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Diamonds Go Back to Basics
Buyer's Choice

Ronald Boyd
Duncan & Boyd Jewelers, Amarillo, Texas

What Moves: “We’ve played middleman with banks, lawyers, and trust departments for a long time, so we’re finding ourselves selling a lot of estate jewelry. People are looking for something with value that they can also use as a portable asset. I don’t sell jewelry as an outright investment but more as a hedge or an alternative to traditional investments. While it appreciates, its owner can enjoy wearing it. We especially like Oscar Heyman. Part of the jewelry’s appeal is its incredible workmanship, which gives it intrinsic, enduring value. It’s just not going to lose its worth. Only very sophisticated and knowledgeable shoppers know what they’re buying when it comes to colored diamonds. Ninety percent of my customers rely on me to advise them before they do so.”

How We Sell It: “One thing we do is very simple: I have my people go out in person and knock on the doors of people we haven’t seen in awhile. We place ads on the back covers of two regional magazines and print a catalog. Newspaper ads are very expensive, although the price of a full page is down. Direct mail works really well.”

Ring in 18k yellow gold and platinum with an oval fancy yellow diamond of 9.62 carats and 10 oval diamonds that total 2.51 carats from OSCAR HEYMAN, (212) 593-0400,

Richard Branscomb
Sierra West Jewelers, Orem, Utah

What Moves: “Our best diamond sellers, outside of bridal, are earrings, studs, and solitaire pendants. Almost all of the cuts we sell are rounds and princesses. We sold a lot of yellow and pink diamonds over the past 10 years—although a lot of it was Chatham-created or treated stones—when J. Lo and Britney Spears were generating a lot of buzz. But that has gone south. Black and white, and brown and white diamonds are popular. They’re not real expensive and we did well with them at Christmas. Three of our favorite suppliers are Simon G., Nelson, and William Lam.”

How We Sell It: “We’re big on value added and up-selling. Being close to two major universities with a lot of Mormon students, who tend to marry young, we have a chance to sell to them when they come in for a bridal set. We teach them that a necklace or studs are a perfect accompaniment. But we also offer incentives. We give away a free strand of pearls if the couple buys the diamond and the ring. If they buy larger than a half carat stone, we’ll offer them two free nights at a hotel chain. If they buy 1 carat or larger, we’ll offer lifetime rhodium cleaning of their rings. We also give a referral slip with a $100 gift certificate that they can give to friends or relatives.”

Black and white diamond and 18k gold pendant, suggested retail $4,840, and matching ring, suggested retail $4,510, by SIMON G., (800) 627-2661,

Rose cut diamond engagement rings
necklace and ring in 18k gold with diamond pavé
1 carat square cushion cut diamond
48 or 96 piece display with samples in alloy and CZ
Black diamond necklaces with white diamond clasps
necklace in 18k white gold with diamonds
Ring in 18k yellow gold and platinum with an oval fancy yellow diamond
Black and white diamond and 18k gold pendant
earrings and ring in 18k gold with soft leaves contrasted with lines of diamonds
Diamond earrings in 18k gold
Engagement ring with matching band