Jewelry Shopping Frequently Asked Questions

At Thom Duma Fine Jewelry, we do everything we can to ensure our customers receive nothing but the best. To that end, we want to make it easy for everyone to understand the complexities of buying jewelry. We receive many questions about diamonds, services, and more every day. To make your experience easier, we’ve put together a list of our answers to some of the most common questions we get. These are not the only questions we hear, however. If you have more questions, call or email us to speak with one of our knowledgeable staff members.

A closeup of a myriad of expertly cut diamonds sitting on a dark teal background

What Diamond is Right For Me?

Diamonds are the ultimate symbol of luxury and romance. These radiant and everlasting gemstones are available in a plethora of shapes and sizes, each unique and distinctive. Every stone can be perfect for your engagement ring. It all depends on your personal preferences.

When thinking about your ideal diamond, consider the four C’s – the standard by which diamonds are graded – and your priorities. The four C’s are cut, clarity, carat, and color. Cut refers to all the diamond shapes, from round to emerald. Clarity describes the number of inclusions or blemishes in a gemstone. The fewer, the better, although they impart a unique quality to the gemstone.

Carat measures the diamond’s size, not to be confused with karat. Most prefer a larger stone, as it is guaranteed to catch the eyes of all onlookers. Finally, color indicates a diamond’s hue. Most diamonds actually exhibit a yellow-brown tint. The ideal gemstone is colorless, although some jewelry lovers prefer a yellow diamond’s color.

An jewelry collector carefully inspects a princess-cut diamond ring while the rest of their jewelry is laid out to dry after a routine cleaning

How Often Do I Clean My Jewelry?

Jewelry should be cleaned weekly at home and twice a year by a professional. While that seems like overdoing it, it is essential to ensure your luxurious accessories shine their brightest at all times. Luckily, cleaning jewelry at home is fairly easy. All you need is mild soap, water, a soft toothbrush, and a microfiber cloth. However, skip the water if you are cleaning jewelry prone to water damage.

Combine the soap and water in a bowl and let the jewelry soak for about 40 minutes. Next, dip the toothbrush in the soapy solution and give the piece a gentle scrub, making sure to get in as many nooks and crannies as possible. Lastly, gently dry it with a microfiber cloth. While you will not be able to get to everything, this should help stem the tide of dust and grime.

A jewelry designer sketches a design he has in mind while holding an inspiration piece

Can I Create My Own Jewelry?

Jewelry is a beautiful and timeless art form. Whether it’s a diamond engagement ring or a beaded bracelet, creating these fantastic accessories is a highly rewarding task. Creating fine jewelry – pieces with precious metals and gemstones – requires extensive training and equipment. For this reason, we offer custom jewelry design services.

After scheduling a private consultation, our goldsmiths will work with you to create jewelry based on your own ideas. They will use advanced technology and software to pull your dream into reality. Whether you want to design a bracelet or an engagement ring, our team can help.

A woman compares three similar rings made of different types of golds at a rustic jewelry boutique

What’s My Ring Size? Can I Find It at Home?

Every finger is unique. From the fingerprint to the ring size, they vary considerably. This makes it vital to wear a ring that fits. If it is too loose, it is likely to fall off and get lost. It either will not fit at all or dangerously cut off circulation if it is too tight. To get an accurate sizing, you can visit a jeweler. We have all the expertise and equipment to get it right.

Alternatively, you can find your ring size at home. You probably will not get as accurate sizing as a jeweler, but nonetheless, it works just fine in a pinch. Grab a tape measure, a marker, and an online size chart. Wrap the tape around your finger and mark where the ends meet. You can also use a piece of yarn and a ruler, so long as the string is not too thick. Note that fingers can change in size depending on humidity.

An assortment of vintage-style gemstone rings sit on a faux gray leather background

What is the Difference Between Sterling Silver, White Gold, and Platinum?

While these precious metals have similar hues, they have characteristics that make them unique. Sterling silver is a common material used in jewelry. This iconic alloy is 92.5% silver and 7.5% other metals, usually copper. Silver is naturally soft and brittle, so more robust materials are used to reinforce it. Unfortunately, this impurity leads to tarnishing and a notable copper scent that many find undesirable.

White gold is a step up from sterling silver. This alloy of gold and bright metals like palladium and chrome evokes a sophisticated light hue. It is often used for engagement rings and beautifully complements an attractive diamond center stone. However, white gold is often plated with rhodium to increase its shine. Over time, this rhodium can wear off, allowing the gold’s natural yellow color to peer through. It must be redipped by a jeweler occasionally.

Platinum is the most valuable precious metal commonly used in jewelry. Inherently strong, platinum does not need to be reinforced by other metals to be worked into jewelry. It has a vibrant shade, a little more gray than white gold. Unlike white gold, platinum never needs to be redipped. While this metal has a reputation for durability, it can still be scratched and is roughly equivalent to 14k gold in strength.

A bridesmaid wearing a plum formal dress fastens a latch on a pearl bracelet for the bride

My Jewelry Has a Problem. Can I Fix It Myself?

Generally, if your jewelry is damaged, take it to a jeweler immediately. This is especially true with broken prongs and any other delicate parts. If the piece is tarnished, there are some measures you can take at home. The aforementioned cleaning can help, but only experienced jewelers have the equipment and training to be trusted with a robust and thorough restoration.

A smiling couple points out engagement rings to each other in a jewelry showroom

Why is Thom Duma Fine Jewelry Ohio’s Best Jeweler?

Thom Duma Fine Jewelry has been serving Warren, Ohio for decades. Our magnificent selection of the finest luxury accessories by the best brands. From well-known names to emerging yet talented microbrands, you will find it all at our showroom. We also offer a myriad of professional jewelry services, including jewelry repair and watch restoration. Our talented experts ensure that your favorite piece is placed in only the most trusted hands. Call us at (330) 393-4696 or email [email protected] to speak directly with a staff member.