Know More about Diamonds
Diamond is the hardest known natural material and the third-hardest known material after aggregated diamond nanorods and ultrahigh frequency. Its hardness and high dispersion of light make it useful for industrial applications and jewelry.
The 5Cs and things to know about Diamonds
The cut of a diamond refers to its proportions. Of the 5c’s,the cut is the aspect most directly influenced by man. The other three are dictated by nature. Quite often the cut of a diamond is confused with its shape. Diamonds are cut into various shapes, depending upon the original form of the rough. Whatever the shape, a well-cut diamond is better able to reflect light. A diamond’s ability to reflect light determines its display of fire and brilliance. Diamonds are usually cut with 58 facets. These facets follow a mathematical formula and are placed at precise angles in relation to each other. This relationship is designed to maximize the amount of light reflected through the diamond and to increase its beauty.The cut, or proportions, of a diamond is measured in percentages relative to the diameter of it’s girdle. The girdle diameter of each diamond is always considered 100%. The table and depth percentages are the key to determining good proportion Diamond’s brilliance comes from the quality of its cut. To be considered well cut, a diamond must have the right proportions, symmetry and polish. A well-cut stone is carefully crafted and polished until it sparkles. Its brilliance and fire are apparent because the stone delivers the maximum amount of light passing through it to the eye. The earliest record of diamond-polishing (with diamond powder) is Indian, and probably dates from the fourteenth century. There are also contemporary references to the practice of diamond polishing in Venice. The earliest reference to diamond cutting is in l550 in Antwerp, the most important diamond center of the period, where a diamond-cutters’ guild was soon to be established.
Cut Too Shallow When a diamond is cut too shallow, light escapes through the bottom, reducing the brilliance of the stone, making the general appearance watery glassy and dark.
|Cut Too Deep When a diamond is cut too deep, light escapes through the bottom, reducing the brilliance of the stone, making the center appear dark.|
|Ideal Cut Light entering the diamond reflects internally from facet to facet and is reflected back out only through the top. Therefore, an ideal cut yields maximum brilliance.|
An Ideal cut employs the strict mathematical proportions referenced below. Ideal cuts apply only to round diamonds, because symmetry is required for maximum light reflection. But an ideal cut is not possible in every case. The rough diamond’s natural inclusions, or imperfections, sometimes make it impossible to apply perfect proportions during the cutting process.A Very Good cut reflects back up to 90 percent of the light entering the stone. An ideal cut is considered extremely well-proportioned. A Good cut applies to a stone that reflects back lots of light. Stones with good cuts are often used in high-quality jewelry. A Fair cut is used to make the most of the weight of the original stone, which tends to reduce its brilliance and fire. A fair cut reflects back as little as 50 percent of the light that has passed through the diamond. A Poor cut diamond looks lifeless to the eye. We do not offer poorly cut diamonds for sale to our customers, and we don’t recommend them for fine jewelry. When you consider a diamond’s cut, you should also check the diamond’s specifications against the following table to determine whether the polish, symmetry, girdle and culet of the diamond fall within acceptable standards.
How is diamond cut?
The expression, “a rough diamond” is used to describe a diamond in its natural uncut state. They so resemble a glass pebble that most people would pass them without a glance. It is the skill of a diamond cutter that unlocks the fiery beauty that lies inside.Modern diamond cutting is scientifically planned to take the best advantage of a diamond’s natural properties. First, because no two diamonds are alike, each has to be studied very carefully and marked for cutting. Some diamonds are cleaved or split along their “grain” like a log, but most diamonds are sawn across the grain by a thin metal disc coated with diamond dust and revolving at high speed. After cleaving or sawing, the diamond is set into a lathe, and its corners are rounded off at its widest part by another diamond held against it. This is called bruiting or girdling. Next the diamond is set into a holder and held against a cast-iron “turntable” which is coated with a mixture of oil and diamond dust and which revolves at great speed. One by one, the facets tiny planes or surfaces that trap the light and make the diamond sparkle are ground onto the diamond. Because diamonds are the hardest natural substances known to man, they can be only cut and polished by another diamond. The beauty of the diamond depends on the way it reflects light. The cutter must shape the facets in such a way as to admit and reflect the maximum amount of light, so that the diamond sparkles with fire, brilliance and scintillation. Considerable skill and painstaking effort go into cutting the rough stones. It is this work and craftsmanship, which enhances the rarity and value of the stone. For more information about 4C’s Diamonds please visit this page: http://www.djewels.org/diamond_tutorials.asp
The clarity of a diamond refers to how clear, or “clean” the diamond is. The more “clean” the diamond, the higher the price. Most diamonds have “imperfections” in them. The clarity scale is a measure of the severity of those imperfections or “inclusions” as it is known in the trade.
