Saturday, March 28, 2009

Shopping Smart

Recently in the news, several jewelry stores and departments are shutting down and closing out with seemingly, incredible sales of 30 to 80 percent off. Curious to see if these were true bargains, I went to the mall and visited one jewelry chain store, as well as the jewelry department in a large department store.

These are your most basic stable, a pair of diamond solitaire stud earrings. The variations on these, however, can become mind boggling. From the diamond clarity and color to the setting style (classic 4 prong above, 3 prong martini, bezel set, screw back, yellow gold, etc), it can sometimes be hard to compare prices. For our purposes, I use an SI-1 clarity and H color as the basis.

I was surprised to find that the prices were double or triple Handiwork's prices. Even with a sale of up to 80% their items would get closer to our everyday tag prices. Let's take a pair of 1.00 Carat diamond earrings as an example.

At Macy's jewelry department, the regular price is $3800. Currently it is on sale for $2393, whereas at our store we have a pair of 1.00 Carat (1/2 CT each ear) start at $1400.

Also at Handiwork Jewelry in Memphis, we have a pair of 1/4 CT (0.25CT)(total weight) diamond studs in 14 Karat white gold start at $169 while a pair totaling 1/2 CT (0.50CT) diamond studs start at $385.

Although we are a small, family owned business, we do believe it maintaining competitive prices. If you find an identical jewelry item at another store for less, please let us know and we will do our best to match that price and even beat it by another 15%. Plus we provide that intimate shopping experience (and free jewelry cleaning!) that you never will find at a department store or jewelry shop in the mall.

And as all smart shoppers know, it is not the discount percentage, but the final price you pay that matters. In a time where a dollar means a lot, beware of those big sales that lure people into thinking they are getting a bargain.