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.

white gold princess cut diamond ring

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

How are diamond cut qualities assigned?

This is where things begin to obtain complicated. The methods made use of to quantitatively analyze the top quality of a cut differ. The method the GIA identifies just what a diamond's cut quality ought to be, as an example, varies in really specific ways from the method various other certifiers like the AGS do it. For the most parts, these companies don't reveal the specific information of the procedures they make use of.

The form of a ruby additionally makes a difference with respect to exactly how its cut grade is identified. Although there are some fundamental criteria that remain the exact same for any type of sort of ruby, the specific techniques used to grade a round ruby's cut are various from those used to quality a heart-shaped ruby's cut.

The remainder of this description will concentrate on round diamonds, as this is without a doubt one of the most usual ruby shape. One of the variables influencing the cut grade of a rounded diamond is the variety of elements it has. Elements are the level, specified locations externally of a ruby. The facets on round diamonds are typically triangular. Presently, it's believed that the excellent round ruby should have 33 aspects on the crown (the area of the diamond that rests over the band, which itself is the best point of the ruby) and 25 on the structure (the reduced, longer section of the diamond). When there are imperfections externally of the ruby, cutters could include added facets in order to cover them. This causes a deterioration in the general high quality of the cut.

While the facet count is typically set as an excellent way of evaluating the high quality of a ruby cut, there are other points on which gemologists regularly disagree. Several of the other factors used by some authorities to assist figure out cut grades consist of the elevation of the ruby's crown, the depth of the structure, the size of the table (the top of the crown), and also the angles of the crown and also structure.

The American Standard criteria for round rubies calls for a crown height of 16.2%, pavilion deepness of 43.1%, and table size of 53% of the total girdle diameter. The Ideal Fantastic criteria, nevertheless, requires 19.2% crown elevation, 40% pavilion deepness, as well as 56.5% table diameter. While these distinctions could be tough for novices to recognize, they are an excellent image of the problems connected with developing an easy assessment of a diamond's cut.

Although there are some disputes regarding the precise percentages that make up the best diamond cut, for potential diamond customers, the most essential thing to recognize is that ruby certifications provided by companies like the AGS and also GIA are trustworthy as well as significant. Respectable ruby vendors base the costs at which they get as well as offer rubies on the cut as well as the remainder of the "4 Cs." When you acquire a ruby, you don't have to bother with the understanding of exactly what makes a great diamond cut transforming a lot that the worth of your diamond will be considerably influenced.

Which ruby reduced grade represents the most effective worth?

Which kind of diamond is best for you mainly relies on your spending plan. For purchasers that are willing to acquire them, suppliers usually advise diamonds with the highest feasible cut grades. Nevertheless, this could be due to some self-interest on their part.

The other three Cs have an influence on diamond costs too, so it could be hard to evaluate the exact difference in rate in between an Ideal or Excellent cut ruby and a Very Excellent cut. For casual buyers and also budget-conscious capitalists alike, diamonds with a Great or Great cut quality could represent an exceptional value. This is because, while they can be much more affordable than otherwise equivalent Perfect or Outstanding cut rubies, the noticeable distinction in high quality is marginal.

At the same time, do not hesitate to utilize your discernment. If, as an example, you stumble upon a diamond with a Suitable reduced score which has great scores in the various other classifications and also is still within your budget, then you must absolutely consider it, as long as you're handling a respectable supplier.

gold necklace with small diamond

What Are Color Enhanced Diamonds and Are They For You?

Clearlake

To begin our feature on different sorts of gems, we will certainly begin with the best as well as most well understood gemstone of them all the ruby. The ruby is the supreme gems. It has few weak points as well as several toughness. It sparkles with its remarkable worth and nostalgic value. It is used in wedding celebration rings to stand for unlimited love or used as gifts/jewelry to be offered to liked ones. However the diamond is so much greater than its infinite elegance.

The diamond obtains its name from the Greek work adamas indicating unsurpassable. In solidity, there is no contrast. The ruby rates in the Mohs range a 10 which is the hardest compound on Planet. Its reducing resistance is 140 times that of the ruby and sapphire, the gemstones(Corundum) that are following in the Mohs range in firmness. The diamond's optical properties such as appeal and also inflexibility make it special and conveniently identified from other replicas. Appreciate!

* History of Diamonds

The very first taped ruby go back around 800 B.C. in India. Some think it also dated back 6,000 years back. The rubies were utilized as decorative purposes and also as amulets to fend off evil as well as provide defense in fight. Throughout the Dark Ages, diamonds were also specified to be utilized as a clinical help. Religious medical professionals even told clients that if they hold a ruby in a hand and also make the indication of the cross would certainly, it would treat as well as illness and recover wounds.

