The international diamond industry grades diamonds using criteria to describe each stone’s cut, clarity, color and carat weight. A diamond’s grade in each of these categories determines its value and price. Becoming educated on the 4Cs is the first step in the process of selecting a diamond engagement ring. Todd Ingwer, Lead Designer for Leo Ingwer, Inc., a family-owned custom diamond jewelry manufacturer located in the heart of New York’s jewelry district, helps customers understand the 4Cs to customize diamond wedding jewelry featuring the most beautiful design within a specific budget.
Cut is sometimes confused with “shape” (round, square, oval), but diamonds of every shape and size must be cut and polished by master craftsmen to release their brilliance. According to Todd Ingwer, "We work with customers via their local jeweler to select a diamond whose cut maximizes its sparkle, and may recommend different shapes to accommodate a budget without compromising on cut."
Most diamonds contain some inner flaws, or inclusions, that occur when a diamond is formed deep within the earth. The visibility, number and size of these inclusions determine what is called the clarity of a diamond. Ingwer notes, "Most flaws are invisible to the naked eye, or are totally hidden within certain settings. We work with jewelers to help customers build a ring around the center stone that may not be absolutely free of inclusions, but looks nearly flawless in its setting."
Colorless diamonds are the most desirable since they allow the most refraction of light that creates their sparkle. According to Ingwer, "Although the highest color-rated diamonds come with the highest price tags, it is very difficult for an untrained eye to see the difference between grades, therefore in tailoring a diamond ring to a customer’s budget, we can balance color and clarity without compromising on the beauty of a the final piece of diamond jewelry."
A carat is the unit of weight by which a diamond is measured. Notes Ingwer, "Often a customer thinks they want a 'diamond as big as the Ritz,' and we can create a ring with large center stones within a particular price point. However, we work with local jewelers and their customers to show that considering a smaller diamond with a better cut, fewer inclusions or a higher color grade may give them a more beautiful end result."
All diamonds sold by Leo Ingwer Inc. have been purchased from legitimate sources not involved in funding conflict in compliance with United Nations resolutions. Leo Ingwer Inc. guarantees that these diamonds are conflict-free, based on personal knowledge and/or written guarantees provided by the supplier of these diamonds.