Three Stone Round Diamond Ring Settings in Clearlake

5 Tips on What To Look For When Buying Diamonds For Wedding Rings

A wedding, or an engagement in  Clearlake, is one of the most important events in every couple’s life. One of the best ways of making the experience memorable is by choosing the right ring to symbolize the love you have for one another. While most couples would like to get the most beautiful ring they can lay their hands on, budgetary restrictions can be a challenge. However, it is possible to find an ideal ring based on your budget.

For anyone looking for precious diamonds for engagement rings and wedding rings in Clearlake, they should consider going about the process carefully. There are various dealers in the market, some of who may sell you fake diamonds. Here are a few useful tips on what to look for when looking for precious diamonds for engagement or wedding rings.

Consider the Diamond Cut

1. Any expert will tell you that the cut is the most important thing to consider when buying diamonds in Clearlake. The main reason behind this is that the cut usually influences the sparkle. A diamond may be clear and feature a high quality color grade, but if the cut is poor, it may still appear dull. The dealer you buy from should be able to cut your diamond in the proper proportions. If your budget can allow it, choose a diamond with the highest cut grade.

Diamond Color

2.  Contrary to common belief, lack of color in your diamonds denotes a higher color grade. Some people go for pale yellow diamond, without knowing that it is low quality. To avoid such an experience, ask the diamond dealer to give you grade H or higher. Near colorless diamond ranges from grade G to J, but it may be quite expensive.

Clarity Diamonds can also be chosen based on their clarity levels.

3. This is usually not a very important factor to consider, considering that the precious stones usually come with imperfections, known as inclusions. These tiny imperfections may not be easy to detect, and they may only be seen through a microscope. However, the fewer there are, the higher the clarity grade of your diamonds. If your budget can be stretched further, consider buying grade VS1 grade or higher.

Consider the Diamond’s Carat Weight

4.  Unlike common belief, carat does not mean the size of the diamond, but its actual weight. Carat and cut must be considered side by side, because no matter the size of the diamond, a poor cut grade can make your precious stones look smaller. Another important fact to keep in mind is that the more the weight of the diamond, the more you will pay for it. Therefore, you should consider going for a less heavy stone with a high grade cut.

Ask for Proof of Certification

5. There is nothing as unfortunate as buying diamonds for your special event only to realize that they are of poor quality, or that they were stolen. To avoid such an eventuality, always ask the dealer in Clearlake to show you the copy of diamond certification.

With these tips, you should be able to make the right choice when buying precious diamonds in Clearlake for you engagement or wedding.

diamond rings

Clearlake How to Buy a Diamond And The 4 Biggest Mistakes When Buying a Diamond

In an ideal world with unlimited budgets and an infinite supply of diamonds, everyone would have beautifully cut "D Flawless" diamonds. In the real world every diamond is unique. There are plenty of gorgeous diamonds to go around - you just need to know how to find one. Choosing a diamond is about balancing several factors to make the most of your budget. Each factor contributes to the beauty and prestige of your diamond. I will explain these factors so you will be prepared to make an informed decision about your diamond purchase.

FACTOR 1: CARAT WEIGHT

People often use the word Carat when discussing how big a diamond is, however "Carat" actually refers to the weight of a diamond. There is no rule as to what carat weight you should buy, but you'll doubtless have heard that "bigger is better." If you ask me, I think bigger is great but you shouldn't forget about the other aspects of a diamond's quality.

A useful tip: if you're looking at Certified Diamonds, you may find it valuable to compare the diameters of different diamonds. Since every diamond is individually cut, some may appear larger than others of the same weight.

FACTOR 2: SHAPE

Approximately 75% of diamonds sold worldwide are Round Brilliants. Rounds diamonds are the most popular, most brilliant, and most expensive. If you are purchasing a diamond as a surprise, Round Brilliant is generally your safest bet.

There is no real hierarchy of shapes being better or worse - it is truly a matter of personal preference. Princess Cuts are the second most popular, and a classic alternative to round diamonds. Cushion Cuts are trendy and have a beautiful vintage look. If you want something different but not too crazy, try an Oval Cut, Asscher Cut, or Radiant Cut diamond.

While no shape is better, there are some significant differences between shapes. Take for example, the radiant cut vs the emerald cut. Though they are a similar shape, the extra facets of the radiant cut give it additional fire and sparkle. If you prefer the emerald cut's understated elegance, consider that it's easier to spot any imperfections and select a higher clarity grade.

