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The way a diamond sparkles in the light is called its brilliance and fire. These are not subjective terms, but can be scientifically defined. Suppose the same amount of light should fall on a pile of black carbon powder as on a cut diamond. Both are formed from the same chemical, but clearly they will handle that light in different ways.
The ray then emerges from the top of the diamond where, once again, it is bent or refracted and is separated into the colours of the spectrum. It is this dispersion that gives the diamond its fire. For centuries, men and women have found that the sparkle and brilliance of a quality diamond expresses their deepest emotions and symbolizes their enduring love.
Most of the light that falls on the powder is absorbed, which is why it appears black. But when light strikes a diamond, part of the ray is reflected from the surface; this is called external reflection. The other part of the ray enters the diamond and, as it does so, it bends due to the greater optical density of a diamond; this is called refraction. Internal reflection is the light that is being reflected from the internal surfaces of the diamond.
We can help find the perfect diamond for you and will explain the 4c’s to you:
While all diamonds are precious, those possessing the best combination of cut, clarity, carat weight and colour (the 4Cs) are the earth’s rarest, the most valuable, and the most beautiful to the eye. The combination of the 4Cs determines the quality and value of a diamond and explains why some are rarer – and therefore more valuable – than others. Strive for a stone that offers the best combination of the 4Cs.
Diamonds and other gemstones are weighed using metric carats. A carat is divided into 100 points which means that a diamond of 50 points weighs 0.50 carats. While larger diamonds are highly prized, diamonds of equal size may vary widely in value and brilliance, depending on their qualities of clarity, cut and color.
Often jewellery containing many diamonds will be referred to by its total weight of diamonds. For example, a ring containing 20 diamonds of 5 points each (0.05 carat each) may be referred to as a 1.00 carat t.d.w. ring or “one carat total diamond weight”. Because diamonds are more expensive the larger they are (qualities being equal), then twenty diamonds totalling one carat will be less expensive than one diamond weighing one carat (of the same quality).
Diamonds are valued by how near they are to colorlessness – the less color, the higher the value. Most diamonds found in jewelry stores run from colorless to near-colorless with slight hints of yellow or brown. The color scale begins with the letter D, ( colorless ), and continues, with increasing presence of color, to the letter Z. Colorless diamonds are extremely rare and very valuable.
The fancy-color diamonds lie outside of this range. Natural fancy coloured diamonds command even higher prices since these diamonds are exceptionally rare. Blue, Canary Yellow, and Pink are just a few of the colours that diamonds can naturally occur in. Today some diamond companies will heat treat or radiate their diamonds to bring out a variety of colours. And most recently they have been able to man-make diamonds in virtually any colour of the rainbow. When buying a fancy coloured diamond, make sure that you have all the facts about the diamond of interest since natural coloured diamonds, heat treated coloured diamonds, and synthetic coloured diamonds and be extremely difficult to distinguish.
The greater a diamond’s clarity, the more brilliant, valuable, and rare it becomes. Virtually all natural diamonds contain identifying characteristics, yet many are invisible to the naked eye. Under the microscope, natural phenomena – called inclusions – may be seen. These are nature’s birthmarks, and they may look like tiny crystals, clouds or feathers.
Diamonds categorized as internally flawless reveal no such inclusions. Diamonds with very, very small inclusions are graded as VVSI or VVS2; the larger the inclusion, the lower the grade, and the less rare the diamond.
The number, colour, type, size, and position of surface and internal inclusions affect a diamond’s value. Major inclusions can interfere with the path of light that travels through a diamond, diminishing its brilliance and sparkle and therefore its value. Larger inclusions and also effect the structural integrity of the diamond making it more prone to chipping or splitting.
The abbreviated terminology identifying a diamond’s clarity is:
Very Very Slightly Included 1
Very Very Slightly Included 2
Very Slightly Included 1
Very Slightly Included 2
Slightly Included 1
Slightly Included 1
While diamonds come in many different shapes, including round brilliants, princess cuts, cushion cuts, hearts, pears, emerald-cuts, marquise and more. But don’t confuse SHAPE with CUT. Cut has to do with proportion and the arrangement of facets. The sheer beauty of a diamond depends on cut more than anything else, using light to create brilliance, sparkle, and flashes of fire. The closer a diamond is to perfectly proportioned, the more light refraction it wall have..and the more it will sparkle! Diamonds that are cut too deep or too shallow lose light through the sides or bottom. As a result, poorly cut stones will be less brilliant and therefore less beautiful – and certainly less valuable – than well cut diamonds.
While these standards have been in place worldwide for decades, the grading of a diamond is someone’s opinion, albeit an educated one. When you buy a diamond, the standard in which it was grading can vary. Ask us about the various certifications available and how to tell which ones are rising to highest of standards.
While all diamonds are beautiful, only by comparing gems will you be able to appreciate what makes one more rare and valuable than another. When you view stones side by side, you’ll understand why diamonds that look similar at a casual glance are priced differently. Keep in mind that there are no bargain diamonds. There are only diamonds of different value, weight and brilliance.
When you understand why some diamonds are rarer than others, you can make an informed decision. Choose a beautiful stone that combines the qualities of the 4Cs you most value.
Come in today and experience the difference