Both of these distinguishable features together are called clarity characteristics. A clarity grade is determined by the relative absence of clarity characteristics.
The following is the GIA Diamond clarity-scale:
Shows no inclusions or blemishes of any sort under 10X magnification when observed by an experienced grader
(IF) INTERNALLY FLAWLESS
Has no inclusions when examined by an experienced grader using 10X magnification, but will have some minor blemishes
(VVS1 and VVS2) VERY VERY SLIGHTLY INCLUDED
Contains minute inclusions that are difficult even for experienced graders to see under 10X magnification.
(VS1 and VS2) VERY SLIGHTLY INCLUDED
Contains minute inclusions such as small crystals, clouds, or feathers when observed with effort under 10X magnification.
(SI1 and SI2) SLIGHTLY INCLUDED
Contains inclusions (clouds, included crystals, knots, cavities, and feathers) that are noticeable to an experienced grader under 10X magnification.
(I1, I2, I3) INCLUDED
Contains inclusions (possibly large feathers or large included crystals) that are obvious under 10X magnification and may affect transparency and brilliance.
EFFECT OF CLARITY ON PRICE
The fewer the inclusions there are in a diamond, the more valuable it is. Frequently inclusions can be removed in the cutting process, and it is the task of the diamond cutter to remove as many as he can while maintaining as much of the original carat weight as possible, since both weight and clarity affect the value of a diamond. Clarity is graded, using a very precise and complex method of evaluating the size, location and visibility of inclusions. Prakriti overseas ltd. Expertise in the field of clarity grading of the Diamonds.
A diamond’s color is another indicator of its value. The closer a stone is to colorless in other words, the less color that is apparent the more value it has. The diamond’s value drops at the first sign of yellow or brown hues.
The best color is no color. Diamonds allow light to be reflected and dispersed as a rainbow of color. This light dispersion has no effect on the technical grading of color. The absolute finest colorless stone carries a D rating, descending through the alphabet to Z, designating a diamond of light yellow or brown.
These gradations are so minute and precise that discerning a single grade (even by an expert) under less than ideal laboratory conditions is virtually impossible. It is often surprising to learn that diamonds also occur by rare accidents of nature in shades of pink, blue, green, amber or even red. These rare occurring colors are referred to as fancies and are evaluated by a different set of color standards.
The most respected system used today for evaluating diamond color was developed by the Gemological Institute of America, (GIA).
Even though there are several grades in each category, there are slight differences between the letter grades. D is the clearest and most valuable, X is a dingy yellow and least expensive. Z grade-colored diamonds are the rarest and most expensive. A diamond so saturated with nitrogen that it becomes a deep, rich yellow is as rare as a colorless diamond.
EFFECT OF COLOUR ON PRICE
When buying a diamond, color is an important factor in determining the price. Completely colorless, icy-white diamonds are very rear and are priced accordingly, the variations in color are often rare so slight that they can be detected only by an expert under special light. Diamonds with a strong natural color are also very rare and are called “fancy colors” commanding collectors prices if also of good size and cut. The best way to see the true color of a diamond is to look through its side against a white background.
