Diamond Color

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 20,089
    Diamond expert Ronnie Mervis discusses diamond color.

    Ronnie Mervis

    Ronnie Mervis is co-owner of Mervis Diamond Importers - the leading diamond dealer in the Washington area for the past 30 years. Voted the "Best Place to Buy a Diamond” in the Washingtonpost.com Readers' Choice BEST BETS contest and selected in 2006 for having the best wedding rings in W*USA9’s A-List Top 100 of Washington, DC’s Best Local Businesses, Mervis Diamond Importers is known for supplying their outstanding diamonds to tens of thousands of happy clients each year. With a direct link to the diamond-producing centers of South Africa, Mervis offers wholesale pricing, guaranteeing their customers great value while their commitment to customer service ensures an enjoyable buying experience. Mervis Diamond Importers offers three marvelous showrooms in Tysons Corner, Virginia, downtown Washington, DC and Chevy Chase, Maryland. Coming soon will be a fourth showroom located in Rockville, Maryland. Ronnie handles the company's marketing and public relations on a very active and personal basis. His familiar accent is heard daily on over thirty radio stations, stretching from Baltimore to Richmond.

    Ronnie Mervis: Hi, I am Ronnie Mervis with Mervis Diamond Importers and I am back to talk to you about the next C which is color. Color is very important. Let me first tell you what I am not going to talk about when we talk about color. I am not going to talk about the exotic colors. There are many exotic colors, which have become very popular. People talk about pink diamonds, purple diamonds, black diamonds, blue diamonds, red diamonds that isn't what falls into the general conversation about the color. But, we are talking about here in terms of diamond color, there is color on the scale from zero color to very slight yellow. Most diamonds are in the slight yellow range.

    The best ones exhibit none of that at all. The ideal what we are looking for mostly is a colorless diamond. A diamond that shows no color at all, when it face up, absolutely like water or like ice. That is what we called a colorless diamond and as we tend to go in to color, the diamond draws more and more yellow. Very slight yellow until at the opposite end of the scale on a white to yellow scale, you get a little bit of yellowness showing in and the stronger it gets more obvious it gets and then we talk about a yellow diamond. If it becomes deeply yellow then it has a value as well, as a fancy intense deep yellow. But for the middle range of diamond, for the most of the diamonds which are sold , most of the engagement ring diamonds, they go from no color to a little bit of body color, but not so much that you can see it, the difference is a microscopic.

    The GIA which is the Gemological Institute of America is the standard for grading of diamonds in the United States. They not the only major lab, there are couple of very important ones, but the GIA set up a color grading scale and its start at D. D, E and F show no color at all and that is what we call colorless. Each one has a little bit less color than the next but they are all essentially colorless. At the color F scale turns ever so slightly, but nothing that you see and we will go into the next four colors which were G, H, I and J. Those are termed near colorless. In a laboratory setting against master stones with a master grader, looking at them in the most perfect of the condition, he or she will see that each one is getting progressively more yellow than the last one that to the average eye nobody will see whether H and I has got any color or not. At J we go into faint yellow. Just return a corner into K, one begins to see a slight a little bit color.

    Just the slightest hint. Again even I am saying yellow, that is a hint of yellow and its only if you compare a J color diamond or a K color diamond, against say a D and it is strict comparison what one might begin to see the first hint of color, but on the ring, and on the finger, you won't see it. From N onwards the yellow becomes more and more obvious going all away down to Z where it starts becoming quite apparent and here we get in to the yellow range.

    We like to tell clients, if you really want to go over the top and get the best, go colorless. If you want a good value and not spend that kind of money, if you somewhere square in the near colorless range G to J you are doing just fine and if you want to drop it little, go into the faint yellow that's also good. On this pyramid the lower in color the more they are, the more plentifully they occur, the less you will pay. At the top it is the exact opposite, they are very rare. So when you pay more for a D and you pay for in this case something below around the T, you are paying more because its more rare and its not named normally better it just occurs more frequently. If a average ratio of tons of rock mined to carats of diamonds produced is about 20 tons of rock to one carat and for that you would get an average stone out. If then say I don't want an average stone, I want one much higher than the average, then how many more tons of rock does one have to mine. The 20 tons might go to 40 tons, or 50 tons, or even more than that. There is a huge cost of mining, tremendous cost of exploration and that's why one has more for rarity. So rarity is a big part of the two factors, rarity affects the value and of course the color. Again the most desirable being the least color, being a D an E or an F but by the same token they cost more. So, there is the word on color. Don't go away, because in the next clip we are going to talk about the fourth C which is carat weights and that relates to diamond size.