A Guide to Buying Jewellery in Seattle
Seattle is a major retail area. If you have been there, you know that you can discover local jewelry makers, fashion designers, ceramicists, and other skilled workmen having handmade trinkets to adorn your home with or wear.
Because Seattle has a vibrant culture that values artisanal craftsmanship and supports slow living, the city is filled with several little and big stores.
The good thing about it is that the local jewelry makers curate unique designs and pieces. That adds a special touch to each little piece of jewelry.
Whether you want to buy an engagement ring, wedding rings, bridal jewelry, vintage jewelry, something for yourself, or otherwise, there is huge variety on offer in Seattle. The local vendors will be able to walk you through everything you need to know from selecting the best diamonds, precious metals, semi-precious stones, antiques jewelry, and settings for your engagement rings, to wedding bands, necklaces, and earrings.
These expert gemologists and designers will make your ring shopping experience a delight as they educate you and help you with your selection, and many can also help you with a custom design to suit you solely. However, choosing the right jewelry shop in Seattle can be tricky, since there are so many options available.
Is buying jewelry in Seattle easy?
With such elaborate retail stores and the availability of knowledgeable and skilled craftsmen, you would assume that purchasing jewelry in Seattle can prove to be overwhelming to some.
There are multiple other challenges associated with jewelry shopping around Seattle. One primary reason is that stakes are usually very high. If you are not familiar with the area and the pricing, you may be prone to getting scammed. All that counted, it is better to be cautious and have a degree of conscientiousness when you go out to purchase jewelry.
You also want to be away from fake jewelry which might be sold in the disguise of precious metals or antique jewelry.
In this article, we bring you a guide to buying diamonds, silver, and gold, listing everything that you must keep in mind and check when finding your unique piece of jewelry. Let’s begin this exhaustive guide to buying jewelry in Seattle
Inspect the price of jewelry
Sterling silver is a precious metal with high value. Consequently, the cost of the item should reflect this. A good quality product will be fairly priced and custom pieces will attract a premium on the price.
Straightforward price comparison is one approach to ensure you're buying the best silver jewelry available.
But where do you begin? Start by looking at sterling silver's current market price. This will, at the absolute least, provide you with a starting point for determining the costs of the jewelry you wish to purchase.
If this is not very helpful, check the general asking price for the item or items you have in mind. Shockingly low costs could be a sign that the silver is not genuine or possibly fake too.
Talk to the vendors
No matter where you buy your silver jewelry, you should speak with a seller or representative at all costs. It is a good right to speak to multiple vendors to find the right jeweler.
You can ask specific questions regarding prices, different styles, hallmarks, and silver sources when speaking to a person on the phone or in person. If you are prepared, you will be able to get the information you require.
Look for hallmarks and specification
Genuine silver jewelry will have certain marks that identify it as such.
These hallmarks will be extremely small and discreetly placed on your jewelry. To look for them, you'll probably need a magnifying lens and bright lighting.
This is a terrific way to physically inspect the goods and determine whether you have genuine silver on your hands if you have already purchased it. The hallmark for sterling silver is STERLING or .925.
However, if you encounter EPNS, you might have a poor-quality item of jewelry. "Electroplated nickel silver" is the abbreviation for EPNS. This is a nickel replacement for silver.
Pure silver is exceedingly malleable, or soft and simple to bend. Jewelry made of high-quality silver must also contain an alloy for increased durability. The greatest silver jewelry will consist primarily of silver with a small amount of something more durable, like copper, incorporated.
Never accept silver that is less than good or sterling.
Tests to ensure authenticity
Another good way to test the authenticity of your silver is by physical tests. But don’t worry. They do not spoil your jewelry.
The initial test is easy. Just find a magnet and check to see if the silver object is magnetic. Anything that latches onto the magnet is likely made of nickel or another metal as silver is not a magnetic metal.
However, make sure to locate a powerful magnet to test this.
You can use a clean, white cloth to massage your silver piece in addition to the magnet test. You can be sure that your purchase was wise if black marks start to form. Real silver oxidizes and develops these black markings when exposed to air.
You can also try a sound test. Use a metal instrument or tool to tap your jewelry piece. You know you have actual silver on your hands if there is a high-pitched ring and vibration that lasts for a few seconds. Rings that are darker or deeper usually come from copper or steel alloys.
Get expert consultation
You can always have your jewelry appraised if you're not sure about it. Bring a piece of jewelry to an appraiser for a professional opinion.
This is terrific advice to follow if you're serious about the piece of jewelry you've bought and want to make sure it's the greatest quality possible because you might have to pay for an evaluation.
Gold Jewelry Guide
Similar to how the right information can save yourself from buying fake silver jewelry, you need to be have all the correct information before you buy gold. This is especially important in the case of gold jewelry as it is often purchased for special occasions. Many people choose gold for their wedding rings and engagement rings too.
