Diamond and Jewelry News and Information

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Saturday, January 30, 2010

Determining Best Value Diamonds

Diamonds are very expensive, which is why anyone who buys a diamond wants to make sure they are getting best value diamonds for the money they spend. When you buy a diamond from a jeweler, whether it is a retail location or a wholesaler, it should be accompanied by a certificate of authenticity.

There are many ways in which diamonds are analyzed to determine whether they are conflict or non-conflict diamonds. Conflict diamonds come from parts of the world where the sale of the diamonds is used to finance wars and acts of terrorism.

Such diamonds are not permitted to be imported into the US, Canada, and European countries. To make sure that such stones are best value diamonds in this regard, there is a process called the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme.

The stones at GIA diamond rings have been analyzed and assessed by GIA, which is the world’s largest non-profit gemological research institute. This institute grades only loose diamonds and when you are satisfied that you have a best value diamond, then you can choose the setting for the ring.

The Kimberley Process Certification Scheme is not an appraisal of the value of the diamond, as you find with GIA diamond rings and GIA appraisals. Instead it is a certificate attesting to the fact that the diamond you purchase has not been mined or bought from one of the countries on the list of those associated with blood diamonds.

This process lays down a minimum requirement for the shipping of diamonds all over the world and must accompany diamonds shipped into the country, especially from African countries. In this way, you know that you have best value diamonds in that no one has been harmed in the mining process and that the money from the sale will not be used for killing.

Appraisal of the diamonds is the best way to find if you have best value diamonds. GIA diamond rings and IGI appraisals look at four main features of the diamonds in order to assess its value. This is called the four C’s of diamond rating and each stone is assigned a letter grade according to the system.

The GIA actually instituted this system of rating that is now used internationally. The report you receive is very thorough and covers just about everything you want to know about the diamond you have purchased or are considering purchasing.

The four C’s of best value diamonds refer to the cut, clarity, carat and color of the diamond. Just because a diamond is white and shiny does not mean that it is of good quality because there may be imperfections in the stone that only a certified gemologist can discover.

Many people look at the carat of the diamond, which is its weight, but the other features are just as important. There are five main cuts of diamonds, for example, and if the cutter is a master at the trade, then cuts will be done to perfection. A poorly cut 2-carat diamond may not be as good a value for the money as a smaller size with a perfect cut.

The closer a diamond is to having no color whatsoever, the greater its value. Diamonds that are pale yellow in color are not the best value diamonds to buy because these have a lower rating on the scale. The most highly rated diamonds are those with the letter grades of D, E and F. However, there are also fancy diamonds which are very valuable showing colors of pink, green, blue and bright yellow. These are very rare and are therefore very expensive.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Buying GIA Diamond Rings Online

You can get a better deal on diamonds when you shop online for the best value diamonds. Online retailers do have GIA diamond rings that come with an appraisal report from the Gemological Institute of America attesting to the authenticity of the diamond and its value. Although there is a wide selection of such rings at a regular jewelry store where you can look at the ring and the diamond as well as try it on, you have the advantage of much larger choice of exotic rings and colored diamonds when you shop online.

In order to shop for GIA diamond rings online, you do need to have a basic understanding of the four C’s of diamonds in order to understand the descriptions that accompany the rings and loose diamonds. There are also online sites where you can purchase loose diamonds and those that have GIA appraisals. These certifications also adhere to international standards for diamond appraisal and grading and are accepted all over the world.

The four C’s are the standards used in grading the diamonds used in GIA diamond rings and refer to the cut, color, clarity and carat of the stone. The online retailers will have this information listed with the picture of the diamond. The carat of a diamond is its weight and even the tiniest gem has a carat.
There are various diamond cuts of GIA diamond rings, which depend to a large extent on the shape of the rough diamond.

Eight-sided rough diamonds are usually cut into round diamonds in which the table has the shape of an octagon. In grading and appraising each cut, there are certain characteristics that the gemologists will look for. A Marquis cut, for example, has 58 facets. A round cut also has 58 facets – 33 on the crown and 25 on the pavilion. In an ideal cut, there is no facet on the cutlet, reducing the number to 57. The appraisal of GIA diamond rings follows the American Standard of diamond cuts.