Diamonds came to be extra prominent during the 19th century due to exploration of ruby down payments in South Africa. This discovery results in boosted supply, boosted cutting as well as polishing methods, and growth in economic climate. In 1979, geologists discovered the Argyle pipeline in Australia which to this date is the wealthiest ruby deposit worldwide. Argyle, ever since, alone is accountable for providing over one third of the world's rubies yearly.

* Diamonds: Exactly how are they developed?

Rubies contains an allotrope of carbons that are developed in high-pressure, high-temperature conditions. Diamonds are created 90 miles under the Planet's surface at temperatures of about 2200 levels Fahrenheit. Diamonds are developed deep within the earth as well as eventually, over extremely lengthy durations of time, press their method to the earth's surface, normally through volcanic eruptions.

The age of these rubies from under the surface area of the planet are from 1 to 3.3 billion years old! When rubies are developed and begin their climb to the planet's surface area, they experience networks where the lava from the volcano increases to the surface area, grabbing diamonds in the process as well as ultimately transferring them on the surface area, where they are ultimately discovered as well as extracted.

* The 4 C's of Diamonds

There are 4 unique qualities that determine the value and also high quality of a diamond. These are the color, cut, quality and also carat weight. Otherwise recognized as the 4 C's of a ruby. In the complying with, we will discuss these functions in information.

* Shade

In the last newsletter, we touch based on the color of gems as being the most crucial function because of that shade is the most apparent attribute. The best ruby ought to show up clear and also colorless but this is not the situation for all rubies. Rubies can be available in any kind of color of the rainbow most typical color is a color of yellow or brownish. The Geological Institute of America(GIA) have actually developed a standard to quality diamond shade. This guideline is composed of a text system that varies from the alphabet D - Z. Please see below:

D E F No Color G H I J Almost Colorless K L M Faintly colored, cannot rarely be seen and also usually yellow in color N O P Q R Gently tinted, typically yellow. Could be seen with the nude eye S T U V W X Y Z Tinted, begins with yellow and progresses to brownish

* Quality

The cut a ruby is established by the ruby's proportion such as its shape, size and depth. The cut identifies what is called the diamond's "radiance". Even if the diamond itself has excellent color and also clarity, with a poor cut the ruby will have a boring radiance. This is because the cut determines just how light travels within the diamond. The Gemological Institute of The U.S.A. has actually additionally designed a clearness grading system to rank diamond clarity. This grading system includes Flawless (Fl), Internally Remarkable (IF), Very Really Somewhat Consisted Of (VV1 or VV2), Really Slightly Included(VS1 or VS2), A Little Included(SI1 or SI2), and Consisted Of(I1, I2, and I3). Although this system had been added to the diamond market, it is not commonly made use of. This is due to the reality that it took a great deal of practice and also training to integrate it.

* Cut

The cut a ruby is established by the diamond's percentage such as its shape, width and also deepness. The cut establishes exactly what is called the ruby's "sparkle". Also if the diamond itself has best color and also quality, with a bad cut the diamond will certainly have a boring luster. This is since the cut establishes just how light travels within the diamond.

There are 3 kinds of cuts that could establish the diamond's radiance. These are a superficial cut, a cut that is too deep as well as excellent cut. A shallow cut is a cut of a ruby that is as well reduced, that light traveling via it is lost on the bottom of the rock as well as does not return right into sight. This cut makes a diamond show up lifeless and plain. A cut that is too deep is a cut that is too expensive, that light taking a trip through it gets away via the sides and also dims the stone. A suitable cut is an excellent cut on a diamond that mirrors light to the top of the stone, offering it excellent radiance.

* Carat weight

As mentioned on the last e-newsletter, a single carat(ct) weighs about 200 milligrams or.2 grams. For smaller sized carat weight diamonds that evaluate much less compared to a carat, it is shared as factors (pt). Factors are 1/100 of a carat weight. Carat weight of a ruby is important due to the fact that bigger diamonds are rarer than smaller sized ones, so primarily the larger the diamond the much more expensive it is. There is no typical grading system or diagram that could reveal different carat weight. This is since there are many variants of rubies fit as well as cut, makings stones of similar weight, look various.

* Imitation Diamonds

Given that rubies are the most beneficial and rarest of all the gems, initiatives have actually been made to duplicate or perhaps enhance rubies utilizing less costly options. A great deal of times, straightforward errors have been made and also these choices or other gemstones such as spinel were sometimes perplexed with genuine diamonds. In many cases, some deceitful individuals attempt to market these choices to misfortunate purchasers in order to revenue. Listed below we will certainly go over regarding these options as well as methods to determine them.

