- What is a black diamond? Do black diamond rings exist?
Black diamonds are amongst the most popular of the colored diamonds. They have gained in popularity over the last few years. The trend is that they are used in engagement rings and the demand for these beautiful gems has increased dramatically. There are several types of black diamonds, albeit not exactly the same. There are natural black diamonds (from the ground), man-made black diamonds and there are treated black diamonds. All are real but there is a vast difference between the different types of black diamonds and if you plan on buying one, you should know that there is also a significant difference in value. Black diamonds (in their natural form), have not remained under the earth's surface as long as normal diamonds would have. They are also more porous than normal diamonds, however, still an extremely strong stone. Natural Black Diamonds are actually quite different than other colored diamonds. They are an impure form of polycrystalline diamond consisting of diamond, graphite, and amorphous carbon. While regular natural colored diamonds receive their color from the impurities that are are present in the ground during the formation process (for example boron causes blue diamonds), black diamonds are similar to white diamonds that have an extremely high amount of inclusions, clusters of graphite inside of them to the point that they simply appear black. Treated black diamonds are regular white diamonds that are usually of extremely low value due to the high amount of inclusions in them. In a way, a more suitable name for these diamonds is colorless treated black diamonds or simply black colored diamonds. Since for the creation of this type of black diamonds, extremely low quality white diamonds with little value are used, these are the cheapest type of black diamonds. Man made, or lab grown, synthetic are not diamonds in the normal sense of the word. These are basically all more or less the same and obviously rarity with these stones is minimal, hereby devaluing the stones.
- Tanzanite - the beautiful blue gem. What is Tanzanite stone?
A brief explanation of where the stone originates and properties of Tanzanite Tanzanite is the blue and violet variety of the mineral zoisite (a calcium aluminium hydroxyl sorosilicate), caused by small amounts of vanadium, belonging to the epidote group. Tanzanite is only found in Tanzania, in a very small mining area approximately 7 km (or 4.3 miles) long and 2 km (1.2 miles) wide) near the Mirerani Hills. Tanzanite is noted for its remarkably strong trichroism (a property, peculiar to certain crystals, of transmitting light of three different colors when viewed from three different directions) appearing alternately blue, violet and burgundy depending on crystal orientation. In its rough state tanzanite is colored a reddish brown to clear, and it requires heat treatment to remove the brownish "veil" and bring out the blue violet of the stone. The gemstone was given the name 'tanzanite' by Tiffany & Co. after Tanzania, the country in which it was discovered. The scientific name of "blue-violet zoisite" was not thought to be consumer friendly enough by Tiffany's marketing department, who introduced it to the market in 1968. In 2002, the American Gem Trade Association chose tanzanite as a December birthstone, the first change to their birthstone list since 1912. What does Tanzanite cost? Have a look at the rough guide below. Unlike diamonds, Tanzanite is graded differently in AAA+, AAA, AAA/AA, AA and lastly A. Compared to diamonds, Tanzanite is significantly more affordable, although the precious stone is and will become rare due to the fact that it can only be found in Tanzania and there is a limited supply of Tanzanite. Would make for a great investment? What people don't know - the healing properties of Tanzanite Physical healing properties of tanzanite include detoxification of the blood, strengthening your immune system and increasing overall vitality. It’s soothing, calming tanzanite powers encourage cell regeneration and healing of skin conditions. The stone also benefits the hair, supporting renewed growth of healthy hair. The cooling, calming, soothing vibrations of tanzanite crystals help relieve headaches and migraines. You will feel the cooling, relaxing sensation on your forehead as soon as you apply the precious gemstone. The emotional healing properties of tanzanite go back to the heart of tanzanite meaning. The beautiful, deep blue tanzanite color is that of truth and sincerity. Tanzanite benefits include a happy energy and enhanced compassion and love for others. It's powers allow you to stop worrying to the point of distraction and mistreatment of yourself and others. Tanzanite properties reduce obsessive tendencies and instil a healthy emotional balance and a feeling of being “centered.” Tanzanite healing properties facilitate truthful thinking and communication. You will find that you can speak your mind but communicate with intelligence and compassion. This is definitely a precious stone which may be undervalued and underestimated. A good buy and a beautiful stone, with exquisite color. Its in our top 5 stones!
- Give your watch a serious upgrade!
