The Diamond Pro

Color & Clarity Matching Diamonds in Jewelry

The following is a real email conversation between The Diamond Pro and a reader just like you who contacted us. Personal information is always removed. Learn from these posts, or contact us yourself to get free personalized help.

Ive just bought some earrings (multi stone GIA F/SI1 with very good cut/pol/symm) . I got f colour to match an uncertificated 5 stone ring thats been assessed (independently) as F/G SI1.  I intend buying a pendant ( trilogy 0.33ct each or maybe graduated 1.5 ct total) and solitaire ring (1ct+) down the road. Do you think I should keep to f colour to match, or go down to g??  Also do you think I should upgrade to VS2 for the larger stones or use a broker to find a good SI1?  and if so what would be a reasonable fee to pay??

Let me address your questions one at a time.

1) Regarding the color on the pendant, I think you can definitely go down to a G, and perhaps even lower.  If having all of the pieces match is crucial to you, then going down to G will not pose a problem, but will definitely save you some money.

But my broader question would be, why are you so concerned with having the different pieces match?  Are they sitting in a case together as a set or are they worn?  If they’re on somebody’s body, then nobody will be able to tell that the earrings are an F while the pendant is an H or an I.  They’re simply too far apart.  Color matching is really only an issue within the same piece of jewelry (ie, side stones to match a center stone in an engagement ring, etc).

One important thing to note is that the savings in dropping from G to H are significantly greater than the savings in dropping from F to G.  I can’t explain to you why that is, it’s just how Martin Rapaport built his price list.  This is why, by the way, you find in markets such as Dubai that demand is much greater for H, I, and J colors than it is for G color.  The upgrade in color to G just isn’t worth the premium you have to pay for it.  Its called the “G Premium.”

2)  When “diamond guys” need to buy diamonds for their loved ones, they rarely buy stones with high clarity (VS2 or higher)  We know that all that matters is that no obvious inclusions should be visible to the naked eye.  Unless your wife’s friends walk around with 10x loupes in their pocketbooks, nobody will ever be able to tell the difference.  And this is only regarding rings where diamonds get the closest amount of scrutiny (envision women bringing their hands to their faces to gawk at their rings).  With pendants and earrings, you have significantly more leeway to go lower in clarity.  An I1 or even a nice I2 will still have great sparkle and life as long as the diamond has a nice cut.  It’s a shame to spend more money on a high clarity stone that nobody will ever get close enough to to tell the difference.

3) Now regarding how to buy the lower clarity stones, I recommend buying from internet sites that provide high quality photographs, such as James Allen,  so you can evaluate the inclusions for yourself to see if they will be visible or not to the naked eye.  If you would like, let me know and I would be happy to scour some online inventory to find you a great stone(s) with great value.

The following was the reader’s response to my answer:

Ira
Thanks for your comments.
The internet ‘science’ suggests you get better performance from a high colour grade, but the general tenure of your comments seem to suggest what Ive suspected after ,
1) research on the web
2) looking at some high/medium quality stones,
and that is that the ‘science’ surrounding diamonds is largely a markeing device to create perception of luxury and price differentials, to maximise revenue?!

Smart Man.  Learned the lesson quite quickly.

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