Additional note: sometimes if you're cursed & die the curse remains but does not show up in your buffs/debuffs bar & doesn't seem to fade naturally. (I have to use the chivalry spell dispel evil/remove curse) to be rid of it. As my gear currently only just takes me above the cap it drops my strength down to 147 & my hp down to 172 permanently until i dispel it. Because of this it's definitely worth making sure you're over the cap relative to your Resisting spells level to reduce the effect of the curse & potentially void it.
Not saying this is your issue but just something to be aware of.
Also, if you need any assistance with the gear, let me know.
[personally i've found the only use the ancient gems have are for +regen & +luck. Everything else can be spellcrafted at higher levels than the gem offer. Also, SDI is potentially useful but the gems offer such little bonus that you're better hunting for SDI specific gear to reach it's potential. - Just my humble experience & opinion.)