How to sell Graff Jewelry
Make sure you get the best price when you resell your Graff Jewelry
For more than 50 years, the House of Graff has represented some of the world’s rarest gemstones and most important diamonds.
Since its launch by visionary founder Laurence Graff in 1960, Graff has formed lasting relationships with the world’s most prestigious jewelry collectors, including royalty, and built a brand synonymous with craftsmanship and innovation.
But tastes and circumstances change, and we don’t need to hold on to our Graff jewelry forever.
If you are looking to sell Graff jewelry and want to make sure that you get the fairest price for your piece, this blog will show you how.
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Why Graff is so prized
From the start, Graff’s eye for superior-quality gemstones garnered him global attention.
His elegant, deceptively simple designs enhance the natural brilliance and fire of any stone he decides to work with which has contributed to a reputation at the forefront of the modern jewelry industry.
The brand is involved with every stage of the journey that their diamonds progresses through: from mining, to cutting, to designing the piece and finally manufacturing.
From its relatively humble beginnings in London, the Graff brand is now established as one of the most prestigious diamond brands, with over 50 stores internationally.
Over the years, Graff has designed numerous historical pieces such as the setting for the near perfect 8.62 carat Burmese ruby, which came to be known as “The Graff Ruby.” Other famous stones that have passed through the House of Graff include the Grand Coeur d’Afrique, a 70 carat, heart-shaped flawless diamond, and The Empress Rose, a flawless, pink, pear-shaped diamond weighing just under 90 carats.
Thought by many to be the heir to Harry Winston, Laurence Graff may in fact be the new “King of Diamonds.”
From the early ’60s onwards, Graff became inspired to create unique by using multiple diamonds in clusters, for maximum effect. Graff has stated, “I took one diamond and placed six stones around it, then 12 stones around that to create a 19-stone cluster. After making all-diamond rings, I started working with emeralds, rubies and sapphires as well.”
A Graff Cluster Diamond Necklace
Today, Graff creates jewelry with a wide range of influences, such as artist Twombly, that allow jewelry lovers of all types to be able to experience a taste of the brand from high jewelry pieces like the Oval Yellow Diamond ring below, to more attainable ones that still bear that unmistakable Graff craftsmanship:
A Diamond Bangle Graff Bracelet
An Oval Yellow Diamond Graff Ring
A Round Cut Graff Diamond Engagement Ring
What type of Graff jewelry can be sold?
Over its history, Graff has produced a huge variety of types and styles of jewelry, and the good news if you are looking to sell is that no matter what it is, you will be able to find a buyer.
The power of the Graff brand means that the jewelry is worth much more than the sum of its parts, unlike non-branded jewelry, or even some ‘designer’ names which aren’t as desirable as Graff.
One thing to know though, is that the price you receive for your Graff jewelry when selling is that can be dependant on a couple of factors:
Even if something has been lovingly cared for, it’s likely that any jewelry that has been worn will have picked up the tiniest flaws associated with age. It’s part of owning something that has a history.
Commonly-used terms to describe pre-owned jewelry are:
- mint condition
- excellent condition
- good condition
- fair condition
- poor condition
If you are selling to a jewelry professional, it’s likely that they will try to improve its condition and then sell it on, but the better condition it is in, the higher the price someone will be willing to pay will be.
There are multiple reasons why it is important to be able to demonstrate the provenance of your Graff jewelry:
- It proves ownership over the piece, and that it is therefore legally yours to sell.
- It proves that the piece is genuine.
Possessing items such as your receipt, the box, jewelry bag, and other appropriate accoutrements that were included with your Graff jewelry purchase will raise your buyer’s confidence in the provenance of the piece:
Your options whens thinking about where to sell your Graff jewelry
Once you’ve made the decision to sell, it’s understandable that you would want to get the best price possible for your Graff jewelry.
But it can be hard to know where to start.
In this section, we’ll look at the different options for where you can sell, and some things to take into consideration when deciding which is the best fit for you.
When selling your Graff jewelry, there are a few things to consider:
- What you are selling
- What is more important for you – price or speed of sale
- How much you value certainty
Understanding what your Graff jewelry is worth
One of the first things to understand is how much your jewelry is likely to be worth when selling it.
You may have a jewelry appraisal stored away with a value attached to it, which you have used for insurance purposes. While there are a few types of appraisals, it’s likely that yours will list the price that it would cost to replace the item with a new, or equivalent, piece.
Unfortunately, the value on your appraisal isn’t the same as the amount that someone would actually be willing to buy the jewelry from you for.
The reason being, that anyone who would buy it from you now, would then be looking to sell it as ‘used’ for lower than the price of a ‘new’ replacement item and still make a profit.
The amount that someone is actually willing to pay for an item is known as the ‘fair market value’.
Determining the fair market value of something can be tricky, and many people look online to try and understand how much their Graff jewelry might now be going for.
One of the most famous sites for high quality vintage jewelry is 1stDibs.com, which specializes in selling from professional jewelry dealers to the public.
Many jewelry lovers enjoy browsing the wares on 1stDibs and it’s not uncommon to assume that if you see a comparable piece of jewelry being sold on there, then you may be able to receive a similar price for your own piece.
Unfortunately, however, the prices on 1stDibs are not a good guide on how much you are likely to get when you sell your jewelry, as the prices advertised are the prices that a jewelry dealer is selling them for, including making a profit once 1stDibs’ fees and all their other costs have been taken out.
