We created these pages to help you understand and learn about how to select and purchase your diamond.

It contains some of the basic information you should know before buying diamonds. It will not make you an expert, but it will assist you in becoming more familiar with the everyday diamond terminology and making a more educated decision.

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    In 1477 AD, Archduke Maximilian of Austria presented a diamond ring to Mary of Burgundy as a sign of their engagement.

    He put it on the third finger of her left hand, the finger believed by ancient Egyptians to have a vein that led directly to the heart. She accepted his proposal and the diamond engagement ring was born.


    The key to buying diamonds is to buy what you like the best.

    The best condition for viewing diamonds is with the face up and with varying amounts of light. More light will give you more sparkle (also known as “Fire”), but low indirect light will show you how well the diamond transforms even the tiniest amoVunt of light. Cup a diamond, either loose or mounted, in your hands. You’ll be amazed.

    There are rarity factors that affect a diamonds value.

    Besides cut, color, clarity and carat weight, there are rarity factors that affect a diamonds value. White is rarer than tinted, clean is rarer than included, and big is rarer than small. Consider your budget when selecting gems with more rare grades. In the end, choose the diamond that pleases you the most.

    A gemstone is composed of pure carbon.

    Diamonds are the hardest of all known substances, but they are not indestructible. Care should be used when storing diamonds because they can scratch other gemstones in a jewelry box and can damage other diamonds by impacting against them.

    How to care for your diamond

    Hand lotions, hair styling products and everyday grime can leave a mark on your diamond that keeps it from sparkling.

    Those materials can even accumulate into a thick layer of gunk on the back of the stone if you wait too long between cleanings.
    Diamonds are the hardest substance known, but coatings and other materials used to enhance them can sometimes be removed by harsh cleansers and vigorous scrubbing, making it even more important to clean the gems with care.

    Gentle & Effective Cleaning tips for All Diamonds


    Soak your diamond jewelry in a warm solution of mild liquid detergent and water. Ivory dishwashing liquid is a good choice, but any other mild detergent is fine.


    Use a soft brush if necessary to remove dirt. Soft is the word—don’t use a brush with bristles that are stiff enough to scratch your jewelry’s metal setting.


    Use a soft brush if necessary to remove dirt. Soft is the word—don’t use a brush with bristles that are stiff enough to scratch your jewelry’s metal setting.


    Dry the jewelry with a lint-free cloth

    If Your Ring Contains Other Gemstones

    The method you use to clean any piece of jewelry must protect its weakest element. If your setting includes other gems, use a cleaning method that is suitable for the less durable stones.

    Points to remember

    Don’t let your diamond come into contact with chlorine bleach when you’re doing housework. It won’t harm the diamond, but it can pit or discolor the mounting.
    Diamonds need care to keep them at their brilliant best.
    Don’t wear your diamond when you’re doing rough work. Even though a diamond is durable, it can be chipped by a hard blow along its grain.
    Don’t jumble your diamond pieces in a drawer or jeweler case. Diamonds can scratch each other and also scratch other jeweler.


    We suggest that you store your diamond jewelry in individual jewelry cases, soft cloth pouches or in separate compartments in your jewelry box. Diamonds which are improperly stored can damage and scratch each other.

    Information – WFDB

    The Mark of Confidence!

    The World Federation of Diamond Bourses or “WFDB” was founded in 1947 to unite and to provide companies or “bourses” known in Europe, trading in rough and polished diamonds and precious stones, with a common set of practices. The WFDB provides a legal framework and meets regularly to create and enforce rules and regulations for its members.

    As stated in the WFDB bylaws “it is the aim of the world federation to participate in the promotion of world trade and to encourage the establishment of bourses, with the view of eventual affiliation of all centers where diamonds are actively traded”.

    More about the World Federation Diamond Bourses:

    Information – Kimberly Process

    The Kimberley Process is an international certification program that regulates the trade in rough diamonds. Its main objective is to prevent the trade in conflict diamonds, while also protecting the legitimate trade in rough diamonds.

    “As a result of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme, diamonds are among the most monitored and audited of any natural resource in the world. This system has proven to be an essential and effective tool in combating the scourge of conflict diamonds”.
    – Eli Izhakoff, Chairman World Diamond Council

    More about:


    Sample Certificate:

    What Is A Diamond Certificate?

    A diamond certificate, also known as a diamond grading report, is a professional evaluation of a diamond’s quality and unique characteristics. This certificate, or cert as it is often called in the diamond and jewelry industry, provides proof of a diamond’s identity. The best, most accurate diamond certificates are issued by independent accredited gem labs that were not involved in the purchase or sale of the diamond.