Another tip: Diamonds (even round diamonds) may not be perfectly symmetrical. It's nothing to worry about if your diamond's width does not precisely match its height, but if your diamond is much longer than it is wide it may not be what you're expecting. This is especially the case in shapes like Cushion and Oval, where a more asymmetrical diamond might look "skinny", with much of the fire and brilliance concentrated at the ends.

FACTOR 3: CUT

"Cut" refers to a diamond's finish and proportions, and is critical in determining its beauty. Getting the angles right ensures a beautiful diamond that's full of life. In many cases it can be more difficult to spot flaws in a fiery, brilliant diamond. Cut is generally graded in five categories: Poor, Fair, Good, Very Good, and Excellent. Excellent is the highest graded awarded by GIA (whereas other labs may use terms like "ideal" or numbers like "0"). If you want to play safe, stick to "Very Good" and "Excellent" cuts when you choose your diamond.

FACTOR 4: CLARITY

Almost all diamonds have naturally¬ occurring features called "inclusions." Inclusions form as the diamond crystallizes deep underground, and they are unique to each diamond. They take many different forms, and can help you identify a diamond as your own. However, large and prominent inclusions can detract from the beauty of a diamond.

There are many different types of inclusions, and not all are created equal. If your diamond certificate has an "inclusion map," check where the inclusions are. Try to find a diamond with inclusions near the edge where they will be masked by sparkle or hidden by the setting of your diamond. If your budget is limited, I recommend buying "SI" clarity or better. "SI" stands for "Slightly Included." With close inspection you can usually spot the inclusions in an SI¬ graded diamond, but these inclusions will most likely not be visible once your diamond is set in jewellery. If you want to be sure your diamond will look "eye clean", even up close, I recommend selecting a VS2 clarity diamond or better. "VS" stands for "Very Slight Inclusion," and imperfections in VS clarity stones are rarely seen by the naked eye.

FACTOR 5: COLOUR

The term "colour" usually refers to how much warm tint is in a diamond. The scale ranges from D (colorless) to Z (very strongly tinted yellow or brown). Pure white diamonds are considered more desirable, and are more expensive. Warmer¬-hued diamonds (such as K, L, and M) are not necessarily less attractive, but they are significantly less valuable.

Conventional wisdom is to select J colour or better. Personally, I love G and H colour diamonds ¬- they hit the "sweet spot" where most people will not notice colour in the diamond unless they're doing a direct comparison. However, an I or J colour diamond that is well cut and has a lot of life can give you a beautiful diamond at a bargain price.

Depending on how they are cut, different diamonds will display colour differently. This is why colour grades are assigned by looking at a diamond upside¬down. Generally, more¬ brilliant diamonds show their colour less than less brilliant diamonds.

FACTOR 6: FLUORESCENCE

Fluorescence has a bad rep, and most of it is unfair. Diamond Fluorescence refers to how a diamond responds when subjected to ultra¬violet light. Fluorescent diamonds can glow any one of several colours, but the most common is blue. In rare cases fluorescence can cause your diamond to have a milky appearance when viewed in direct daylight. This is most often the case with strong or very strong fluorescence and D/E/F colour diamonds.

However, there are many, many more cases where blue fluorescence is a positive thing. Imagine you were shining a blue light on a yellow diamond... the blue tint can make your diamond look whiter. If your diamond falls in the "near colourless," "lightly tinted," or "tinted" range I recommend looking for medium blue or faint blue fluorescence.

Warning: Green, red, and yellow fluorescence are rare, and they will not have the same benefit. If you are interested in a diamond that has strong blue, very strong blue, green, red, or yellow fluorescence, I recommend asking your salesperson to show you your diamond outside in natural daylight. If you're buying online, contact the seller prior to making your purchase so they can examine the diamond first in natural daylight.

FACTOR 7: GRADER

This should always be your first question: Says who? Every diamond grading laboratory has different standards, so comparing diamonds graded by different sources is extremely unreliable. One grader might grade a diamond K SI2, and another might call that same diamond F VS2. I know that sounds crazy, but I see it happen all the time.

The most reputable and consistent grading laboratories are GIA, AGS, IGI, and HRD. GIA is considered the global standard worldwide. AGS is a popular alternative in the U.S.A. while IGI and HRD are more common in Europe.

