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FCD education

justginger

Ideal_Rock
Joined
May 11, 2009
Messages
3,712
As I am becoming more interested in the world of colored diamonds, I'd really like to find good, reliable sources of education. There is a proverbial mine of information available about white diamonds, but I am really struggling to find reputable FCD facts. Does anyone have any suggestions of where to look to gain this type of knowledge?

For example, I'd like to know what the actual level of rarity for each hue is -- seems like every website or article I stumble upon claims something different. Nearly all agree that red is the most rare (with one disagreeing and stating it is violet), but it dissolves from that point on. Some say blue is the next highest, others say violet, others state green. Who can actually clarify this point for me?

Also - as Kenny has mentioned in his thread on his new baby violet, there are levels of modifiers. Pure violet, then grayish violet, then gray violet, then violet gray, then violetish gray. Now, when it comes to two completely different, desirable hues - for example, green and blue, are these modified "in betweeners" still very desirable, for their own unique color blend? For example, I was eyeing a fancy intense blue green. This is presumably less rare than non-modified green or non-modified blue...but it is absolutely beautiful, and almost an entirely unique color with its own merit.

Would appreciate any directions to good information, and also opinions on a stone modified with a desirable color (presuming most people don't find gray or brown to be 'desirable'). :))
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 20, 2008
Messages
23,268
This is a very expensive book, but maybe you can find it in the library. It is the definitive bible on colored diamonds, written by the foremost expert in the world.

http://www.amazon.com/Collecting-Cl...1019/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1307203718&sr=8-2

The GIA also has some old magazine articles for purchase in their "Gems and Gemology" magazine, as well as posters that lay out the various saturation levels for many hues.

Look at what I just found on youtube. Several parts.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=buasZOgrqY4
 

AN0NYM0US

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 10, 2011
Messages
325
Rarity is a difficult subject. I have been a fan of FCD's for quite a few years now and have read everything I could find and still feel that what I don't know could fill many books. In regards to your example list of rare colors when it comes to pure colors without modifiers I also wonder which is most rare. Heck I would through Orange in there too, I have been looking for a pure orange for years and haven't seen many/any offered, but one can usually find a pure green or blue with most vendors. Does that make Orange more rare than blue and green?

You are correct that any modifier will generally reduce the price of a FCD even when the modifying colors are rare themselves ex. blue-green, orange-pink, purple-red, however the reduction in price won't be as heavily affected as if the modifier were a "negative" one such as brown, yellow or grey. I just bought a .43ct greenish blue and the price was about 15% lower than similar "pure" blues offered. I actually prefered the slight green, it gives the diamond a cool caribbean ocean look and saved me some $$$

Regarding desirability I only buy what I desire. I actually like grey in certain colors like blue. A greyish blue is a nice steely blue color and too me quite appealing. Really buy what you like, you are the only one that has to like them.
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
28,702
AN0NYM0US|1307246073|2938176 said:
Rarity is a difficult subject. I have been a fan of FCD's for quite a few years now and have read everything I could find and still feel that what I don't know could fill many books. In regards to your example list of rare colors when it comes to pure colors without modifiers I also wonder which is most rare. Heck I would through Orange in there too, I have been looking for a pure orange for years and haven't seen many/any offered, but one can usually find a pure green or blue with most vendors. Does that make Orange more rare than blue and green?

You are correct that any modifier will generally reduce the price of a FCD even when the modifying colors are rare themselves ex. blue-green, orange-pink, purple-red, however the reduction in price won't be as heavily affected as if the modifier were a "negative" one such as brown, yellow or grey. I just bought a .43ct greenish blue and the price was about 15% lower than similar "pure" blues offered. I actually prefered the slight green, it gives the diamond a cool caribbean ocean look and saved me some $$$

Regarding desirability I only buy what I desire. I actually like grey in certain colors like blue. A greyish blue is a nice steely blue color and too me quite appealing. Really buy what you like, you are the only one that has to like them.
I'd love to see pics of your Greenish Blue!

