The Four C’s of Diamonds

Clarity, Colour, Carat Weight, and Cut. These are the four C’s of diamonds you should look out for when you appraise a diamond you’re interested in. We will explore these in some depth so you are well equipped the next time you go shopping and have confidence in your acquisition.

Clarity:

Diamonds are formed under an incredible amount of heat and pressure within the earth. They often contain unique birthmarks, either internal (inclusions) or external (blemishes).

  1. Inclusions can interfere with the passage of light through the diamond, so the fewer the inclusions, the more brilliant a diamond.
  2. Blemishes include surface irregularities. They lower the value and luster of a diamond.

A diamond’s clarity rating is based on the inclusions and blemishes that are visible under 10x magnification. Diamonds without these imperfections are rare and, naturally, very valuable.

Diamond grades (clarity rating) range from Flawless (completely free of blemishes and inclusions) to Included 3 (possess large, heavy blemishes and inclusions visible to the naked eye).

CLARITY FINAL.jpgThe eleven different clarity grades assigned to diamonds

Colour:

A diamond’s colour has a significant impact on its value & appearance. A diamond is like a prism that divides light into an array of colours. A colourless diamond allows more light to pass through it, emits more sparkle, and is hence more valued than a coloured diamond with the exception of fancy coloured diamonds.

Colour is a result of lingering traces of nitrogen, boron, hydrogen or other elements present in the composition of the diamond. We follow an international grading system that begins with the letter D (colourless) and continues with increasing presence of colour to the letter Z. The distinctions between successive letters are very subtle & tough to observe to the untrained eye.

COLOUR FINAL.jpg
A summary illustration of colour grading

Fancy coloured diamonds are also available in: black, brown, champagne, cognac, etc. In the case of these diamonds, the intensity and hue of the colour plays the most important role in deciding the value of the stone, not the clarity. A diamond with an intense colour and rare colour (red), can be more expensive than a colourless diamond.

CD FINAL.jpg

Carat Weight:

A carat is the unit of measurement used to describe the weight of loose diamonds. One carat weighs 200 grams and, just as a dollar is divided into 100 pennies, a carat is divided into 100 points. As such, a stone weighing 1.50 carats has a weight of 1 carat and 50 points.

Diamonds of the same weight do not necessarily have the same appearance. When diamonds are mined, large gems are discovered much less frequently than small ones, hence making them much more valuable.

As an illustration of how diamond pricing works, consider this example: A 2 carat diamond of F colour, VVS1 clarity will always be worth more than two 1 carat diamonds of the same colour, clarity and cut. In contrast, a smaller 0.50 carat diamond with high colour and clarity ratings may cost more than a 0.75 carat diamond with lower colour and clarity ratings.

Note that as diamond carat size increases, both the diameter and the depth of the diamond increase. This is why a 1 carat diamond (about 6.5 mm in diameter) does not look twice as wide as a 0.50 carat diamond (about 5 mm in diameter).

CARAT FINAL.jpgDiamond sizes in carats and millimetres

Cut:

A good cut gives a diamond its brilliance.

Cut refers to the proportions of the diamond relative to its shape (round brilliant, marquise, pear, princess, etc.) Every diamond, regardless of its shape, gets its brilliancy and scintillation through its cut and polish, which allow the maximum amount of light to enter through its top, be reflected, and dispersed back through its top.

Rough diamonds, those that are mined from the earth, do not display all their beauty. They need to be cut and polished to exhibit the brilliance that diamonds are known for.

ROUGH DIAMONDS FINAL.jpg

The most popular shape for diamonds is the round Brilliant cut with 58 facets. Stones that are not cut into this shape are known as fancy cuts. The cut of the diamond is often determined by the original shape of the rough stone, the location of the inclusions, the flaws to be eliminated, and the preservation of weight.

The drawing shows the play of light inside a diamond and explains why an ideal cut diamond has the maximum luster.

CUT FINAL.jpg

The 4 C’s of diamonds are the central pillars to learning about diamonds. They provide the foundations upon which we build the more advanced topics and allow you to understand the diamonds you are looking at.

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Do you trust your jeweller?

Are you looking at buying or customizing jewellery?
Start by finding a jeweller you can trust.

Buying fine jewellery is a unique experience and process. It’s the kind of purchase that requires both the jeweller and buyer to have an intimate understanding of preferences, styles, resources, and vision.

It also takes a trained jeweller to be able to pick out and recommend a gemstone or diamond that reflects your individuality.

Most importantly, fine jewellery purchases are often associated with deep emotional significance.  These could be weddings, anniversaries, memorable parties and events, award ceremonies, promotions, or gifts to and from loved ones. When purchasing such a precious and significant memento, you do not want to leave anything to chance. Therefore, finding a trusted jeweller who will enhance the experience and add to the fond memories associated with the piece becomes all the more important.

Here are some questions you should be asking when establishing trust with your jeweller.

1)  Is the jeweller interested in you and what you want?

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A good and experienced jeweller would know that the most important factor is to understand you and what you desire. It’s not about selling what they have to you, but ensuring you are able to purchase what works best for you.

