The diamonds used in the design of your piece are an integral part of the overall look and feel of the ring and is the detail we find clients often pay the most attention to. Diamonds can vary in five key characteristics: shape, cut, colour, clarity and carat, with the last four most commonly referred to as the Four C’s. Each of these characteristics has a range of options that allows you to select a diamond of a particular quality and style to suit your taste and budget.
The shape of a diamond is quite a personal choice and is often selected based on the preferences of the wearer of the ring, the way it feels and looks proportionately and aesthetically on their hand, along with what type of sparkle appeals to them. Traditionally the most popular diamond shape for an engagement ring is the round brilliant cut, due to the fact that it not only looks incredible in most designs, but it is also timeless and considered the most brilliant of all diamond shapes. In recent years however we have found clients to be increasingly drawn to diamonds of different shapes that showcase a uniqueness that they can tailor to their personality. If there is a specific shape you are interested in we have an eye for sourcing incredibly well proportioned shapes and can work with you to find the perfect stone for your requirements.
The cut of a diamond refers to its proportions, symmetry and polish, not the shape, which is defined separately. The cut essentially contributes to the sparkle of your diamond and is therefore one of the most, if not the most, important of the Four C’s. A diamond’s cut varies on a scale of excellent to poor with the scale determining how effective the stone is at interacting with light. Within each of these levels of grading there is also a scale, moving from those that just made the grade through to the best in their grade and this should be taken in to consideration when reviewing a diamond.
When jewellers or gemmologists refer to a diamond’s colour, they are actually referring to its lack of colour and how colourless the diamond is. This is also referred to as its grading of whiteness, with diamonds (of the white variety) increasing in value the whiter they are. The colour of a diamond can play a large role in the value and visual appeal of a diamond, if you’re unsure about what class of colour you’re looking for visit our colour page where we’ve detailed everything you need to know about colour when selecting your diamond.
Clarity refers to the number and size of inclusions in a diamond. An inclusion is a naturally occurring flaw, often microscopic, that was developed in the diamond during its creation. Think of it as nature’s fingerprint, with no two diamonds having the same inclusions. Diamonds are graded on their level of clarity and are rated from Flawless to Included. Clarity is another very important factor in determining the value of a diamond and while inclusions are not necessarily visible to the naked eye throughout most of the clarity chart, the number and size of inclusions can affect the brilliance of the stone when rated on the lower end of the scale. This is when they can also become easy to see with the naked eye.
The carat of a diamond is one of the primary influencers in a diamond’s price and refers to the diamond’s weight, not specifically its size. The carat will affect the price of a diamond as larger stones are rarer, however it is worth remembering the value of similar carat diamonds can vary depending on the other characteristics of the diamond like cut, colour and clarity. The combination of all characteristics towards your desired diamond is something you should discuss with your jeweller when selecting your stone.