Here are some pure orange diamonds:

http://www.fancycolordiamond.net/search/fancy_colored_diamond_details.cfm?id=6087P

http://www.fancycolordiamond.net/search/fancy_colored_diamond_details.cfm?id=6103P

http://www.fancydiamonds.net/view_diamonds/2418.htm

http://www.fancycolordiamond.net/search/fancy_colored_diamond_details.cfm?id=5987FD
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
28,702
TL|1307203924|2937714 said:
This is a very expensive book, but maybe you can find it in the library. It is the definitive bible on colored diamonds, written by the foremost expert in the world.
http://www.amazon.com/Collecting-Cl...1019/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1307203718&sr=8-2
The GIA also has some old magazine articles for purchase in their "Gems and Gemology" magazine, as well as posters that lay out the various saturation levels for many hues.
Look at what I just found on youtube. Several parts.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=buasZOgrqY4
+1 on that book.
I got a used copy much cheaper and I refer to it all the time.

TL - great find on those videos!!!

http://www.ncdia.com/ is down at the moment but I have found some videos there that were informative.
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
28,702
justginger|1307203498|2937711 said:
As I am becoming more interested in the world of colored diamonds, I'd really like to find good, reliable sources of education. There is a proverbial mine of information available about white diamonds, but I am really struggling to find reputable FCD facts. Does anyone have any suggestions of where to look to gain this type of knowledge?

For example, I'd like to know what the actual level of rarity for each hue is -- seems like every website or article I stumble upon claims something different. Nearly all agree that red is the most rare (with one disagreeing and stating it is violet), but it dissolves from that point on. Some say blue is the next highest, others say violet, others state green. Who can actually clarify this point for me?

Also - as Kenny has mentioned in his thread on his new baby violet, there are levels of modifiers. Pure violet, then grayish violet, then gray violet, then violet gray, then violetish gray. Now, when it comes to two completely different, desirable hues - for example, green and blue, are these modified "in betweeners" still very desirable, for their own unique color blend? For example, I was eyeing a fancy intense blue green. This is presumably less rare than non-modified green or non-modified blue...but it is absolutely beautiful, and almost an entirely unique color with its own merit.

Would appreciate any directions to good information, and also opinions on a stone modified with a desirable color (presuming most people don't find gray or brown to be 'desirable'). :))
I hear you.
I also read different opinions on the pecking order of FCD color rarity.
I've been trying to figure out the pecking order of just the Argyle pinks.
I suspect the very lack of consensus itself tells us that data about rare things is rare too.

Hofer's huge book has a whole chapter dedicated to rarity.
There are two kinds of rarity:
1. What the earth offers us
2. What the the gem-diamond industry offers us and what is agreed to be "desirable".
Hofer calls them true and false rarity, and they don't always match.

Diamonds acquire their color from many different processes, geological and chemical, or combination of processes.
True rarity of FCD color is actually an indication of the rarity of these processes, or the combination of processes.
Example: if blue is from boron impurities and green is from radiation a blue green had to be a boron-containing stone that was also exposed to radiation.
The next logical question is, Does that happen more rarely than boron-contaminated stones NOT being exposed to radiation?

On pg. 102 Hofer explains how the geological processes that produce Canary Yellow occur less often than those which produce Cape Yellow.

Hofer does not give us one simple list that ranks color-rarity.
Instead he created 5 tables; one for each of his "rarity" levels.
Each table lists all 12 colors and has 2 columns, one for natural rarity and the other for commercial rarity.
Before I post the 5 tables I must post 2 lists that explain Hofer's terminology.

This is a list of Hofer's terms for level of rarity, both for natural and commercial:
(I think he should have just numbered them 1 through 5, but for some reason Hofer didn't consult with me.) Haha. :lol:



Next are the abbreviations used for colors.
Upper case is for the dominant hue and lower case for secondary or modifying hue.
No attempt was made to produce a zillion other tables for diamonds with two modifying hues.



