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After years of navigating the diamond world, we at Your Diamond Guru have learned a thing or two about what makes a reputable diamond retailer. We also understand how saturated the market can be, and so how difficult it can seem to find a seller to trust. There are well-known, trustworthy names, such as Whiteflash (best for diamond quality), Blue Nile (great selection), James Allen (best for fancy shapes), and Brilliant Earth (best for lab diamonds)—so what about other companies?
Today, we’ll be analyzing the interesting offerings of 77 Diamonds, which take their name from the first use of a diamond ring in an engagement, when Austria’s Archduke Maximilian proposed to Mary of Burgundy in 1477. “Since then”, writes 77 Diamonds on their site “a great number of engagement rings have been offered as unique tokens of love and devotion.”
So do 77 diamonds stand out from the crowd? Are they worth purchasing from? What’s the quality of their wares? Read on to find out.
- The Company
- The History
- The Website
- The Designs
- The Diamonds
- Do 77 Diamonds Offer Value for Money?
- Our Final Thoughts
The Company & History
Based in the UK, 77 Diamonds have been operating since 2005 and was founded by two friends, Vadim Weinig and Tobias Kormind. Their idea was simple, which was, in their own words, to “provide customers with finely-crafted jewelry, yet within a structure that enabled greater affordability and power of choice”.
In contrast to some of our favorites, 77 Diamonds focuses on both the UK and European diamond jewelry markets. They have one showroom in Mayfair, an area of London that is known for its high-quality, luxurious retail stores, another in Manchester, and showrooms in Berlin, Zurich, Paris, Milan, and Antwerp respectively.
Weinig and Kormind bring an interesting, mixed experience to the 77 Diamonds name. The former hails from a family of diamond merchants based in Antwerp and grew up visiting diamond mines. The latter has a background in the online luxury industry, and so, together these two make for a very exciting mix—so do their respective backgrounds make for a worthwhile buying experience?
77 Diamonds Showrooms
Having your own diamond showrooms is something to shout about. It’s an inherently trustworthy thing to be able to show your wares physically to those who are interested. We will always enjoy such an advantage, as there’s nothing like seeing a diamond in person, especially if that diamond is of high quality. On Google, they have 4.6 out of 5 stars, based on 440 reviews, with many reviews giving 5 stars and commending the in-person service.
However, the service seems to be a mixed bag, with other customers having a less-than-satisfactory experience. In the diamond game, consistency is key, and so we would recommend keeping this in mind if you’re to book an appointment at 77 Diamonds.
The 77 Diamonds website is what you’d want from a diamond seller. It’s clean, easily navigable, and has a wide variety of information available. They even have a dedicated education section that, while it isn’t the biggest, is certainly well-detailed.
When investigating a diamond jewelry retailer, we will always look at their loose diamond page first, just to get a feel about how they’re treating their main ware. 77 Diamond’s loose diamond page is a little disappointing. While it appears to have a wide variety of Round Cut diamonds (almost have a million on offer at time of writing), the way they present these isn’t appealing
As you can see, a lot of their available diamonds are presented with a sample image, rather than a photo of the actual diamond being described. This isn’t the case with all of their diamonds, but the actual diamond images included aren’t of the best quality. Some of the images use a 360-degree field of view, and others don’t. This issue with images is a big problem, especially if you’re looking to purchase online. Without high-quality images or HD video, how can you know the actual quality of what you’re purchasing?
The site itself isn’t dated and looks great, with a minimalist design that suits the presentation of diamond jewelry, and their actual jewelry pages are much more impressive.
These images are of a much higher quality, which is to be expected as they are 77 Diamond designs. Each specific jewelry item page has its own high-quality images as well, which are also 360-degree.
This image is taken from their Delicacy Vintage engagement ring page. You can change the setting style by metal, and there’s a wealth of information to be found, which is very impressive.
One curious detail to note is that the prices shown on the site exclude VAT, which is odd for a Europe-based organization. In the UK in particular, VAT is always included within the final pricetag of an item so that you know what final price you have to pay. For a site that targets the UK and the EU, it is odd for this to be left out.
The jewelry designs 77 Diamonds’ offer are quite beautiful. Their rings span from modern to classic styles, and they have a smaller amount of necklaces, pendants, and earrings.
77 Diamonds’ Gaia diamond necklace is a beautiful piece of jewelry that features a diamond centerpiece that tapers towards a central pear-shaped diamond. Hanging from this a single round cut diamond, creating an incredibly contemporary look that will dazzle any viewer.
These designs seem to be very popular, and from our experience of 77 Diamonds, appear to be just as good as any you would find on the market today. That being said, we have seen a small number of reviews where the quality of the settings has been called into question.
Want to Learn More About Diamonds?
Here at Your Diamond Guru, we’ve made it our mission to educate people all about diamonds—what to look for, where to look, how to find a good deal, and much more. If you’re one of the people, either a diamond newbie or aficionado, head over to our education section to find out more about these intensely beautiful stones.
