Why Diamonds Are Like Snowflakes

Like the Fable of the snowflake, not all things are created equal, even if they fit the same definition and have the exact same criteria.  In the world of color diamonds, where there are hundreds of possible primary and secondary color combinations, it is possible to find two diamonds that are graded exactly the same, but do not look the same to the eye! This occurs because diamond color is graded by certain criteria according to a universal measuring system. When diamonds fit in the same place on a color scale, this tatus indicates that they fulfill the technical criteria in the same way - not that they are of exactly the same appearance! Therefore, eve if two diamonds are graded alike, they will not look the same to your eye. 


How the unique properties of a diamond are similar to a snowflake

Diamond 'Portraits'

The image below depicts six Fancy Brown-Pink Diamonds. Each is graded with the exact same color by the GIA. Other than the shape, if looking only at the certificate, one wouldn’t be able to differentiate between them. They are all Brown diamonds with a strong Pink Secondary Hue and all with the same “Fancy” intensity grade. The fact that these stones look so different from one another is specifically the reason why we display photographs of each and every diamond for our clients.

 Fancy Pink Brown Diamonds: All with the very same color grading, yet all diamonds look completely different from one another

 Fancy Pink Brown Diamonds: All with the very same color grading, yet all diamonds look completely different from one another

As so clearly seen above with the Fancy Pink-Brown Diamonds, each of the stones, although they contain the very same color grade, are entirely different from one another.
When looking for a white diamond, one can use any other diamond of the same color grade (D-Z) to identify exactly what the stone will look like. Fancy Color Diamonds, and Fancy Color Diamond Jewelry on the other hand, are a world of their own. Each stone is so entirely unique that it is imperative that it be assessed by both the buyer and seller.

Many characteristics will affect the shade of the diamond color. Even stones that are graded as a Pure Pink might still have different hues of pink coloring depending on the diamond origin. Diamonds that are found in different mines around the world, i.e. Argyle in Australia, India, South Africa, or Brazil will appear completely different from one another as a result of the material of the stone.

The following image contains a number of Fancy Pink Diamonds. Each stone was graded by the GIA with the same color, intensity, and grade. While the diamonds might be similar, many characteristics directly affect the appearance of the each stone.

 Fancy Pink Diamonds

 Fancy Pink Diamond Rings

  The Fancy Pink Diamonds in the image above all have the same GIA color grading, but they look completely different from each other. The shape, cut, and rough material of the stones all affect the shade and strength of the color.

The ring on the left is from the Argyle mine while the ring of the right is probably from the Kimberley mine. Different Materials, different shades.

The intensity scale of a color diamond is broken down to nine grades (Faint, Very Light, Light, Fancy Light, Fancy, Fancy Intense, Fancy Vivid, Fancy Dark, Fancy Deep). However, within the industry, color diamonds are given another grade of 1-10 of that specific intensity. Meaning, a Fancy Intense Pink Diamond can have a weak intensity (2 or 3 out of 10 on the color scale) and would actually be called a "Lucky Fancy Intense." Reason being because it is border line Fancy Pink and was lucky to have been graded a Fancy Intense. A Fancy Intense Pink Diamond can also have a strong intensity (10 out of 10). Meaning, it should have been graded a Fancy Vivid, but only received a Fancy Intense grade.

Diamonds with a 10 out of 10 intensity grade are excellent buys because they are less expensive than they are actually worth!

 Fancy Intense Pink Diamonds

 Fancy Intense Pink Diamond Rings

  Although the diamonds in the image were all graded as Fancy Intense Pink Diamonds, they are clearly very different from each other. The stone on the left has a much weaker Fancy Intense grade (3 out of 10 on the scale) while the stone on the right is very strong (at least 9-10 out of 10 on the scale) and is basically borderline vivid Pink.

The loose diamond, second from the right, has a brighter shade as opposed to the diamond, second from the left, which has a much darker tone.