In this standard there are certain percentages and angles for each aspect of the diamond. The gemologists use a perfectly cut diamond as their comparison sample and through the use of precise instruments they arrive at an appraisal. In general four gemologists appraise one diamond at different times. This ensures that your diamond rings or jewellery has gone through a complete study by an independent process.

Your name is not connected to the diamond in any way throughout the process and it is known to the gemologists only by a number. The only part of the process on which the gemologists may differ is in determining the color of the diamond. Contrary to what the majority of people believe, all diamonds are not clear and most do have a trace of yellow in the color. When determining the color, powerful microscopes are used and the gemologists have to come to a consensus about the color.

On the appraisal report of GIA diamond rings, the color grade is shown as a letter. D is the highest grade, so receiving a report with this letter does not mean that the diamond has a reduced value. It is exactly the opposite. D means that it is virtually colorless. Diamonds that have large traces of yellow in them have the grade of between T and X, even though you will not be able to detect this coloring without the use of a high-powered microscope. The letters Y to Z are reserved for fancy diamonds, which do come in various colors and because of this they are quite expensive.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

More on diamond appraisals

The report on GIA diamond rings or IGI appraisals also gives details on the cut of the stone and its shape. The weight, which is the carat, of the diamond will be listed along with its precise measurements. Diagrams of the diamond in the report will show the angles of the stone that were measured.

In addition, gemologists look at the clarity of the diamond, which tells how well the diamond catches the light and reflects, refracts and disperses it. This part of the report basically refers to the sparkle and shine of the stone as it sits in the setting of the ring.

GIA grading reports on diamonds have earned international recognition so that if you have a diamond that you want to sell, the buyer will receive all the information attesting to the quality and authenticity of the stone. These reports are praised for the incredible amount of accuracy they contain about the appraised diamond.
If your GIA diamond ring contains a diamond between 0.15 and 1.99 carats, you will receive a Diamond Dossier. This gives you the same type of information about the stone as you would receive in a regular grading report, but it is presented in a more compact format. For security reasons, this dossier will also have the identification number of the certificate imprinted by laser.

Since buying diamonds and diamond jewelry results in a high price, you really do need to have an appraisal to accompany your GIA diamond rings or a non conflict diamond. For insurance purposes, you would need to have this document as proof of the cost of the diamonds in order to take out an insurance policy on them.

To have your diamonds appraised by the GIA you can contact them directly or bring your stones to any jeweler to have them sent to the GIA. If you inherit a diamond ring or buy one at an estate sale, you may want to know the estimated value of the ring. While the GIA can appraise the stone, you will need to have it taken out of its mounting in order to have the work carried out. The GIA can advise you of the best setting to choose for the ring.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

An Overview of GIA Diamond Rings Appraisal Reports

When you look at the diamond rings in the showcase at a jewelry store the salesperson will likely tell you that they are GIA diamond rings or the that stones are EGL loose diamonds. You smile and nod even though you haven’t a clue what all this means. GIA is an acronym for the Gemological Institute of America and EGL is an acronym for the European Gemological Society. Both are international institutes that appraise diamonds.

Even though a jeweler will tell you the rings you are looking at are GIA diamond rings, this means the diamond has been appraised by the GIA and not the complete ring. It is necessary to know that the stones have been appraised so that you know you are buying best value diamonds and that they are most likely have a money back guarantee. Diamonds sold with such a guarantee are worth what the jeweler is charging for them.

When you send diamonds to the GIA for appraisal, you will receive a comprehensive report on the analysis. The color will be assessed and assigned a letter grade ranging from D to Z, with D being pure white diamonds.

You can have GIA diamond rings with a slight tint in the diamond, which may bring down the price, but does not take anything away from the beauty of the stone. In order to see the differences in color from white to faint yellow, you would have to use the same precise lighting methods that are used in the laboratory setting.