    Every lab world wide use’s it’s own parameter’s for the grading of a diamond and especially in it’s certificate element’s, Some of the key elements you’ll find in a standard diamond certificate include: a plotted diagram of the stone or a picture of it, listing all of its significant characteristics, such as shape, carat weight, color, clarity, exact measurements and proportions, imperfections, and the quality of the stone’s polish, symmetry and cut. The report also may contain comments about the presence or absence of fluorescence in the diamond, as well as its unique laser-inscribed identification number or other laser-inscribed information if present.

    One of the most established reputable and highly respected gem labs in the industry to grade and certifies diamonds is the: Gemological Institute of America (GIA). This laboratory has a longstanding history and reputation for strict, consistent, unbiased third-party diamond grading. How ever world wide exists many more different diamond labs for grading a diamond such as: HRD, IGI and EGL. Every country or region usually has a local known lab which is trusted on consumer’s mind. For example, in order to suite the Chine’s consumer’s market one lab which is highly respected and used widely in China: NGTC.


    Why do I Need a Diamond Certificate?

    There are several reasons why you should purchase a diamond that comes with a certificate issued by a known independent gem laboratory like GIA or NGTC:

    While a certificate doesn’t state a monetary value for your diamond as an appraisal would, it gives you a tangible document that attests to the quality and authenticity of your stone.

    Certificate of a known world diamond lab, can give you an easy check over the internet for genuine verification of the certificate from its issuing lab site.

    A certificate allows you to “comparison shop” to determine which diamond is a better value for you, based on its quality and unique characteristics.

    We at SJ DIAMONDS are happy to help you check you’re diamonds by giving you the link to the most popular diamond labs at the end of this page. And are encouraging you to check!

    A certificate is used by appraisers to help gauge a stone’s replacement value for insurance purposes should it be lost, stolen or damaged.

    How to read a Diamond Certificate?

    Date: It shows the date the Diamond was examined by lab and report was issued.

    Clarity Characteristics: Describes any internal and/or external characteristics, if present.

    Report Number: A unique certificate identification number (also uses for to check certificate over the internet).

    Finish: Finish grades represent the quality of the surface condition (polish) and the size, shape and placement of the facets including the evenness of the outline (symmetry).

    Laser Inscription Registry: At the request of the customer, the diamond is micro laser inscribed with its unique inscription usually the Report Number.

    Polish: The overall condition or smoothness of the diamond’s surface.

    Shape And Cutting Style: Description of the outline of the diamond (shape) and the pattern of the facet arrangement (cutting style).

    Symmetry: Exactness of the diamond’s outline and the shape, placement, and alignment of its facets.

    Measurements: The dimensions of the diamond listed as minimum diameter – maximum diameter x depth for round diamonds and length x width x depth for fancy shape diamonds.

    Fluorescence: The strength and the color of the diamond when viewed under long-wave ultra violet light.

    Carat Weight: The weight of the diamond given in carats.

    Comments: It describes additional identifying characteristics or features that are otherwise not represented on the report.

    Color Grade: Assesses absence of color from colorless to light yellow or brown when compared to lab’s Master Color Comparison Diamonds.

    Proportion Diagram: A graphic profile representation of the diamond’s actual proportions.

    Clarity Grade: Assesses the relative absence of inclusions (internal characteristics) and blemishes (external characteristics). Clarity is graded on a relative scale from Flawless to Included based on size, position and quantity of clarity characteristics visible under magnification X 10.

    Security Features: To ensure integrity, the Laboratory reports include a suite of security components such as hologram, security screen and microprint lines in addition to several other proprietary security features.

    SJ DIAMONDS – Information – 4C’s Education

    4Cs are diamond terminology and a system created to grade the quality of a diamond on its carat, cut, color and clarity.

    Choosing the right diamond requires knowledge and understanding of a diamond’s unique properties and qualities. We’ll try to offer here some extensive educational section devoted to the “4C’s” of diamond quality – as well as the fascinating history and journey of diamonds from mine to retail.


    Know your carats

    Carat weight is one of the “4 C’s” used to evaluate diamonds, and is therefore one of the most important factors in determining the price of a diamond. The term is derived from the carob seeds used to balance scales in ancient times because of their uniformity of weight and shape.

    1 carat = 1/5 grams

    The carat system is used to express the weight of a diamond and many other gemstones. One carat equals approximately 200 milligrams (0.2 grams). There are 142 carats to an ounce. Carats are also divided into “points,” with one carat equaling 100 points.
    Please note that “Carats” are different than “Karats.” Whereas the term “carat” refers to the system for weighing diamonds, the term “karat” refers to the system for measuring the purity of gold.

