The wondrous world of diamonds!
Diamonds are forever! Welcome to their magical world. Choose your eternal diamond with the help of our diamond experts.
A little bit about the precious diamond…
The hardest material in the world, the diamond, is made from a single element: carbon. Its hardness is due to its lattice structure and the strong bonds that bind the carbon atoms together. Its brilliance, however, is due to the craftsmanship required to cut and polish it. The four most important characteristics when determining a diamond’s value are the 4Cs, namely
Cut, Clarity, Color, Carat Weight. Diamond graders worldwide use these four criteria as guidelines for assigning grades to diamonds. Therefore, when buying a piece of jewelry or even a loose diamond, one must consider these four aspects.
The ‘cut’ of the diamond characterizes both its shape as well as its reflective qualities. The ’round brilliant’ is the most common and most popular diamond cut, as it allows light to be reflected within the diamond and back to the observer’s eye, giving it a scintillating shine. How well a diamond is cut depends on its proportions. A round brilliant diamond has 58 facets, and it is the proportional cut of these facets as well as the diamond’s length and width that enable it to reflect light and give the diamond its ‘Cut’ grade.
Choosing a Cut Grade
Excellent: Maximum fire and brilliance. Reflects almost all the light that enters the diamond, creating an exceptional sparkle.
Very Good: Reflects most of the light that enters the diamond, allowing for superior fire and brilliance. Seems excellent under normal light but at a lower price.
Good: Reflects the majority of light that enters the diamond, giving an above average appearance. Definitely good value for money.
Fair: Allows a lot of the light that enters the diamond to escape from the bottom, minimizing the fire and brilliance. More acceptable for smaller diamonds.
Poor: Allows most of the light that enters the diamond to escape from the sides and bottom, making the diamond seem lifeless and dull even to the untrained eye.
It is actually the absence of colour that determines a diamond’s colour grade. A chemically pure and perfectly structured diamond has no hue, and therefore a higher value. In order to assess its colour, the diamond is compared to master stones of established colour value under controlled lighting conditions. A colour grade is then assigned from a scale of D-Z.
The colour distinctions are very subtle and cannot be distinguished by the untrained eye. They do, however, play an important role in the diamond’s quality and price.
Diamonds are formed in the Earth’s upper mantle under extremely high temperature and pressure conditions. Thus, certain diamonds have internal characteristics ‘inclusions’ and external ones ‘blemishes’. The size, nature and position of these characteristics determine its clarity grade and thus its value.
The GIA clarity grade scale has the following categories:
Flawless (FL)-No inclusions or blemishes visible under 10x magnification
Internally Flawless ( IF)- No inclusions visible under 10x magnification.
Very Very Slightly Included (VVS1/VVS2)- Inclusions so slight they are difficult for a trained grader to see under 10x magnification.
Very Slightly Included (VS1/VS2)- Inclusions observed with effort under 10x magnification, but can be characterized as minor.
Slightly Included (SI1/SI2)- Inclusions are noticeable under 10x magnification.
Included (I1/I2/I3)- Inclusions are obvious under 10x magnification, which may affect transparency and brilliance.
The carat weight of a diamond determines how much it weighs. A metric carat is defined as 200 milligrams. It is expressed to the hundredth decimal place for more precision. Diamond carat price for each category of clarity, cut and colour increases with carat weight as larger diamonds are rarer and in higher demand. Size also increases with carat weight, depending of course on the diamond’s cut.
Diamond grading is an extremely intricate and specialized process, which requires expert knowledge and experience that only certified gemologists and diamond graders are possess.
Therefore, when deciding upon the purchase of a piece of diamond jewelry, or even a loose diamond, it is highly advisable that you consult a GIA certified diamond expert.
(Facad’oro has both a gemologist and a diamond grader to aid you with every purchase and guarantee that the diamond you have purchased is of the specific quality.)