It is the time of the year, right after Valentine’s Day, that we can admire many girls wearing a beautiful engagement ring. You girls need to know all about that special brilliant diamond, how to take care of it and the trends for jewellery as to start planning all the details of your wedding look.
Melvyn Kirtley, Chief Gemologist at Tiffany & Co., was in Vancouver for a special event and Perfect Wedding Magazine had the opportunity to talk with him about all anyone needs to know about diamonds and coloured gemstones.
What is the Tiffany setting?
The Tiffany setting is a six prong setting made from platinum, originally designed in the1880’s by Charles Lewis Tiffany, to hold the diamond away from the finger to show it off its maximum beauty. This is the traditional setting in Tiffany, even to this day it is one of our most popular. It has been refined over the years but ultimately is the same type of design we’ve originally produced back in the 1880’s. It is a beautiful design that really allows the diamonds to float above the finger.
What we should look for when choosing a diamond?
There are several factors – everyone talks about the 4 C’s, which are really important. Clarity: referring to the lack of internal inclusion of the diamond. Colour: It has to do with lack of colour, the top six grades in colour, D through I. You can’t really see any perceptible colour in the diamond. You want to see a diamond that is as colourless as possible. You have 3 colourless grades and 3 near colourless grades: D, E, F, and G, H, I – stay within that range. At the lowest colour range that we carry, which is ‘I’, you wouldn’t be able to see any perceptible colour. Cut: it is the most important ‘C’ because the proportioning of the cut of the diamond, the polishing, the faceting, how it is done will affect how beautifully brilliant a diamond is. In Tiffany, all the diamonds are proportioned in cut and weight so all the light that enters comes back to you in a flash of colour, brilliance, scintillation and sparkle. A Tiffany diamond can be seen from across the room. Carat: weight of the size of diamond. We carry diamonds in a range from a ¼ carat up to 20, 30 carats. The combination of these 4 factors creates the beauty of a diamond.
Above: Tiffany engagement rings in platinum and 18 karat yellow gold (clockwise from top): Tiffany® Setting, Jean Schlumberger Rope ring, Tiffany Novo, Tiffany Bezet, Tiffany Legacy®, Lucida®, Cushion-cut yellow diamond ring, Jean Schlumberger engagement ring, Tiffany Embrace. Photo Credit: © Tiffany & Co.
What is the trend on the type of cut, specifically for engagement rings?
A round brilliant solitaire, because it shows off the diamond to its maximum beauty. We do have some exclusive cuts that we’ve designed but the round brilliant is still the most popular.
What is rarest diamond: pinks, blues, green?
In coloured diamonds, which makes them very, very rare, they tend to be in the smaller carat weight ranges and the rarest coloured diamonds are the ones getting closed to the red colour, pure pink are very rare, too. Tiffany has very intense, vivid pink diamonds right now. The location on where these diamonds are found can be anywhere in the world. It can happen, that in the whole production, only one can potentially have a hint of colour.
Ring in 18k rose gold with a 2.12-carat Fancy Intense Orangey Pink diamond. Price upon request. Photo Credit: © Tiffany & Co.
What would you recommend for the special care of diamonds that can be done in the comfort of your home?
Diamonds are attracted to grease, and it will cause a dulling in the brilliance. It is very easy to clean a diamond you just need a very soft tooth-brush and a little bit of mild detergent. Rinse it off and dry it with paper towel. You don’t need any special solutions. If the diamond is very dirty, at Tiffany we can steam clean it!
What gemstone is the most popular to have this year?
We have some incredibly beautiful coloured gemstones. Everything from exceptionally Red Tourmalines, bright electric Blue Cuprite to incredible Ceylon Sapphires, African Rubies from Mozambique, Green and Orange Garnets, Green Tourmalines, Emeralds, Blue Tanzanite, Pink Morganite.
We have a wonderful assortment in the 2015 Blue Book collection of the finest and rarest gemstones. This year, we are focusing on blue gemstones, everything from Montana Sapphires, Tourmalines and Aquamarines, and mostly set in platinum or 18Karat yellow gold.
Oval Aquamarine and Diamond Drop Earrings $58,000 CAD. Photo Credit: © Tiffany & Co.
Your favourite gemstone?
I have so many favourite gemstones! It is so difficult to say! I gravitate to Blue Gemstones, I love Blue. Tourmaline, which has a very exotic name – Cuprian Elbaite Tourmaline, often found in Brazil and in Africa. That is a bright brilliant electric blue that is quite stunning and remarkable. I love the Montana Sapphires, and of course coloured diamonds, in which you can find very rare green-ish blue! Currently, Tiffany has green diamonds and orange-pinks… extraordinary!