Buying a piece of jewellery with a diamond in it can be a confusing business with prices varying massively. The main thing you should be aware of is where your diamond has come from. The Kimberley Process is an international government-led certification process that guarantees diamonds have not been used to fund armed conflict. Unfortunately the Kimberley Process doesn’t certify environmental and social standards and has recently been weakend by its acceptance of Zimbabwe as conflict free. I will always do my best to supply Conflict Free Fair Trade Diamonds but at the very least, they will have come from a supplier that supports the Kimberley Process
As far as how you diamond looks, hopefully the information on the "Fours C's" below will ease a little of that confusion.
The cut of a diamond determines how it reflects light, this is responsible for its sparkle or brilliance and refers to the angles and proportions of the polished stone. A well-cut diamond is cut by a skilled professional to the best proportions possible so that light will be reflected from each of its facets and disperse through its top.
Because a diamond with perfect colour and clarity could nevertheless have poor brilliance if it is not well cut, many gemologists consider this to be the most important property to note when choosing a diamond. Diamonds can carry cut grades of Excellent, Ideal, Very Good, Good, or Fair.
Diamonds are measured in weight, not size. The heavier the diamond, the greater the carat weight. As diamonds increase in size, their cost tends to increase exponentially, meaning a one-carat diamond can cost significantly more than a half carat diamond of equal quality. The weight of a diamond less than one carat in size may also be described in "points". There are 100 "points" in 1 carat.
While many diamonds appear to be colourless, or white, they may actually have subtle yellow or brown tones that can be detected when comparing diamonds side by side. Colourless diamonds are the rarest and most valuable of all.
These variations are a result of the natural forces (i.e., temperature, pressure, trace elements) at work during the formation of diamonds within the Earth. Because subtle colour variations dramatically affect the value of a diamond, a colour grading scale is used to categorize the shading differences from one diamond to the next.
Diamonds are graded according to the GIA (Gemological Institute of America) colour chart.
This is an indication of a diamond's purity. Clarity is determined by a diamond's naturally occurring internal characteristics. These characteristics are sometimes not visible to the naked eye and they are what make each diamond unique. The characteristics, or inclusions, may look like crystals, feathers, clouds or dark spots and the quantity, size, and location of these inclusions has an affect on a diamond's value. Diamonds with fewer and smaller inclusions are generally more expensive.
All of the diamonds that I use will be of the highest quality available within each individual budget which is why I always like to quote separately for each client. Obviously, everyone wants their diamond to be at the top of all those confusing charts, but if budget is an issue, then sometimes, a slightly smaller or lower grade of diamond can be the answer.
I hope I haven't confused you too much!