    How Different Carat Weights “Measure Up”

    When it comes to jewelry, carat weight is extremely important because it determines the size and appearance of your ring, earrings and other pieces. The tool below illustrates what diamonds of various sizes look like set in jewelry, and how these different sizes look in comparison to one another. Please note that differences in diamond sizes will not always seem in proportion to the naked eye; a 2 Carat diamond doesn’t appear to be twice as large as a one carat diamond.

    Carat Weight Drives Diamond Prices

    Diamonds are formed under very rare circumstances, are often very difficult to mine, and are usually found in relatively small quantities. This is one of the main reasons why they are so valuable. Larger sized diamonds are rarer still, making them worth significantly more than smaller sized diamonds in most cases. For instance, a 2 – carat diamond is always worth more than two 1- carat diamonds of equal or similar quality. Likewise, a 1- carat diamond will cost much more than a 95 pointer (0.95 carats) of equal or similar quality – even though the two stones are very close in size.

    Usually, larger diamond = higher price. Exceptions to this rule would be when other diamond factors such as clarity, color and cut come into play. These factors can have a significant impact on the price of a diamond – for instance, it is entirely possible for a smaller stone of exceptional quality to be worth more than a larger stone of only average quality.

    The most difficult challenge for any diamond cutter is to preserve the greatest possible weight from the original rough diamond and still produce a finished stone with the best possible quality in terms of clarity, color and cut.

    How to Choose the Right Weight!

    There are a number of factors to consider when deciding what size diamond to purchase, including quality, style, body type, setting and budget.
    If you prefer larger diamond styles but have a limited budget, you can get a bigger diamond by looking a little further down the quality scale on clarity, color or cut.
    Keep in mind that the smaller the person, the larger the diamond will appear, and visa versa.



    As one of the “4C’s” of judging
    diamond quality, cut is extremely important in determining a diamond’s value and price.

    Yet it is probably the least understood of the “4C’s.”

    So what exactly is “cut?”

    The diamond cut has 2 meaning’s, the one which the “4C’s” refer to is actually the shape of a diamond and not the real meaning of the word cut, however in the world of diamond’s the phrase “CUT” has another meaning and that one is:,

    Cut refers in diamond world also to the skill of the diamond cutter in unlocking the full beauty of a diamond during the cutting and polishing process. While nature determines the clarity and color of a diamond, cut is a man-made factor that influences a diamond’s quality and value. Even if a diamond has exceptional color and clarity, a poor cut will cause it to lose sparkle and fire.

    When evaluating cut, a number of factors are considered, including the execution of the diamond’s overall design, the skill in which it was cut, the quality of its polish, its roundness, depth, width, and the uniformity of its facets.
    A diamond is cut according to an exact mathematical formula. The most common cut, the round brilliant, has 58 facets – small, flat, polished planes designed to yield the maximum amount of light to be reflected back to the viewer. This reflection, known as brilliance, gives a diamond its unparalleled sparkle and fire.
    A diamond’s proportions – particularly its depth compared to its diameter, and the diameter of the table (the largest and topmost facet of the diamond) determine how well light will travel within the diamond and back to the eye.
    A well-cut diamond has the right angles and proportions to release the inner brilliance of the stone and project its maximum sparkle and fire. A poorly cut diamond – one that is cut too deep or too shallow – loses light and becomes a “dull” diamond that may even have some “dead” spots inside.

    Two keys to a diamond’s brilliance are its crown and pavilion. The crown is the top portion of a diamond extending from the girdle (the outermost edge of a cut gem) to the table. The pavilion is the part of the diamond below the girdle. Above the girdle of a round brilliant cut diamond are 32 facets plus the table. Below the girdle are 24 facets plus the culet, or point. Just a few degrees off the standard can have a dramatic impact on a diamond’s brilliance. However, cutters can compensate by adjusting crown angles, table sizes and pavilion angles to produce the best possible results for each diamond.


    The second meaning of the “4C’s” “CUT” is the shape of the diamond

    Finding the Right Diamond Shape.
    Sometimes, people refer to a diamond’s “cut,” when what they really mean is its shape. Although diamonds are available in many different shapes, the most common and popular, by far, is the round brilliant. According to the Diamond Promotion Service, more than 75% of all diamonds sold are round. The reason for this is because many experts consider round the “ideal” shape for a diamond because it maximizes a stone’s sparkle. However, non-round diamond shapes, called fancy shapes, are beautiful in their own right – and they allow the wearer to express their unique style and personality.

    Round Brilliant – A 58-faceted shape featuring a facet arrangement that appears to radiate out from the center of the diamond toward its outer rim, maximizing its brilliance. The round brilliant diamond is a timeless, classic shape that is appropriate with any outfit and for any occasion.

