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18ct gold 3 stone Diamond ring
18ct gold 3 stone Diamond ring

Diamonds - Diamond Jewellery

Diamond is the hardest mineral known to man. This, combined with its natural lustre, brilliant fire when polished and its rarity make it the most valuable of all gemstones.

Diamonds form under extremes of temperature and pressure at 50miles or more under the Earth's surface. Originally, the main producers were India and Brazil but most of their diamonds came from secondary deposits such as river gravels after the diamonds had been brought to the surface by natural means.

Since the discovery of diamonds in the kimberlite rock in South Africa around 1870, diamonds have been mined much more extensively. Today, diamond mining involves processing huge quantities of rock.

Approximately 250 tons of kimberlite ore must be mined and processed to produce one carat of polished diamond of gem quality. This is partly why diamonds are so expensive, but this is only the start of the process by which the diamond becomes part of a piece of jewellery.

18ct Single Stone Diamond Ring
18ct Single Stone Diamond Ring

From the mine, the diamonds have to be sorted, cut and polished, adding value to the diamond along each stage of the process. Before these last processes, the rough diamond looks just like a pebble. It is the skill of the diamond cutters and polishers which unlocks the fiery beauty of the diamond.

The beauty of a diamond depends on the way it reflects and refracts light. The best cut stones reflect as much light out of the top of the stone as possible giving it the unmistakable fire and brilliance associated with the most beautiful gemstone on the planet.

Diamond Grading

Diamonds are graded by the four C's; Carat, Cut, Colour and Clarity.

Carat Weight

In simple terms this is the physical weight of the diamond. A one carat diamond will weigh 0.2g. One must be careful however not to confuse carat weight with the size of the diamond, they will be a correlation but it will also depend upon the quality and shape of the cut.


The cut of a diamond is the factor that is directly influenced by man, it is very important as it can account for around 40% of the diamonds price! The 'cut' refers to the proportions and symmetry of the diamond; something which requires the skills of a highly trained gemstone craftsman, as a poorly cut stone will lack brilliance and fire.

One carat single stone diamond ring
One carat single stone diamond ring

Diamonds need to be cut to perfect proportions to ensure that as much light as possible is reflected out of the top of the stone. A diamond that is cut too deep or too shallow will lose light through the bottom of stone, diminishing its sparkle. It is then the polisher's skill that determines whether its full beauty is released.

There are many different varieties of diamond cut, with some of the standard ones listed below:

  • Brilliant Cut
  • Princess Cut
  • Marquise Cut
  • Pear Cut
  • Emerald Cut
  • Baguette Cut

The most popular cut for diamond rings always has been and always will be the round Brilliant Cut. With fifty seven facets on its surface it provides a fantastic look that never dates. Princess Cut diamonds offer the same sparkling look that round Brilliant Cut diamonds offer but with a slightly more modern square look. Marquise and Pear Cut stones offer a great variation in shape and Emerald and Baguette Cut diamonds exude finesse with their simple look and stunning rectangular, angled look.


A diamond's colour plays a major part in both its price and its beauty. The colour of diamonds can vary hugely from white (completely colourless) through to brownish-yellow, it is however very rare that a diamond is found to be totally colourless. The closer a diamond is to being totally colourless the more valuable it becomes, although it can be very difficult to determine the true colour at a glance due to interfering factors such as ambient lighting.

'Fancy' coloured diamonds can also be found such as pink and blue, but these are extremely rare and expensive!

18ct Gold single stone Diamond Ring
18ct Gold single stone Diamond Ring


Nearly all diamonds contain small flaws or inclusions such as air bubbles, cracks, scratches etc. The majority of inclusions are not visible to the naked eye and require magnification. These flaws may make every diamond unique but the fewer there are the more valuable the diamond.

Other factors which can also affect the value of the diamond are where the inclusions are found and how visible they are a fissure deep within the diamond will not be as important as one present near the surface for obvious reasons.

A chart showing the scale on which diamond clarity is graded is available as a PDF file below. Click the link to view the PDF.

Look at the Diamond Clarity Grading Scale Chart PDFDiamond Clarity Grading Scale Chart PDF

Download Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the PDF above

Diamond Jewellery From John Hollins

The culmination of these factors can result in stunningly beautiful diamond jewellery such as diamond wedding rings, diamond pendants, and diamond rings for other occasions. We have a wide range of diamond jewellery available here at John Hollins Fine Jewellery and we are available to help answer any questions you may have.

Our current range of diamond rings consists of three stone diamond rings, five stone diamond rings, half eternity diamond rings and solitaire diamond rings

John Hollins Fine Jewellery
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