Here’s what you need to know when purchasing gold:
Know the purity level and pricing ratios
There are 24 "karats," as we like to call them, in any gold alloy. You have 100% pure, unadulterated gold in your possession when you purchase 24-carat gold, which is like having 100% pure, unadulterated money in your wallet.
But you do not have to aim for 100% high-quality gold every time. Purchase your gold according to its purpose and compatibility. If you are buying gold for daily wear, it might wear off with friction and use. Choose a relatively lower-grade of gold for this purpose.
You might also want to choose an alloy that suits you. For example, check for metals that you are allergic to. You will want to avoid those metals in your jewelry’s alloy.
Evaluate your jewelry
There is a difference between gold jewelry and gold plated or gold-filled jewelry. People and shopkeepers usually prefer gold alloys instead of gold plated or gold-filled jewelry because it is immediately next to 24 carat gold, in terms of quality. They do not tarnish or wear out easily and will easily last you a lifetime. This is alse one of the primary reasons behind the popularity of gold use in wedding rings and engagement rings.
Know your alloys
Every alloy will give you a specific color and quality. Meaning, you can find gold jewelery in vibrant hues.
From a mix with different proportions of nickel, copper, manganese, etc. you can get yellow gold, green gold, rose gold, or white gold color for your jewelry. Know which alloy is used in your accessory and if it suits your preferences.
You could ask the vendor for a specific alloy with a specific color.
Finding a vendor
It is important to wisely select evaluate jewelry stores for gold purchase.
Always prefer to go to trusted, reputable jewelers because they have a name for selling high-quality products. But remember, reputed jewelry stores often command premium prices.
If you want to stay budget-friendly, you can look out for an independent jewelry business but it is important to check their trustworthiness thoroughly.
Also do not forget to compare prices. It is not wise to buy gold in one go. Take input from multiple jewelers, evaluate, and compare before finalizing your piece and price.
Some of these marks will indicate caratage or the percentage quality of the gold. If you find short forms like GP or GF, these might be indicating whether the accessory is gold plated or gold filled. Other times, it might also be reflective of the metals used in the alloy.
Calculate purchase fairness
To know if the purchase you have made is fair or not, you need to compare it with the market price of gold. Check according to the percentage of gold in your alloy and do not miss other costs like the profit margin of the vendor, designing price, etc.
Diamond Jewelry Guide
Seattle is known not just for its lush green environment but many wander here in search of Seattle diamonds. However, you might want to do your homework before buying diamonds in Seattle.
Physical stores all the way
To ensure an authentic purchase, it is wise to choose brick-and-mortar stores for purchasing diamond jewelry. Online vendors can be shady and you do not wish to be scammed on your precious diamonds. Therefore, always choose to go to the stores for purchasing diamonds.
Additionally, even if you are going with an empty head with no idea of what you want, the expertise available at physical stores, with seasoned jewelers, is always helpful in guiding you to the right piece of jewelry.
Bring time in hand
Seattle does not have a particular district for its diamonds. This means, that all its diamond shops are scattered over the place and you will need time to physically visit these stores, select what suits you and make an analytic comparison of the quality and price, and suitability.
However, a relief here is that most of the diamond shops are concentrated downtown.
Know how to bargain
Trading partners here are constantly trying to outdo one another. One of these strategies is drastically reducing the cost of their products. However, you should know how to begin the bargain on your end. Ultimately, as a buyer, these competitions are to your benefit. But make sure that the prices do not reflect poor-grade diamonds. Remember, there is a fine line between affordable and downright cheap.
As in the case of any other jewelry purchase, make sure that you have references or credibility to add to the seller’s name. You will be losing a good amount of time if it is wasted on a non-credible jeweler. It is also important to ensure you are buying from a jewelry business that deals in ethically sourced diamonds exclusively.
If you have to go online to choose a vendor, you can do that too. But bear a few things in mind. Knowing the reputation of the shop you want to buy from should be your priority.
Keep in mind that greater customer service typically results from expertise while purchasing jewelry. Therefore, it pays to learn as much as you can about a store.
It is an added advantage if you can physically visit the store.
Check the seller’s expertise
Find a trustworthy store and check out some of their offerings.
You will be able to see the merchant's areas of expertise in this manner. Some traders specialize in certain types and patterns of diamonds, like rose cut diamonds or salt and pepper diamonds. Similarly, there are shops that offer a specialization in diamond wedding rings and engagement rings.
For instance, you might run against merchants who specialize in antique gems. It is quicker and simpler to purchase diamonds from specialized dealers than from generic diamond retailers.
However, since many vendors primarily cater to niche markets, their prices are sometimes higher.
Certification of the diamond
Certification of authenticity by a reputed agency will only better your chances of buying high-quality diamond jewelry. Make sure the stamps are by agencies like the American Gem Society or Gemological Institute of America.
Seattle has jewelry options for everyone and plenty of choices to offer, regardless of whether you are in the market for wedding rings or a jewelry box. It is just about finding the right store and the right piece for yourself.