    Princess – A square or rectangular shape with numerous sparkling facets. The princess is a relatively new shape and is particularly popular in solitaire engagement rings and diamond stud earrings. Because of its design, this shape requires more weight to be directed toward the diamond’s depth than a round brilliant in order to maximize brilliance. A princess diamond offers its wearer a more modern, individual look compared to the classic round diamond.

    Many more shapes are found in the world of diamonds:


    Also known as Square Emerald. Square step cut with cropped corners.


    Rectangular step cut with cropped corners.


    Typically square to slightly rectangular with cropped corners.


    Similar to a radiant cut, with rounded corners.


    Similar to a round brilliant in sparkle and brilliance.


    Elongated brilliant cut with pointed ends.


    Hybrid cut, combining the best of the oval and the marquise brilliant in sparkle and brilliance.


    Ideal when perfectly symmetrical in appearance where lobes are of even height and breadth make it truly brilliant.


    What it means

    Although most diamonds may appear to be colorless to the untrained eye, true colorless diamonds are extremely rare and highly prized.

    Color can hinder the passage of light through a diamond, lessening its spectacular sparkle and fire. Even a slight tinged of yellow or brown can have a dramatic impact on a diamond’s value. Determining the presence or absence of “color” in a white diamond is one of the famous “4 C’s,” or key indicators, of a diamond’s quality.

    In general, whiter stone = greater value.

    Diamonds are also found in a variety of other colors such as blue, green, yellow, orange, pink or, “rarest of all” red, these are known as Fancy color diamond. All such colored diamonds are very rare and prized. Most diamonds are graded on a professional color scale that begins with “D” for colorless and continues all the way down to “Z”, with a stone’s yellow or brown tint becoming increasingly visible as you move down the scale.


    Absolutely colorless

    The highest color grade, which is extremely rare-



    Minimal traces of color that can only be detected by an expert gemologist. Also rare.



    Slight color, which can only be detected by an expert gemologist, but still, considered a “colorless” grade. High quality diamond.


    Near colorless

    Color noticeable when compared to diamonds of better grades, but these grades offer excellent value.


    Near colorless

    Color slightly detectable. An excellent value the color of these diamonds gives them a slightly noticeable tint to the naked eye when compared to diamonds of better color grades.


    Slightly Colored

    Color slightly detectable. An excellent value The color of these diamonds gives them a slightly noticeable tint to the naked eye when compared to diamonds of better color grades.


    Not carried at Diamonds Stud Source

    Which Color Should I Choose?

    Diamonds further down the color scale can still be very beautiful, appear colorless and display impressive sparkle and fire with the proper cut, high clarity and in the right jewelry setting. Diamonds with lower color grades also represent a significant dollar value over stones with little or no hint of color. In fact, many people actually prefer the warmer glow of diamonds with lower color grades. Most people buy a diamond with the best color grade they can afford, while taking into account the other “3 C’s” of diamond quality: carat weight, clarity and cut.

    The color of the metal in a mounting can either mask or enhance the color. Yellow metal kills the color in blue stones, and makes slightly yellow or brown diamonds appear more colorless, while darker yellows and browns look darker and richer. White metal makes slightly yellow or brown stones look yellower or browner (usually unpleasantly so) but enhances the color of blue stones. For this reason, mounted diamonds can’t be color – graded as rigorously as loose stones. With the exception of rare fancy colors such as blue, pink and red, colorless diamonds command the highest prices. (Diamond is the only gem in which an absence of color means it is more valuable). Diamonds in the normal color range are graded and evaluated by how closely they approach absolute colorlessness: the less color, the higher the grade, and the value.

    A Word on Fluorescence
    Fluorescence is the reaction of some diamonds exposed to UV lighting. Fluorescence makes some clear diamonds appear to be cloudy and some yellow tinted diamonds appear to be clear under UV lighting. Under normal lighting conditions, fluorescence is not detectible. Even trained gemologists are unable to consistently agree on the effects of fluorescence. Therefore, whether or not a diamond displays fluorescence is of only minor importance in the purchasing decision of most diamond buyers.


    The importance of diamond clarity!

    Clarity is one of the key indicators of a diamond’s quality – and therefore, its value. Clarity is so important; it is one of the “4C’s” used to evaluate a diamond.

    Clarity refers to the presence of surface or internal marks, also called flaws, within a diamond caused during its formation deep in the earth or during the cutting process.

    When these marks occur within the diamond, they are called inclusions

    These flaws can take the form of scratches, chips, cavities, stress lines or fractures, crystals or bubbles within the diamond and other imperfections. All diamonds have flaws. Because no two diamonds have the same flaws, these marks provide each diamond with a unique “fingerprint” that gemologists can use to identify it.