* Artificial Diamonds

Synthetic rubies are rubies that are grown produced in a lab. The first well-known cases of diamond synthesis were claimed to be recorded between 1879 - 1928, but this was never confirmed. It had not been until the 1940's where research began in the USA, Sweden, Soviet Union began investigating. Artificial rubies are or else recognized as High Stress High Temperature (HPHT) rubies or Chemical Vapor Deposit (CVD) rubies. The name of both these synthetic rubies acquires from the procedures used to produce them. A few of these artificial rubies could either have higher, lower or comparable features than that of a ruby. Therefore, these synthetic diamonds are used for abrasives, cutting as well as polishing devices, and switches over in power plant.

* Simulants

Simulants are non-diamond substances that are used to reproduce the appearance and even the shape of a ruby. One of the most standard as well as popular simulant is cubic zirconia (CZ). CZ at ordinary sight could sparkle more than a diamond and it is much less dense, suggesting that a 1 carat weight CZ will certainly be a lot bigger compared to a 1 carat weight diamond. Nowadays, an extra prominent simulant is moissanite, which has all the very same features of a diamond. These features include firmness (Moissanite-9.25 and diamond-10 in Mohs scale), refractive index(Moissanite -2.65 and ruby -2.42) and also diffusion (Moissanite -.104 as well as ruby -.044). This makes it difficult to separate the two at plain view as well as would commonly need testers to tell the distinction. In the following area we will talk about ways to recognize moissanites and various other replicas.

* Genuine or Fake?

An old method of identifying diamonds is to do a scrape examination. This requires scraping a ruby with an additional diamond which is devastating as well as is hardly ever made use of nowadays. The very best and most reliable way to examine for rubies is to use testers that use thermal conductivity. These testers are composed of battery powered thermistors installed with a retracting copper tip. This tester works by injecting the heat onto the checked rock and after that the gadget gauges the amount of heat that it performs. However thermal conductivity testers functions best to identify rubies as well as its other simulants, it will not assist distinguish laboratory produced or synthetic rocks. To be able to determine these, specific optical strategies are needed. Laboratories utilize techniques such as spectroscopy, microscopy and also luminescence in order to figure out a specific stones beginning. The typical individual could utilize loupes and also microscopic lens to identify artificial stones. All-natural rubies usually have small blemishes and also flaws such as incorporations or some sort of foreign material, which will certainly not be discovered in synthetics.

___________________________________________

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.

rose gold morganite halo engagement ring

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

You have been dating the individual of your dreams for quite a long time now. You might or might not be remaining with each other as a pair, either of the 2 has its own connection problems; if you do not live as a pair, the sensation of isolation that surges with your heart every single time your partner claims the words "excellent bye" after a beautiful day well spent with each other influences you to do even more and every single time you transform incorrectly to share with him or her your sensations, the vacant area that welcomes you, promptly turns your inspiration to do even more into a resolve to do even more currently! For those who have taken their relationships a step better by moving in with each other.

Due to the isolation felt each time a partner claims great bye, different types of stress as well as sensations established in they can be the requirement to make your love authorities for the entire globe to see or you both intend to start a steady household. Whatever encourages you into lastly making the primary step to the most vital commitment you would ever before make in your whole life could not be off value yet the sign which you need to give while taking this action is of the utmost relevance - "The Engagement Ring".

Today purchasing an involvement ring has currently end up being the status quo of identifying on your own as one who is currently taken as well as all set for marriage yet have you ever before had fun with the rock or band on your hand and also thought regarding its history? Because it's not defined in the holy bible or the earliest files that give in-depth accounts of practices before marital relationship in time passed.

The prominent engagement ring of the modern-day age had its beginning as current as the 19th century as well as wasn't always an icon of undying affection, it was basically the initial part settlement of the new bride price to be paid to the bride-to-be's family members yet handed over and also used by the bride. It was a sort of insurance given for the female, in situation the possible companion which was constantly the male at that time disbands the marital relationship thus jeopardizing the female's merit and also attract various other guys.

Truth meaning and also sign of the interaction ring began radiating via in the 20th century, when guys gave their fiancées a band that symbolized their love and intents for a marriage union, the interaction ring indicated that she had actually been taken, out of limits and prepared to be married to her real love and it was positioned on the 4th finger of the left hand, for that finger was believed to have a capillary running with it which came directly from the heart as a result signifying the finger as a "heart finger". Earlier rings might just be an item of silver or an iron band with no adornment, which the lady inserts right into her fourth finger on her left hand, this was the practice for a brief time till business rings and also the media took over the engagement scene. The Adverts shown on engagement rings in the middle of the 19th century suggested that men ought to invest no less compared to 2 months of their month-to-month income to purchase the excellent ring for his priceless bride to be and just with an advert the definition and design of the involvement ring took a brand-new direction. The modern involvement ring is an icon that reveals that a person is engaged to be married snappy. The cut, prices and also construct from the interaction ring although not very important, adds a particular flavour to your engagement day or event and has actually rejected a brand-new jewelry market all by itself. The Engagement ring currently can be found in various designs; maybe a band made of precious materials such as Gold, Platinum or Silver or maybe a band tied with treasure rocks to give an alluring beauty to the ring. The different significant layouts of interaction rings shall be gone over below.

