Over the last 90 years, some of the most prominent gemmologists and gemmological institutions have aimed to create scientific consistency. The principal goal of their endeavour has been to formalize a standardized, unbiased language to accurately describe diamonds and gemstones.
One in 10,000 natural diamonds has enough colour to be deemed a fancy-coloured stone. Browns are the most common, and some mines like Rio Tinto’s Argyle in Australia produce large quantities of these diamonds, which are marketed as ‘champagne’ in the lighter yellowish brown range and ‘cognac’ for the darker orangey brown variety.
Experience and keen perception are a must in the jewellery industry. Since the scale of the object is most often very small, this is a good place to start training the eyes to see things that can truly make a difference in value and price.
As an independent appraiser who neither buys nor sells diamonds, I often have to explain why my grades are substantially different from those provided by a client’s grading report from one of the many laboratories. Inevitably, the client wants to know how something like this can happen. Come to think of it, aren’t we all a bit curious?