    Inclusions can interfere with the passage of light through a diamond, diminishing its beautiful sparkle and fire. In the rarest and most expensive diamonds, these marks are too tiny to see even under magnification. The general rule of clarity grading is: the fewer (and smaller) the inclusions, the rarer and more valuable the diamond.

    How Are Diamonds Graded For Clarity?

    Diamonds are graded for clarity by trained gemologists under a loupe at 10x magnification. Clarity grades are based on the size, number and position of imperfections in a diamond. Diamonds that appear to be completely free of any surface or internal flaws under 10x magnification receive the highest clarity grades of “Flawless” (FL) or “Internally Flawless” (IF) according to the Gemological Institute of America’s (GIA) clarity grading scale. At the other end of the spectrum, diamonds with large and/or numerous inclusions visible to the naked eye fall under one of the “Included” grades (I1(p1), I2(p2) or I3(p3)) under the GIA clarity grading scale.



    No surface blemishes or internal inclusions visible to a trained eye under 10x magnification. Exceptionally rare, beautiful and highly valuable diamond.

    SI1 – SI2

    Slightly Included

    Small inclusions and/or surface blemishes easily seen under 10x magnification, but very difficult to see with the naked eye. Good quality diamond.


    Internally Flawless

    No internal inclusions and only very minor surface blemishes visible to a trained eye under 10x magnification. Very rare, beautiful and highly valuable diamond.


    Included 1

    Inclusions and/or surface blemishes easily visible under 10x magnification, and usually visible to the naked eye. Little effect on a diamond’s brilliance

    VVS1 – VVS2

    Very Very Slightly Included

    Few, very tiny inclusions and/or surface blemishes difficult for a trained eye to see under 10x magnification. An excellent quality, beautiful diamond.


    Included 2

    More and larger inclusions and/or surface blemishes visible to the naked eye. Some diminished brilliance to the diamond.

    SI1 – VS2

    Very Slightly Included

    Very small inclusions and/or surface blemishes only visible to a trained eye under 10x magnification. High quality, beautiful diamond.



    Many very large inclusions and/or surface blemishes easily visible to the naked eye. Substantial diminished brilliance to the diamond. Rarely used for jewelry purposes.

    Choosing the “Right” Clarity Grade

    A diamond’s clarity grade has a significant impact on its price. IF (“Internally Flawless”) and FL (“Flawless”) diamonds are the rarest and exhibit no flaws that can diminish their brilliance – hence, they are considered exceptionally beautiful and can command great prices. However, a diamond doesn’t have to be flawless to be beautiful.
    Diamonds in the VVS and VS ranges are beautiful rare stones that display no visible imperfections and represent a significant cost savings over “IF” and “FL” diamonds. Diamonds in the “SI” range offer even more of a cost savings, and many display no imperfections visible to the naked eye. Even some “I1″(P1) stones display no visible flaws to the unaided eye that would detract from their brilliance or beauty.

    When deciding what clarity grade to purchase, you need to take into account your budget and weigh in how important the other elements of the “4C’s” (carat weight, color and cut) are to you. Obviously, you want to buy the best quality diamond you can afford.

    The History and Mystique of Diamonds By SJ DIAMONDS

    Perhaps no gemstone has captured our imaginations through the ages more than the diamond. It has been prized, revered and coveted by cultures around the world for centuries due to its unparalleled beauty, rarity, mystery and strength.

    Diamonds are the ultimate expression of love.

    This regal stone, which derives its name from the ancient Greek word “adamao,” translated as “I tame” or “I subdue,” also represents the ultimate gift of love and romance. Its strength and durability have made it an enduring symbol of matrimony and eternal commitment.

    The first engagement ring on record was presented by Austria’s Archduke Maximilian to his betrothed, Mary of Burgundy, in 1477. The ring was placed on the third finger of her left hand, based on an ancient Egyptian belief that this finger contained a “love vein” that ran directly to the heart. Ever since then, couples around the world have pledged their love and devotion with a diamond.

    To the ancients, diamonds were magical, mystical talismans.

    It was believed they could do everything from bringing luck, wealth and success to their wearers to bestowing power, fearlessness, invincibility and even heightened sexual prowess. Roman soldiers wore diamonds in battle to protect them and give them courage. In the Middle Ages, diamonds were used to ward off the effects of poison and illness. The Jewish High Priests believed the stone could determine innocence or guilt.

    Diamonds come from the center of the earth.
    Diamonds are incredibly old. They were formed deep in the earth – 100-200 miles below the surface – as much as 3.3 billion years ago. Diamonds are made of pure carbon, crystallized by intense heat and pressure in the earth’s interior and forced to the surface by volcanic eruption. Aside from their uniqueness and beauty, diamonds are extremely durable. In fact, they are the hardest known substance on earth – four times harder than rubies or sapphires, the next hardest materials. Due to their hardness, diamonds can only be scratched or polished by other diamonds.

