The quality of a diamond is assessed against the universal 4Cs of diamond quality system, being cut, colour, clarity and carat weight with importance in that order. The higher the grading across all four categories, the higher the value of the stone. All Simon’s Jewellery diamonds have been assessed against this system, having been sourced from trusted and reputable diamond suppliers. Simon’s gemologists are also able to assess any of your diamonds against the 4Cs if they have not already been valued.
Carats are the measure of the weight of a gemstone or diamond, with one carat being equivalent to 200mg. Of the four C’s of diamond quality, it is the most well known but least understood. The cut of a diamond and the quality of that cut can affect the appearance of the size of a diamond as much as carat weight. The value of a diamond alone cannot be determined simply by carat, however the value of larger diamonds increases exponentially as they become more rare. The carat weight chosen will depend on buyer preference.
Most diamonds contain tiny imperfections which occur during the formation of the diamond which not visible unless viewed under magnification. Clarity is a measure of these blemishes or inclusions and ranges from flawless (F) through to very slightly included and included. Although to the naked eye they may appear the same, the difference in inclusions can make a large difference to the value of a diamond. Stones above slightly included are deemed more valuable.
Arguably the most important of the 4Cs, the precision and symmetry of the way a diamond has been cut from the rough stone affect how light travels through it. Too deep or too shallow a cut will cause light to be lost and therefore the stone will not be brilliant. No matter the other characteristics of a diamond, such as its clarity or colour, if the stone is poorly cut it will be less lustrous and therefore valuable. When buying a diamond, aim for very good or ideal cuts for the best stone.
You also need to consider the shape of cut you want when purchasing a diamond, from a more classic round cut to an unusual marquis or cushion cut. Your choice will depend solely on your preferred style.
Colour is determined by how pure a diamond is. The closer to colourless, the higher the value of the diamond (this excludes coloured diamonds such as black or pink). The highest measure is D, being colourless, and continuing through to Z with a yellow or straw hue. Any colour in diamonds graded D to H are undetectable to most people’s eye and are preferred.
Automatic vs Quartz
Depending on the brand of watch you decide to purchase, the movement of the watch may be quartz or mechanical. This describes the motor of the watch that drives the timekeeping and any optional features such as chronographs, calendars and time zones. There are advantages and disadvantages of each method, so you will need to consider which type is more appropriate for you.
Mechanical watches are usually found in luxury watches and are seen by enthusiasts are being superior due to the level of skill and craftsmanship that goes into creating the movement.
Automatic movement is usually found in luxury watches and are seen by enthusiasts as being superior due to the level of skill and craftsmanship that goes into creating the movement. Automatic movement uses energy from a wound spring, rather than a battery, to power the watch. This spring stores energy and transfers it through a series of gears and springs, regulating the release of energy to power the watch. Manual mechanical movement is seen as superior, however modern watches most commonly use an automatic style of mechanical movement which avoids the need for daily winding. If regularly worn, most watches will not need to be wound. Mechanical watches need to be serviced periodically, requiring them to have higher maintenance.
Quartz movement is the more common movement used in most watches. It is highly accurate with few moving parts, making it a more affordable and durable option. Quartz watches are usually battery powered, however some brands have developed solar and kinetic options. The power source sends an electrical current through a small quartz crystal, electrifying the crystal to create vibrations. These vibrations keep the movement oscillating to keep time. Aside from the occasional battery replacement, quartz watches need little maintenance.