The Straight Dope

Go Back   Straight Dope Message Board > Main > General Questions

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 04-10-2012, 01:43 PM
Mr. Slant Mr.  Slant is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Is Tanzanite Viable In An Engagement Ring?

I'm looking at a tanzanite ring at my local Jared's jewelry store.
The intention is to use it as an engagement ring... perhaps, someday.
Is that a poor idea in terms of the hardness of the gem?

Last edited by Mr. Slant; 04-10-2012 at 01:44 PM..
Reply With Quote
Advertisements  
  #2  
Old 04-10-2012, 01:55 PM
TriPolar TriPolar is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
This is more of an IMHO response, but it precludes your question.

It's a poor idea to tell a woman you love her enough to marry her, but not enough to buy her a real diamond. It's a poor idea to purchase an engagement ring before she says Yes. You can always give here an inexpensive ring and go shopping after the deal is sealed.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 04-10-2012, 01:59 PM
chrisk chrisk is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Southern ontario
Posts: 6,028
I'm not by any means a jewelry expert, but I think it's not a good choice. Taking a look at a few references for 'Tanzanite Mohs scale', it's generally pegged at just under 7 on the Mohs hardness scale, or '6.5-7'

You'd want a stone that has at least a solid 7 on the Mohs scale for 'everyday wear' use like an engagement ring, and higher would be better.
__________________
Stringing Words Forum
Aspiring writers and authors supporting each other.
Goals and resolutions our particular specialty - also sharing commiseration and triumphs.
Join today!
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 04-10-2012, 02:26 PM
Zsofia Zsofia is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
This is more of an IMHO response, but it precludes your question.

It's a poor idea to tell a woman you love her enough to marry her, but not enough to buy her a real diamond. It's a poor idea to purchase an engagement ring before she says Yes. You can always give here an inexpensive ring and go shopping after the deal is sealed.
You're assuming all women want diamonds? Can't stand them myself. They're boring and they have unpleasant associations with colonialism, slavery, and civil war.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 04-10-2012, 02:34 PM
Moonlitherial Moonlitherial is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
This is more of an IMHO response, but it precludes your question.

It's a poor idea to tell a woman you love her enough to marry her, but not enough to buy her a real diamond. It's a poor idea to purchase an engagement ring before she says Yes. You can always give here an inexpensive ring and go shopping after the deal is sealed.
He's asking about the hardness of the gem in relation to daily wearing not to what the beliefs of his someday fiancee might be which makes it GQ not IMHO.

However OP, since your question did get a quick response I would add that from an IMHO point of view it's better to select a ring for a specific girl than to find a girl who will appreciate your view of what a ring should be.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 04-10-2012, 02:40 PM
Anne Neville Anne Neville is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Quote:
Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
It's a poor idea to tell a woman you love her enough to marry her, but not enough to buy her a real diamond.
Unless you know she wants something other than a diamond. Some of us do.

I didn't want a diamond engagement ring, but I wanted something durable, because I am a klutz. I ruled out everything below 7 on the Mohs scale right out of the gate.

Quote:
It's a poor idea to purchase an engagement ring before she says Yes. You can always give here an inexpensive ring and go shopping after the deal is sealed.
Yes. Then you're also not likely to get something that is not to her taste or that is impractical for her.

Not all of us need a surprise proposal complete with ring. They don't ask for evidence of that when you get your marriage license, or at least in North Carolina, where I got married, they don't.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 04-10-2012, 02:46 PM
Aurelia Aurelia is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Not all women want diamonds, but as others have noted, you should wait until you have a specific person to whom you want to propose and whose tastes you are familiar with. Sapphires, rubies, emeralds, and topazes are some alternatives to diamonds, and also have the minimum hardness required.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 04-10-2012, 02:57 PM
Colophon Colophon is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Well call me Mr Cheapskate, but my wife's engagement ring is tanzanite, set between two small diamonds on a white gold band, and we both think it's beautiful. In fact she chose it, after I proposed. I love the colour - we looked at sapphires too but never saw one in anything like as vibrant a colour.

She's been wearing it for four and a half years now and there don't seem to be any issues with the hardness - no scratches.

