Where to start? Maybe the quick review for those in a rush: go see Dean for any jewelry needs you may have. He's the best, hands down. You can read the rest of this review or other reviews, but I am telling you, you will want to go see Dean as soon as you can.
Now for those that have some more time: I came across Dean on Citysearch while looking for a place to get my fiancee's engagement ring. I had been to some local Austin jewelry stores, as well as Tiffany's in the Domain. After visiting at a handful of these stores, I wasn't wowed by anything I saw, even rings well beyond my budget. All the rings I saw just seemed uninteresting and plain, even those that were made to look baroque. I could buy a nice ring from these places, but the experience didn't feel personal to me. That wasn't how I wanted to propose to my future wife.
But then I found Dean. I went to his website and his rings just grabbed my attention. I liked the colored diamonds since my fiancee had mentioned that she liked colored stones. I gave his number a call and set up an appointment to see him the next day. When I met with him, we talked about my budget and he was instantly brain-storming ideas about what sort of ring he could make with my price point in mind. I was floored by his ideas -- his sketches alone seemed like more beautiful rings than the ones I had been spending my time looking at. After a couple of meetings, in between which we both thought about ideas, we came up with an amazing design I knew my fiancee would love. I brought a friend one day to a meeting with Dean, just to get a little outside perspective. Well, she also loved the design and was floored by how personable and helpful Dean was. Ever since, she has been dropping hints to her husband to go have a ""talk"" with Dean.
Suffice it to say, my fiancee loved the ring. Everyone who's seen her engagement ring loves it. In fact, she asked Dean for a bunch of business cards so she could hand them out instead of having to constantly explain where she got her ring.
We went back to get our wedding bands from Dean, and my fiancee was also instantly impressed by Dean and his work. Dean has really helped us to create beautiful, special, personal rings. They feel more like works of art than rings in fact. And throughout the process, Dean was incredibly accommodating of my schedule, budget, and ideas. We have also taken the rings back to have them cleaned and adjusted, and Dean's been happy to help.
It's rare to find people who excel at what they do. Not only does Dean excel at what he does, his down-to-earth, laid-back demeanor made the entire engagement/wedding ring process a joy. With no qualifications, I can easily say that if you need to purchase jewelry, you should see Dean.
Pros: crafts unique, beautiful rings, budget-conscious, friendly
Cons: absolutely none