shape
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Diamond stud earrings? What aspects are most important?

mrfat

Rough_Rock
Joined
Apr 15, 2015
Messages
19
Are there different criteria for choosing diamonds for a earrings versus a ring? With earrings you'll only see the crown and rarely if ever the pavilion so I'm thinking you can go much lower in color. Perhaps a well cut J or K or maybe even lower since they still tend to face up pretty white. Also viewing distance is likely to be at least 1 ft away if not more. So clarity could dip into perhaps SI2 or even I1? Still avoid carbon inclusions in favor of others? Or would carbon be preferred over say clouds or feathers as they could reduce transparency? OR just stick with eye clean SI1?

I know cut is important but given the orientation of the stones does this change the specs desired. Instead of light entering the stone perpendicular to the table it's now more parallel? Or perhaps instead of light entering mostly from above it's entering more near the horizon so does that effect the angles need to produce better light performance? Would it be better to get a steeper crown or perhaps closer to the 60/60 specs?

I haven't really seen any diamond earrings that have great fire. Is that related to their orientation? Even well cut ones with ideal proportions just don't seem to have the same fire and scintillation as they do when worn as a ring.
 

solgen

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Apr 10, 2015
Messages
563
Given relative viewing distances and angles I do think you can go lower in color and clarity. J or K, SI1 RBC could very well suffice. Color sensitivity is highly individual so it's up to you to see what you can tolerate.

I don't know how the table being perpendicular to the ground as opposed to parallel will affect things. It does seem that light entering the stone would not be coming from a different angle so that could effect light performance characteristics.
 

Carlowen

Rough_Rock
Joined
Dec 3, 2015
Messages
5
I disagree. I agonized over the diamond studs I bought my wife, and there is no doubt in my mind that cut and polish should be your first criteria. A well cut and polished diamond will more than make up for small size.
As for color, obviously you go with what you can afford. I chose E and F, but went all the down to VS2 on clarity.
 

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
25,547
mrfat|1449173383|3957029 said:
Are there different criteria for choosing diamonds for a earrings versus a ring? With earrings you'll only see the crown and rarely if ever the pavilion so I'm thinking you can go much lower in color. Perhaps a well cut J or K or maybe even lower since they still tend to face up pretty white. Also viewing distance is likely to be at least 1 ft away if not more. So clarity could dip into perhaps SI2 or even I1? Still avoid carbon inclusions in favor of others? Or would carbon be preferred over say clouds or feathers as they could reduce transparency? OR just stick with eye clean SI1?

I know cut is important but given the orientation of the stones does this change the specs desired. Instead of light entering the stone perpendicular to the table it's now more parallel? Or perhaps instead of light entering mostly from above it's entering more near the horizon so does that effect the angles need to produce better light performance? Would it be better to get a steeper crown or perhaps closer to the 60/60 specs?

I haven't really seen any diamond earrings that have great fire. Is that related to their orientation? Even well cut ones with ideal proportions just don't seem to have the same fire and scintillation as they do when worn as a ring.

How large will they be?

The usual considerations re. size/colour/clarity hold for both earrings and rings - larger stones will show more colour, and you'll want to consider higher clarity for larger stones - though I agree that earrings are more forgiving due to sheer distance of viewing (if someone's close enough to your ear to inspect each stone... odds are he or she isn't terribly interested in inspecting your diamonds ::) )

Are you looking specifically for fiery earrings? Most people's hair is going to block light from directly above, so most light is ambient light entering face-up. The difference you point out between how the same stone looks in the ear vs. on the finger is an interesting discussion point - the primary difference is that with rings, most of the time,
A) You're viewing the stones from a wide variety of angles, which highlights fire, and
B) The light sources from above are often point-sources, which highlights fire
Whereas with earrings... you've got a mostly-static view of a stone performing in ambient, diffused light. Put a spotlight on the table and make a point of turning your head head and those earrings will be every bit as fiery as they'd be in a ring :sun:

For studs, the lighting the majority of us deal with day-to-day just doesn't favour fire :(sad Given that fact, I personally prefer to prioritise other things - brightness and size in particular. Garry Holloway used his wife's earrings as test subjects several years ago and posted his observations on PS: RBs with shallower pavilions are less susceptible to diminished light return due to skin/hair oils than stones with steeper pavilions. My recommendation for studs is to choose shallower stones rather than the "Tolk type" stones usually recommended on here for rings. Concerns like obstruction, etc. also diminish w/ earrings because, again, you're guaranteed a certain viewing distance :))

I do think that for stones of a certain value other considerations should take precedence - if a GIA EX 2ct G VS2 sells for considerably more than a shallow "Yssie's Stud Preference" GIA VG 2ct G VS2 and the buying cost difference isn't significant... I'd recommend the former without hesitation.

