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Tips for Buying Jewelry
Jewelry -- from an engagement ring to a statement necklace to a simpler expression of your feelings -- is a traditional and thoughtful gift. But buying jewelry also is not often simple. Here are some things to think about as you search for the perfect piece:
Make a budget – and stick to it. Obviously your budget will depend in part on what kind of jewelry you are buying. But whatever you are shopping for, know what you can afford to spend – and don’t be tempted or talked into spending more. After all, jewelry is a luxury, not a necessity, and you don’t want to compromise your financial health by going overboard.
Know what you are looking for. Don’t walk into a store and say, “I am looking for something for my wife. Do you have any suggestions?” That’s just asking for trouble. And, unless you are already married or planning to propose, choose something other than a ring.
Think about her taste. In an ideal world, the woman (or man) you are buying for would show you a picture of what she wants. But that rarely happens. So take note of what kind of jewelry she usually wears. White gold (or silver) or yellow gold? Earrings or bracelets? Big, showy pieces or delicate ones? The type of jewelry she wears most often is most likely the kind she likes best. And don’t forget to get her size – not just her ring size, but measure the length of necklace chains or bracelets. You want the gift to fit.
Deal with a reliable jeweler. This is where it can help to ask your friends and relatives whether they know a jeweler they have dealt with for a long time and trust. If no one can help you, you can go to one of the well-known mall-type jewelers, which will give you a receipt describing the piece.
Don’t forget other buying options. For example, if your lady is into unique or unusual jewelry, you might check out an antique shop or Etsy. Just make sure that you get a receipt with a complete description. And, if it is an expensive piece, have it appraised to make sure it is as it is represented on the receipt.