The carat weight measures the mass of a diamond. One carat is defined as 200 milligrams (about 0.007 ounce avoirdupois). The point unit-equal to one one-hundredth of a carat (0.01 carat, or 2 mg)-is commonly used for diamonds of less than one carat. All else being equal, the price per carat increases with carat weight, since larger diamonds are both rarer and more desirable for use as gemstones.The price per carat does not increase smoothly with increasing size. Instead, there are sharp jumps around milestone carat weights, as demand is much higher for diamonds weighing just more than a milestone than for those weighing just less. As an example, a 0.95 carat diamond may have a significantly lower price per carat than a comparable 1.05 carat diamond, because of differences in demand.
How Carat weight Affects Value
Larger diamonds are more rare and in more demand than smaller diamonds of the same quality, so they can be sold for a higher price. A one carat diamond solitaire ring is nearly always more expensive than a diamond ring made up of multiple diamonds that are similar, but smaller, even though they total one carat or more. Carat size describes the weight of a diamond. 1 carat is equivalent to 200 milligrams. A carat is then divided into 100 points. Therefore, a 50 point diamond weights 100 milligrams.The same principle applies at the dividing line for 2 and 3 carat diamonds etc.-as the price increases in leaps with each complete and full carat unit. Price jumps for full and numerically “round” “stages” are also applied to diamonds of lesser weights, i.e., a 50 points diamond vs. a 49 points diamond is more valuable weight per weight by being a “full” 1/2 carat (there are 100 ‘points’ in one carat. Thus, e.g., 0.50 or, 1/2 carat is equal to 50 points).
The one of the most significant part of today’s 4 C’s.Diamond world is cost. If someone is unable to get the diamond at best price it is worthless to buy. This cost factor makes the 5th C about the diamond.When you are ready to choose your diamond, see a reliable jeweler. Jewelers are the experts who will be happy to explain the 5C’s to you in more detail. They will also be able to show you beautiful diamonds in many sizes and can tell you the difference between various qualities of diamonds and how these differences affect the price you pay. Established jewelers prize their good reputation, and know you are making one of your most important purchases. They can help you select the very best your money can buy.
Round– This is by far the most popular diamond shape and also the most optically brilliant, because of its 360-degree symmetry. The ‘ideal’ round brilliant cut was calculated by gem enthusiast and mathematician Marcel Tolkowsky in 1919, to reflect and scatter the maximum amount of light. The round silhouette works with almost every mounting, from classic solitaires to the most avant-garde designs.
Round diamonds can be set in prongs, in which they are visible from all sides, or into bezel mountings. In general, well cut round diamonds should be set with the least possible amount of metal around the stone, so that it is held securely but can still have light entering it to show off its sparkle and brilliance.
The traditional choice for all occasions and preferred by many for their personal investment portfolio. The depth percentage should range between 58 to 63 percent and the table percentage should range between 55 to 64 percent. The most desired percentages are the 60 percent, and perfectionists will look for depth of 59 through 62 percent and table of 56 through 58 percent.
Oval – This cut makes the most use of the sparkle of a round-brilliant cut, and combines this with an elongated outline which is particularly flattering on the hand. The oval cut diamond is based upon the traditional configuration of the round brilliant diamond and that’s why its technical name is oval modified brilliant diamond.
The oval was invented by Lazare Kaplan in the early 1960s. A length-to-width ratio of 1.5:1 is almost universally considered a pleasing shape for oval diamonds, with any variation beyond 1.4:1 or 1.6:1 beginning to be noticeable and become an aesthetic issue.
However as with all fancies, a certain degree of individual taste is always factored into the desirability of a particular diamond’s shape. Fifty-six facets are typical for oval brilliant diamonds. Over the last year or two ovals have become very popular as center diamonds for engagement rings
Generally this is cut so that the length is twice the width, but this depends, of course, on personal preference. The oval shape is very versatile, and works well in almost any setting.
Princess – This has become particularly popular over the last few years – developed in 1970, the Princess is now second only to the round in popularity. The Princess Cut Diamond is a brilliant style shape with sharp, uncut corners. This is the perfect choice for a combination between a square or rectangular outline with the brilliance of a round cut.
Brilliant style refers to vertical direction crown and pavilion facets instead of step style horizontally facets. A princess Cut Diamond generally has 76 facets, giving it more brilliance and fire than the round brilliant. The Princess Cut diamond is fast becoming one of the most popular cuts in the United States.
