All about diamonds.
You’ve probably done some research. And, with that research, you may have some questions. Because buying a diamond is an important decision, we want to provide you all you need to know. It’s an important decision and purchase. Your desire to find the perfect diamond brought you here to us. We’re glad it did, because we want you to find the perfect diamond, too! An important fact to know, like a snowflake, no two diamonds are alike. A natural diamond's journey begins billions of years before it arrives in our showcase. This is why it’s so important to work with an accredited professional who can explain all of the differences. It starts with the basics: The 4Cs.
When a diamond is cut with the ideal proportions for its shape, it reflects more light out of the top, producing incredible fire and brilliance. Cut is probably the most important C of them all. A poorly cut diamond with incongruous proportions looks dull and dark because it allows light to escape out of the bottom and sides. In short, a well-cut diamond sparkles a lot because it reflects and refracts light better than one not cut as well. Achieving the best cut for a diamond comes down to the hands of a skilled diamond cutter and ultimately reflects the diamonds final beauty, value, and price.
White diamonds are not all colorless. The spectrum ranges from light yellow to totally colorless. A lettering system from D to Z is used to identify the amount of color present in each diamond, with D awarded only to rare, totally colorless diamonds. A diamond can be graded D, E or F; near colorless, G, H, I or J. A white diamond’s beauty and value increases the more colorless it is. Many of these diamond color distinctions are so subtle that they are invisible to the untrained eye. These distinctions make a very big difference in diamond quality and price.
Natural diamonds are formed by tremendous heat and pressure deep within the earth. This process can result in “inclusions” and “blemishes.” These are simply fancy words for imperfections. No diamond is perfect, but the closer it comes, the higher its value. Inclusions seldom affect a diamond’s beauty, although they do affect price.
Carat weight refers to size and weight. Larger diamonds are scarce, and therefore more valuable. However, two diamonds with the same carat weight can vary greatly in value, depending on the color, clarity and most importantly, the cut. A half-carat diamond with high color and clarity ratings may cost more than a three-quarter carat diamond with lower color and clarity ratings, but identical cut. It’s simply a matter of deciding what matters most to you, size or quality, then finding the best combination of size, color and clarity to suit your budget.
The most popular; cut for maximum brilliance.
A fancy-cut diamond that has a great deal of sparkle.
Becoming one of the most popular fancy cuts and is a modified brilliant-cut with similar fire; elongated shape creating the illusion of greater size.
A square cut with rounded corners, much like a pillow.
An elegant square shape with blocked corners that make diamonds appear octagonal.
Rectangular with parallel facets and blocked corners; produces a hall-of-mirrors effect.
An elongated shape with tapering points at both ends.
Teardrop-shaped, with a great deal of sparkle.
A combination of the emerald cut and the sparkle of the round brilliant; typically, with blocked corners.
A sentimental cut that can be difficult to find.
Fancy Colored Diamonds
Since their discovery centuries ago, most people assume all diamonds to be strictly white. However, one in 10,000 diamonds has enough color to be called "fancy", and can be blue, red, green, brown or yellow. A white diamond’s color is graded on a scale that ranges from D to Z. Once there is enough color to be considered "fancy", a diamond is graded on a scale from dark to vivid, based on hue and light. What should you look for in a colored diamond? In this case, the more color a colored diamond has, the better! For example, a Fancy Deep and Fancy Vivid has more color than a Fancy Light, making them more valuable. When you are looking at a colored diamond, tone is very important. Colored diamonds are also graded differently than a white diamond and that grading system is based on the presence of color. Terms used by GIA (Gemological Institute of American) are Faint, Very Light, Fancy Light, Fancy, Fancy Dark, Fancy Intense, Fancy Deep and Fancy Vivid. A colored diamond will be typically more expensive than a white diamond, because they are so rare. Approximately 2% of the total rough diamonds mined from the earth are fancy colored. And, since rarity will affect the price, it’s not surprising that some of the most expensive colored diamonds have sold for millions of dollars at auction!