Celebrating The 2019 Winter, Whisky & Wine Gala


With some amazing food paired with wine and whisky, our Winter Gala was a smash! All of us at BVW Jewelers are so appreciative and happy that so many folks made it out. We had some lucky winners who took home some incredible jewelry, watches, gift certificates, and more for all who entered to win. Hope to see you all again next year!

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The 4 C’s of Diamond Grading Guide

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]This week I thought we’d discuss the four C’s of the International Diamond Grading System. These four C’s include: Color, Clarity, Cut, and Carat weight.

It wasn’t always that there existed a universal guideline for which gemstones could be graded. Back in the 1500s, merchants used to employ a varying amount of terms to describe the value of a diamond. The issue with this was that the terms utilized were vague and not very consistent. However, “carat” is still the same measurement of weight that was used both back then and today.

Beginning in the middle of the twentieth century, GIA established the first official standard for describing diamonds. Their universally accepted approach to evaluating diamonds has made communication regarding the assessment of diamonds to be eminently easier.


Cut: this determines the amount of sparkle a diamond will emanate. Cut is the absolute most significant aspect of a diamond.

Carat weight: it is paramount that measurements are as precise as they can be. To ensure this, we measure to the hundredth decimal place. For example, a one carat diamond is recorded as 1.00 carat.

Color: we use an official scale that runs from D (colorless) all the way down to Z (accumulation of color). These differentiations are important because, although subtle, can inflict a vast difference in the quality and value of a stone.

Clarity: the clarity of a diamond depends on how it forms. During creation, most diamonds form inclusions which may affect the value of the diamond. They are considered to be a stone’s birthmark.

BVW Jewelers does not own the image displayed. It has been borrowed from GIA as a reference for the aforementioned topics.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Guide to Custom Made Engagement Rings

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]If you’ve been shopping for an engagement ring, you’ve probably come across hundreds of different styles and designs – and the fact that you’re still shopping probably means that you haven’t found that perfect ring. You can keep on shopping, or you can visit your neighborhood jeweler and explore the option of a custom made engagement ring.

Having a ring custom made ensures you – and most importantly, she – will get the ring of her dreams. It will be an engagement ring like no one else’s, a unique and lasting statement of your love.

Having an engagement ring custom made can be an incredibly rewarding experience. And to make it even easier, we’ve put together a checklist of some things you should consider for your meeting with your jeweler.

Ask the Jeweler How Long It Will Take.

If you’re planning to propose on a special day, you’ll need to know when you can get the ring from the jeweler. Assume it will take at least two weeks to make a ring with a straightforward design. A complex design, or one that requires the jeweler to match stones, can take five to six weeks or longer.

Three-stone diamond ring

This three-stone ring is an example of a straightforward design with a quicker turnover. Photo: DeBeers.

Split shank ring set with square-shaped center diamond and smaller diamonds along the shank. Photo: DeBeers.

Split shank ring set with square-shaped center diamond and smaller diamonds along the shank. Photo: DeBeers.

Find Out What Diamond Shape She Prefers.

Expect your jeweler to ask about diamond shape, as the shape of the diamond will help determine the overall ring design. There are numerous choices: round, square, oval, pear, marquise, heart, and more.

If you’re not sure which shape to pick, notice the shape of the gemstones in her favorite jewelry to get an insight into what she likes. The round brilliant cut diamond is the most popular shape and cutting style for engagement rings. However, the square brilliant cut, often referred to by the trade name princess cut, is popular as well. In addition, you can combine multiple shapes into the design of the ring and add a halo setting.

Ring with halo setting.

Mixing and matching shapes makes for endless design opportunities. The smaller round stones in this ring are formed into a halo. Photo: Coast Diamond.

Pick a Ring Style.

You have endless options when selecting an engagement ring style: classic, edgy, vintage, modern, and more.

Two-tone, bezel-set rings

Modern: This minimalist two-tone, bezel-set ring is a twist on the classic solitaire. Photo: Whitney Boin Studio.

Ornate hand-engraved, three-stone ring.

Vintage: An ornate hand-engraved, three-stone ring featuring a diamond center stone with amethyst side stones, and bead-set diamond melee in an 18K yellow gold and platinum ring. The style echoes the Art Deco era.
Photo: Joseph Schubach.

Black diamond ring with textured finish.

