The Ring and Diamond Guide
The Anatomy of a Diamond
No two diamonds will be the same thanks to the 4C’s of diamond quality. Even if they are the same carat, they may possess differing clarity, cut or colour. Despite this, diamonds do generally have the same basic anatomy.
The basic anatomy of a diamond consists of 9 parts and of the 4 C’s below, the one that has the most impact on the anatomy of a diamond is the cut.
Anatomy of a Diamond
Total Depth: The diamonds overall depth, starting from the table at the top to the cutlet, at the bottom.
Pavilion Depth: The pavillion depth is the lower portion of the diamond, measuring from the bottom edge of the girdle to the cutlet at the bottom.
Pavilion Angle: Pavilion angle is an important dimension of the diamond because it relates to the diamond’s brightness.
Crown Height: The crown is the upper portion of the diamond, from the top edge of the girdle to the table at the top.
Crown Angle: The crown angle is the angle that is formed where the bezel facets meet the girdle plane. The best range of crown angles provides an excellent route for escaping light and excellent entry ways for light to gain access to the diamond.
Girdle Thickness: The girdle is the middle part of the diamond, a rather narrow section which separates the crown from the pavilion. The thinner the girdle the better as think girdles adds weight to the diamond which makes the stone look smaller.
Lower Girdle / Half Facet Length: This can be calculated by measuring the length of the girdle relative to the length of the pavilion.
Cutlet: The cutlet is the small area on the bottom of the diamond, which serves to prevent chipping and abrasion to the point.
Understanding the 4 C’s of Diamonds Shopping
Buying a diamond can be a costly venture, which is why it’s important to get the best quality diamond for your money. Understanding the 4 C’s of diamond quality will help you in your quest to buy the perfect diamond.
That is why we have created the following guide to help understand the 4 C’s and assist you in the diamond buying process.The 4 C’s of diamond quality are: Clarity, Cut, Color and Carat (Size of the diamond).
Diamonds that occur naturally in the ground are a result of Carbon being subjected to a huge amount of pressure and heat, this process causes a multitude of characteristics both internally and externally, these characteristics are called blemishes.
The evaluation of a diamond’s clarity involves deducing the number, size and nature of these blemishes, the fewer amount of blemishes, the higher the clarity of the diamond and thus the higher the value.
Diamond Clarity Descriptions
IF (Internally Flawless) – No inclusions and the only blemishes visible to a skilled diamond grader is at 10x magnification.
VVS1 & VVS2 ( Very, Very, Slightly Included) – Minute example of inclusions that are either very difficult to see or extremely difficult to see at 10x magnification.
VS1 & VS2 (Very, Slightly Included) – Minute example of inclusions that are either difficult to see or quite easy to see at 10x magnification.
SI1 & SI2 (Slightly Included) – Noticeable example of inclusions that are either very easy to see or easy to see at 10x magnification.
I1 & I2 (Included) – Obvious example of inclusions that are visible to see at 10x magnification, transparency and brilliance may be affected.
I3 (Included) – Obvious example of inclusions that are visible to see at 10x magnification, transparency and brilliance may be affected.
Often, when people think about a diamond’s cut, they think about the shape of the diamond, Princess, Emerald etc. In reality however, a diamond’s cut is really about how well the diamond interacts with and reflects the light.
The GIA cut grading system evaluates the following 3 properties for the diamonds overall appearance : Brightness, fire and scintillation. The remaining 4 properties evaluates the cut of the diamond: Weight ratio, durability, polish and symmetry.
Diamond Cut Descriptions
Excellent – The diamond has an even pattern of bright and dark areas.
Very Good – A combination of proportions that leads to increased darkness in the diamond
Good – A shallow crown angle and a low crown height leads to lack of contrast and localized darkness.
Fair – A shallow crown angle and a low crown height leads to lack of contrast and localized darkness greater than that of the Good rating.
Poor – A shallow crown angle and a low crown height leads to lack of contrast and localized darkness and a very dark table area.
The colour grading of a diamond is usually based on the absence of colour, the greater the quality of the diamond, the less colour it has. In fact, the best quality diamonds have no colour at all, like a drop of water. GIA colour grading ranges from D to Z and are evaluated under controlled lighting and precise viewing conditions
Diamond Colour Descriptions
D – G – Colourless
H – K – Near Colourless
L – M – Faint
N – R – Very Light
S – Z – Light
A diamond’s carat is how much it weighs, a metric carat weighs 200 milligrams. Diamond prices tend to increase as carat weight increases because larger diamond weights are a lot rarer and often more desirable. Although, two diamonds of equal carat size won’t necessarily have the same price, this depends on the other 3 C’s above.