THE BETSEY SOOK STANDARD: THE 4 C’S
Here is a peek into our selection processes, when working with diamonds of 0.5 carat and above.
COLOUR: Diamonds always need a crisp, clear, unapologetic whiteness, which is why, a Betsey Sook diamond comes in the best colour grades: Colourless or Near Colourless, ranging from D to H. Below H is not found in our atelier. Tiffany & Co. diamonds goes a bit lower, they accept the colour grade I, and highstreet diamonds typically have a considerably lower colour grade (K, L, M and down to Z). The more colourless (white), the more chemically pure.
CLARITY: All Betsey Sook diamonds are eye-clean. We ensure that none of our diamonds comes with unsightly inclusions or with flaws that could affect the diamond’s longevity and durability.
Clients need to know, though, that inclusions are a diamond’s birthmarks and part of the diamond’s natural formation process. They can not be completely avoided – unless the diamond is exceedingly rare and priced accordingly. Or synthetic, or a simulant.
When it comes to clarity, we recommend paying for quality and beauty, not necessarily for rarity. We also factor in the carat size as well as the diamond’s shape, also known as its cut. A large diamond asks for a greater clarity grade. Round brillant-cut diamonds with their 57-58 facets are more forgiving, and certain fancy-cut diamonds (for example the emerald-cut diamond) always needs a fantastic clarity grade. It is our job to navigate through these parametres and pitfalls for our clients. We also take the actual jewellery design into consideration, as some inclusions will not affect the diamond’s beauty at all, once it is set in the jewellery piece. Other will. Which laboratory graded the diamond? That is a factor we take into consideration as well, as not all laboratories have the same standards.
CUT: We work with the top two cut grades, Excellent and Very Good. Cut affects the light return of the diamond, its whiteness, and how sparkly and bright it appears, when looked at in movement. It also describes to what extent the arrangement of facets is pleasing to the eye. We filter out the ones that appear “messy”.
As our design aesthetic is delicate and demands a certain level of precision, a poorly cut diamond would look misplaced in our jewellery. Uneven proportions and non-ideal symmetry would be better camouflaged in rustic jewellery, where visible inclusions and irregular cuts could even be a charming effect. Nothing wrong with that. Just be aware that these diamonds are considerably less valuable.
The Betsey Sook atelier also factors in the design, when determining the ideal cut grade for a client. If the diamond is prong-set and seen from all angles, the Betsey Sook atelier will put a higher priority on the cut grade, because the diamond’s proportions, balance and symmetry is at full display. A bezel-set diamond on the other hand can be absolutely stunning and incredibly beautiful also with a Very Good cut grade, which gives us more options, when we source.
CARAT: Every woman has an ideal diamond size that fits her personality and body measurements. That – and the client’s budget – is the determining factor for the carat size, we will select.
FLOURESCENCE: Absence of fluorescence makes a diamond more classically elegant. Its beauty has a unmistakable precision that we appreciate. Fluorescence in Betsey Sook diamonds are kept to None or Faint.