to antique and vintage pieces as they offer a sense of romantic history and allow the wearer to stand out from the crowd. All it requires is a little patience.
Diamonds are constantly in demand although prices will vary not just according to carat weight but also according to colour, clarity and cut. For some people, weight is the most important criteria, in which case they may sacrifice clarity or colour to obtain the larger stone within their given budget. Others may prefer the guarantees inherent within a higher grade stone and accordingly accept a smaller size.
For example, a single 1.00ct round brilliant-cut diamond with a high colour grade and rated IF (internally flawless) will make £4000-5000 at auction (perhaps £20,000-25,000 retail).
Auctioneers will typically include the ring size in the catalogue description but in most cases, it will be possible to have a shank re-sized for the perfect fit.
Coloured gemstones are currently riding the wave of fashion. The best untreated Burmese rubies, Colombian emeralds and Kashmiri sapphires are bringing relatively high prices. For significant gemstones, it is important to have a certification stating the origin of the stone and evidence of colour enhancement.
The Art Deco 10.87 carat single-stone diamond ring that was sold in November 2015 was assessed prior to sale by the AnchorCert Gem Laboratory and graded according to colour (L) and clarity (VS2). It realised £74,400 including fees.