    Where diamonds are found?
    Diamonds are found all over the world, but 80% of all diamonds come from just seven sources: Angola, Australia, Botswana, Namibia, Russia, South Africa and Zaire. Modern mining – and the rise of the great De Beers diamond empire – began in South Africa in the mid – 19th century. Legend has it that Erasmus Jacobs, an eight-year-old farm boy, found a 21-ct. yellow “pebble” in 1866 near the Orange River that turned out to be a diamond – the first of many discovered in South Africa.

    Why diamonds are so rare.
    Powerful volcanic activity formed what are known as “pipes” – openings in the earth – and forced the diamonds up through the pipes to the surface, along with other minerals such as kimberlite. Some of these diamonds made their way into streams, rivers and seas; however, these are only considered secondary deposits. Most of the diamonds forced up through the earth settled back into the kimberlite pipes, and it is these primary sources that have been the basis for the world’s diamond mines. Only one in 200 Kimberly pipes will contain diamonds in economically viable quantities – one reason why diamonds are so rare.
    Approximately 250 tons of ore must be mined and processed to produce a single one-carat, polished, gem quality diamond. This ore goes through many stages of blasting, crushing, processing and advanced x-ray techniques to release the diamonds. More than 100 million carats are mined each year, but only a quarter of these will be considered gem quality.

    Diamonds were first mined in India more than 4,000 years ago.
    The ancient Greeks and Romans believed they were tears of the gods and splinters from falling stars. The Hindus believed that diamonds were formed by lightning striking rock and attributed such power to these precious stones that they placed them in the eyes of their statues. Kings and queens throughout history have adorned themselves with diamonds and fought bitter battles to gain possession of these unique jewels.

    Cutting and polishing determine the value.
    The next step for the rough diamond is cutting and polishing. This is a great skill, with meticulous techniques that have been practiced and perfected for generations. The main diamond cutting and trading centers are based in Tel Aviv, Israel; Antwerp, Belgium; Mumbai, India;; New York; and Johannesburg, South Africa. China and Thailand have most recently developed their own centers.
    Although some of the polishing process is computerized, most of the work is still performed by hand. First, the cutter uses cleaving, sawing or laser cutting to separate the original rough into smaller, more workable pieces. Then, the girdler uses a process called bruiting that grinds away the stone’s edges and provides its outline shape. Faceting follows, usually in two steps. The first 18 facets (table, culet, bezel and pavilion of a stone) are cut and polished by the blocker. The brilliantine cuts and polishes the final 40 facets, including the star, upper girdle and lower girdle. Finally, the cut gem is boiled in acids to remove dust and oil. Once polished, most diamonds are sold and traded in one of the 24 registered diamond bourses around the world.

    At this point, the polished gems are ready to be set into finished pieces of jewelry, which is the manufacturer’s job. They are then either sold to a wholesaler, who works as a middleman to sell the manufacturer’s goods to the retailer, or sold directly to the retailer by the manufacturer.

    terms to know


    Total brightness of light radiated by a diamond with positive contrast effects. The exact proportion of the diamond cut maximizes each diamond’s brilliance.


    The girdle is the thin band around the circumference or widest portion of the diamond. This edge is secured in jewelry settings and protects the diamond from damage.

    Carat Weight:

    Although commonly thought to refer to the size of a diamond, a carat is actually a standard unit of measure that defines the weight of a diamond. One carat is equivalent to 200 milligrams. Since it is a unit of measure and not size, two diamonds of the same carat weight may appear to be different sizes depending on how the diamond is cut. Some diamonds will have extra weight on the bottom part of the stone and therefore appear smaller.


    Inclusions are trace minerals, fractures, and other characteristics that make up the unique internal fingerprint of a gemstone. Inclusions are created during the gem’s formation within the Earth.


    Gemstones are frequently sent to an independent laboratory to be graded against a master set of gemstones according to industry-wide guidelines. GIA is the most known gemological laboratory for grading diamond certificate, However many more interna-tional labs are used in the diamond industry such as, HRD, IGI, WGI etc. for worldwide markets. The difference in lab grading is usually due to different master set used.

    KP (Kimberley Process):

    As a leading diamond manufacturer, SJ DIAMONDS has joined the treaty of the United Nations, all diamond-producing countries and non-governmental organizations in adopting an international agreement known as the Kimberley Process (KP) to prevent all traffic in conflict diamonds.

