Colour is one of the ‘four Cs’—the four key characteristics used to classify the quality of diamonds. Whilst the differences in colour between diamonds are often difficult to spot with the inexperienced eye, our master jewellers are happy to help you understand the often subtle nuances between the different grades.
Coloured Diamonds and Grading
The vast majority of people associate diamonds exclusively with white diamonds. There are, however, diamonds of many different colours that you may wish to consider when having bespoke jewellery pieces created, including black, blue, brown, green, pink, purple and yellow.
These exquisite gemstones are often set in a ring as a centrepiece stone, or they can be used to be used to accentuate or offset the exquisiteness of a larger white diamond in an item of jewellery.
Coloured diamonds receive different quality gradings to white diamonds, which are classified according to the ‘four Cs’ assigned by the Gemological Institute of America.
White diamonds are actually graded according to their lack of colour, with the most ‘colourless’ diamonds given a grade D, the highest colour grade for a white diamond. In contrast, coloured diamonds are graded by the richness of their hue, tone and colour saturation, with the exception of yellow diamonds, which are graded in the same manner as white diamonds.
When coloured diamonds are graded, the following ‘grade labels’ are applied: Faint, Very Light, Light, Fancy Light, Fancy, Fancy Intense, Fancy Vivid, Fancy Dark and Fancy Deep.
The grading ‘Faint’ implies that the diamond’s colour is scarcely noticeable, while the grading ‘Fancy Deep’ implies that the diamond has a rich, deeply saturated colour.
Some, though not all, coloured diamonds are listed as having two colours, a primary colour and a secondary colour, also known as a modifying colour. The secondary colour can enhance the value of a coloured diamond when it complements the stone’s primary hue, but can actually lower its value if it fails to complement it.
This is an important consideration when buying coloured diamonds, one that the master jewellers at ARMANS can help you to make sense of when shopping for coloured diamond jewellery, or when discussing your ideas regarding the creation of a unique, custom-made item.