You go out looking for a watch to suit the outfit. Let's look smooth and impress the larger public audience, right? A decent watch, flaunting money, status and looks could just tip the scales. It's you, over your competitors. Forget the outfit, it's like jewellery for women, just men do it differently...they buy watches...and pens! Now you get standard watches, and then you get, for lack of a better word, "pimped" watches (a new industry trend). What is a watch that has been "pimped", you ask? Well, take the standard version, send it in and it receives a grand overhaul whether its a new watch or old. We are talking diamonds encrusted into the watch face, gem stones, gold, or more gold, platinum, silver, whatever your taste. Pimp it. Can it be done? Hell yeah, of course it can! Didn't think about this one - well, then you need to get in touch with us and soon. The top watches today : well, let's start with Fossil watches for men, simple, inexpensive but packs a punch. Then you have all those big names such as Rado, Breitling, Rolex, Tag Heuer, Bulgari, Hublot, Tissot to name a few. Are they standard? You bought them from the shelf, or ordered online, yes? Then the watch you bought is a standard version, unless you put in a special pre-order request. If you are willing to pay this for a watch, why not really bring it to life with some extra diamonds, gems or metal? Pick your color, there are gem stones to suit every individual. Showcase your good taste in the finer luxuries and your investment! You heard right, your watch will not only retain its value, but if you choose good quality diamonds to be used, your watch becomes an invaluable investment too. Just a thought....mmm...."Pimp my watch"? Sounds good to me Have a look at the top 46 watches today
- The big question - Do diamonds increase in value over time?
Through the years, diamonds have long held prominence as a status symbol, a sparkling outward reminder to the world of an individual’s wealth and prestige. But diamond values have indeed fluctuated over the years. From the booming economic excess of the 1980s when De Beers dominated the market and proclaimed “a diamond is forever” to a downturn in the De Beers monopoly as well as the the economic downturn of the Great Recession, diamond values and prices are a reflection of numerous market variants. Yes, there have been marked events in the timeline, where prices have dipped, but like any other commodity, this is economic and market related. Most notably, though, diamonds and their pricing are a reflection of supply and demand. D-Color Flawless Round Diamond Just like the prices of precious metals such as gold, silver and platinum, the market for a diamond ebbs and flows in value based on demand for the precious stones. Any influence on the diamonds released into the market would influence price. So is a diamond an investment? Does it appreciate over time? Yes, and no. The answer, like most diamonds, isn’t flawless. Overall, the answer is yes. A diamond’s value appreciates over time. Like most valuable items and other commodities, diamond prices increase with inflation. A diamond that was purchased in 1980 would, of course, be worth considerably more in 2020, just the same as if you purchased gold. However, whether that is due to the rarity of the diamond or the result of inflation is largely dependant on many factors. Rarity is the key to a diamond being “Investment Grade” What ultimately makes a good investment is a diamond that is very rare. The larger the diamond, the rarer it is in nature, so high carat weight is one way to find a rare stone. But perfect color and clarity are also rare, no matter the size of the stone. Maximizing the rarity, a flawless, perfectly cut, colorless large diamond will always be in demand and fetch a higher price in the market. The rarity of perfect stones allows the diamond to increase in value more rapidly – both because of inflation and because of the high demand and limited supply of perfect stones. Imperfect stones and those showing considerable flaws are not nearly as rare and valued, nor are they likely to appreciate much over time. They will hold value, but their value likely will increase and decrease in value more freely than a flawless stone. It must also be noted that natural fancy colors, such as the fancy intense yellow, more commonly called canary yellow, are also considered investment grade. Some colors are more rare than others, and appreciate more quickly. Topping the most rare natural diamond colors in the spectrum is red, but blue and pink are also very rare and considered great fancy colors for investment purchases. Depending on the rarity and color of the stone, a fancy colored diamond can be up to 200,000 times more expensive than a normal diamond. Have a look at our Fancy Diamond Blog post for more information on these stones. Hearts and Arrows - now this is "Investment Grade" Back in the 1980s, Japanese jewelers were the first to discover the existence of a kaleidoscopic effect when a round brilliant cut diamond was examined through a special viewer. At that time, those diamonds didn’t feature perfect looking hearts and arrows patternings yet. As the Japanese started to refine their polishing techniques, the hearts and arrows phenomenon slowly gained popularity and was picked up by other cutting houses around the world. By the time the kaleidoscopic cutting style arrived in the United States during the early 1990s, the foundational technique and guidelines for producing the Heart & Arrows patternings had already been established before it underwent further development. Diamond Housekeeping Tips Diamonds and the jewelry settings that house them must be kept clean, and all precious jewelry should be removed during aggressive activities like sports. Diamonds are the hardest mineral, but that does not mean they are immune to damage. Hitting a diamond the wrong way can chip or crack the stone. Storing diamonds together is also ill advised as the stones can scratch each other. A diamond that was purchased as flawless could become damaged during everyday wear and tear or in improper storage. This damage lowers the value of the diamond. While a chipped diamond can be re-cut, the lower carat weight will still decrease the overall value. The long and short of investment diamonds is that diamonds are subject to the fluctuations of supply and demand, so the more rare a diamond is, the more likely it will appreciate in value over time. Preserving and protecting a diamond ensures it retains and gains value.