Of course, if your beloved is a bricklayer or a roadmender, you might want to reconsider.


Edit: I do agree with the other responses, though - wait until you have the girl before you buy the ring.

Last edited by Colophon; 04-10-2012 at 02:59 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 04-10-2012, 02:59 PM
Anne Neville Anne Neville is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Picking out an engagement ring before there's a specific woman you've picked it out for- creepy. Most women are going to be reluctant to date you if they find out you've done this. The only exception would be if the ring is a family heirloom.

And what happens if you buy this engagement ring and never find a woman to give it to? You've wasted a lot of money, that's what.

Wait until there's an actual person with actual ring preferences in your life before you go buying an engagement ring. Then buy something she likes. She's going to be the one wearing it, after all.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 04-10-2012, 03:07 PM
cher3 cher3 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
It appears to be about the same as peridot on the hardness scale. I have a peridot ring that I wore almost every day for about a year and it did develop some scratches.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 04-10-2012, 03:15 PM
Hello Again Hello Again is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Quote:
Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
It's a poor idea to tell a woman you love her enough to marry her, but not enough to buy her a real diamond. .
That is the most hideous bullshit I have ever heard.

I do not wear diamonds and never will. They are ugly, a waste of money, and in many cases a chunk of pure evil.

To the OP's question Tanzanite is more suitable for a pendant or earings.

Also to the OP's question, all mall-based jewelry stores are horrible ripoffs, so if you wanted to buy a Tanzanite ring, I wouldn't buy it at Jared.

And finally to the OP's question, buying a ring for a someday hypothetical bride that may or may not like it in the possible future is beyond creepy.

Last edited by Hello Again; 04-10-2012 at 03:16 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 04-10-2012, 03:20 PM
Bridget Burke Bridget Burke is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Houston
Posts: 7,011
If you really like tanzanite, why don't you buy a pinky ring?

It's not a good idea to buy an expensive ring for a lady you haven't even met. Even after you meet her--she might prefer another gem. Or none at all....
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 04-10-2012, 03:23 PM
Lukeinva Lukeinva is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by Colophon View Post
Of course, if your beloved is a bricklayer or a roadmender, you might want to reconsider.

Tread lightly. Without bricklayers there'd be no walls, and without roadmenders there'd be...a lot of potholes.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 04-10-2012, 03:31 PM
Colophon Colophon is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lukeinva View Post
Tread lightly. Without bricklayers there'd be no walls, and without roadmenders there'd be...a lot of potholes.
Hey, no slight on brickies and roadmenders. I simply meant that a tanzanite ring is probably not optimum for manual labour, if that's your lady's bag.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 04-10-2012, 04:00 PM
Rhythmdvl Rhythmdvl is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Shakedown Street
Posts: 12,431
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bridget Burke View Post
If you really like tanzanite, why don't you buy a pinky ring?
I took the context of the OP to mean he's heterosexual.



Mrs. Devil's ring is citrine (a quartz; 7 or so hardness). We both have a loathing for diamonds both for the blood and suffering inherently attached to all diamonds plus a generalized aversion to over-marketing (see TriPolar's 'interesting' quip). No scratches or problems yet. And I've it on good authority that she loves me.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 04-10-2012, 04:04 PM
raspberry hunter raspberry hunter is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2009
Tanzanite is without question too soft and too scratch-prone (mohs 6.5) to be used as an engagement ring if it's the sort of engagement ring that will be worn every day. Especially if the woman in question is, like me, a klutz, and knocks her hands about everywhere.

Sapphire and ruby are hard and tough enough (mohs 9) to be used as an engagement ring. So is cubic zirconia and alexandrite (mohs 8.5), with the added advantage that very pretty CZ can be had fairly cheap (My engagement ring is a CZ.) Spinel is also a tough stone, beautiful, and just at the upper range (mohs 8) of hardness that I'd recommend for an engagement ring that was worn every day. I wouldn't really recommend something below Mohs 8 for long-term every-day wear.

If it's only going to be worn on special occasions, and the woman is very careful with the ring, which is the case for some women, then tanzanite is probably fine.