This gives a classic shape and beautiful sparkle. Although a square outline is largely preferred, some stones are cut in a slightly more rectangular shape. The princess cut works excellently as a solitaire, but is also particularly attractive paired with side stones such as trillions or smaller princess-cut diamonds.
Princess cut diamonds are amongst the smallest diamonds in the diamond pool. They are inverted pyramids and carry most of their weight at the bottom. Though they are small, they look electrifying.
Emerald -This is considered among the most classic of diamond shapes. It is always cut with blocked corners, usually to a rectangular outline, although some are cut to be more square.
Because of its simpler faceting, larger inclusions tend to be more visible to the naked eye, so diamonds cut in this shape need to be of a higher clarity. Diamond ‘purists’ love the emerald cut for its simplicity.
The flat planes of the outside edges allow for a variety of side stones shapes. Typical pairings would be two or three side baguetts,two half-moons, and other smaller emeralds, but not trillions ,as their sparkle makes the center emerald cut look flat. The length-to-width ratio should be between 1.5:1 to 1.75:1.
Radiant -The Radiant Cut Diamond is a straight-edged rectangular or square stone with cut corners. Radiant diamonds show resemblance to emerald cut diamonds with respect to shape.
The radiant cut diamond has 62-70 facets. Radiant are principally used for important center stones primarily for rings but also for pendant. They are rarely used for earrings or as side stones because they are hard to calibrate and match.
These diamonds are also square or rectangular in shape. But they glitter more than the emerald shaped diamonds because of the difference in the number of facets. Since radiant diamonds have more number of facets than the emerald diamonds, they look more stunning.
It is cut with the combination of the step-cutting towards the culet that the princess and emerald cuts display, and some of the triangular faceting of the brilliant cut.
This is extremely effective as a solitaire but also works well in combination with other stones, particularly cut into baguettes, trillions and princesses. Usually, a radiant-cut stone is set with special prongs to ensure that the blocked corners are securely held.
Heart – The Heart Shaped Brilliant bears some similarity to the Pear Shape, except that there is a cleft at the top. In fact, often the reason cutters may choose a Heart shape over a Pear may be that the Rough Diamond contained an inclusion located in the cleft.
The skill of the cutter can make a great difference in the beauty of this cut. The “Shape Appeal” is especially important with Hearts.
Romantic perfection for the special occasions. The perfect stone for the special occasion requirements. The Heart shaped brilliant is the hit item on Valentines day. Usually the width will be 10% wider than the head-to-point length.
Marquise – The Marquise Cut takes its name from a legend relating to the Marquise of Pompadour. This is an elongated shape with tapering points at both ends. Its shape successfully flatters the finger, making it appear longer, so is a popular cut for gemstones in designer jewellery.
According to the legend, the Sun King desired a stone to be polished into the shape of the mouth of the Marquise.
It is important to consider that a length-to-width ratio between 1.75:1 to 2:1 is most pleasing. As with other fancy shapes, the consumer’s individual taste constitutes an element of the evaluation as well. The typical marquise diamond contains 56 facets.
This works equally well in a simple solitaire setting or with side stones, particularly baguette or trillion shapes. A marquise-cut diamond is traditionally mounted with six prongs: four positioned on the sides to hold the body of the stone securely and two V-shaped prongs to protect the points at either end.
Pear – The Pear Shaped Brilliant is a combination of a Round brilliant and a Marquise cut. Pendants looks very nice set with a Pear shape as do earrings, due to the “Teardrop” shape.
The pear shaped brilliant diamond is based upon the traditional configuration of the round brilliant diamond. More than other fancy shapes, length-to-width ratio is a matter of taste when it comes to pear shaped diamonds.
Because pears may be used for engagement rings, suites in necklaces, earrings, and integral parts of custom designs, a wide variety of shapes is considered desirable. The typical pear shaped diamond will contain 58 facets.