- What are fancy diamonds?
Definition of Fancy diamonds Diamonds in the normal color range are colorless through to a light yellow hue and are described using the industry’s D to Z color grading scale (D being excellent and Z being poor color quality). Fancy color diamonds, on the other hand, are yellow and brown diamonds that exhibit color beyond the Z range, or diamonds that exhibit any other color face-up. These rare specimens come in every color of the spectrum, including, most importantly, blue, green, pink, and red. Have a look at this beautiful, very rare "white" fancy diamond. A normal diamond is translucent but this is a cloudy white : What are the prices of Fancy diamonds? Lets compare three different colors - Red, Blue intense and Brown to Champagne, all stones being one Carat in weight (which is not really considerably large). The fancy eye clean Red would set you back $1,297,000. The intense Blue fancy would cost $325,000 and the brown to champagne color would cost $4,400. Amazing when you look at the variances in prices due to the rarer colored diamonds. Reds, Blues and Pink colors dominate the most rare and expensive. Gem diamonds in the D to Z range usually decrease in value as the color becomes more obvious. Just the opposite happens with fancy color diamonds. Their value generally increases with the strength and purity of the color. Large, vivid fancy color diamonds are extremely rare and very valuable. However, many fancy diamond colors are muted rather than pure and strong. Here is another interesting fact : Natural fancy intense tinted, colored diamonds can be up to 200,000 times more rare and expensive than normal translucent diamonds! Really makes you think. These very rare and expensive stones are worth their characteristics. Excellent investment potential and hold to appreciate in value over time. So, get in touch with us now for your own Fancy Diamonds!
- How much does a Diamond Cost?
This is a question that I'm sure has been asked for many ages and we still have people asking this very question. For a better understanding of the answer, it takes a bit of research and looking for the perfect diamond for the individual. The most important aspect in answering the above question is the 4 C's of the diamond - Carat (weight), Clarity (how many imperfections exist inside and outside the diamond), Cut (the symmetry and cut quality of the diamond, from a rough stone, to a finished, cut and polished diamond) and lastly, Color (from the clear, whitest to yellow / brown). To put this into a working perspective, you can purchase a 2 carat diamond, with very high (excellent) specs and it will cost over R1,200,000 or $80,000! Comparatively, a 5 carat diamond, with lower specs, yellowish color, good clarity etc. would set you back R750,000 or $50,000. Surely the larger diamond would cost more? Such a difference in carat size (2 carat and 5 carat). One is significantly larger than the other. It is purely a matter of the combination of the 4 C's and other market factors at play. Have a look at this chart of estimate diamond prices. This is a rough guide on the price of diamonds. In the image below, you can see that there are three different specification columns with large differences in pricing. A Low, Average and High Spec : Let's have a careful look at the 5 carat (last row) at the bottom. Can you see how quality in a diamond have a huge impact in variance in price? Remember, there are roughly 7500 different options when it comes to one single diamond - this is very specific and largely a consumer based decision. When purchasing a diamond - we would advise you follow the 4 C's and pick a stone that is individually suited. You may also find that you find a perfectly cut VVS1 diamond, with a fairly good color and because of the perfect cut, the stone actually shines better than a flawless diamond which is not cut very well. In everything, and all cases, we say CUT is the most important factor when grading diamonds. If the cut is poor, the diamond has poor reflection of light and brilliance. Always be well informed and ensure that you inspect the diamond carefully before making a purchase.
To begin, what are the months associated with birthstones? January Birthstone: Garnet February Birthstone: Amethyst March Birthstone: Aquamarine April Birthstone: Diamond May Birthstone: Emerald June Birthstone: Pearl or Alexandrite July Birthstone: Ruby August Birthstone: Peridot September Birthstone: Sapphire October Birthstone: Tourmaline or Opal November Birthstone: Topaz or Citrine December Birthstone: Tanzanite, Zircon or Turquoise Birthstones and their vivid, intense and bold colors have long been a way to connect your birth month with rare and unique gemstones. They are a meaningful gift for mom, a friend, spouse, or family member for a special occasion, or even a loved one. But they mean much more than that as you'll find out below. You might be wondering what your birthstone is, whether you're shopping for a birthstone or trying to determine the birthstone gem colors that match each month. They're great stones for rings, necklaces, earrings, bracelets, charms, and more. Paired with diamonds in rings, they really add that extra touch of Brilliance.