ETA: My engagement ring is (clear) CZ through my own insistence (mr. hunter wanted to get me a diamond), because, like Rhythmdvl, I also don't go in for the over-marketing and the conflict diamond stuff. Although if I had to do it all over again, I'd get a sapphire or at least a blue CZ, because colored stones are just more interesting to me.

Last edited by raspberry hunter; 04-10-2012 at 04:06 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 04-10-2012, 04:11 PM
Colophon Colophon is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Quote:
Originally Posted by raspberry hunter View Post
Tanzanite is without question too soft and too scratch-prone (mohs 6.5) to be used as an engagement ring if it's the sort of engagement ring that will be worn every day.
Hmm, I'm going to have to have a closer look at Mrs C's engagement ring when I get home. As I said, she's been wearing it for over four years, every day, and never takes it off except to have it cleaned occasionally. I'm pretty sure it's not scratched up, though.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 04-10-2012, 04:17 PM
Jonathan Chance Jonathan Chance is offline
Domo Arigato Mister Moderato
Moderator
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: On the run with Kilroy
Posts: 16,692
I did exactly that. A large tanzanite stone in a gold setting as an engagement ring for Lady Chance. She loved it and wore it everyday until we married at which point she retired it. Never had a lick of trouble with it.

And it's a pretty stone. Good luck!
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 04-10-2012, 04:24 PM
Heart of Dorkness Heart of Dorkness is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
I had a pearl engagement ring, which is like a mohs 2.5 - somewhere between Play-Doh and chalk, I think. I just accepted that it was going to show wear. It did have a few dark marks and dents on the underside from where it rubbed against my wedding ring, but did surprisingly well for a couple of years... until one day it just fell off the mounting. I put it away as a keepsake and now just wear a wedding band. But my point is, I imagine tanzanite, especially one that's securely mounted, could be just fine for daily wear. It depends on the wearer, I think.

But I agree: it's something she'll wear every day for the rest of her life, so don't pick it out without taking her tastes into heavy consideration, at very least.
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 04-10-2012, 04:25 PM
raspberry hunter raspberry hunter is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2009
Colophon and Jonathan Chance, it's very probable that your wives are not nearly as big a klutz as I am. I must knock my ring finger against something hard several times every day by accident. And a lot of these warnings are geared towards not knowing whether the woman in question is like me or not

Also, I'm talking about a forty-year timescale here more than a four-year one. In forty years I'm betting it'll probably be a bit scratched up. In four years, maybe not so much, although if you inspect it with a loupe I'll be interested to see what you'd find. (I'd expect at least a little wear on the facet points.)
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 04-10-2012, 04:34 PM
alice_in_wonderland alice_in_wonderland is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
I don't think you should choose a ring before you meet the girl, and I don't think you should choose the girl based on if she likes the same ring as you.

However, if you meet a nice girl, and she likes tanzanite, and she's not horribly clutzy, or is ok with needing to get the stone replace once and a while, go for it.
Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 04-10-2012, 04:34 PM
TriPolar TriPolar is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by Heart of Dorkness View Post
But I agree: it's something she'll wear every day for the rest of her life, so don't pick it out without taking her tastes into heavy consideration, at very least.
I should have reduced my comments to something simple like that.

Last edited by TriPolar; 04-10-2012 at 04:34 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 04-10-2012, 04:40 PM
Tom Tildrum Tom Tildrum is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Falls Church, Va.
Posts: 10,089
A woman at my old job bought her wedding dress long before she met the man she eventually would marry. She said that she went to one of those running-of-the-brides events and saw what she knew she wanted, at a good price. She kept it under her bed.
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 04-10-2012, 04:44 PM
Crab Rangoon Crab Rangoon is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
I requested an opal (5.5 - 6.5 hardness) for my engagement ring. My husband found a beautiful opal and had it set appropriately (it is protected around its edges by the metal) and I have worn it constantly for going on 12 years now (except when I make meatloaf or hamburger patties - Eww). No problems whatsoever, and I do lots of yard and garden work.

