A Guide to Diamonds
A Guide to Diamonds
The hardest substance known to man takes it's name from the ancient Greek "adamas" meaning the "unconquerable". A well cut diamond is a fascinating object of great beauty. Light is the element that brings it alive, igniting it's brilliance and fire. We have written this guide to give you some useful information about diamonds. We have an ethical policy and only deal with trusted and legitimate sources.
Buying a Diamond
The "4Cs" are used to help you understand the classification and quality of diamonds. Stones with the highest cobination of the "4Cs" are far more rare and consequently more expensive. By using different combinations of the "4Cs" it is possible to find a stone for every taste and budget.
Carats are often confused with size. This is actually a measurement of weight. One carat weighs 200 milligrams. A single carat is divided into 100 points (rather like pounds and pence). A 0.75 carat diamond is the same as a 75point or ¾ carat stone. Does a 1ct stone cost the same as two 50pt stones? No. Larger diamonds are more rare and harder to find and they are priced accordingly. The cut and setting of a stone can make it appear bigger or smaller.
This refers to the presence or lack of inclusions in a stone. Inclusions may be minerals or fractures that appear whilst the diamond is formed at great temperature and huge pressure beneath the Earth's surface (at a depth of 150/300km). Inclusions can look like feathers, clouds, tiny crystals or spots. Large or numerous inclusions can have an impact on the dispersion of light within a stone, possibly making it less brilliant. We use a 10x loupe to look into the stone and grade it. Clarity is classified from extremely rare flawless stones through those with very small inclusions difficult to see under magnification down to stones with large or abundant inclusions easily recognisable with the naked eye. The greater a diamonds clarity the more brilliant and therefore valuable it is.
Diamonds can be found in all colours, blacks, browns and "fancy" colours such as pink, yellow, blue and of course all the white colours; warm summer whites, icy winter whites and then the highly prized absolutely colourless. It is very difficult to see the subtle differences in colour. Stones are graded in controlled lighting conditions and in comparison to a master set. It is a good idea to compare and play with a few stones to find "your" stone. The one that suits your colouring, choice of metals and budget.
The term "cut" refers not only to the shape of the stone but also the "make" or quality of the cut. A stone cut too deep or shallow may lose or "leak" light from the sides or bottom. A well-cut stone however will maximise a diamonds characteristic high refractive qualities, reflecting light from one mirror like facet to another, resulting in the fantastic display of brilliance, sparkle and fire that is only found in diamonds
We hope that this information has been of some help and interest. If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask us. Most importantly of all, have fun choosing your stone..