I like stones like this for studs (low depth, shallow pavilion, thinner girdle, shorter LGF, symmetric faceting):
http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/0.91-carat-i-color-vvs2-clarity-very-good-cut-sku-774764
http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/0.70-carat-e-color-vs2-clarity-very-good-cut-sku-754158
http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/0.70-carat-i-color-si1-clarity-very-good-cut-sku-673660
 

ADN

Shiny_Rock
Trade
Joined
Nov 24, 2015
Messages
311
mrfat|1449173383|3957029 said:
Are there different criteria for choosing diamonds for a earrings versus a ring? With earrings you'll only see the crown and rarely if ever the pavilion so I'm thinking you can go much lower in color. Perhaps a well cut J or K or maybe even lower since they still tend to face up pretty white. Also viewing distance is likely to be at least 1 ft away if not more. So clarity could dip into perhaps SI2 or even I1? Still avoid carbon inclusions in favor of others? Or would carbon be preferred over say clouds or feathers as they could reduce transparency? OR just stick with eye clean SI1?

I know cut is important but given the orientation of the stones does this change the specs desired. Instead of light entering the stone perpendicular to the table it's now more parallel? Or perhaps instead of light entering mostly from above it's entering more near the horizon so does that effect the angles need to produce better light performance? Would it be better to get a steeper crown or perhaps closer to the 60/60 specs?

I haven't really seen any diamond earrings that have great fire. Is that related to their orientation? Even well cut ones with ideal proportions just don't seem to have the same fire and scintillation as they do when worn as a ring.

Hi
Start with the overall style you are looking for before turning attention to the actual diamonds themselves. Because until you have a framework, you won’t know what your diamond requirements will really be.
Select a Metal Quality (18kt gold / 14kt gold / platinum / etc)
Select a Metal Colour (a yellow gold may influence your diamond colour choice differently from a white gold setting)
Select a Setting Style (diamond clarity requirements for a bezel may be significantly different from a 3 claw setting)

With stud earrings, the diamonds themselves are much more important than in other diamond earring styles as the entire ‘look’ depends on how well they return light to the viewers’ eye.

Colour is an important factor, and if budget allows, try to stay within the ‘near colourless’ or ‘colourless’ range. Larger diamonds tend to show more colour than smaller ones, so you may be able to sacrifice a bit of colour in the lower carat weights. The carat weight you settle on for your studs will ultimately be determined by your budget, keeping in mind that you can always tweak any of the other 3Cs in order to adjust as needed.

It is very important that your diamonds have been matched for millimetre (mm) dimension. Diameter needs to be close enough that you won’t notice any size difference.

With diamond studs, no one is coming up to you with a loupe to look at your earrings, therefore many people decide that clarity is not as important as size and colour. As long as they are relatively eye clean, you can sacrifice a clarity grade or two to make an improvement in colour or carat weight. You still want to stay away from the big black inclusions directly under the centre of the table…it’s always preferable to have light/soft inclusions where possible.

Remember that there’s going to be a head in between and they won’t be viewed side-by-side, so it is also acceptable for diamond studs to have a clarity/colour/carat range, as opposed to an exact matched grading. Because diamonds are regularly pre-paired from parcels of stones that are all very similar in their characteristics, you might see a pair like this:
2=0.50cts (1x.24ct & 1x.26ct)
1xF colour & 1x G colour
1xSI1 clarity & 1xSI2 clarity
Obviously, the bigger and more valuable the diamonds become, the less tolerance there is and the closer they will need to be in their characteristics.

When choosing a pair, an important feature is that they have been matched against each other for ‘make’ (mm diameter/table size/depth/girdle/etc.)

