A Primer on Diamonds: What To Know Before You Buy
Before you begin shopping for an engagement ring, you should have a budget in mind. In most cases, the centre stone will account for the majority of your expenditure. Prices in the diamond industry can fluctuate dramatically with seemingly little apparent change. Going in with fairly specific parameters will help you find the right diamond to satisfy your demands. At Atelier Lou Bijouterie, we can help you start this exciting adventure and give you some guidance as you embark on this journey.
Once you have establishes a budget, you can start doing some research on diamonds. A great place to begin is by becoming familiar with the “4Cs” of diamonds: cut, colour, clarity and carat weight.
The cut grade of a diamond is considered by many to be the most important factor in determining its “quality” and is often overlooked. Cut is where the sparkle comes from, and since a diamond’s main job is to shine, choosing a stone that is well-cut becomes a critical part of your search. Regardless of the shape, size, colour, or clarity of the diamond you choose, the cut quality should not be compromised. Most diamonds sold today are accompanied by a certificate or report, which, among other things, shows the cut grade of the diamond.
The colour of a diamond also plays an important role in its value. Generally, with regard to colour, the more colourless the diamond, the rarer it is. Diamond colour is graded on a scale from D to Z. The highest colour, that is, the most colourless, that diamonds come in is “D”. As you go further down the alphabet the diamond begins to pick up a stronger yellowish tint. At Atelier Lou Bijouterie, we generally recommend diamonds in the D-J colour range.
Clarity, the third of the 4Cs, is another very important factor in determining diamond “quality”. Clarity is graded on a range starting from flawless to included. The smaller and fewer inclusions there are in a diamond, the rarer and more valuable the diamond becomes. We generally recommend diamonds in the VS and SI categories.
The final C of the 4Cs is carat weight. The word carat (ct) derived from the Ancient Greek word for carob seed, is a unit of mass equal to 200 milligrams. The current definition, sometimes known as the metric carat, was adopted in 1907 and soon afterwards in many countries around the world. The carat is divisible into 100 points of 2 mg. This should not be confused with the word Karat, which is used as a measurement of the purity of gold. Naturally, the larger the diamond, the more rare and valuable it becomes. As long as the other C’s are not compromised, no matter the size of the diamond, you will get the shine that you are after.
Almost all of the rings purchased from Atelier Lou Bijouterie are made to order according to each client’s specifications. Of course, we have an extensive selection of jewelry and engagement rings to choose from which can help you zero in on the specific design in mind. The creation of a custom-designed piece of jewelry is neither complicated nor expensive, We are here to help guide you through the selection process. Our technical expertise and design experience will help create a special jewel that will spark for many years to come.