This feminine diamond shape, with one rounded end and a tapering point at the other, is a classic and extremely popular. A ratio of 1.5:1.0 is common, so that the length of the stone is about 1 ½ times the width of the stone.
The symmetry of a pear cut diamond is vital, as this ensures the light is evenly reflected, particularly in the point. This cut is usually mounted with five prongs – two to hold the rounded end, two to hold the curved sides of the stone and one special V-shaped prong to hold the point at the end, the most vulnerable part of the stone, securely.
Why Diamonds Are So Valuable?
Anything extremely rare is also precious. Diamonds, formed billions of years ago are rare in that only a few survived the hazardous journey from the depths of the earth to reach the earth’s surface. Indeed, you may be surprised to learn that even though diamond production has increased in recent years, it is estimated that as little as 500 tons have ever been mined in recorded history to date. Of diamonds mined today, approximately 50% are judged to be of gem quality. Even fewer are large enough to be polished into diamonds that are much bigger than the head of a match.
To recover the relatively small amount of both gem quality and industrial diamonds is not easy, even with the increasing sophistication of today’s technology. Approximately 250 tons of ore must be mined and processed from the average Kimberlite Pipe in order to produce a one carat polished diamond of gem quality. Wherever possible, the considerable quantity of waste material produced is disposed of in such a way as to minimize the impact on the local environment.
The Diamond’s Rarity and Natural Beauty :- Remember, each “C” is important in contributing to a diamond’s quality, but it is the combination of all of them that determines its value. For example, a colorless diamond is at the top of the Diamond Quality Pyramid in color, but if it lacks clarity, is small, or is not well-cut, it will be of lower value. The finest diamonds possess the rarest quality in each of the 4Cs, and are the most valuable. Ancient Greeks thought diamonds were tears of the gods and the Romans believed diamonds were actual splinters from falling stars. Another legend has it that there was an inaccessible valley in Central Asia carpeted with diamonds, “patrolled by birds of prey in the air and guarded by snakes of murderous gaze on the ground”. Today, diamonds hold a deep fascination as the world’s ultimate symbol of love. The diamond’s rarity and natural beauty are the qualities that have made the diamond such a special and magical gift.The Discovery of Diamonds :- Diamonds were discovered around two thousand years ago, but their origin has been said to date as far back as 100 million years. Adding to the mystery and aura of what make diamonds so sought after, approximately 250 tons of ore must be mined and processed in order to produce a single one-carat polished, gem quality diamond. History and Magic :- Women are not only drawn to diamond jewelry because of its natural beauty; they are also inspired by the history and magic associated with diamonds. Like women, diamonds are unique and special by nature. Because of this special ness, diamond jewelry offers a way to articulate our innermost feelings and emotions regarding another person.
Diamond CareDiamonds do need care to keep them at their brilliant best. A clean diamond not only reflects light better, but actually looks bigger than one that’s been “dulled” by skin oils, soap, cosmetics and cooking grease.Diamonds have an affinity for grease and should be cleaned once every month to keep their fire at its brightest. The detergent bath – Prepare a small bowl of warm suds with any mild liquid detergent. Brush pieces gently with a tooth brush while they are in the suds. Transfer to a wire strainer and rinse under warm running water. Pat dry with a soft, lint free cloth. The cold water soak – Make a half and half solution of cold water and household ammonia in a cup. Soak the diamond for 30 minutes. Lift out and tap gently around the back and front of the mounting with a small brush. Swish the solution once more, and drain on paper. No rinse is needed.
Things Not To Do With Your Diamond– Don’t let your diamond come in contact with chlorine bleach when you’re doing housework. It won’t hurt the diamond, but it can pit or discolor the mounting. – Don’t wear your diamond when you’re doing rough work or doing the dishes. Even though a diamond is durable, it can be chipped by a hard blow along its grain. – Don’t jumble your diamond pieces in a drawer or jewelry case, because diamonds can scratch each other and also scratch other jewelry. – Take your diamonds to your jeweler for a “Check-up” at least once a year. He will check your ring for loose settings and signs of wear. He’ll usually give them a professional “shine-up” too.