EGL is tricky because there are EGL labs all over the world, and some of them do a great job while others can be less reliable. We strongly recommend caution when buying an EGL certified diamond unless it's from EGL-¬USA.

Many diamonds are assigned grades by valuation companies and in-¬house graders. If your diamond does not come with a report from a major laboratory, you should always ask where the grader trained. He or she should be certified by a major grading laboratory: GIA, AGS, IGI, or HRD. Be smart and be cautious about reports done by uncertified shop owners, salespeople, or valuation companies.

SELECTING YOUR DIAMOND

You can choose to purchase your diamond online, or from a retail store. If you prefer to purchase your diamond in a retail store, avoid the big chains and shop with smaller independent jewellers. Many independent jewellers are actually significantly less expensive than their large competitors. (You don't have to take my word for it - shop around and you'll quickly learn that this is true). This way you'll buy a better quality diamond and - if you wish - you'll have the opportunity to design your own hand-made engagement ring setting.

If you choose to shop online, I would recommend comparing prices and service across several websites. Be sure that the company ships from your country - otherwise you'll be hit with expensive duty and GST. Always make sure you call or e-mail customer service and have them hand-inspect your diamond before you complete your purchase. Sometimes a diamond may seem like a great deal, but it could have an unfortunate inclusion, asymmetrical cut, or be negatively impacted by fluoresence. And above all, make sure you have an easy and affordable way to return the diamond if it doesn't turn out as you'd hoped. Online shopping is the best way to get a great deal on a diamond for your engagement ring, diamond studs, or pendant - just review this article, be reasonably cautious, and have fun.

affordable engagement rings

Fake Or Actual Ruby And Is This Right For You

Clearlake

Just how are ruby cut qualities designated?

This is where things start to obtain made complex. The techniques used to quantitatively evaluate the high quality of a cut vary. The means the GIA establishes exactly what a ruby's cut grade ought to be, for instance, differs in very particular ways from the way various other certifiers like the AGS do it. For the most parts, these companies don't divulge the specific information of the processes they use.

The shape of a ruby also makes a difference with respect to just how its cut grade is identified. Although there are some fundamental standards that stay the exact same for any type of sort of diamond, the exact approaches made use of to grade a round diamond's cut are various from those made use of to quality a heart-shaped diamond's cut.

The remainder of this explanation will focus on round diamonds, as this is by far the most usual ruby shape. Among the factors affecting the cut grade of a round diamond is the variety of elements it has. Elements are the level, defined locations on the surface of a ruby. The aspects on round diamonds are normally triangular. Presently, it's thought that the ideal round ruby ought to have 33 elements on the crown (the section of the diamond that rests above the girdle, which itself is the best point of the ruby) as well as 25 on the pavilion (the reduced, longer area of the diamond). When there are imperfections on the surface of the ruby, cutters could add additional aspects in order to cover them. This causes a degradation in the general top quality of the cut.

While the facet matter is typically set as a good method of evaluating the top quality of a diamond cut, there are various other points on which gemologists frequently disagree. Several of the various other aspects utilized by some authorities to help identify cut grades include the elevation of the diamond's crown, the deepness of the pavilion, the diameter of the table (the top of the crown), as well as the angles of the crown and structure.

The American Criterion standard for round rubies asks for a crown elevation of 16.2%, structure depth of 43.1%, and also table diameter of 53% of the complete band size. The Suitable Fantastic benchmark, however, asks for 19.2% crown height, 40% pavilion deepness, and 56.5% table diameter. While these distinctions may be tough for beginners to determine, they are a good image of the difficulties associated with developing a straightforward evaluation of a ruby's cut.

Although there are some arguments regarding the precise percentages that comprise the ideal ruby cut, for possible diamond customers, the most essential point to recognize is that ruby qualifications offered by companies like the AGS and also GIA are reliable as well as significant. Credible diamond suppliers base the prices at which they acquire and also offer diamonds on the cut as well as the remainder of the "four Cs." When you acquire a diamond, you do not need to stress over the perception of just what makes a great ruby cut altering a lot that the value of your ruby will certainly be substantially affected.

Which ruby cut grade stands for the most effective value?

Which kind of ruby is best for you largely depends upon your budget plan. For purchasers who agree to acquire them, suppliers typically suggest rubies with the greatest possible cut grades. Nevertheless, this could result from some self-interest on their component.