    Today, over 99% of the world’s rough diamonds are documented with Certificates of Origin to ensure that they come from conflict-free sources. In order to curb any potential for illicit trade in diamonds passing through troubled areas, a System of Warranties (Sow) further ensures that KP diamonds cannot be tampered with during transit. A written statement must accompany diamonds and diamond jewelry, to guarantee they are from legitimate sources.

    SJ DIAMONDS is proud to endorse and fully comply with all the requirements of the Kimberley Process (KP) and the System of Warranties (SOW).


    A characteristic that makes every diamond unique are tiny traces of other elements or gasses that may have been trapped inside at the time the diamond was formed. These are called inclusions, nature’s fingerprints, or a diamond’s birthmarks. The clarity scale measures the number, size and location of these within each diamond. The most valuable and rare designation is flawless (FL/IF).


    The first two numbers of a diamond’s measurement represent its maximum and minimum diameter. The third number represents the depth of the diamond from its culet to its table.


    Many diamonds appear colorless, but may actually contain very faint traces of yellow or brown. The less color a diamond has the rarer and more valuable it is. The color scale describes the degree of body color, from D (completely colorless) to Z (dark – but not fancy colored).


    The pavilion is the bottom portion of a diamond, which extends from the girdle to the culet. In a classic round brilliant the pavilion consists of eight main and sixteen brilliant facets.

    Fancy Color:

    Even that white color is the most common and colorless is more rare, at some color level diamond are becoming even more rarer due to over color which is known as fancy color, starting at light fancy (for lowest fancy level) and end’s at vivid (the strongest and most rare level). These diamonds are usually very rare and come in many colors. The most common is yellow fancy colors but you can find orange green pink blue red and many more.


    Polish is the term that describes the external finish of a gemstone. Because diamonds are the hardest substance known, they are capable of taking the highest level of polish known as adamantine. Poorly polished diamonds do not achieve this level of finish.


    The crown is the area of a gemstone above the girdle – including the table, main facets and brilliant facets. Light is projected to the observer through the crown in the form of brilliance, fire, and sparkle.


    Proportions are the set of measurements used to describe the various angles and percentages of a finished gem diamond. They define the footprint of the diamond relative to its size. It is well known that very particular proportions create the best visual results in a diamond.


    The culet is the tiny facet at the point of the pavilion, or bottom, of a diamond. The culet is used by cutters to center all faceting of a diamond as well as to protect the point.

    Round Brilliant Cut:

    Round is the shape with the highest degree of symmetry. That is why round diamonds have always been considered top performers. The brilliant cut has 58 facets. This cut makes the best possible use of light to increase brilliance, fire and sparkle.


    Cut refers to the shape, style and finish of a diamond. The quality of the cut determines how well a diamond will reflect and refract light. The more perfectly cut – the more brilliance, fire and sparkle.


    Commonly called “sparkle” – and known scientifically as dynamic contrast brilliance – scintillation refers to the tiny flashes of light when the diamond, the light source, or the observer moves. Scintillation is affected by the number, size, and position of all facets, as well as the quality of their poli

    Depth Percentage:

    All percentage measurements are based on the diameter of the gemstone being 100%. The depth percentage is simply the height of a gemstone, measured from the culet to the table, divided by its diameter.


    A piece of jewelry that is set with only one gemstone is often referred to as a solitaire. The gemstone itself is also often referred to as a solitaire.


    The flat polished surfaces on a gemstone. These surfaces act as both windows and mirrors in a diamond – allowing light to pass through and/or reflect. A round, brilliant-cut diamond has 58 facets.


    Symmetry describes the overall shape of a diamond as well as the alignment, shape and positioning of all its facets. Perfect symmetry greatly enhances a diamond’s ability to reflect and refract light.


    The quality of each facet’s polish and symmetry, the condition of its girdle, and the overall precision of the cut determine a diamond’s fini


    The table is the largest facet of the diamond, located directly on the top. The table is the window through which we see most of a diamonds magic.


    The spectral colors of light reflected and refracted from within a diamond through its crown. Fire is maximized by cutting all 58 facets of a round brilliant diamond to the correct proportions.

    Table Percentage:

    The width of the table divided by the diameter of the diamond gives us the table percentage.


    Some diamonds glow when exposed to ultraviolet light. This is often very faint blue, but may occur in other colors. Subtle fluorescence that is not visible under normal light conditions does not affect the value of a diamond.

    SJ DIAMONDS – Information – Certified Diamonds Inventory

    SJ DIAMONDS is committed to providing our customers the best value, quality, service and selection of certified diamonds in the world.

