exhilarating element of colour is Nature’s inherent
way of injecting personality and excitement in an
otherwise monotonous life routine. The most and appealing
materials in life are those that exhibit colour —
bright orange and red leaves in Autumn, crystal blue
oceans in the Caribbean, vivid and pink sweeping sunsets,
and swirling stars on the midnight blue sky, among
others. Fancy coloured diamonds are a phenomenon of
nature where the diamond exhibits a natural colour
as its most prominent feature. While all diamonds
elicit a similar sense of heart fluttering magnificence,
the emotions that are elicited when you gaze at fancy
coloured diamond are unmatched in any other aesthetic
In colourless diamonds, the absence of colour is what makes
the diamonds so precious and valuable. However, in fancy
coloured diamonds it is the very presence of colour and
its intensity that increase their and value.
. While it is indeed naturally possible
to find coloured diamonds in a single colour, it is significantly
more common to find them with a secondary, and even a third
or fourth colour present in the colour of the stone composition
of the stone. Many times, these added elements bring about
a special and complex impression and result in an added
facet of beauty. However, the most valuable stones are those
that exhibit only a single colour, as this phenomenon is
rarer in the world of fancy coloured diamonds.
The colourless diamond
grading scale measures the absence of colour that
is present in the stone, on a scale of D—Z,
and is divided into six categories. With the presence
of colour comes the appearance of yellow or brown
in the stone. Actually, the end of the colourless
diamond scale is where the colour scale for coloured
diamonds begins! The final two categories in the scale
are referred to as Cape Diamonds, which are also known
as Faint Yellow or light yellow or Faint Champagne
Although The categories
seem to overlap, in actuality coloured diamonds are
graded on an entirely different scale. Not only are
they indicated by the actual colours that are present
in the stone, They are also assessed by the vibrancy
of their colour.
There are twelve different
colours in which fancy coloured diamonds appear. They
will either display purely one colour, or will be
combined with overtones of one, two or even three
additional colours. The secondary tones occur logically
based on the colour wheel of nature, meaning that
a red diamond can have overtones of purple or brown,
but will not exhibit any green, for example.
use systematic methods to identify the exact colours
that are present in the stones. The three attributes
that are used when assessing a diamond's colour are
the hue, the tone, and the saturation. Together, these
characteristics are all measured and quontified in
order to identify the stones as a specific grade on
the colour scale.
The hue is the tint of colour that
is present in the stone.
The Tone is the lightness or darkness
of the colour.
The saturation is the strength or
purity of the colours.
The intensity of the colour is the strength
of the colour that is shown in the diamond. The intensity
level can be anywhere from a very soft presence to a very
strong presence, and the stronger the shade, The higher
the value of the diamond. The GIA developed on intensity
scale to uniformly define The intensity level of the diamond.
The nine grades in the scale are: Faint,
Very Light, Light, Fancy Light, Fancy, Fancy lntense and
Fancy Vivid/ Fancy Deep/ or Fancy Dark.
For example, the following depiction represents
the full scale of colour intensity in Pink, Blue, and Green
colour Diamonds. The intensity scale clearly begins with
very soft colours and progressively demonstrates a richer
colour stone. However, iT is imporTdnT To undersTdnd Thoir
However, it is important to
understand that not every diamond colour appears in all of
the above intensity levels. For example, Orange diamonds cannot
be found in Faint, Very Light, or Light intensities. Only
Fancy Light, Fancy, Fancy lntense, Fancy Vivid, and Fancy
Deep Orange colours can be found. Black diamonds and white
diamonds appear in only one colour intensity — Fancy
Black and Fancy White.
The exact colour intensity
of a diamond cannot be determined from the rough stone.
However,as it would intuitively be understood , The greater
The colour intensity of the rough, the greter the colour
intensity of the rough, the greater the intensity of the
polished diamond will be. However, the intensity of the
colour is also significantly affected by the cut and shape
of the diamond. Also, The cut of fancy coloured (Modified
cut) differs from that of colourless (brillianf cut).
The origin of the diamond also affects
the colour intensity. Different diamond mines produce different
shades or tones, oherwise known as ‘material' of due
to the presence of the colour-causing where the diamond
was materialized. For The majority of the time a Pink diamond
in India or South Africa does not compare to a diamond found
from the Argyle diamond mine in Obviously, There are always
diamonds in the rough.
of Colour Grading
The Fancy coloured diamond grading scale
was developed by the GIA in the mid—1970s. With the
grownth in populariiy of fancy colours. The |ndustry grownth
in popularity of fancy colours. the industry required some
sort of a standardization in order to better define the
stones and universalize the fancy coloured diamond trade.
Unlike The colourless diamond scale, the decision was made
to grade natural fancy diamonds with a description as opposed
to a letter because of the multitude colour combinations
Colourless diamonds remain graded on
an alphabetic scale. Many years ago, people used various
grading systems including Roman and Western numeric to grade
their diamonds. OThers used an ‘A, B, and C’
scale where ‘AA’ and ‘AAA’ would
have been given to higher grade stones, similar to other
precious assets like bonds. ln 1953, a man from the Gemological
lnstitute of America named Richard T Liddicoat developed
a standardized grading scale that measured colourless stones
from ‘D-Z.’ The letter ‘D’ was chosen
as an appropriate start for the scale not To confuse it
was with the first letter in the word ‘diamond' it
seemed to first letter in the word 'diamond'. It seemed
to fit its position.
The greatest thing about natural diamond colour is that
it never fades or dissipates. A diamond can be stored or
displayed for years, and other than simply wiping the diamond
clean it will sparkle as much as did the day it was first
polished. Thus, coloured diamonds Truly are a gift? forever.
— Courtesy of Leibish & Co, www.fancydiamonds.net