I also endorse the idea that you need to wait and see what your fiance would like - what if my husband had bought a giant diamond a year before he met me? He would have been very disappointed.
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 04-10-2012, 04:46 PM
Antigen Antigen is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: was Montreal, now MD
Posts: 7,116
Those of you saying he shouldn't buy a ring for a woman he hasn't met - while I agree with you that it's creepy, he didn't say he hasn't met this woman. I read it more as his having a girlfriend and he's thinking about proposing one of these days, and is starting to explore ring options.
Reply With Quote
  #26  
Old 04-10-2012, 04:51 PM
Anne Neville Anne Neville is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Tildrum View Post
A woman at my old job bought her wedding dress long before she met the man she eventually would marry. She said that she went to one of those running-of-the-brides events and saw what she knew she wanted, at a good price. She kept it under her bed.
There's a difference between this and a man picking out an engagement ring before he's met a woman to give it to, though. One big difference is that it's the woman who picked out the wedding dress, and it's the woman who wears the wedding dress.
Reply With Quote
  #27  
Old 04-10-2012, 05:11 PM
Aurelia Aurelia is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
There are also women who pick out their engagement rings before they've met someone they want to marry. A friend of mine has a requirement that her engagement ring has at least $10,000 worth of diamonds. Maybe one day she'll meet someone rich enough for her tastes.
Reply With Quote
  #28  
Old 04-10-2012, 05:14 PM
Rhythmdvl Rhythmdvl is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Shakedown Street
Posts: 12,431
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anne Neville View Post
There's a difference between this and a man picking out an engagement ring before he's met a woman to give it to, though. One big difference is that it's the woman who picked out the wedding dress, and it's the woman who wears the wedding dress.
One is presumptuous; the other very vaguely creepy.


I'm not saying which is which.

Last edited by Rhythmdvl; 04-10-2012 at 05:15 PM.. Reason: Why don't I learn to hit the quote button?
Reply With Quote
  #29  
Old 04-10-2012, 05:25 PM
Anne Neville Anne Neville is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhythmdvl View Post
One is presumptuous; the other very vaguely creepy.


I'm not saying which is which.
And they're both a bit pathetic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aurelia
There are also women who pick out their engagement rings before they've met someone they want to marry. A friend of mine has a requirement that her engagement ring has at least $10,000 worth of diamonds. Maybe one day she'll meet someone rich enough for her tastes.
She should focus her search on people who have more dollars than sense.
Reply With Quote
  #30  
Old 04-10-2012, 06:15 PM
Kimstu Kimstu is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
I know somebody who's been wearing a large tanzanite solitaire in her engagement ring for about 3 years now, and she doesn't seem to have any problems with it (except once it fell out of the setting, but the stone doesn't appear to have been damaged). But she doesn't bang up her hands much.

Agree emphatically that the recipient should help pick out an engagement ring, though. In the meantime, if you want a ring for the actual proposal, get something cheap and cute with some sentimental significance that she could wear for sports/outdoor activities when she doesn't want to risk her fancy ring.

