What is the most important thing to remember when buying a diamond?
When you go to buy a diamond, consider the 4Cs of diamonds: cut, color, clarity, and carat. These will help you to choose the best diamonds on the same criteria on which jewelers use to select them.
What is diamond cut?
Cut is the most important property, which increases its beauty. With a well-cut diamond, it reflects light to maximize the stones brilliance. A diamond with perfect color and clarity could nevertheless have poor brilliance if it is not well cut. The shape of a diamond describes the outline of the stone and pattern of the facet arrangement. A stone can be cut in various shapes, such as: round, princess, heart, oval, pear, and others. The depth of a diamond is the ultimate feature for its brilliance and fire. A stone’s cut by depth can be described with shallow cut, deep cut, or ideal cut.
What is diamond color?
Diamonds are found in all colors of the rainbow, from colorless and transparent stones to ink black. Varying degrees of yellow or brown is common in most of the diamonds and a slight difference in color can make a substantial difference in value. A truly colorless diamond is extremely rare and considered the most valuable. It allows most light to pass through the stone and create the most brilliance. The color scale goes from D to Z, with D being the most white and Z being the most yellow.
What is diamond clarity?
Clarity is a term used to describe the absence or presence of flaws inside or on the surface of a diamond. In other words, the clarity of a diamond refers to a diamond’s clearness or purity. When these marks occur internally, they are called inclusions, and when they occur on the surface, they are known as blemishes. These slight flaws make every diamond quite unique, but can also affect the beauty and value of the diamond. Diamond Clarity Grading Scale grades a Diamond with any of the following grades:
- F (Flawless),
- IF (Internally Flawless),
- VVS1 – VVS2 (Very, Very Slightly Included – 1 & 2),
- VS1 – VS2 (Very Slightly Included – 1 & 2),
- SI1 – SI2 (Slightly Included – 1 & 2),
- I1 – I2 – I3 (Included – 1, 2 & 3)
What is diamond carat weight?
The term “carat” refers to the weight of a diamond. Each carat is divided into 100 points. (i.e. A 1/4 carat diamond is considered as 25 points and a 1/2 carat diamond is considered as 50 points.) When diamonds are mined, larger diamonds are discovered rarely in comparison of small ones, which makes larger diamonds much more valuable. For that reason, the price of a diamond rises exponentially with its size, therefore, a 2 carat diamond of a given quality is always worth much more than two 1 carat diamonds of the equal quality.
What is gemstone?
A gemstone is a mineral or rock, which can be used in jewelry after cutting or faceting and polishing. Gemstones are diverse in their beauty and many gems are available in a stunning variety of colors. After a skilled cutting and polishing of a gem, full color and luster can be seen.
How do I care for my jewelry?
Jewelry requires proper care and treatment for its longevity so that it can be handed down as heirlooms to future generations without losing their shine and sparkle. Regular cleaning of jewelry is essential to maintain the quality of jewelry’s gemstones and metal. When wearing jewelry, it gets dirty as you use various skin and body care solutions such as soaps, lotions, and can become oily from your skin’s natural oils. And when you are not wearing them, they collect dust. You can clean your jewelry at home by your own by using a soft brush, water, and soap, or by using readymade jewelry cleaners. You can also take services of a professional jeweler to keep jewelry clean. Jewelry should be stored individually in a soft cloth pouch or plastic zip-lock bags to ensure that a piece of jewelry or gemstone so that it does not scratch other jewelry or gemstones. You should not wear jewelry while doing heavy work, housework or gardening as it can be scratched. You should avoid the situation where your jewelry comes in contact with chlorine bleach, hair spray or other chemicals because they can severely discolor and damage your jewelry, as well as their settings.
What are lab created diamonds?
Diamonds have been produced in laboratories since the 1950s, but in the last few years, lab created diamonds are being made more consistently and in desirable qualities and sizes.
