Ashford & Grace Fine Jewelry

Website FAQ

Diamonds

1 What are the 4Cs?

Answer:
The  4Cs are the unique characteristics which determine the rarity of each diamond. They are cut, color, clarity, and carat. Using this criterion, a smaller diamond of higher quality will be likely more valuable than a larger diamond of lower quality.

2 What is cut?

Answer:

The cut is what gives a diamond its sparkle.  Every diamond is precisely cut and defined to give the brilliance that we have all come to know.  Although it is difficult to scale, the cut of any diamond has three attributes: brilliance (the total light reflected from a diamond), fire (the dispersion of light into the colors of the spectrum), and scintillation (the flashes of light, or sparkle, when a diamond is moved). Furthermore, an understanding of diamond cut begins with the shape of a diamond. The standard round brilliant is the shape used in most diamond jewelry. All others are known as fancy shapes. Traditional fancy shapes include the marquise, pear, oval and emerald cuts. Hearts, cushions, triangles and a variety of others are also gaining popularity in diamond jewelry. In 2005, GIA unveiled a diamond cut scale, which is used to scale the cut of a diamond. Source: www.gia.edu

Typical Diamond Cuts:


3 What is color?

Answer:

The color of the diamond is also a determining factor in the value of the diamond. Most diamonds rare from colorless to shades of light yellow and brown. The greater the colorlessness of the diamond is the greater the value. However, fancy-colored diamonds such as blues, pinks, and others are excluded from this color scale.
Source: www.gia.edu

4 What is clarity?

Answer:

Diamond clarity refers to the absence of inclusions (internal) or blemishes (external) in a diamond. These markings occur during the formation of the diamond in the Earth. The value of the diamond increases as the amount of blemishes and inclusions lessen. No diamond is completely flawless when looked under 10x magnification, and those that approach flawless are exceeding rare.
Source: www.gia.edu

5 What is carat?

Answer:

A carat is the standard unit of weight used for all diamonds and gemstones. One carat is equal to 0.2 grams. Furthermore, a carat is divided into a hundred points. For example, 50-point diamond weights 0.5 carats. Larger diamonds are described as using decimal places (e.g. 1.08 carats). Seemingly small differences in the carat weight of a diamond can have a great impact on the cost. Therefore, jewelers will often measure down to the hundred thousandth of a carat then round to the nearest hundredth of a carat. (N.B Carat and Karat are two very different things. The former is for stones while the latter measures gold purity.)
Source: www.gia.edu

6 How does one clean a diamond?

Answer:

Yes, diamonds need to be cleaned. Anything that cuts through grease can be used to clean the oil and dirt of a diamond.  Commercial cleaners however are recommended to clean your stone. It is important to note that all stones are cleaned in different ways, so contact one of our jewelers for assistance.

7 What is a clarity-enhanced stone?

Answer:

A clarity-enhanced stone is a diamond which has had its visual appeal improved through a technique known as feather or fracture filling. This process is not considered permanent and may need to be repeated. By law, it must be disclosed before sale whether or not this has been done to the stone.

8 Where is the best place to buy or sell a diamond?

Answer:

The best place to sell or buy a diamond is from a professional jeweler.  These stones will be authentic, and you will receive the best price for your stone from professionals. Beware of buying diamonds online and from questionable sources because they may be not be diamonds. If they are not diamonds, it is likely that you will be unable to return them and receive a refund.

9 What is Rapaport?

Answer:

Rapaport is widely considered to be the industry standard for information on the jeweler trade. The company distributes relevant information to its clients considering the trade of diamonds and other jewelry markets. It’s price list is the go-to source for diamond pricing and other market information. It also runs the world’s largest trading network of diamonds. http://www.diamonds.net/

10 What is a GIA report?

Answer:

A GIA report is an official report issued by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), the most trusted name in the gem buying industry. These reports are considered the standard in determining the value of a diamond or any precious stone.  The report contains information on the 4Cs of the diamond and any other relevant information to help determine its value.  All the information is gathered independently by the GIA to ensure accuracy. http://www.gia.edu

11 What is Cubic Zirconia?

Answer:

Cubic Zirconia is a synthetically created stone that appears to be similar to a diamond. To the naked eye, it will appear to be diamond. It is often used as a cheaper alternative to diamonds in jewelry. However, when they are tested or seen by a trained eye, the difference is clear. Moreover, there have been cases of questionable vendors selling CZ as real diamonds. Always buy your diamonds from a reputed source. All our diamonds have been tested thoroughly, and some have GIA reports to confirm the authenticity

12 What is Moissanite?

Answer:

Moissanite is the more recently developed competitor of Cubic Zirconia. The optical properties in particular allow it to be mistaken for a real diamond. However, like CZ, they are less valuable, and one can have their stone tested to verify its authenticity as a diamond. All our stones are extensively tested, so you buy what you paid for. You do not want to pay for a diamond and receive a cheaper alternative.