Edgy: Asymmetry, textured finish, and a black diamond make this an unusual engagement ring. Photo: Cole Roger. Courtesy: Rona Fisher Jewelry Design’

How do you decide the right ring style for your bride-to-be? Pinterest can be your friend. Ask her friends to share images of rings and jewelry she may have shared with them. Also notice the kind of clothes she likes. Does she have a more tailored wardrobe or is she a fashionista? Is she conservative or does she like to raise eyebrows? How about the décor in her (or your) home: Is it traditional or funky? Is it streamlined or ornate?

The way your partner dresses and decorates the home tells you a lot about her style. Chances are she’ll love a ring that reflects it.

Pick a Color Palette

Platinum or white gold rings with colorless diamonds are a classic choice. But you have lots of alternatives available if you want to experiment.

  • Metals: Platinum, white gold, rose gold, yellow gold, or two-tone combinations are some of your options. The metal can also have a variety of finishes, including a bright polish (shiny), a matte finish (a flatter look), or a textured surface. Alternative metals might be a possibility too if you’re looking for something unusual. Read up on white metals.
  • Diamonds: If you opt for colorless diamonds, check out the GIA color chart to see the gradations of color in the D-to-Z color range. Colored diamonds are another option and can be used to spice up your ring.
  • Colored gemstones come in every color of the rainbow, and can be used as a center stone or as side stones.

Ring featuring different color metals for prongs and shanks.

This ring uses different colors of metal for the prongs and the shank. This shows how color can be added in subtle ways. Photo: Suzanne Kalan.

High karat yellow gold ring.

High karat yellow gold can create a bold contrast to the center stone. The higher the karat, the more saturated the yellow color appears. Photo: Denise James/Tracy Rasinski Photography LLC.

Diamond and pink sapphire ring.

Colored gemstones and diamonds can make an exquisite combination. Here a 3.14 ct cut cornered rectangular modified brilliant (a.k.a. radiant cut) pink sapphire center stone is surrounded by 0.24 carats of round brilliant pink sapphires and 0.83 carats of round brilliant diamonds. Photo: Omi Privé.

14K white gold ring set with near colorless diamonds.

The use of negative space enhances this monochromatic design. Near colorless diamonds set in 14K white gold take on new depth because of the use of a simple pattern. Photo: ZIVA Jewels Inc.

Know Her Ring Size.

We saved the easiest for last. Be sure to know the ring size of your beloved before meeting with a jewelry designer!

Getting engaged is a wonderful moment in your life. So is designing the engagement ring for your future fiancée. Now, go have some fun!


This article originally appeared on the GIA Website: Guy’s Guide to Custom Made Engagement Rings


Full Circle with Britten Wolf of BVW Jewelers

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Personality shines through every aspect of BVW Jewelers. Britten Wolf got his start with custom jewelry of his own, inspired by art and flowing organic patterns. After working as an independent wholesale jeweler for local retail locations, he was able to launch BVW Jewelers with the desire to share his jewelry and knowledge of all aspects of fine jewelry to the local Reno Nevada community. The store gives the locals a personal place to shop and socialize while enjoying unique surroundings. Bridal jewelry for any budget; we have an environment for customers who care about unique jewelry and enjoy a professional yet fun atmosphere.

Describe your brand in three words?

Extraordinary Never Ordinary

How did you get your start in the jewelry industry?

I am a second-generation jeweler/goldsmith who apprenticed with my family in Albuquerque, New Mexico. At sixteen I took an interest in the family business and began my apprenticeship fabricating Southwestern jewelry. Soon I realized that I was intrigued with goldsmithing carving wax, and custom designing, once I began creating designs using the lost wax method my passion and dedication have been unstoppable.

 What’s your go-to source for inspiration?

Nature for my personal designs, my pieces have an organic flow that when incorporated into high end jewelry creates a truly unique look that clients gravitate to. I love incorporating color, whether designing in two tone metals or using colored stones as well. The rise in popularity of gemstones in engagement rings has increased which allows even greater creative possibilities branching out even further from the traditional mainstream ideas.

What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned from your business? 

You can’t hear if you don’t listen, when a customer is trying to explain their vision and their vocabulary is limited in terms of jewelry knowledge, you must hear what they mean as well as what they say. This covers every aspect of life as well as business.

What’s your favorite quote or personal mantra?

Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.” Albert Schweitzer

Name three things essential to your business.

Reputation, honesty and commitment to be and do the best work, have the best customer relations, and be honest. If a design is not structurally sound that a customer wants I cannot in good conscience make it, knowing that it was my job to inform them and attempt to find an alternative method to achieve the closest look to what they want that will be with them for years to come.

What has been the biggest reward of your career? 

