Australian Chocolate Diamonds
No precious stone comes out of the ground perfectly formed. Invariably what enhances the worth of any gemstone is what is done to it once it is mined and brought to the House ultimately responsible for creating. We know that diamonds achieving the highest grade are those that adhere to what are traditionally known as the Four Cs—Cut, Clarity, Colour and Carat.
Unique in both presentation and its identity, every Australian Chocolate Diamond comes with its very own ‘Diamond Story’ certificate. The certificate contains specific information about each individual diamond: its point of origin, original rough weight, Argyle lot number, colour and clarity.
The Australian Chocolate Diamond ‘Birth Certificate’ acts as a guarantee that the gem you are investing in is an authentic, homegrown Australian Argyle Diamond mined from the red earth of the Australian Kimberley Region Western Australia. Even then, only a few make it to the global marketplace deemed worthy
of becoming jewellery.
The single largest effect on the value of any diamond is rarity. The larger the diamond, the cleaner or the more unusual the colour, the brighter the colour value—all are elements that make for an expensive stone.
Natural Pink Diamonds are a good example. The fact that they are intrinsically rare is reflected in the price of the stone. Australian Chocolate Diamonds are no different: the rarer the colour, the larger or the cleaner the stone, the more expensive it will be. However, Australian Chocolate Diamonds, being a relatively new trend in the market, are still priced very competitively; at least for the time being, with an Australian Chocolate Diamond costing on average half that of an equivalent good quality white diamond.
Australian Chocolate Diamonds and Argyle Pink Diamonds are the only coloured diamonds whose hue and value does not result from impurities in the stone, rather the colour originates from a process known as ‘Plastic deformation and reformation’.
During plastic deformation heat and pressure severely alter the crystalline structure so that it completely loses the original parallel structure of white rough diamond and reforms into a freeform crystalline structure as it cools. Australian Chocolate Diamonds are colour graded against the Argyle Colour Grading Scale, ranging from C1 to C7, with C1 being the lightest stones and C7 the darkest. Most Australian Chocolate Diamonds grade within the C4 to C6 colour range.
Other important factors that affect the beauty of the stone include the following:
• The ‘cut’, which does not refer to the overall shape of the diamond but rather the quality of the cutting.
• The proportion, finish and symmetry of the external facets of the diamond. These are qualities that create the fire and the brilliance innate to the stone. (A diamond may be flawless but if it is not well cut it will appear dull and lifeless.)
• Clarity is also important in that it refers to the amount and size of natural imperfections in the diamond. This may be internal (inclusions) or external (blemishes) and recognising the differences and how to bring them out is part of the stonecutter’s craft.
Few things in nature are absolutely perfect; the closer to perfection, the more desirable the diamond.