Whether selecting diamonds that have been pre-paired, or individually certified diamonds to match as a pair, pay attention to the Cut grade. Cut is involved in determining how light functions when it enters the diamonds crown, refracts around the diamond internally, and then leaves the diamond and returns to your eye in the form of brilliance, fire and scintillation. Of all the areas, cut is the “C” that you don’t want to focus on for saving money.

Hope this helps
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,225
My personal opinion on the subject.

No one gets closer than 10 inches to your earrings except you, when you see them in your hand. And your head is between them when you wear them.

1. Clarity, personally, IF I could find them Si1's are my sweet spot. Would I buy eyeclean Si2's? Yes, but they are hard to find eyeclean enough for me (no black inclusions, no feathers, an inclusions can't impact performance). I would go up to Vs2 if it's to get the right matched pair. But no way would I pay for more clarity than that.

2. Color. I prefer K's. I see no point at all in any higher color than J's for earrings. BUT, that's also because I have a STRONG preference for 60/60 style stones (which favor white light over colored) for earrings, AND blue fluorescence. Both of which discount the stones.

3. Cut. Excellent cut with good HCA and good IS is enough for me.

4. Matching. I like the angles and the tables to match as much as possible, personally.

That said, if a good upgrade policy is important to you (like you want to start with a smaller pair of studs and work your way up) then you may want to go for stones that quality for a good upgrade policy (so you may want to go for BGD signatures, or ACAs, for example).


Those are my personal preference though.

For other people I advise:
Great cut first.
Size second.
Color I/J
Clarity: Eyeclean.
 

wildcat03

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Apr 11, 2011
Messages
874
I have a pair of G/SI2s that I love. One has twinning wisps as the inclusion and it is very slightly noticeable if I compare it to its match, but not otherwise. The other one has a feather and a crystal. I can find the feather if I search in the right light. In retrospect I probably would have preferred going down in color to H or even I and up in clarity to SI1 but I love my earrings. I get compliments on them all the time and no one has ever stuck their nose in my ear to inspect them :)
 

LLJsmom

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 24, 2012
Messages
12,242
For me, Cut first, then color, a very personal preference. The rest would all just depend on the others.
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,225
This is the type of stone I would get FOR MYSELF:
http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/1.25-carat-k-color-si1-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-515984 Ticks all my boxes. 60/60 with good HCA, Medium Fluorescence, K Si1.

http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/0.90-carat-k-color-vs2-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-685042 Just missing the fluorescence, but it's gorgeous.

Finding a match for either of them though, that would be tough.


So this is what I'd end up with as they are a great pair.
http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/1.03-carat-j-color-si1-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-478649
http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/1.01-carat-j-color-si1-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-769026

Like I said, for earrings 60/60's with good HCA scores is where I'd be looking. J/K Si1 and if possible fluorescence.

Or I'd get these if I wanted to save a ton of money by purchasing 90 pointers instead of full carat stones (which is what I would do):
http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/0.90-carat-j-color-si1-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-772309
http://www.jamesallen.com/loose-diamonds/round-cut/0.90-carat-j-color-vs1-clarity-excellent-cut-sku-736916

The first pair are 10K and the second pair are 7400. That's a big savings.
 

mrfat

Rough_Rock
Joined
Apr 15, 2015
Messages
19
Thanks for all the advice. So fire may be lacking due to how they are worn. We looked at more pairs and we just couldn't get the same fire we get from rings. So perhaps 60/60 stones would be a good compromise. Initially I was looking at stones closer to the 1ct mark but her earlobes are small and it appears even .5ct stones will suffice. So, now .5-.75ct stones are what we are looking at.
 

ringo865

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Feb 14, 2014
Messages
2,861
Reluctant to mention jewels by grace has a pair of Brian Gavin signature 1.27 ctw studs. AGS0, I think I SI2 and J SI1. I don't want to tell you because they are a great price and are Brian Gavin and ags0 so I want them. But secretly I want ones a bit larger, like 6mm. Grace also has a pair of (uncerted?) apps 2 ctw that are E color i1 clarity. Says eye clean at 12 inches. For sure the AGS0 will be an awesome cut.

Ack. What am I doing?

Hopefully your lady won't want preloved. Or they're both way too big for her.
 
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