At Diamond Design

Understanding the 4cs to Find Your Perfect Diamond

Without getting too technical, a ‘Cut’ grading refers to the proportions of a diamond and the physics of light refraction. A diamond’s cut dramatically affects its brilliance and fire, and it is the primary criteria we use for hand-selecting diamonds.

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“Diamonds have personalities that can’t be measured in grades.”

At Diamond Design, we’re devoted to beautiful diamonds and we love sharing our expertise.

Finding the right ring in the right price range can be challenging. And since diamonds with the same 4Cs (Cut, Carat, Clarity and Cut) can vary in price, the 4Cs alone may not offer as much guidance as you’d expect.


The 5th C – Context

To start, the 4Cs are an important tool, but let’s be clear: using the 4Cs as the sole determinant of value would simply be incorrect. To illustrate our point, diamonds with the same grading criteria can vary in price by as much as 30%.

Before we discuss the well known 4Cs we need to consider a 5th C, which is context. Think of it this way – if you compared four people, all with the same height, eye colour, weight and hair length, on paper they’d be the same. But in person, they’d be quite different.

It’s the same with diamonds – they all have their own unique personalities and a gem lab certificate will not tell you the whole story.

That’s why seeing a ring in person, under correct lighting, is so critical. Nothing is more important than one-on-one time with diamonds to make the right decision.

We never purchase diamonds online or sight-unseen, because we believe you can’t judge a diamond’s personality from its 4Cs rating alone. All of our diamonds are hand-chosen, and they are all stunning. Our Design Consultants will help you find the diamond that is just right for you.

The Role of a Well Informed Diamond Consultant

We appreciate how important this purchase is. This is a lifetime purchase, and we are happy to help you understand your choices to ensure you get your investment right the first time.

To start, your Design Consultant will illustrate why diamonds which are graded the same on paper may actually be different in person – maybe they have different diameters, for example, or one is appreciably brighter or less clear.

Nothing can replace speaking directly with an expert and seeing your choices laid out. Our Design Consultants are extremely knowledgeable diamond and ring experts, but they’re more than that. Their primary focus is learning about you, and finding a ring that suits your personality, lifestyle and budget.

Your first meeting with one us is always simply a consultation. They’ll educate you, help you navigate your options, be your partner, and add value to your ring shopping experience.

Learn more about the process of working with a Design Consultant here.

“A Gem Lab report won’t tell you whether you’ll love your diamond – you have to see it in person to know that.”

The Most Important C – Cut

Without getting too technical, a ‘Cut’ grading refers to the proportions of a diamond and the physics of light refraction. A diamond’s cut dramatically affects its brilliance and fire.

How light tracks through a diamond is extremely important to its personality. Unfortunately, diamonds cut with an eye to ‘yield’ often have poor proportions and are therefore much less pretty.

Interestingly enough, a poor cut does not alter the colour or clarity grading of a diamond, so one needs to be very aware of what they’re purchasing.

Get Clear on Clarity

Clarity is a great example of why context is important when looking at a ring. Clarity measures how significant the internal ‘characteristics’ of a diamond are. Most characteristics are microscopic, but when they are visible to the naked eye the diamond can be less than appealing.

The opposite can also be true – when characteristics are insignificant and located to the side of a diamond, they may have little or no affect at all on a diamond’s presentation and attractiveness. This is a key way to stretch your diamond budget – but you need to see the diamond in real life to appreciate how clarity affects its beauty.

Clarity grading criteria is so often misunderstood – having us provide context here can be very helpful.

Carat – Weight vs. Size

Carat is a method of weight for gem stones – nothing more. Carat weight does not speak to the brilliance of a diamond, nor does it mean that all 1-carat diamonds will look the same or have the same diameter.

In fact two diamonds, both weighing one carat, will measure differently if one of them is cut more deeply.

This means you could purchase a 1.00 carat diamond that has the diameter of a 0.80 carat diamond, having a significant impact on sparkle.

Like they say – you get what you pay for, and that’s why it can be so helpful to let us guide you through this process.

Nothing can replace seeing a diamond in person. Diamonds can look great on paper or in pictures, but may not live up to expectations in reality. All professional diamond buyers insist on seeing a diamond in person before purchasing.

All the diamonds in our store are hand-chosen, and we travel throughout the year to international brokers to find them.

We appreciate how significant and symbolic this purchase is. That’s why we take extra time to educate you on all the features to consider when purchasing your diamond.

Let us help you navigate the world of diamonds and bring context to your purchase to ensure you get exactly what you want.

More Questions?

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Or call the store directly at (709) 754-9497

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