Make sure the proposal ring is something that doesn't look at all like a traditional engagement ring, so there won't be an awkward moment when she thinks "Is that it?" and tries to look thrilled with it. I know a guy who gave his girl a selection of colored enamel cloisonne bands; she had fun mixing and matching them as casual jewelry after she acquired the Official Solitaire on her third finger.
Reply With Quote
  #31  
Old 04-10-2012, 06:58 PM
Mr. Slant Mr.  Slant is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by Antigen View Post
Those of you saying he shouldn't buy a ring for a woman he hasn't met - while I agree with you that it's creepy, he didn't say he hasn't met this woman. I read it more as his having a girlfriend and he's thinking about proposing one of these days, and is starting to explore ring options.
You're reading my post as I intended it to be read.
I left my post purposely vague, so that one of the (several) people that knows my real-life name and my handle doesn't begin real-life rumors circulating as a result of a message board post.
Notes:
- There's a woman
- The woman loves tanzanite
- The woman likes the notion of avoiding diamond as too mainstream
Reply With Quote
  #32  
Old 04-10-2012, 07:06 PM
Zsofia Zsofia is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Slant View Post
You're reading my post as I intended it to be read.
I left my post purposely vague, so that one of the (several) people that knows my real-life name and my handle doesn't begin real-life rumors circulating as a result of a message board post.
Notes:
- There's a woman
- The woman loves tanzanite
- The woman likes the notion of avoiding diamond as too mainstream
Have you considered the many colored varieties of created stones? They can make created rubies and sapphires in tons of colors, and then you KNOW there's not even a whiff of colonial oppression. (My engagement ring is my grandmother's old setting, reset with a created emerald.)
Reply With Quote
  #33  
Old 04-10-2012, 07:08 PM
Mr. Slant Mr.  Slant is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zsofia View Post
Have you considered the many colored varieties of created stones? They can make created rubies and sapphires in tons of colors, and then you KNOW there's not even a whiff of colonial oppression. (My engagement ring is my grandmother's old setting, reset with a created emerald.)
Zsofia,
I appreciate your kind offer of advice. I'll ask you to confine this to private messages or create a separate thread to avoid derailing this thread.
Reply With Quote
  #34  
Old 04-10-2012, 07:31 PM
Anne Neville Anne Neville is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Slant View Post
You're reading my post as I intended it to be read.
I left my post purposely vague, so that one of the (several) people that knows my real-life name and my handle doesn't begin real-life rumors circulating as a result of a message board post.
Notes:
- There's a woman
- The woman loves tanzanite
- The woman likes the notion of avoiding diamond as too mainstream
Oh, that's a very different story.

I'd still worry a bit about the hardness of tanzanite.
Reply With Quote
  #35  
Old 04-10-2012, 08:14 PM
alice_in_wonderland alice_in_wonderland is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Slant View Post
You're reading my post as I intended it to be read.
I left my post purposely vague, so that one of the (several) people that knows my real-life name and my handle doesn't begin real-life rumors circulating as a result of a message board post.
Notes:
- There's a woman
- The woman loves tanzanite
- The woman likes the notion of avoiding diamond as too mainstream
Well then go for it! Even if it means replacing the stone now and again if Tanzinite is her fave I don't think she'll mind.
Reply With Quote
  #36  
Old 04-10-2012, 08:39 PM
Tom Tildrum Tom Tildrum is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Falls Church, Va.
Posts: 10,089
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhythmdvl View Post
One is presumptuous; the other very vaguely creepy.


I'm not saying which is which.
Once she did develop a boyfriend, we chuckled a bit that there was a certain horror-movie quality to him unsuspectingly banging her on her bed, while the wedding dress lurked underneath. Something like Poltergeist and the burial ground.
Reply With Quote
  #37  
Old 04-10-2012, 08:49 PM
TriPolar TriPolar is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Slant View Post
You're reading my post as I intended it to be read.
I left my post purposely vague, so that one of the (several) people that knows my real-life name and my handle doesn't begin real-life rumors circulating as a result of a message board post.
Notes:
- There's a woman
- The woman loves tanzanite
- The woman likes the notion of avoiding diamond as too mainstream
All very different from the way it first sounded. When the time comes, good luck!
Reply With Quote
  #38  
Old 04-10-2012, 09:21 PM
lavenderviolet lavenderviolet is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
I looked into the topic of non-diamond e-rings a lot when I recently became engaged, because I am morally opposed to the diamond industry and consider retail diamond prices to be a total rip-off. I ended up getting a moissanite ring myself.

Some people do get lucky and are able to keep an engagement ring with a soft stone looking nice, but if you want a non-diamond stone that you don't have to worry about, you probably want to stick with moissanite, sapphire, or ruby as the main stone of the ring.
If you look at vintage engagement rings, you'll notice that sapphires were a common choice in engagement rings before the DeBeers marketing convinced people to think "engagement = diamond". Sapphire seems to be making a comeback these days thanks to the anti-diamond sentiment that's rising and Princess Kate's engagement ring. It comes in many pretty colors (not just blue) and purple sapphire might be a good alternative to tanzanite, IMO. If you're sure she wants a colored stone as the main stone, I would probably opt for the purple sapphire, myself.

If you are dead-set on using tanzanite in a ring, I'd suggest using it as side stones and ideally in a protected setting like a channel setting or bezel setting. That would help it stay safe. Prong settings don't protect the stone very well.