Below is the first of five tables.
Note the most rare colors are mentioned but the least rare (like yellow and brown) are not; they just have a dash.
Unfortunately this is the finest detail he offers; he does not tell us whether Pure Red is more rare than anything else on this table.
IMHO, this makes his system more useful for advanced collectors than for noobs.

Also notice that Violet is not even mentioned.
Hofer later admitted he ommited the color because at the time of publishing, 1998, he had never even seen a diamond with Violet as the dominating hue.
Does that push violet above red?
I doubt it but it's fun to speculate. :Up_to_something:
The Aurora collection (the 260 FCDs that is the focus of this book) does not even have a pure red because none were available.



Next table for those slightly less rare:

1.png

2.png

3.png

4.png
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
28,702
The last table lists the least rare FCD colors:

5.png

6.png

7.png
 

justginger

Ideal_Rock
Joined
May 11, 2009
Messages
3,712
Holy moly, Kenny - this is exactly the information I was looking for!! :appl: Thank you so much for taking the time to put all of this online for me. I will certainly be looking into purchasing Hofer's book myself, once I return home, but for the moment, this is just perfect. :bigsmile:

I think I will be trying to follow the guidelines for true rarity, despite what commercialism may tell me. ::) I love the idea of having something that is truly a remarkable piece of geologic history.
 

sphenequeen

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Oct 16, 2009
Messages
640
kenny|1307378245|2939015 said:
AN0NYM0US|1307246073|2938176 said:
Rarity is a difficult subject. I have been a fan of FCD's for quite a few years now and have read everything I could find and still feel that what I don't know could fill many books. In regards to your example list of rare colors when it comes to pure colors without modifiers I also wonder which is most rare. Heck I would through Orange in there too, I have been looking for a pure orange for years and haven't seen many/any offered, but one can usually find a pure green or blue with most vendors. Does that make Orange more rare than blue and green?

You are correct that any modifier will generally reduce the price of a FCD even when the modifying colors are rare themselves ex. blue-green, orange-pink, purple-red, however the reduction in price won't be as heavily affected as if the modifier were a "negative" one such as brown, yellow or grey. I just bought a .43ct greenish blue and the price was about 15% lower than similar "pure" blues offered. I actually prefered the slight green, it gives the diamond a cool caribbean ocean look and saved me some $$$

Regarding desirability I only buy what I desire. I actually like grey in certain colors like blue. A greyish blue is a nice steely blue color and too me quite appealing. Really buy what you like, you are the only one that has to like them.
I'd love to see pics of your Greenish Blue!

Here are some pure orange diamonds:

http://www.fancycolordiamond.net/search/fancy_colored_diamond_details.cfm?id=6087P

http://www.fancycolordiamond.net/search/fancy_colored_diamond_details.cfm?id=6103P

http://www.fancydiamonds.net/view_diamonds/2418.htm

http://www.fancycolordiamond.net/search/fancy_colored_diamond_details.cfm?id=5987FD
Kenny-

I noticed that the two 0.16 orange diamonds you posted are the same stone, two different websites. I have noticed in the past that they share a few of the same stones - are they in fact the same company? I thought you might know because you have done business with at least one of them (if not both). Just curious!
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
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Messages
28,702
They are two separate companies but I believe they are each run by families which are closely related.
I've noticed that sometimes Leibish will "co-buy" a diamond with another firm and they will both list it for sale.
When it sells they must settle the account.

Leibish is in Israel and Ishay Ben-David is in New York.
In last weekend's Las Vegas' jewelry show they shared a booth and I got to see inventory from both and meet some of the IBD folks.

Leibish has a larger inventory and a wider range of stones in all sizes and prices, with plenty in my size range of 1/4 carat.
IBD seems to have inventory that has a higher ratio of larger and more expensive stones.