- The History of Diamonds - how did diamonds come into existence?
The timeline of diamonds and where it started Diamonds are considered one of the oldest materials on earth. They are between 1 to 3.5 billion years old. Planet Earth is ‘only’ 4.5 billion years old. Diamonds are formed at the center of the earth. They only make it to the surface by coincidence, e.g. because of erupting volcanoes, in magma, or molten rock. Diamonds burn up in magma, so rough diamonds need to be protected or insulated inside a piece of kimberlitic rock to make it all the way up. 400 BC : The first Diamonds discovered in India The earliest known reference to diamonds is a Sanskrit manuscript, "The Lesson of Profit" (Arthasastra) by Kautiliya, 320 to 296 BC. "A stone (diamond) that is big, heavy, capable of bearing blows, with symmetrical points, capable of scratching (from the inside) a (glass) vessel (filled with water), revolving like a spindle and brilliantly shining is excellent. That diamond, with points lost, without edges and defective on one side is bad." Greek translation : Adamas or the "unbreakeable". "The substance that possesses the greatest value, not only among precious stones, but of all human possessions, is adamas; a mineral which for a long time, was known to kings only, and to very few of them...These stones [diamonds] are tested upon the anvil, and will resist the blow to such an extent as to make the iron rebound and the very anvil split asunder." "These particles are held in great request by engravers, who enclose them in iron, and are enabled thereby, with the greatest facility, to cut the very hardest substances known." Trading routes from Europe to India become apparent. Diamonds begin to appear in European jewellery in the 13th and 14th centuries. The earliest European diamond trading capital was Venice, where the first attempts to polish the natural faces and flaws of the diamond originated sometime after 1330. Antwerp, allowing a yearly import of 1000 to 2000 carats until 1725. Fifteenth century - Antwerp, Belgium The oldest document proving the existence of the diamond trade in Antwerp dates from 1447. 1475 brought the first diamond polishing wheel infused with a mixture of olive oil and diamond dust: the Scaif, invented by Lodewyk van Berken. With it comes the concept of absolute symmetry in the placement of facets. Sixteenth century Not many cities could ‘cut it’ compared to Antwerp in the 16th century. It was the world’s biggest trade center, so its port welcomed 40% of the world’s trade, with a starring role for the diamond industry. The city has been able to hold on to its top position in the global diamond trade ever since. Seventeenth century The intrepid French trader, Jean-Baptiste Tavernier, was the first European who obtained permissions to visit the Indian diamond fields. Jean-Baptiste discovers the famous "Hope Diamond". In 1725 new diamond deposits were discovered in Brazil, and production was significantly enlarged. Secondary deposits were discovered in South Africa. In 1870, the first primary deposits are found in Kimberley. In 1949 Russian deposits are found in Siberia, adding 15 million carats to world production. Nineteenth century - the first De Beers diamond mine Two simple farmers Johannes Nicolaas and Diederik Arnoldus De Beer bought their South African farm ‘Vooruitzicht’ in 1865. They had no idea it would be a diamond mine. In 1871, they found a rough 83.5-carat diamond. The brothers sold their land for 6,800,000 British pounds. The ‘Cullinan’ diamond was later discovered in South Africa, weighing in at 3,106 carat. The diamond was named after the owner of the mine and split into 9 cut stones: Cullinan I to IX. All 9 stones were donated to the British royal family. Tolkowsky (1919) No less than 80% of all colorless diamonds are brilliant-cut. This cut consists of 57 planes or facets and was refined by Antwerp local hero Marcel Tolkowsky. Tolkowsky was the first to grade diamonds based on hearts and arrows patterning. 1944 Jewish diamond cutters and traders that were not able to find refuge, were deported to concentration camps during World War II. Of the 1,645 members of the Antwerp Diamond Bourse, only 355 remained. The Belgian and British governments founded the ‘Diamond Office’ to encourage Jewish ‘diamantaires’ to return to Antwerp soon after the Second World War. 1960's Up until the beginning of the 1970’s, most of rough diamonds that were traded in Antwerp, were also cut there. Some of the cutting trade has moved to lower income countries since then, although larger and more complex stones are still cut in Antwerp. 2002 - No to conflict diamonds In 2002, the Kimberley-certificate is implemented to curb conflict diamond trading and was implemented in 2003. 2014 - A record year for Antwerp diamond trade The Antwerp diamond trade booked a record revenue in 2014. More than 227 million carat rough and cut diamonds were traded, estimated at 58 billion dollars. This makes diamonds one of Belgium’s most important export products. Today (Current) Today’s diamond market presents producers with four major challenges: reserve replenishment, environmental challenges, increasing social awareness, increasing pressures on operating costs.