In addition to the risk of a softer stone being scratch or worn down, another problem you might run into is that the settings these stones are put in (if you're not getting it custom made) are frequently less durable than a good quality engagement ring setting, and not really intended for daily wear like a decent engagement ring setting is.

Myself, I ended up with a very nice looking semi-customized ring from http://www.moissaniteco.com I'm a big fan of moissanite and I encourage you to research it if you think your lady might be interested in a colorless stone that's not a diamond.

Last edited by lavenderviolet; 04-10-2012 at 09:22 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #39  
Old 04-11-2012, 08:22 AM
ralph124c ralph124c is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
NO! DeBeers Knows Best!

According to DeBeers, you should spend 2 1/2 months salary on a DIAMOND ring-you cheapskate! What kind of woman would take less?
Reply With Quote
  #40  
Old 04-11-2012, 08:42 AM
Sigmagirl Sigmagirl is offline
Go Browns!
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Western Reserve
Posts: 8,188
The OP might consider going to a gem show and buying a tanzanite stone he likes and then keeping it until he finds the lady, and then asking her what she thinks about tanzanites. He can then have the stone made into an engagement ring, pendant, cocktail ring, or other piece to suit her tastes.
Reply With Quote
  #41  
Old 04-11-2012, 08:42 AM
Colophon Colophon is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Quote:
Originally Posted by ralph124c View Post
According to DeBeers, you should spend 2 1/2 months salary on a DIAMOND ring-you cheapskate! What kind of woman would take less?
Is it two and a half now? I'm sure it started out as "How else can a month's salary last a lifetime?", then it morphed into two. Still creeping up, huh?
Reply With Quote
  #42  
Old 04-11-2012, 09:00 AM
jayjay jayjay is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Quote:
Originally Posted by Colophon View Post
Is it two and a half now? I'm sure it started out as "How else can a month's salary last a lifetime?", then it morphed into two. Still creeping up, huh?
Hey, their profits are down with all this "blood diamond" nonsense! How else is DeBeers supposed to make money?!
Reply With Quote
  #43  
Old 04-11-2012, 10:07 AM
Hello Again Hello Again is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Quote:
Originally Posted by lavenderviolet View Post
Myself, I ended up with a very nice looking semi-customized ring from http://www.moissaniteco.com I'm a big fan of moissanite and I encourage you to research it if you think your lady might be interested in a colorless stone that's not a diamond.
BTW, I had by ring custom made at the same webstore - it's a Tsavorite Garnet (grass green) with Moissanite side stones. They don't even list Tsavorites in their store but they were easily able to certified stones at a modest price. Highly recommended seller.

A Tsavorite has variable hardness that goes from 6.5-7.5. I actually chose it because Tsavorite is resistant to shattering compared to an emerald. The center stone is princess cut in a prong setting but the prong set has these sidebars that protect the stone to some degree. It looks perfect after 4 years of continuous wear but I am also not opposed to having the stone replaced if it starts to look iffy.

I think a Tanzanite would be about the same - if you're ok with having the stone replaced at some point go for it. If not, I think lavenderviolet is right on to suggest a purple sapphire. They come in all sorts of colors. With Moissaniteco you have your choice of natural or manufactured sapphire - noting that a manufactureed stone is NOT a glass imitation, it is identical to a mined sapphire.

I also really like purple Iolite at Mohs 7-7.5 which is a stone whose color is polarized - it looks clear or purple depending on the angle of view and the manner of cut. The darker blue-purples can be very similar to Tanzanite. Symbolically, Iolite stands for clear vision, and was supposedly used as a navigational tool by vikings.

Colored Gemstone info
More colored gemstone info
Reply With Quote
  #44  
Old 04-11-2012, 10:57 AM
purplehorseshoe purplehorseshoe is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
From the wiki article:

"Because tanzanite is relatively soft, it is usually set in necklaces and earrings..."