The various other 3 Cs have an effect on ruby costs also, so it could be challenging to evaluate the specific distinction in rate between a Suitable or Excellent cut diamond and an Excellent cut. For casual buyers and also budget-conscious capitalists alike, diamonds with an Extremely Great or Good cut grade can stand for an exceptional value. This is because, while they could be much more budget friendly than or else equivalent Suitable or Exceptional cut diamonds, the noticeable distinction in high quality is marginal.

At the same time, don't hesitate to use your discretion. If, as an example, you find a ruby with a Suitable cut score which has great ratings in the various other classifications as well as is still within your budget plan, then you should certainly consider it, as long as you're handling a trustworthy supplier.

___________________________________________

Vintage Wedding Rings in Washington

Sapphire Rings in Clearlake

5 Tips on What To Look For When Buying Diamonds For Wedding Rings

A wedding, or an engagement in  Clearlake, is one of the most important events in every couple’s life. One of the best ways of making the experience memorable is by choosing the right ring to symbolize the love you have for one another. While most couples would like to get the most beautiful ring they can lay their hands on, budgetary restrictions can be a challenge. However, it is possible to find an ideal ring based on your budget.

For anyone looking for precious diamonds for engagement rings and wedding rings in Clearlake, they should consider going about the process carefully. There are various dealers in the market, some of who may sell you fake diamonds. Here are a few useful tips on what to look for when looking for precious diamonds for engagement or wedding rings.

Consider the Diamond Cut

1. Any expert will tell you that the cut is the most important thing to consider when buying diamonds in Clearlake. The main reason behind this is that the cut usually influences the sparkle. A diamond may be clear and feature a high quality color grade, but if the cut is poor, it may still appear dull. The dealer you buy from should be able to cut your diamond in the proper proportions. If your budget can allow it, choose a diamond with the highest cut grade.

Diamond Color

2.  Contrary to common belief, lack of color in your diamonds denotes a higher color grade. Some people go for pale yellow diamond, without knowing that it is low quality. To avoid such an experience, ask the diamond dealer to give you grade H or higher. Near colorless diamond ranges from grade G to J, but it may be quite expensive.

Clarity Diamonds can also be chosen based on their clarity levels.

3. This is usually not a very important factor to consider, considering that the precious stones usually come with imperfections, known as inclusions. These tiny imperfections may not be easy to detect, and they may only be seen through a microscope. However, the fewer there are, the higher the clarity grade of your diamonds. If your budget can be stretched further, consider buying grade VS1 grade or higher.

Consider the Diamond’s Carat Weight

4.  Unlike common belief, carat does not mean the size of the diamond, but its actual weight. Carat and cut must be considered side by side, because no matter the size of the diamond, a poor cut grade can make your precious stones look smaller. Another important fact to keep in mind is that the more the weight of the diamond, the more you will pay for it. Therefore, you should consider going for a less heavy stone with a high grade cut.

Ask for Proof of Certification

5. There is nothing as unfortunate as buying diamonds for your special event only to realize that they are of poor quality, or that they were stolen. To avoid such an eventuality, always ask the dealer in Clearlake to show you the copy of diamond certification.

With these tips, you should be able to make the right choice when buying precious diamonds in Clearlake for you engagement or wedding.

3 stone sapphire ring

Clearlake How to Buy a Diamond And The 4 Biggest Mistakes When Buying a Diamond

Diamonds are naturally readily available in a very vast array of colors. Many people find out about anemic diamonds and also GIA's shade grading system that is made use of to categorize a ruby's body shade ... you know D, E, F, etc. This shade grading system is only used to categorize the most usual ruby body shade of yellow however anytime a diamond is discovered in another color like pink, blue, green, etc.; after that this diamond is referred to as a "" fancy ruby"".

Natural Fancy diamonds can be really pricey and also often times a lot more pricey than a similar dimension colorless ruby. A great instance of a Fancy diamond is the notorious 45.52 carat elegant deep blue diamond, the Hope Ruby, which is on display in the Smithsonian Nature Museum in Washington, DC.

A color boosted diamond is a 100% natural ruby that has actually had its shade changed. As well as most importantly, shade boosted diamonds come in a very broad choice of shades at very budget friendly costs!