Being afforded the opportunity to do what I love, do it well and recognize how much our clients love it as well. When a client comes to us because they have been referred.

What is the biggest challenge you face?

Time, there’s never enough time in the day. However, we count our blessings that we continue to grow and succeed.

How does technology play a role in your everyday?

CAD programs and 3-D printers have changed the way I communicate with a client as well as moved our business to a vastly different level than the days of hand carving for hours then having to re-carve for changes. We can print a model for our clients to approve or change in less than an hour which really keeps them excited and confident in the process.


How To Purchase A Diamond Engagement Ring

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Have a price range in mind. Going in with fairly specific parameters will help your jeweler find the right engagement ring to fit your budget.

Know what you want to spend

You will be confronted with a dizzying array of choices when it comes to diamond engagement rings.

What kind of jewelry does she already wear?

Is she more classic or modern? Feminine or sophisticated? Does she wear more silver or gold? Do her pieces tend to be more delicate or chunky? Simple or ornate? Have these preferences in mind when you set out to shop. If you buy something similar to what she already likes, you can’t go wrong.

Know her ring size

If she wears rings, borrow one she already owns. Trace the inner circle on a piece of paper, or press the ring into a bar of soap for an impression. You can also slide it down one of your own fingers and draw a line where it stops. A jeweler can use these measurements to identify her approximate ring size.

If she doesn’t wear rings, estimate in the following manner: The average ring size in the US is 6 (based on the ‘average’ US female being 5’4″ tall and weighing 140 lbs.) If she’s more slender, or fine boned, her ring size is probably in the 4 1/2 to 5 1/2 range. If she is heavier, larger boned or taller, her ring size is probably in the 6 1/2 to 7 1/2 range. It’s always better to buy a ring a bit bigger than you think she’ll need, because sizing a ring down is much easier than increasing its size.

Are her preferences hard to pin down?

Consider buying an unset diamond. If you choose the diamond first and have the setting made later, you can include her in selecting the style and final details of the ring (always a good idea) and avoid the awkwardness of choosing a ring that’s more to your taste than hers.

Know what diamond shape suits her

If she hasn’t made it easy for you by already voicing an opinion on the subject (or admiring someone else’s engagement ring), here are a few things to keep in mind when considering shape:

She will be wearing this ring 24/7 every day of your married life. It will need to go with everything from jeans to evening wear. If you’re uncertain about her shape preference, it’s sensible to stick to the classics. They became classics because they appeal to most people most of the time.

Shapes with fewer facets, such as emerald or square, require higher clarity. The fewer the facets, the more visible any inclusions will be.

Certain shapes pair more successfully with other gems in multi-stone rings. Round, Oval and Marquise all work well. Pear and Heart shape are more challenging.

Taste in shape is often reflected in other tastes a woman has. If she prefers clean, modern lines in furniture, for example, it’s likely she’ll react well to the same aesthetic in Emerald or Square shapes. If she tends towards the traditional, a round shape rarely misses. More bohemian types tend to favor more unusual shapes, like Trilliant or Marquise.

What Setting Makes Sense?

While there are an unending variety of patterns, details and metal choices, there are four basic types you are likely to encounter:

 – A single stone. Still the most popular choice in engagement rings. The head secures the diamond. Prongs allow the diamond to catch the most light. A four-prong-setting shows more of the diamond, but a six-prong setting is often more secure.

 – Diamonds or other gemstones, flank the main stone for additional sparkle or color. Popular sidestone settings include ‘channel’, which protects stones by keeping them flush, and ‘bar-channel’, which allows more light to enter the sidestones.

Three Stone
 – One diamond for the past, one for the present, and one for the future. Typically, the center diamond is larger than the two side stones.

Pave (pah-vey)
 – The main stone is surrounded by tiny diamonds to add sparkle and the illusion of greater size.

As to actual setting design, consider her lifestyle, and how well a certain setting will fit into it. If she’s more active or outdoorsy, look for lower profile, less ornate, more sturdy choices, which are less likely to get knocked or caught on things. If she’s more of a glamour girl, look for statement settings, with a higher stone profile and more intricate ring detailing or unique motif.
Source: Gemological Institute of America Inc.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Our New Television Spot Celebrates Reno

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Celebrating the Biggest Little City, a city that accepts everyone for who they are with love. If you believe, please share: #LoveIsLove #BiggestLittleCity #HitchedInReno[/vc_column_text][vc_video popup=”no” link=”https://youtu.be/W9cWNBc6RXE”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