    We offer our customers extraordinary values on the largest inventory of certified diamonds. The simplest of all the gemstones, diamond consists of 99.95% pure crystallized carbon. A diamond begins to crystallize far beneath the earth’s surface among a mixture of liquids, gases, and crystals. Diamonds can, in fact, be from 1 to 3 billion years old–more than two-thirds the age of the earth itself.
    click here to request a list of our current inventory email

    SJ DIAMONDS – Information – Fancy Cutt

    Cut has the biggest impact on the beauty of diamonds and the least amount of difference in their price.

    The word cut has several meanings when it comes to diamonds. The cut of a diamond does not just mean its shape (round brilliant, princess, oval, cushion, etc.) but also addresses the symmetry, polishing, angles and the proportions of each physical aspect of the diamond.
    The cut determines the diamond’s sparkle. A properly cut diamond will refract the light that enters the diamond and return it through the top to produce the much desired sparkle. The angles have to be exactly right to effectively reflect the light back to your eye.
    The typical brilliant cut diamond is cut with 57 facets, 33 on the crown and 24 on the pavilion. On a well-proportioned stone, these facets will be uniform and symmetrical. If they are not, the diamond’s ability to refract and reflect light will suffer.


    Cutting a raw diamond into a faceted and polished gem-quality stone is a multi-step process. Each step is critical to the final outcome.
    The steps are:


    • Marking
    • Cleaving
    • Sawing
    • Bruiting (Girdling)
    • Faceting


    Marking: A rough stone is marked prior to cleaving or sawing to determine the direction of the grain and cleavage, eliminate waste, and bypass any inclusions or imperfections. The natural shape of the rough stone will also be a major factor in deciding how to cut the stone. An octahedron can be cut into one or two Round Brilliants but a square Princess cut will result in the least amount of waste due to the square shape of the stone. Asymmetrical crystals such as macles are used primarily for fancy cuts. Cubic shapes are ideal for a square Princess or Radiant cut. High-tech computerized helium and oxygen analyzers are now used to evaluate a stone prior to cutting.


    Cleaving refers to splitting a stone along its grain by striking it. A rough stone is cleaved if there are conspicuous defects and/or inclusions which would prevent it from being made into a single gemstone. Cleavage is the tendency of crystalline materials to split along defined cleavage plane. Due to its atomic structure, a diamond can be cleaved in four directions parallel to each of the four octahedron crystal faces. Cleaving is a critical step as a mistake by the “cleaver” could fracture, or shatter the stone.


    A stone-cutting saw is a thin disk made of phosphor bronze. As the saw blade rotates it continues to pickup or “recharge” itself with diamond dust which is the cutting agent. It can take several hours for the saw blade to cut through a 1k rough diamond.


    The rough is placed in a chuck on a lathe. While the rough stone rotates on the diamond lathe, a second diamond mounted on a dop is pressed against it, rounding the rough diamond into a conical shape. This step is also referred to as “rounding.”


    To facet a round brilliant, the “blocker” or “lapper” will cut the first 18 main facets, then a “brillianteer” will cut and polish the remaining 40 facets. The cutting (also called “placing”) and polishing of each facet is accomplished by attaching the stone to a top stick with cement, then pressing it against a revolving cast iron disk, on a scaife, or lap that has been “charged” with diamond dust. During this faceting stage the angles of each facet must be cut to an exacting standard in order to yield maximum brilliancy, and maintain symmetry.


    SJ DIAMONDS – Information – Fancy Color Diamonds Inventory

    While everyone usually prefers a white color diamond, which is the most common Colored Diamonds are now becoming even more extraordinary and scarce due to their color which is commonly referred to as Fancy Color.

    Starting at light fancy (for lowest fancy color levels) and ending at fancy vivid (the strongest and most rarer level).
    These diamonds are usually rare and come in many colors. The most common is the yellow fancy color; however, you can also find orange, green, pink, blue, red, and several other colors.

    What gives a diamond color?

    If an element interacts with carbon atoms during diamond creation, the diamond’s color can change. Radiation and pressure on a diamond’s structure will also impact its color as well. Below is a short list of fancy colored diamond’s natural interactions that achieve its fancy color.

    The presence of nitrogen can impart yellow or orange shades to a diamond.

    The presence of boron will impart a blue shade to a diamond ranging from deep blue to sky blue.

    The presence of hydrogen produces unique violet hues.


    Tremendous pressure exerted on a diamond deep in the earth can abnormally compress its structure, thus creating a red, pink, purple or brown stone. Evidence of graining, which scientists believe is attributed to tremendous pressures under the earth can be seen at 10x in many Argyle pink and congac diamonds.


    Natural radiation impacting already formed diamonds over millions of years can give them a green hue.
    Source: www.ncdia.com
    Learn more about colored diamonds at Natural Color Diamond Association.