The ring on the left has a much stronger resemblance to the shade of Bubble Gum which is familiar with the Argyle mine in Australia. The ring on the right hand side has a bit of Brownish looking Pink shade which reflects that it likely originated from Brazilian material.

In the image below, the stone on the left has a slightly weaker Fancy Intense grade that almost resembles a Bubble Gum color tone. The cut as well affects how the color reflects between the many facets and is seen at different levels throughout the step-cut in the center. The second stone from the left has a very similar tone, only a stronger Fancy Intense grade. All the diamonds in the image below are from the Argyle mine and have a great distribution and a very deep color tone.

 Fancy Intense Purplish Pink Diamonds

 Fancy Intense Purplish Pink Diamonds

 The Fancy Intense Purplish Pink Diamonds above all have a slight bubble gum color tone. However, you can see the stone on the right is 10 out of 10 on the scale and is border vivid, while the stone on the left is about 3-4 on the scale and isn't considered a very strong Intense color.

In the 2 rings, you can see different hues of pink. Although both rings are Fancy Intense Purplish Pink from Argyle mine, the round is more purple looking while the Pear shape has more of a Bubble Gum tone.

As previously mentioned, one needs to see images of color diamonds before the purchase is made. How the color is distributed through the stone as well as where various inclusions are found will have a strong effect of the color tone.
Fancy color diamonds are all beautiful, and the most incredible thing about these stones is the fact that each and every one is entirely unique. Before the purchase, the buyer needs to know if that specific diamond suits their requirements.

 Fancy Yellow Diamonds

 Fancy Yellow Diamond Rings

 The Fancy Yellow loose diamond on the far left hand side of the image has a weak intensity grade whereas the stone on the right hand side has a very strong intensity grade.

The ring on the left has a Honey yellow color tone, the ring in the center has a Goldish shade with some dark points due to the Round shape, and the ring on the right has a slight Brownish tint.

Different shapes will reflect the color in different ways. An emerald shaped stone with an even distribution may still lose its color in the middle, where a brilliant round diamond will often have a darker center and contain more fire than the others. Radiant and Cushion shapes will usually show off the best color saturation possible.

 Fancy Intense Yellow Diamonds

 Fancy Intense Yellow Diamond Rings

 The Fancy Intense Yellow diamond the right has a bit of an Orangy tone while the Fancy Intense Yellow on the left has a bit of Brownish tint. It is also visible that the 2 stones on the right have a stronger color then the 2 stones on left.

The rings all appear strikingly different from one another. The diamond on the left is 3-4 out of 10 on the intensity scale, while the Marquise on the right is 10 out of 10 on the intensity scale. You can also see that he Oval and Marquise have excellent distribution but the Oval has more of a mustard tone. 

One could take 10 white diamonds of the exact same color and they will look exactly the same. However, Fancy Color Diamonds look entirely different from one another. In order to understand just how complex the fancy color diamond family is, take a look at the World Of Colors. White diamonds contain only different shades graded from D – Z. Fancy Color Diamonds are found with 12 different colors, over 90 secondary hues, 9 intensity levels, and over 230 color combinations!

 Fancy Vivid Yellow Diamonds

 Fancy Vivid Yellow diamonds: The yellow color in the Cushion shaped diamond first from the right, has a bit of Brownish tint, while the Pear shape, second from the left, has a bit of Orangy tint.

LEIBISH offers multiple images of each and every diamond in stock. Furthermore, upon the request of the customer, more images can always be sent. This should be considered an ABSOLUTE MUST, especially for those looking to purchase diamonds online.

Learn more about why it is essential that large companies stock their own diamonds as opposed to reselling other companies products.

In such a unique field, the knowledge of the business means all too much. When a large company offers fancy color diamonds to the public without the industry experience or even showing an actualy photo of the diamond, they simply will not be able to provide the expertise required.

Contributor: Benji Margolese

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