However, it can be useful to get a ballpark figure of how much a jeweller may be willing to pay for your item.
For example, a pair of Graff “Butterfly” Diamond Earrings may be listed for $26,000:
However, as with buying many vintage pieces, prices aren’t fixed and dealers are usually open to negotiation.
Underneath the ‘Purchase’ button, you can see there is a ‘make an offer’ button, which says that sellers are most likely to accept offers of 5% – 20% below the $26,000 asking price:
A 5% to 20% offer below the listed price is a $1,300 to $5,200 reduction on the original $26,000 price.
This reduces the amount that the jeweller is likely to receive for the earrings to between $24,700 and $20,800.
Then 1stDibs’ commission fee needs to be taken into account. This is a 15% commission fee plus a 3% processing cost, which would reduce the price that the seller actually receives to between $17,056 – $20,254.
Most jewelers will look to buy jewelry for around half of what they are sure they can sell it for, so in order for this to make sense for the dealer, it’s likely that they would aim to buy a watch like this for around half of the $17,056 – $20,254 figures.
This would mean that a jeweler would be likely to pay around $8,528 – $10,127 to acquire these particular earrings.
If you have an extremely high end or one-off piece, consider an auction house.
Graff has produced a huge range of jewelry over its sixty-year history, from one-off bespoke pieces for royalty, to more attainable rings and necklaces which can be purchased in their boutiques worldwide.
If you are selling an extremely rare or high-end piece, then it may make sense to use an auction house, as they can result in a higher price achieved due to the competitive nature of several bidders pushing the price up.
Two of the most well-known auction houses for jewelry are Sotheby’s and Christies:
When considering whether a traditional auction house is the right choice for you, it’s important to understand that the final ‘hammer price’ you see for past sales is not the amount that the sellers actually received.
- Sotheby’s commission for the seller is typically 20% of the final sale price
- Christies commission for a seller is also 17% of the final sale price, with an additional 2% ‘performance commission fee’ if it goes over the agreed ‘high estimate
These high-end auction houses also charge the sellers an additional 10-15% of the final sales price, which can mean that they are less willing to bid high amounts.
The other thing to consider with auction houses is the length of time that these organisations will take to sell your item.
As the snippet from an email below shows, it can take around a month for them to assess the value of an item.
Once the item has been accepted, you would then have to wait for a suitable auction to be held, which could be an additional three months, depending on when the next suitable auction is due to be held.
The other potential wait could be if you list your item and it doesn’t reach your desired price, in which case it will be passed in and returned to you. This uncertainty can put off some buyers who are more comfortable with a fixed price.
For the reasons listed above, if you are keen to sell your item reasonably quickly, high end auction houses are unlikely to be able to help.
But, if you are willing to wait, you have an item that fits their high requirements and you are happy with the commission % that the auction houses charge then they could be the best solution to get a great price if your item is subject to a bidding war that drives the price up.
Selling using online auction sites
There are two types of online auction websites that deal with high quality jewellery:
- Auction sites that sell to consumers e.g. 1stDibs.com
- Auction sites that buy from consumers e.g. worthy.com
Graff and Worthy.com
Worthy.com is a marketplace which works the opposite way to 1st Dibs.
Instead of connecting professional jewelry traders to customers, it connects ordinary people who are looking to sell used jewelry with a network of nearly 1,000 jewelry traders who can bid on their items.
Worthy is much faster than selling through a traditional auction and it does put you in contact with a range of jewelry buyers who could bid the price of your item up, if they like it.
The cost to access these buyers is Worthy’s ‘success fee’ commission, which is only payable on the completion of the auction.
These fees are:
- Up to $5,000 = 18%
- 5,001 – 15,000 = 14%
- 15,001 – 30,000 = 12%
- 30,000 and above = 10%
Worthy can be a good option as it means that your jewelry can get out in front of as many people as possible, who will then bid against each other to increase the possible price you receive.
Graff and IdonowIdon’t.com
I do now I don’t operates on a similar business model to Worthy.com, but has a slew of bad reviews on Trustpilot with reports of them not paying sellers for the goods that have been sold.
As a result I would not recommend that you use their service.
Selling Graff direct to a jewelry dealer
The best way to get the most money for your Graff jewelry is to eliminate as many layers between you and the person buying it as possible.
In essence, to talk directly to the type of people who are buying through worthy.com, but without having to pay Worthy the commission and reduce the amount you make.
Our recommendation is The Diamond Oak.
The Diamond Oak is a family run business with multiple generations in the jewelry industry, based out of the Diamond District in New York.
Best of all, working with Alon you will get a fair price extremely quickly, instead of having to wait for an auction to run its course and then pay the fees out of the sales price. Alon’s process is:
- Complete a form on The Diamond Oak’s website
- Alon will get back to you with an estimate, usually the next business day
- If you like the estimate, Alon will provide a pre-paid and insured shipping label
- Once he’s received it, Alon will check that all looks OK, and then pay straight away.
If you have Graff jewelry that you are looking to sell, Alon at The Diamond Oak will guide you through the process and ensure that you receive the very best price possible – just click through and fill out the form and he’ll get straight back to you with an offer for you to consider.
Even if you don’t end up working with him, you will receive a guide price back extremely quickly, which can then help you understand whether you are getting a better deal through other avenues.