A little bit of history- For several, years it has been popular that a diamond's color could be "" improved"" by putting a little bit of colored substance externally of a diamond and also similar to magic ... a ruby that had an obvious yellow-colored color would certainly change to a more appealing near anemic ruby. Sadly, this kind of shade enhanced ruby could change back to its original body color if this colored material was unintentionally gotten rid of. In more current years, the innovation of color improved diamonds has actually gone incredibly high tech. It is now possible to totally transform the shade of a diamond! These processes are thought about permanent since it does stay stable when exposed to daily regular conditions. The color will not fade if subjected to sunshine or be cleaned off by harsh chemicals.

Exactly how is it done? The preferred end result of any of these treatments is to have a much more valuable ruby. A less marketable diamond would certainly be a ruby that has a reduced body color or often a reduced clarity. The shade improved ruby treatment business understand if they begin with a specific kind of diamond as well as procedure it for a certain quantity of time that they ought to end up with a particular shade yet it does not constantly function this way. This is a science that does need some art in their procedures ... the only procedure that gives constant results is the layer process.

The three processes are as adheres to- Process # 1- HPHT Shade Enhanced Diamonds- High Pressure/ High Temperature (HPHT) treatment can enhance the shade of specific kinds of brownish rubies as well as hence raise their value. General Electric has developed a procedure that pretty much is a mechanical simulation of a diamond's development in nature. The color boosted ruby will certainly be warmed up to a very high temperature under a really high, supported stress. Mistakes in the crystal framework are after that reorganized causing a modification of the diamond's color. Since the conditions of HPHT are really much like ruby's original formation, just a well equipped laboratory will have the ability to positively recognize this kind of color improved ruby. HPHT wased initially used to transform yellow-colored diamonds into even more marketable fancy tinted improved diamonds, now it is additionally utilized to transform some unpopular brown rubies into more desirable anemic tinted boosted diamonds.

Refine # 2- Irradiated Color Boosted Diamonds- OK ... do not start obtaining all excited because you saw words irradiated! This is a 100% risk-free process that is really similar to just what is used to preserve food by revealing it to a stream of Gamma rays. The shade improved diamond process is done in numerous different methods however the results are just the same. You start with a reduced color (P, Q, R, and so on) 100% natural diamond that has currently been cut as well as polished, then it is exposed to a stream of fast electrons. Throughout this part of the procedure the diamond will resort to a really dark color because several of the atoms in the diamond's crystal framework have actually currently been dislocated and this in turn has influenced the method light go through the diamond. Next the diamond undergoes a controlled home heating (annealing) procedure, this allows several of those atoms to transfer (partly repaired) in order to get a preferred shade.

Process # 3- Layered Shade Enhanced Diamonds- The finish on polished rubies refers to a thin synthetic layer that changes the color of the diamond. The layer can either be of the desired shade or can create a tinted interference-effect. However often this process is done to deceive a buyer. It is a fairly simple procedure to execute, it has actually been around for years (although the finishings materials are better currently), and also it does not require a great deal of pricey advanced tools. Just recently, I have actually seen some pink coated diamonds on the market, they are very eye-catching ... and also naturally you would certainly need to acquire them understanding that they have been covered and also follow your jeweler's standards concerning having and caring for these shade boosted rubies. The layer can be related to the entire of a diamond's surface area, simply the bottom of the diamond, or to a narrow area near the girdle. A well-applied finish can transform the color by one or more shade quality. Some coatings can be removed with steaming in acid, strong cleansing services, or perhaps household chemicals. Often dots or larger areas of purple or blue ink are paintinged on the ruby in order to help combat a yellowish shade. The ruby's setup will generally cover the dots, so they are tough to see in an installed rock.

So, is a color boosted diamond right for you? Perhaps ... natural elegant shade rubies can be stunning yet they are expensive! Color boosted rubies are cost effective and also allow lots of people to have a vibrantly colored diamond. Ask your local jeweler if they have any kind of Fancy rubies ... either natural or color boosted rubies. It is always intriguing, and also fun, to take a look at something different!

Under regular wear the irradiated and also HPHT shade enhanced diamonds will certainly have no troubles of the color fading away. The only factor to consider will certainly be when you have to have any kind of solution done on the item of precious jewelry. If this sort of shade boosted ruby is exposed to excessive quantities of heat it may impact the shade. The jewelry expert will require to understand that the diamond is a shade improved ruby before any kind of job is done and after that the jewelry expert will certainly be able to select the most effective strategy. Color boosted rubies are currently additionally made use of as the small accent diamonds around a larger colorless diamond. There are lots of amazing pieces of fashion jewelry offered with small blue, yellow, black, or environment-friendly shade boosted rubies.