Laboratory grown diamonds have the same chemical composition, the same physical and optical properties and function the same way as their natural counterparts. Some consider them a more eco-friendly choice because they are grown and not mined. Today, lab created diamonds provide a noticeable savings versus natural diamonds of the same size and quality, but be aware. With the newness of the market and the potential of overproduction, prices may not be as stable as the existing natural diamond market and have the potential to fluctuate greatly.
What are clarity enhanced diamonds?
Technology has made it possible to take a natural diamond that has come out of the ground, that has visible internal imperfections called inclusions and improve its overall appearance. The basic process is to start with a lower clarity diamond and “fill” the visible inclusion with a proprietary substance that has the same optical properties as diamond, thus making the inclusion virtually invisible. As long as it is being purchased from a reputable jeweler who understands the process and discloses all of the information completely, a clarity enhanced diamond may be an option for someone who is looking for a large diamond size of medium quality at a substantial savings. They generally cost 30 to 40% less than a comparable non-enhanced natural diamond.
Why is platinum more expensive than gold?
When it comes to jewelry, platinum is the more expensive option of the common precious metals; however, it is considered the best quality material available by most jewelers, which gives reason for its higher cost. Platinum is used near in pure form with most pieces of jewelry being made up of 95% platinum compared to the 58.5% of gold in 14 karat items. Platinum is more than 60% heavier than other precious metals, which makes it dense, therefore, it takes more platinum to make a piece of jewelry than it does other metals. (i.e. A wedding band with the exact same size, width, and thickness that weighs 7.96 grams in 14 karat gold will weigh 12.95 grams in platinum.) Additionally, platinum takes a little more handling and expertise to be worked into jewelry, which adds to the manufacturing cost.
Price vs. Durability: Which metal do I choose for my ring?
The chart below is not intended to be absolute, but an attempt to illustrate the price of metals versus their durability. The way to read the relative cost is if you found a ring made of silver that cost $100, that same ring would cost about $400 in 14 karat, and $900 in platinum.
|Precious Jewelry Metal||Relative cost||Expectation of wear before you need repair.|
|Sterling Silver||$1||1 year|
|10 karat gold||$3||5 years|
|14 karat gold||$4||10 years|
|18 karat gold||$5||15 years|
|Platinum||$9||50 years plus|
Platinum vs. White Gold: Which metal should I choose?
Both metals are beautiful, rare, durable, and great choices for jewelry, especially engagement rings. Many times, the decision of which to choose for your ring is a matter of personal preference. Here are key differences between the two:
- Platinum is dense, heavy, more pure, hypoallergenic, holds stones more securely, and will last a lifetime; however, platinum does cost more. Even though it is naturally a “white” metal, platinum does not stay shiny. Platinum will grey and dull over time, which is referred to as patina. It is not necessarily unattractive, just not shiny. People that like platinum generally appreciate its patina.
- White gold (14 karat or 18 karat) is by far the most popular option when it comes to engagement rings. It is a precious, rare metal that polishes beautifully, easy to work with, and a great balance between cost and durability. However, gold comes out of the ground as a yellow-orange metal that must be mixed with other metals (alloy) to make stronger for jewelry and to achieve a “white” color. Even “true white” gold alloys need to be finished with a rhodium plating to be bright, white, and shiny. Rhodium, which is a hard, bright, heavy metal of the platinum family, does wear over time and will need to be serviced regularly to maintain the bright white, shiny look.
How long does a custom engagement ring take to make?
Depending on the amount of customization requested, the time to make a custom engagement ring can vary. If you are simply combining two or more ready-made components, it can be complete in just a day or two in most cases. The complete custom design process gives you, the customer, the opportunity to make a ring that is just for you with your specific requests and desires. When choosing this option, we suggest shopping at least 5 to 6 weeks ahead of your due date. Give yourself time to work with an artist one-on-one to go over the variety of options and the individual details your ring requires, and to allow your designer to make any necessary adjustments, if necessary. Take a week to review center stone options and make comparisons of qualities and prices. Once all of the decisions have been made and the design is finalized, it is generally a 2 to 3 week process to manufacture your engagement ring.