Just as each person is unique, so is every diamond. Therefore, your perfect diamond is as rare and individual to as you are. Diamonds are the ultimate expression of love, passion, magic and luxury. They are the most mythical of all precious gemstones.
The quality and value of a diamond is judged on four fundamental criteria known as the four C’s. The carat-weight, colour, clarity and cut. Some differences in quality are easily noticeable, others need specialist equipment and qualified graders with years of experience to assess and detect. Minor differences in colour, clarity and weight can have a major effect on value.
The cut of a Diamond is the only property that is totally dependent on man. Cut refers to not only the shape and style of the diamond, but its proportions, symmetry, and finish or “make”. Proportions and angles influence the internal reflection of light as well as the dispersion of light leaving the diamond. This determines the brilliance and fire (brightness and sparkle) of the diamond, and ultimately its perceived beauty.
Cut therefore, is actually one of the most important aspects to consider when choosing your diamond. A diamond can be cut for maximum weight recovery or maximum brilliance and beauty.
All cuts are based on scientific formulas to maximize the return of light from the diamond. Ultimately taste and preference for the overall appearance determine the buyer’s choice. Diamonds may be cut to form a; Round Brilliant, Round Single, Princess, Heart, Emerald, Baguette, Marquise, Oval, Pear, Radiant or Triangle.
Diamonds may have various inclusions or imperfections. Scratches, traces of minerals and other imperfections; do appear in the majority of diamonds to different degrees. As with the colour of your diamond; a system of grading is available to determine the clarity of your stone. The number and size of inclusions or imperfections determines the clarity grading. Most imperfections in gem quality diamonds are not visible to the naked eye. For this reason clarity is graded under 10-x magnification. Grades correspond to the International Clarity Grading Scale.
Most gem quality diamonds fall within a range from “D” colourless to “Z” light yellow. The colour of a diamond is determined on the basis of a visual assessment by comparing it to a set of master diamonds under laboratory conditions. The differences between colours are very subtle and graded according to the International Colour Grading Scale. Diamonds awarded a ‘Grade D’ are extremely rare and are of the greatest value.
Diamonds that fall after the ‘Z’ colour grading are referred to as fancies. Within the category of fancies an assortment of vibrant colours are available. With the exception of some natural fancy colours, such as blue, pink, purple, yellow or red, the colourless grade is the most valuable.
The weight of a diamond is expressed in carats and is the standard measurement for Diamond weight. 1 carat is equal to 0.2 grams. A carat is then further subdivided into 100 points. For example: 0.50 ct = 1/2 carat = 50 points.
Diamonds are a natural stone and therefore the properties of these precious gems cannot be controlled. In the mining process various sized diamonds are discovered; smaller stones being found more frequently than larger ones. Larger carat sizes are very rare and of extremely high value.
Weight plays an influential part in determining the value of a diamond. However, two diamonds of equal weight can have very unequal values depending on their quality. Furthermore weight does not always indicate size. Depending on proportions two diamonds weighing the same may appear very different in size. Internationally, the weight of a diamond is mentioned to two decimal places.
Each Diamond available today, was formulated more than one hundred million years ago. Created by a combination of extreme heat and pressure deep within the earth’s core more than 3 billion years ago, Diamonds are then brought to the surface by volcanic eruption.
Diamonds are the hardest minerals in existence and their longevity surpasses all other precious stones. It is due to their strength and eternal brilliance that enables Diamond jewellery to be worn day after day, generation after generation.
The tradition of bestowing an engagement ring to the one you love as a promise of marriage began in 1477. Archduke Maximillian of Hamburg captured his love for Mary of Burgundy, in the first gift of an engagement ring. At the time, diamonds were looked upon as charms and said to enhance the love between a husband and wife. Cupid’s arrows were also thought to be tipped with diamonds, dispersing a magic that nothing else could equal.
From this time onward the tradition of giving an engagement ring began to spread around the world. And today the engagement ring itself has become as much of a milestone as the forthcoming wedding.
This tradition dates back to Ancient Egypt, where it was believed that the vena amoris (the vein of love) ran directly from that finger to the heart. Wearing the ring on the third finger has since become customary in all English speaking countries.
Planning a wedding can be an expensive time. It is important to remember though that receptions and honeymoons will soon become a memory. However, your engagement ring will be with you forever. It can be passed on through generations and is a constant reflection of your love for each other. Diamonds are available in a variety of different sizes, shapes, clarities and colours and you will be certain to find one that suits your taste and budget.
The Latin word for Pearl literally means unique, attesting to the fact that no two pearls are identical. There are basically three types of Pearls: natural, cultured and imitation. A natural pearl (often referred to as an Oriental Pearl) forms when an irritant, such as a piece of sand, works its way into a particular species of oyster, mussel or clam. As a defence mechanism, the mollusk then secretes a fluid to coat the irritant. Layer upon layer of this coating is deposited upon the irritant until a lustrous pearl is formed. A cultured pearl virtually undergoes the same process. The only difference is that the irritant is a surgically implanted bead or piece of shell called Mother of Pearl.
Gemstones are minerals which have been crystallised as a result of high temperature and pressures exerted by elements that form the earth’s crust. Today, Coloured Gemstones are gathered from all corners of the globe.