They should be willing to lend an ear, ask the right questions to help you navigate through your thoughts, clear up confusions, and guide you with sufficient options towards reaching your final decision comfortably.

2) Does your jeweller have a good track record and background?

Personal references, testimonials from past customers, repeat customers, years in business and general reputation are some measures if not all to check on whether your jeweller has good standing. Team members with a formal training in the subject area related to jewellery design, manufacturing, and gems would also make you feel more assured that you are working with a competent jeweller who knows their subject well and is therefore credible.

3) Does the jeweller offer a complete, end-to-end, range of services?

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You do not want to have to go to a doctor who sends you to a multitude of places for check-ups, tests, and medications. Similarly, you would want a jeweler who can provide you with all your needed services professionally and competently as part of a single package.

Purchasing jewellery may require the acquisition of gems, resizing, resetting, designing, customising, polishing, cleaning and repairing. Your jeweler should have the resources to provide you with such basic services.

 4) Diamond certification and appraisal?

Don’t just take your jeweler’s word for it: Ask for a third-party diamond certificate from a respected independent gem lab, such as the Gemological Institute of America (G.I.A.), International Gemological Institute (I.G.I.) etc.

The certification proves the stone is natural and describes any treatments done to it. It also documents the colour, carat and quality of the diamond.

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5) All in all, can you trust the jeweller?

Whether it is through referrals or background checks, the best way to determine whether your jeweller is trustworthy or not is to experience a round of interaction with them for yourself. Arrange an appointment with them, ask them the questions on your mind and make sure you find the engagement meaningful and honest.

About Mahika:

Mahika, has been in the diamond jewellery business for a decade and is a trusted brand amongst serious jewellery collectors who annually set aside a percentage of their earnings towards the purchase of exquisite and customised fine jewellery. Working with such customers ensures that Mahika has advanced expertise in their trade and craft and is therefore able to meet the expectations to service such an exclusive clientele.

At Mahika, both Meera and Gopal are known to spend a good amount of time in understanding their customers first, before embarking on  the process of helping them identify the perfect piece for them. It’s an added bonus that conversations with them are fun yet warm.

 

Customising your wedding bands

For most couples, wedding bands and engagement rings are the most precious and treasured keepsakes they will ever own. One can choose to simply pick one off the shelf or put in a little heart and mind to customise the bands that represent their unique love affair.

Here are 3 reasons why many of Mahika’s customers pick the second option:

  1. They do not wish to compromise on even the tiniest detail
    You may have seen a band in a store that caught your eye. You try it on and it looks great. However there is something about it that you would have liked different. Maybe a different kind of setting, maybe a better grade diamond, or maybe a simple tweak in design that would have been your own unique signature.By customising your bands, you get to determine every aspect of them.pair-1-white
  2. It allows for bonding between the couple
    Everyone knows that planning a wedding can be tiring and stressful. The venue, package selection, make up trials, timelines, guest lists , family, friends and a million other things. Much of this is to ensure a great experience for your loved once.The bands however are simply about the both of you. It’s fun to brainstorm with your bride or groom to conceptualize and design that perfect band that truly represents and is unique to the two of you without having to compromise. In the process you get to understand each other’s style, preferences, creative talents and personalities a little better.pair-2-white
  3. It does not have to burst your budget.
    It’s a common myth that customized rings will cost a lot more than picking one off the shelf. Given the right advice and guidance by your jeweller on how to strike the right balance between the design, choice of diamonds and quality, it is always possible to work something to your delight within your budget.

Contact us today for a free consultation.

Taking care of your diamond jewellery

We invest so much time in deciding the jewellery that suits our personality and that we will hand down as heirloom to the children of our family…however, how many of us have given thought to taking care of those pieces in order to make them more durable and allow the luster to be there centuries later?

Taking care of the jewellery that we own is one of the best ways to ensure that the settings of the diamonds stay intact and they do not loose their luster.

A few ways to put thought into action:

Always remember to take off your jewellery when doing any rough work: cleaning, gardening, housekeeping, exercising etc.

Two reasons for this:

1.       The surface of your metal will get knocked against other surfaces and get worn out, i.e. scratches will appear and the polish will wear out.

2.       The chemicals in the products used for housekeeping, gardening etc are harmful for the gold/platinum and might discolour the metal.

Diamonds scratch diamonds, so do not put two diamond jewellery pieces together. Even if it is a pair of earrings, store them separately in separate zip lock bags/pouches. This will keep your diamonds intact and the gold/platinum on your jewellery will not get scratched.

Tips to clean and maintain your precious jewellery:

  • Once a year, it is important to take your jewellery to your jeweller for him to check the settings of your diamonds and the polish of the metal. In the case of any loose settings or a lot of scratches on the metal, it should be fixed at the earliest.
  • We should clean our jewellery regularly as lotions, creams, skin oils etc tend to make diamonds look dull.
  • If cleaning at home, clean diamond jewellery by using a soft brush dipped in warm water and mild detergent. Take care not to use hard or sharp objects to remove oil or dirt.

I hope we have been able to give you a little insight into maintaining your diamond jewellery and keeping it sparkly all the time.

Kindly do not hesitate to get in touch with us at info@mahika.biz for any queries on cleaning your jewellery.