Now that you find out about color enhanced diamonds and someone attempts to market you on what they call an all-natural expensive colored diamond yet it is at an extremely deal price ... you will understand that something just does not seem ideal concerning the deal. A record from a respected grading laboratory should come with all natural Fancy colored rubies that are marketed as natural. If you take care of a trusted firm and you have been comforted regarding exactly what you are purchasing, then you will certainly lessen the possibility of something bad happening to you. Just like any scenario involving a costly purchase of something that not many people are well versed in, education and learning needs to be a vital part of your strategy. This is a lot more essential if you intend to buy a shade boosted ruby. Bud Boland has actually remained in the jewelry organisation for 40 years and has done every little thing from watchmaking, diamond setting, fashion jewelry making, and has been a Jeweler for nearly 35 years. He is a Graduate Jeweler from GIA (Gemological Institute of America), which is also the location where he was an Instructor. He has taught about diamonds to thousands of students from all around the world

white gold diamond chain

Phony Or Actual Diamond And Also Is This Right For You

Clearlake

In an ideal world with unlimited budgets and an infinite supply of diamonds, everyone would have beautifully cut "D Flawless" diamonds. In the real world every diamond is unique. There are plenty of gorgeous diamonds to go around - you just need to know how to find one. Choosing a diamond is about balancing several factors to make the most of your budget. Each factor contributes to the beauty and prestige of your diamond. I will explain these factors so you will be prepared to make an informed decision about your diamond purchase.

FACTOR 1: CARAT WEIGHT

People often use the word Carat when discussing how big a diamond is, however "Carat" actually refers to the weight of a diamond. There is no rule as to what carat weight you should buy, but you'll doubtless have heard that "bigger is better." If you ask me, I think bigger is great but you shouldn't forget about the other aspects of a diamond's quality.

A useful tip: if you're looking at Certified Diamonds, you may find it valuable to compare the diameters of different diamonds. Since every diamond is individually cut, some may appear larger than others of the same weight.

FACTOR 2: SHAPE

Approximately 75% of diamonds sold worldwide are Round Brilliants. Rounds diamonds are the most popular, most brilliant, and most expensive. If you are purchasing a diamond as a surprise, Round Brilliant is generally your safest bet.

There is no real hierarchy of shapes being better or worse - it is truly a matter of personal preference. Princess Cuts are the second most popular, and a classic alternative to round diamonds. Cushion Cuts are trendy and have a beautiful vintage look. If you want something different but not too crazy, try an Oval Cut, Asscher Cut, or Radiant Cut diamond.

While no shape is better, there are some significant differences between shapes. Take for example, the radiant cut vs the emerald cut. Though they are a similar shape, the extra facets of the radiant cut give it additional fire and sparkle. If you prefer the emerald cut's understated elegance, consider that it's easier to spot any imperfections and select a higher clarity grade.

Another tip: Diamonds (even round diamonds) may not be perfectly symmetrical. It's nothing to worry about if your diamond's width does not precisely match its height, but if your diamond is much longer than it is wide it may not be what you're expecting. This is especially the case in shapes like Cushion and Oval, where a more asymmetrical diamond might look "skinny", with much of the fire and brilliance concentrated at the ends.

FACTOR 3: CUT

"Cut" refers to a diamond's finish and proportions, and is critical in determining its beauty. Getting the angles right ensures a beautiful diamond that's full of life. In many cases it can be more difficult to spot flaws in a fiery, brilliant diamond. Cut is generally graded in five categories: Poor, Fair, Good, Very Good, and Excellent. Excellent is the highest graded awarded by GIA (whereas other labs may use terms like "ideal" or numbers like "0"). If you want to play safe, stick to "Very Good" and "Excellent" cuts when you choose your diamond.

FACTOR 4: CLARITY

Almost all diamonds have naturally¬ occurring features called "inclusions." Inclusions form as the diamond crystallizes deep underground, and they are unique to each diamond. They take many different forms, and can help you identify a diamond as your own. However, large and prominent inclusions can detract from the beauty of a diamond.