The article says this is the source.
Reply With Quote
  #45  
Old 04-11-2012, 11:04 AM
Gyrate Gyrate is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Just a further tip on buying tanzanite: I am led to believe that the company that runs The Jewellery Channel is also the main wholesaler for tanzanite. I have certainly bought some very nice tanzanite (and tanzanite/diamond) rings and earrings off there at well below store prices. Something to check out.

Disclaimer: I have no personal or professional connection to TJC or any related companies or persons. I just like their tanzanite jewellery.
Reply With Quote
  #46  
Old 04-11-2012, 11:45 AM
Tastes of Chocolate Tastes of Chocolate is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: slightly north of center
Posts: 4,267
After the diamond in her original engagement ring was lost, my parents replaced her ring with one with a tanzanite stone in it.

Over the years, she had to have the main top facet repolished a few time, and the corners of the bevels were obviously rounded from wear. Now this was not a small stone, in a setting without much metal protecting the stone, so anything brushing against it was going to rub against the stone.
Reply With Quote
  #47  
Old 04-11-2012, 03:05 PM
Mr. Slant Mr.  Slant is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by raspberry hunter View Post
Colophon and Jonathan Chance, it's very probable that your wives are not nearly as big a klutz as I am. I must knock my ring finger against something hard several times every day by accident. And a lot of these warnings are geared towards not knowing whether the woman in question is like me or not
SNIP
Yeah, she's clumsier than all sin.
Reply With Quote
  #48  
Old 04-11-2012, 03:32 PM
raspberry hunter raspberry hunter is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2009
Yeah... if she's as clumsy as I am, in that case I'd say, try looking into blue-purple sapphires, as lavenderviolet mentioned, or possibly spinels. Sapphires in that color will be rather more expensive, especially because of the Kate thing, but they do come in lovely purplish colors like tanzanite; spinels it's a little harder to get that color, but still possible.

If she doesn't mind synthetics/simulants, there are really beautiful synthetics in that color range as well. People have brought up some good suggestions; I'll also mention that winkcz has many different colors of cz, including "tanzanite"-colored cz. If cz comes in the shade you want, I think it's a really nice option, as long as you get a well-cut one (which these are) because it's got high dispersion (rainbows) like diamond, but comes in awesome colors as well, without the huuuuuge price tag of a colored diamond.
Reply With Quote
  #49  
Old 04-11-2012, 04:54 PM
Hello Again Hello Again is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Quote:
Originally Posted by raspberry hunter View Post
If she doesn't mind synthetics/simulants, there are really beautiful synthetics in that color range as well. People have brought up some good suggestions; I'll also mention that winkcz has many different colors of cz, including "tanzanite"-colored cz. If cz comes in the shade you want, I think it's a really nice option, as long as you get a well-cut one (which these are) because it's got high dispersion (rainbows) like diamond, but comes in awesome colors as well, without the huuuuuge price tag of a colored diamond.
Not to disagree with the bulk of your post, just that the terms synthetic and simulant are not synonymous nor do they describe the same basic properties (chemical composition vs. appearance).

A "synthetic" is a manufactured gemstone identical in chemical makeup to a mined gemstone. A synthetic sapphire is not an "imitation" sapphire, it's entirely a saphhire that was made in a lab.

A "simulant" is way to describe a stone whose significant property is that is resembles another stone. It can be a mined stone or a manufactured stone. A CZ is NOT a synthetic diamond, it IS synthetic zirconia. A CZ is a diamond simulant, and a clear sapphire is a diamond simulant too.
Reply With Quote
  #50  
Old 04-11-2012, 05:43 PM
raspberry hunter raspberry hunter is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2009
Yes, sorry. Hello Again's post is right on, and I was unclear. CZ's are diamond (or tanzanite) simulants and do NOT have the chemical composition of diamonds (or sapphires or tanzanite, for that matter). Same with moissanite. (Moissanite is really cool, though...) That's why you could get away with using a tanzanite-colored cz; because it is not the same type of stone, it is much harder for the same color.

That'll teach me to post in a hurry over lunch
Reply With Quote
Reply



Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:10 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@chicagoreader.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Publishers - interested in subscribing to the Straight Dope?
Write to: sdsubscriptions@chicagoreader.com.

Copyright 2013 Sun-Times Media, LLC.