We stated before that we had concerns about the quality of their diamonds due to the lack of visual information on each diamond’s page. They’ve obviously got a very large repository of diamonds, so we can imagine that in this range, they’ll have both good and bad diamonds. This isn’t necessarily an issue, but the only potential problem occurs if they happen to advertise something as better than it actually is.
Another issue with their diamonds is that 77 Diamonds offer EGL-certified diamonds. The European Gemological Laboratories are a group of for-profit independent laboratories, in contrast to the non-profit GIA. They’ve been found to not hold diamonds to the same high standards as the GIA, and do not operate with standardized reporting.
Additionally, as they are a business that turns a profit, they’ve got a financial incentive to provide better grades to diamonds that don’t actually deserve them. The GIA is in no position to need to ‘please’ the jeweler, and so can provide more accurate gradings.
Do 77 Diamonds Offer Value for Money?
In this section, we will compare a number of diamonds from 77 Diamonds with equal counterparts of the same gradings from other companies.
|1.00 Carat Round diamond from 77 Diamonds||1.00-Carat Round Cut Diamond from Blue Nile|
|Cut: Excellent||Cut: Excellent|
|Clarity: VS1||Clarity: VS1|
|Color: F||Color: F|
|Carat: 1.00||Carat: 1.00|
|Certification: GIA||Certification: GIA|
|Cost: $7,828||Cost: $7,507|
Here you can see two diamonds of exactly the same qualities, offered by 77 Diamonds and Blue Nile (who we already think are a fantastic company to buy diamonds from—read our Blue Nile review here). At this level of analysis, there is only one real difference, and that is cost. The Blue Nile diamond is around £300 less expensive than the 77 Diamonds’ offering.
Now, obviously a VS1, excellent cut diamond with GIA certification is nothing to turn your head away from, and both these companies offer them. However, in our eyes there is a clear winner here. Blue Nile are incredibly well-known and completely trustworthy within their sales process, so not only are you getting a diamond for less, you can also rest assured that you can trust the seller.
This isn’t to disparage 77 Diamonds as we’re only judging based on the facts we can currently utilize. A site that sells EGL diamonds is to be approached with a little bit of caution. So, in this scenario, Blue Nile provides better value for money. And remember, 77 Diamonds is also not including VAT in that price.
However, we have to weigh this on a case-by-case basis. Let’s compare two different diamonds of a higher quality.
|1.00 Carat Round diamond from 77 Diamonds||1.00-Carat Round Cut Diamond from James Allen|
|Cut: Excellent||Cut: Excellent|
|Clarity: IF||Clarity: IF|
|Color: D||Color: D|
|Carat: 1.00||Carat: 1.00|
|Certification: GIA||Certification: GIA|
|Cost: $15,836||Cost: $12,390|
Again, these two diamonds are both 1.00 ctw internally-flawless D-color diamonds with Excellent cuts. However, the one from James Allen is more than $3,000 less expensive than the one from 77 Diamonds.
While this analysis only compares four diamonds, it is interesting to see that 77 Diamonds comes in at a higher price in both examples. If you’re considering purchasing a diamond, doing these kind of comparisons is very worthwhile, as they help you find better value for money. In terms of 77 Diamonds, we would say that there is the potential for gaining value for money through them, yet you should always conduct thorough research before making a purchase.
Our Final Thoughts
There is nothing about 77 Diamonds that immediately says to us you should avoid them at all costs. In truth, they have a variety of good offerings and have their heads on their collective shoulders when it comes to running a diamond jewelry business.
However, on the flipside, there’s nothing about them that particularly screams “You should buy from us!” If we had to choose between 77 Diamonds and another reputable seller, we’d most likely choose the latter, as there are more impressive companies operating on the market today.
In fact, as you saw, it’s quite easy to find diamonds from sellers with better reputations that are the exact same quality as those available at 77 Diamonds, and for a smaller price tag. Our final recommendation is to not completely rule out purchasing from 77 Diamonds, but always look at other, more impressive retailers first.
Where Should You Buy
I would suggest taking a look at online vendors like Blue Nile, Brilliant Earth, James Allen and Whiteflash. Not only will you find better value, but you will also be able to take an in-depth look at your diamond choices and examine the finer details. There’s also a greater selection of diamonds and settings that no bricks and mortar store could possibly compete with.
Whiteflash specialize in high quality cut round and princess cut diamonds, whereas James Allen is better for fancy shapes, Blue Nile has a larger selection of diamonds at a lower quality/price point and Brilliant Earth is fantastic for lab created diamonds.
If you’ve enjoyed this review and would like to look into more of the most well-known diamond retailers operating today, head over to our retailer reviews section for in-depth analysis of some truly stellar brands.
Richard Jenkins, The Diamond Guru
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