- The different types of jewellery
There are many different types of jewellery dating back from the 1400's. This is how far jewellery goes back. When you hear the word jewellery, what comes to mind is probably engagement rings, wedding rings, promise rings and in general, rings are the most sought after of jewellery items. What is Jewellery actually? Jewellery consists of decorative items worn for personal adornment and to beautify the wearer, and may not necessarily even be as fancy as the name would suggest. Items may be made very simply, using beads (usually glass). Today the word Jewellery conjures up mental images of rings, necklaces, bracelets, earrings, belly rings & toe rings. Even watches are being beautified with diamonds, precious metals and gemstones and could therefore be seen as jewellery. rings - yes, there are more than you may think Lets begin with rings - either diamond rings, or gemstones or a combination of both. One of the most popular and trendy rings is the solitaire ring (solitaire meaning one). A simple, yet very traditional, classic and elegant setting with one stone, a diamond or other gemstone in the centre. Then there is the Anniversary band for those who would like to seal their commitment to each other with a simple band to celebrate an anniversary or commemorable moment. The most famous rings are the engagement ring and wedding ring. The engagement ring usually studded with diamonds and gems and a single shank. This is then replaced by the wedding ring when the engaged couple is wed. A bridal set refers to both the engagement ring and wedding ring used together, as two bands, on the same wedding ring finger. The 3 stone ring is also famous and symbolizes past, present and the future. Other, less important rings include the promise ring (commitment), antique rings (older and more traditional), plain bands (usually no stones, just gold, platinum, silver), cluster rings (large rings with a number of small stones, gems or diamonds), birthstone rings, estate rings (belongs to an estate, usually someone who is deceased and the ring was inherited. These are just a handful of rings, although certainly the most popular. Have a look at this Gallery of Rings which showcases a large number of rings, ring designs and accessories. Other Jewellery items This extends into many different channels, as jewellery is very custom. Of the most popular, necklaces and earrings are also every girl's best friend, especially when paired with classic, beautiful ring/s. The rest include toe rings, belly rings, pendants and bracelets. Remember, not all jewellery is made out of gold and platinum. Fashion or costume items may be made from silver, sterling silver (a lot of costume jewellery is made out of sterling), and even pewter. As long as the item beautifies and enhances the visual appearance of the wearer. #EngagementRing #DiamondRing
- How do you price a diamond?
Lets first start by using a comparative. The two diamonds below are both 1.00 Carat, same weight, same size. By looking at these two diamonds, which would you say is the more expensive diamond? The one on the left is the more expensive. The one on the left is a D color, Internally flawless (IF) and the one on the right is an I color, SI1 (small inclusions). Both are excellent cut, round. Would you be surprised to know that the diamond on the left (high quality) is USD 10,953 and the other lower quality USD 3,555? That's a big difference, for the same size diamond? Diamonds are unique in every aspect and there are many factors that go into pricing a diamond. However, there are guidelines when it comes to pricing. This inevitably always goes back to the 4 C's or this is where many start with pricing a diamond. This is not to mention the other aspects which further affect the price - polish, symmetry, the specific lab that graded the diamond, depth, table and fluorescence of the diamond. Diamonds would be priced using the following guideline, all contributing to price, in order of relevance and importance : 1. Carat weight 2. Cut - the most important aspect of the 4 C's (Super Ideal, Ideal, Excellent, Very Good) 3. Clarity & Color would be next 4. Polish, Symmetry, Fluorescence etc. 5. The Grading lab used (Cetification) Then you would have covered pretty much every aspect of the diamond. Many people make use of the Rapaport - a "guide" to price diamonds and is largely market driven. This is however only a guide and the pricing is very broad in terms of factoring in ALL aspects of a diamond. You could also make use of other tools on the market. From experience, most tools that we have come across are merely guides as well. A good way is to compare sold and market prices, or retail. This also provides you with a fairly good idea of the price of a diamond. You could also use this diamond price search engine to view prices, with accurate averages. Want more information about the industry and top diamond and jewelry blogs online? Have a look at Feedspot, which has a wealth of information regarding the industry and the top 75 diamond blogs on the internet today. An excellent way to brush up on your minerals knowledge.