How to Choose a Diamond, an important guide from Orsini Fine Jewellers:
- The first thing to consider is the shape of the diamond as this will determine the overall ring design.
- Try and determine what size diamond is appropriate. If your partner has made hints or comments you may have a general idea. If you know they have their heart set on a one carat diamond, even the most stunning 0.70ct stone will be a disappointment.
- Then it is a matter of determining what diamond characteristics will fit within your budget. I do not like discussing budgets when it is one of the most romantic purchases my clients will ever make, however it is essential as there is a huge range between the highest grade and lowest grade diamonds. My job is to help clients find the perfect diamond in the highest quality possible that meets their criteria in steps 1 & 2, as well as their budget. I tend to advise my clients that if the carat weight is very important then lower the clarity 1st and then the colour. I advise to leave lowering the cut characteristics until last as these characteristics (cut, symmetry, polish) effect the performance of the diamond. If after following the steps above, you are still outside your budget, repeat the process with new thresholds, once again reduce the clarity first (going as low as SI1-2) and then the colour. Again the cut should remain above good at all times. I advise excellent cut diamonds with my clients (especially round diamonds) as they tend to impact the performance of the diamond the most.
- If you are still outside your budget, your next step will depend on what is really important to you and your partner. Other aspects to consider are;
- A lower coloured diamond L-M color may be perfectly acceptable when set in yellow gold. The yellow gold can reflect within the diamond and make it appear more yellow coloured so it is a waste of money to get a D-E colour diamond set in yellow gold.
- If the diamond has a GIA report you can probably drop down to a SI2, these inclusions may be noticeable to the naked eye however they would require close inspection.
- If the size of the diamond is very important, you may consider a fancy shape. These can have a greater surface area and appear much larger (eg Marquise cut). Please note that these unusual cuts are a personal preference so you would need to know that your partner liked them first.
- If you are still well outside your budget, you may need to consider reducing your minimum carat weight, or your last option may be waiting a bit longer to save up and increasing your budget. There are payment & duty free options available at Orsini so you may be able to chat to Sarah Hutchings (Director of Orsini Fine Jewellery) about these, ph 09 354 3115. I find when someone decides to propose this is not a decision that they want to delay, especially when ‘love is in the air’.