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Monthly Archives

July 2015

Fun Information – Why do we give engagement rings?

Presenting an engagement ring during a proposal — be it a diamond, gemstone, or totally unique metal band — has been a custom for so many generations that no one really knows why we even do it. Thanks to our etiquette experts, we’ve uncovered some fun facts about that oh-so-special piece of jewelry. Here, a basic history of the engagement ring.

Engagement rings have been credited all the way back to Ancient Egypt, but instances of exchanging rings goes back to Ancient Greece and Rome, too.
In ancient Greece married couples weren’t the only people who gifted each other gold jewels for their fingers — lovers did too (but with the inclination that they’d tie the knot soon enough)! In Ancient Egypt, men wore rings to symbolize their wealth, hence sharing one with their wife to represent the joint ownership of riches. Ancient Rome took the exchange one step further by having a betrothed couple’s parents exchange tokens too.

In the 11th century, the church sanctified the importance of rings.
And then in the mid-16th century, it was incorporated in the wedding ceremony to take on a crucial role.

Way back when, only kings and queens wore precious stones.
There were even legends created about the gems!

Colorful birthstones as engagement rings have been popular since the Middle Ages.
Sorry celebs. But these vibrantly-hued gems really gained traction during the Victorian era.

Diamonds were only discovered in the mid-1800s and were worn by the social elite.
Unsurprisingly, between World War I and the Depression, people stopped toting around diamonds as much. By the late 1940s, though, they became a permanent fixture in engagement rings again once De Beers created one of the most lucrative ad campaigns in history with the catchphrase “A Diamond Is Forever.”

Source: Brides Magazine

How Light Affects a Diamond’s Appearance | GIA 4Cs Blog

“Shine bright like a diamond,” is a phrase that can be understood in a variety of ways, depending on the diamond light source. In fact, there’s often a noticeable change in how a diamond appears in sunlight, in candlelight, and under artificial light. This change proves the importance of understanding how light affects a diamond’s appearance.

It All Begins with Diamond Cut

Diamond cut is often confused with shape, but they are very different. Diamond shape refers to the general silhouette or outline of the stone; diamond cut refers to its facet arrangement. Of the 4Cs of diamond quality (color, clarity, cut, and carat weight), cut is the most complex and technically difficult  “C” to assess. The proportions, facet arrangement and finish (quality of polish and quality of symmetry) constitute what we call cut. These define the diamond’s ability to transmit light and sparkle so intensely — proving the quality of cut is crucial to a diamond’s final beauty and value.

A diamond’s facet arrangement is key to understanding how your diamond interacts with light and its surrounding environment. Think of your diamond’s facets as a complex series of mirrors reflecting the environment. A round brilliant colorless diamond has an astounding 58 facets or “mirrors” that show the reflection of its surroundings, including you.

Loose-diamonds-showing-fire

Every time the diamond moves, or if you move past the diamond, you see a mesmerizing display of glinting lights and colors, as light reflects on the facets and the facets reflect light on each other. This symphony of reflected light is made up of brilliance (the total light reflected from a diamond), fire (the dispersion of light into the colors of the spectrum), and scintillation (the pattern of light and dark areas and the flashes of light or sparkle when a diamond is moved).

Try it for yourself:  See how the diamond changes its look depending on how far or close you hold it from your gaze.  It will also respond differently to a diffused lighting environment – for example, fluorescent light bounced off of a white ceiling. Or to an environment with a dark ceiling and spot lighting only.  And its look will even be influenced by the color and lightness or darkness of the clothing you wear.

As you shop for diamonds pay close attention to a diamond’s interplay with light and your personal preference for the pattern of light and dark areas caused by the reflections within the diamond. Ask your jeweler to show you diamonds under different lighting conditions so you can compare looks between store lighting and daylight or incandescent light.

diamond-cut-example

Consider the lighting conditions you’ll wear the diamond most, and ask to view the diamond under those conditions.  For example, if you work in an office under fluorescent lighting, ask to see diamonds under fluorescent lights until you find that one diamond whose sparkle and brilliance seems to speak just to you.

And once you’ve purchased your diamond, remember that facets are like mirrors and mirrors work best when they’re clean. So to maximize your diamond’s play with light, make sure to keep it clean by following these simple diamond cleaning tips.

It’s captivating to see how a diamond’s appearance can change in relation to its surroundings. Seize the opportunity to find out which kind of light complements your diamond best by exploring different environments.

Diamond cut quality and the surrounding environment play a significant role in how light interacts with the faceted stone. What scenery do you think maximizes your diamond’s brilliance?

To enjoy another gemstone’s reaction to light, you might also like alexandrite’s color change. Check it out in Phenomenal Gems.

Main image photo by Robert Weldon/GIA

Source: How Light Affects a Diamond’s Appearance | GIA 4Cs Blog

Yellow Gold Engagement Rings are Making a Comeback!

Yellow gold may have a rep for looking dated, but the classic metal is making a comeback (along with vintage-inspired rings in general!). What’s the appeal of this pure form of gold? It’s about as low maintenance as it gets. Yellow gold is the most hypoallergenic gold, and is easier to clean than white or rose gold. Not to mention, it’s priced lower than other fine jewelry metals like platinum. Whether you’re in the market for a modern take on a old classic, or looking to give off a fabulous nostalgic vibe, we can’t get enough of this trend!

Check out our favorite yellow gold engagement rings below!

yellow gold engagement rings

1. Ring by Simon G Jewelry 2. Ring by Demarco 3. Ring by Frederic Sage 4. Ring by 25karats 5. Ring by Mark Broumand 6. Ring by Tiffany 7. Ring by Danhov 8. Ring by Ritani 9. Ring by Tacori

 

WhoSource: The Knot – Yellow Gold Engagement Rings are Making a Comeback!

Happy birthday July!

ruby

RUBY
Ruby is derived from the Latin word ruber, meaning red, the color of passion. Ruby gemstones have been esteemed
since ancient times and are mentioned in the Bible as one of the gems used to represent one of the 12 tribes of Israel,
during Exodus. Kings and queens have long enjoyed this rare gem and rubies are amply represented in royal regalia.
Rubies remain one of the most popular gems in history.
COLOR
Rubies come in many shades of red. Rubies tend to be priced by color. The closer a gem is to the vivid red “pigeon’s
blood” color, the higher the price.
BIRTHSTONE MONTH
July

ANNIVERSARY GEMSTONE
14th and 15th Wedding Anniversary
ORIGINS
Ruby sources include Afghanistan, Cambodia, Greenland, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Tanzania and Vietnam. Myanmar (Burma) is known to produce some of the world’s finest quality rubies.
Ruby belongs to the mineral species corundum and is related to sapphire.
DURABILITY
Ruby is a durable gemstone with a hardness of 9 (out of 10) on the Mohs Scale of Mineral Hardness.
ENHANCEMENTS
Rubies are sometimes heat treated to increase their transparency and clarity. A more recent type of treatment uses high lead glass to fill pits and cracks in the stones at high temperatures. Oil and dyes may also be used, but these treatments are not considered durable. Information about any ruby gemstone known to be treated will be disclosed to the buyer. Ruby can be man-made, meaning it is manufactured in a lab rather than mined.
CARE & CLEANING
Ruby jewelry can be scratched, so do not pile together with other jewelry when storing. Keep ruby jewelry in a padded container, especially when traveling. Ruby jewelry is best cleaned with warm, sudsy water and a tightly woven microfiber cloth. Do not use mechanical cleaners for fractured or filled gemstones.