When I return an FCD that I bought from Leibish they tell me to ship it to IBD in NY.
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
28,702
justginger|1307590429|2941324 said:
Holy moly, Kenny - this is exactly the information I was looking for!! :appl: Thank you so much for taking the time to put all of this online for me. I will certainly be looking into purchasing Hofer's book myself, once I return home, but for the moment, this is just perfect. :bigsmile:

I think I will be trying to follow the guidelines for true rarity, despite what commercialism may tell me. ::) I love the idea of having something that is truly a remarkable piece of geologic history.
You're welcome.
Hofer and his publisher should thank me.
I must have sold a lot of his expensive books by now.

I think it must be obvious by now that I do all this posting and macro photography to spread the love and the tingle I get in my gut when I look at FCDs. :love: :love:
When the lighting is just right the feeling I get from them is like the endorphine rush you get from chocolate melting in your mouth, or that naughty thing that men think about every 10 seconds. :naughty:
Good thing FCDs don't make you fat or give you STDs. :lol:
But they will make you broke.

I'll be the first to admit that I want more people to learn about and buy their own FCDs.
In person they are little miracles.
 

Arkteia

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 3, 2009
Messages
7,565
See what you did, Kenny!

I read it, went and bought my first colored diamond on ebay! $ 17.00 I s'ppose... Very soon my house will be flooded with 1-point cheapo fancy diamonds... :((

"The more knowledge, the more grief" according to Ecclesiastes.
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
28,702
Crasru, welcome. :wavey:
Step right in.
Have a seat.

We start you off with $17 stones but gradually we move you up to the hard stuff. :o :wink2:

af.jpg
 

AN0NYM0US

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 10, 2011
Messages
325
Not to threadjack, but Kenny did ask :Up_to_something: this is the only pic (vendor's) I have right now, because haven't received it yet. I have purchased from this vendor a few times and their pics have always been accurate.

hEL-23_340.jpg

.43 greenish blue2.JPG
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
28,702
Mmmmmmmm.
Yes it does have that Caribbean white-sandy-beach look.
Just looking at it puts me in me a calm relaxed mood. :love:
I visualize taking a break from snorkeling, and laying in a hammock between palm trees and sipping on an ice cold drink with an umbrella in it.

Color is a powerful thing.
It can be like a fragrance you wear, if you are open to the effect.
Lovely diamond, and nice size too. :naughty:

I'd love it if you'd started a thread about your FCD collection.
Do you set them?
Also if you are happy with your vendor we'd all benefit by knowing who it is.

On the other hand if you'd rather remain more private I completely respect that too.
These puppies ain't cheap and while I'm an open book about mine I'm not naive.
I do cherish my privacy and I keep mine in a box in a bank vault so I don't have to worry about them.
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
28,702
kenny|1307378565|2939019 said:
TL|1307203924|2937714 said:
This is a very expensive book, but maybe you can find it in the library. It is the definitive bible on colored diamonds, written by the foremost expert in the world.
http://www.amazon.com/Collecting-Cl...1019/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1307203718&sr=8-2
The GIA also has some old magazine articles for purchase in their "Gems and Gemology" magazine, as well as posters that lay out the various saturation levels for many hues.
Look at what I just found on youtube. Several parts.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=buasZOgrqY4
+1 on that book.
I got a used copy much cheaper and I refer to it all the time.

TL - great find on those videos!!!

http://www.ncdia.com/ is down at the moment but I have found some videos there that were informative.

For the record here are those NCDIA videos.
They are directed at jewelers, but are an informative introduction for anyone new to FCDs.

http://www.ncdia.com/origin-of-color/wonders-of-nature/explore-the-wonder-of-natural-color-diamonds.html
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
28,702
FYI another source with some interesting tidbits of FCD info:
This is their FAQ section, but surf all around their site.
Check out all the PDF files of past newsletters.

http://pastorgeneve.com/faq.php
 
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