Various Sorts Of Involvement Rings

Jewelry rings; these are the ultimate classic involvement rings, the solitaire ring includes a band as well as a gem stone; the band could be made from any product of your option varying from gold to platinum while the gemstone need to likewise be opted to fit your peculiar attributes, it could be diamonds or pearl cut in different ways that would certainly be described below.

Involvement Rings with Side stones: These exquisite rings are made with gems inserted into the sides of the band, which could be made from any steel material relying on your preference. Some side rocks sound also included a central rock at the middle. The popular gemstones utilized for this design of rings are typically diamonds but you can personally customize your gems to the preference of your love.

The Three Stone Rings or the Trinity ring: this is a ring layout with its own romantic history, it is believed that each stone in the 3 rock ring signifies the past, present and future of the time where a couple has actually spent with each other and the ring would bind them together for all eternity. The ring layout is that of an immaculate platinum band with three elegant gems; one at the middle with two area purposefully by the sides. The gemstones are usually crazy of rubies yet you are allowed to customize yours right into 3 various kinds of gemstones if you so desire.

The Matching Wedding Establish: this is a gorgeous combination of both the involvement ring and also the actual wedding celebration band, there is no set style on how a matching bridal collection needs to look like but it is usually good to have either the involvement ring or the wedding ring accentuating the other and also vice versa I.e. an elegant platinum engagement ring with a gemstone must be coupled with a basic Gold classic wedding celebration band, providing the bride-to-be with a touch of colour. Tension Rings: allow the name not act as a barrier to you when considering the tension ring for it is just one of those layouts we call simple however indefinitely classy, it contains a band made from any product of your selection, snugly holding a gems in its grip with stress i.e. the gems is not held by prongs but clasped between the two sides of the band product you selected. The band product acts as its holding assistance. It is very advised you choose two contrasting colours for the band and also the gems to draw out the true elegance of the tension ring.

The Various Cuts of Gemstones

The Pillow cut: this technique of reducing a gemstone, provides the stone a traditional shape that is between a rectangular shape and also an oval, it is one of one of the most preferred jewellery cuts and also it's also understood as the antique cut.

The Marquise cut: the approach employed in reducing the shape of the marquise cut gives the gemstone an oval form in the middle with ends. This ring has a classic elven or must I claim earthy look that brings out the mythological appeal in your bride-to-be.

The Emerald cut: the emerald treasure naturally has its very own specified shape and this cut approach plainly mirrors it, the emerald cut is a rectangle-shaped cut with cropped corners extending at its four ends.

The Asscher cut: this technique of cutting the gemstone offers it a form people state is similar to the emerald rectangle but it is more octagonal fit than rectangle, the octagonal form helps it catch light and mirror it in different directions. It's a completely attractive cut for a rings gems.

The Princess cut: this is among the most pre-owned cuts on gems, it is square in shape and also helps highlight the appeal of the gemstone made use of rather demurely. The Round cut: this cut general looks round yet its even more compared to that for it has different spikes contributed to its surfaces making it one of, if not one of the most shining gemstone cut of the whole lot, it is known among women for its capability to blind the eye (glimmer).

The Heart cut: perfect for the romantics in mind and also shaped to stomach their hearts, it is a basic as well as classy cut that is fairly prominent among females. After providing a general subject on interaction ring styles and also cuts, the next action is to bring to your notice the leaders in the sector that supplies you with the most effective and most pricey rings- sometimes- out there.

Costs Barnes: the manufacturers of several of one of the most splendid and also pricey involvement bands out there. Tiffany: everybody recognizes the name Tiffany this developer home likewise provides consumers with top of the variety rings as well as prices postpone. Tacori: the Tacori design is likewise one of one of the most demanded interaction rings in the jewellery market the cut and plan of its designs are constantly a pleasure to behold.

In picking a ring your spending plan should likewise enter play so either you acquire Tiffany's or an ordinary engagement ring, it's the idea that counts.

princess cut engagement rings

What You Should Know When Buying a Diamond Ring

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.

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Vintage Wedding Rings in Washington