There are many different types of inclusions, and not all are created equal. If your diamond certificate has an "inclusion map," check where the inclusions are. Try to find a diamond with inclusions near the edge where they will be masked by sparkle or hidden by the setting of your diamond. If your budget is limited, I recommend buying "SI" clarity or better. "SI" stands for "Slightly Included." With close inspection you can usually spot the inclusions in an SI¬ graded diamond, but these inclusions will most likely not be visible once your diamond is set in jewellery. If you want to be sure your diamond will look "eye clean", even up close, I recommend selecting a VS2 clarity diamond or better. "VS" stands for "Very Slight Inclusion," and imperfections in VS clarity stones are rarely seen by the naked eye.

FACTOR 5: COLOUR

The term "colour" usually refers to how much warm tint is in a diamond. The scale ranges from D (colorless) to Z (very strongly tinted yellow or brown). Pure white diamonds are considered more desirable, and are more expensive. Warmer¬-hued diamonds (such as K, L, and M) are not necessarily less attractive, but they are significantly less valuable.

Conventional wisdom is to select J colour or better. Personally, I love G and H colour diamonds ¬- they hit the "sweet spot" where most people will not notice colour in the diamond unless they're doing a direct comparison. However, an I or J colour diamond that is well cut and has a lot of life can give you a beautiful diamond at a bargain price.

Depending on how they are cut, different diamonds will display colour differently. This is why colour grades are assigned by looking at a diamond upside¬down. Generally, more¬ brilliant diamonds show their colour less than less brilliant diamonds.

FACTOR 6: FLUORESCENCE

Fluorescence has a bad rep, and most of it is unfair. Diamond Fluorescence refers to how a diamond responds when subjected to ultra¬violet light. Fluorescent diamonds can glow any one of several colours, but the most common is blue. In rare cases fluorescence can cause your diamond to have a milky appearance when viewed in direct daylight. This is most often the case with strong or very strong fluorescence and D/E/F colour diamonds.

However, there are many, many more cases where blue fluorescence is a positive thing. Imagine you were shining a blue light on a yellow diamond... the blue tint can make your diamond look whiter. If your diamond falls in the "near colourless," "lightly tinted," or "tinted" range I recommend looking for medium blue or faint blue fluorescence.

Warning: Green, red, and yellow fluorescence are rare, and they will not have the same benefit. If you are interested in a diamond that has strong blue, very strong blue, green, red, or yellow fluorescence, I recommend asking your salesperson to show you your diamond outside in natural daylight. If you're buying online, contact the seller prior to making your purchase so they can examine the diamond first in natural daylight.

FACTOR 7: GRADER

This should always be your first question: Says who? Every diamond grading laboratory has different standards, so comparing diamonds graded by different sources is extremely unreliable. One grader might grade a diamond K SI2, and another might call that same diamond F VS2. I know that sounds crazy, but I see it happen all the time.

The most reputable and consistent grading laboratories are GIA, AGS, IGI, and HRD. GIA is considered the global standard worldwide. AGS is a popular alternative in the U.S.A. while IGI and HRD are more common in Europe.

EGL is tricky because there are EGL labs all over the world, and some of them do a great job while others can be less reliable. We strongly recommend caution when buying an EGL certified diamond unless it's from EGL-¬USA.

Many diamonds are assigned grades by valuation companies and in-¬house graders. If your diamond does not come with a report from a major laboratory, you should always ask where the grader trained. He or she should be certified by a major grading laboratory: GIA, AGS, IGI, or HRD. Be smart and be cautious about reports done by uncertified shop owners, salespeople, or valuation companies.

SELECTING YOUR DIAMOND

You can choose to purchase your diamond online, or from a retail store. If you prefer to purchase your diamond in a retail store, avoid the big chains and shop with smaller independent jewellers. Many independent jewellers are actually significantly less expensive than their large competitors. (You don't have to take my word for it - shop around and you'll quickly learn that this is true). This way you'll buy a better quality diamond and - if you wish - you'll have the opportunity to design your own hand-made engagement ring setting.

If you choose to shop online, I would recommend comparing prices and service across several websites. Be sure that the company ships from your country - otherwise you'll be hit with expensive duty and GST. Always make sure you call or e-mail customer service and have them hand-inspect your diamond before you complete your purchase. Sometimes a diamond may seem like a great deal, but it could have an unfortunate inclusion, asymmetrical cut, or be negatively impacted by fluoresence. And above all, make sure you have an easy and affordable way to return the diamond if it doesn't turn out as you'd hoped. Online shopping is the best way to get a great deal on a diamond for your engagement ring, diamond studs, or pendant - just review this article, be reasonably cautious, and have fun.

___________________________________________

Vintage Wedding Rings in Washington