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Jewelry Shopping

Updated on January 14, 2015
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Basic Jewelry Knowledge

"It's the thought that counts." How many times have you heard that? Well the thought does count because you should give a "thoughtful" gift. So really in the end it is the gift that counts and everyone knows it. When it comes to buying jewelry how do you give it "thought"? By knowing some basic information and facts about gemstones and precious metals. It doesn't matter if you are making the purchase for yourself (self-gifting) or to give to someone else, the same principles apply. You are better off if you have some knowledge of the subject.

Don't shop in a store that makes you feel like they are doing you a favor by letting you through the door. If your experience starts out like that it will be downhill from that point on. You're not supposed to feel intimidated, because the result of that is you will spend too much and buy things you don't want. I don't feel comfortable with a "greeter" standing at the door even if he's wearing a suit because I know that he is a store guard. Some stores even have uniformed guards just sitting in the corner. Now that is a welcoming sight isn't? These things ruin my visit to the store right from the start.

Focus on your style

Buying jewelry is associated with pleasure and enjoying yourself. Don't hand over total power to the salesperson. Don't let them run the show or you will end up buying something that they like but it's not your taste at all. It seems like the more expensive the item is, the more we hand over power to the salesperson. You know what style of clothing you like to wear and it's the same with jewelry. Buy what you like and know you will wear. Don't leave your personality out of the experience. You don't want someone who doesn't even know you choosing what they think will look best on you.

To have an enjoyable and personal experience, make use of professionals who give personal attention such as Akshay Andy Anand in Overland Park, KS.

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I love beautiful gems and I enjoy talking about them. I want the person in the store to enjoy it with me. Buying jewelry is associated with happy events so you don't want awkwardness while you are shopping for jewelry. Don't be so rigid in the amount you want to spend because you might end up buying something you don't really like because "the price was right". Be flexible enough so in the end you'll get the benefit of owning something that you'll always love to wear.

Art You Can Wear

I like to think of jewelry as "wearable art". You don't display it on a table or hang it on a wall, you have it with you all the time to look at. That is the real pleasure of it because you're not limited to viewing it like other artwork. Don't think you have to have in-depth knowledge of gemstones or precious metals to make a wise choice. You can easily do enough research through books or on the internet to equip yourself before you buy. The professional staff in the store has the technical knowledge and they should be willing to help educate you and focus on what you want. I like to read about gemstones and jewelry. There are basic facts you can use when you are shopping and you'll know right away if the salesperson is interested in helping you or in just making a sale.

The Four Cs

Have you heard of the four "C"s? It is the method used to determine the quality of diamonds. They are color, cut, carat and clarity. I like to add a 5th C, "cost" because we all know that in the end that plays a major part in your decision to purchase. Color is very important in gemology not only for diamonds but for colored gemstomes as well. Cut refers not only to the shape of stone but also to how well the facets interact with light. Clarity means how clear the stone is. It is acceptable for some gems like emeralds to have internal blemishes or inclusions, but other stones that have them lose their value. Carat refers to the weight of the stone. It takes 100 points to equal one carat. If the salesperson tells you the stone is 50 points then it means it is 1/2 carat. It is also helpful to know basic information about precious metals. You need to know whether you are buying 10K, 14K, 18K or 24K gold. The number tells you how much gold content there is in the mix of metals. 18K gold is 75% gold (18/24). You can see that it is possible to have a really enjoyable experience when you enter a jewelry store if you just have some basic information before you walk through the door. I have fun everytime I go to look at jewelry and I shop where I get personal attention from the staff.

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