6 Things you Should Know About Lab-Grown Diamonds


Demand for diamonds is growing but supply couldn’t keep up–until now

A clear, sparkling diamond is rare. That’s part of its appeal. Those mined today formed billions of years ago. But a new method can grow gem-quality diamonds on demand in just three months. They’re identical to their natural counterparts and cost 30 to 40 percent less. That’s promising for anyone in the market for an engagement ring. And it bodes well for the future of electronics too.[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”23598″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center”][vc_column_text]

—Ariel Baruch, jeweler at Diamonds by Israel Standard Inc., which sells lab-grown diamonds

  1. Global demand for diamonds is currently on the rise, thanks in part to a growing middle class in countries such as India and China. But it’s been a decade since a large diamond mine has been discovered. By 2019, demand is projected to outstrip supply by 5 to 6 percent.
  2. Luckily, diamonds can also be made in a lab. In the 1950s, scientists first created diamonds by replicating the intense heat and pressure that forms them underground. The stones tend to be discolored and small (in some cases just a powder), but they retain a natural diamond’s defining properties.
  3. Diamond is one of the hardest known materials. It can withstand high levels of radiation and doesn’t trigger an immune response. This makes it useful in construction, nuclear engineering, and medicine. In 2013, industry used about 1,500 tons of diamond, 99 percent of which were lab-grown.
  4. To make purer gems, diamond-grower IIa Technologies refined a process called chemical vapor deposition. In a vacuum chamber, they shower a fingernail-thin diamond “seed” with microwave rays and methane and hydrogen gases. These build up layers of carbon bonds.
  5. In March, IIa opened the world’s largest diamond-growing facility in Singapore. It’s capable of cranking out more than 300,000 carats a year, using half the energy of diamond mining. Plus it has far less environmental impact. To the naked eye, the diamonds are indistinguishable from natural ones. But they’ll still be a tough sell for jewelry, where lab-grown make up less than 1 percent of the market. “They’re seen as inauthentic, no matter that they are objectively identical,” explains Ravi Dhar, director of the Center for Customer Insights at Yale University.
  6. Diamond’s unsurpassed thermal conductivity makes it an ideal heat sink for electronics. It transfers about twice the heat and can carry more current than the silicon usually used in semiconductors. IIa is working to grow diamond plates that will enable smaller, more-powerful devices that don’t overheat. “It will take time,” says physicist Devi Shanker Misra, who invented IIa’s technique, “but I hope that it will replace silicon.”

72: Global diamond jewelry sales, in billions of dollars, per year

By Rebecca Harrington Posted August 14, 2015 Popular Science

This article was originally published in the August 2015 issue of Popular Science under the title “Lab-Grown Diamonds to Keep Electronics Cool.”


BVW Jewelers Named One of America’s Coolest Jewelry Stores

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]BVW Jewelers has been named one of America’s Coolest Jewelry Stores by INSTORE, the magazine for the American jewelry store owner. The Reno, NV, business took fourth place in the Small Cool division for stores with five or fewer employees.

Read the Article Here.

The 14th annual contest highlights the best examples of independent jewelry retailers in North America.

“Every year we feel privileged to bring our readers the best of the best in our industry,” said Ralf Kircher, INSTORE’s executive editor. “From its bar-height cases to its custom designs within, BVW Jewelers easily falls into that category. But a store wouldn’t really fit our ‘cool’ criteria if it weren’t for such aspects as innovative marketing, superb customer service and a unique work culture.”

Stores are judged in exterior appearance, interior appearance, store biography, advertising, website and overall individuality.

The top five winners in the two divisions are given trophies and featured in the August issue of INSTORE and at instoremag.com. Honorable Mention stores are featured as monthly Cool Stores in issues of INSTORE from September 2015 through June 2016.

INSTORE Magazine’s 2015 America’s Coolest Stores Contest

2014 America’s Coolest Stores

Big Cool (Six or more full-time employees)

1. Fox Fine Jewelry, Ventura, CA
2. Crocker’s Fine Jewelry, Texarkana, TX
3. Goldsmith Gallery Jewelers, Billings, MT
4. Bailey’s Fine Jewelry, Raleigh, NC
5. Wixon Jewelers, Minneapolis, MN

Small Cool (Five or fewer full-time employees)

1. Veloce, Jewelry by Medawar, Portage, MI
2. Peridot Fine Jewelry, Larchmont, NY
3. Cut Fine Jewelers, Baton Rouge, LA
4. BVW Jewelers, Reno, NV
5. Sparkles Fine Jewelry, Chicago, IL[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]