A Complete Guide to Diamond Replacement
Most diamonds are three billion years old, which are older than some stars!
These striking stones may seem like they may last forever, but that is unfortunately not the case. Although tough, a diamond can chip, break, or crack if you hit it just the right way.
Your diamond jewelry may live at the bottom of the jewelry box if it’s broken or missing stones. But this doesn’t have to be your precious jewelry’s final resting place. You can decide on a diamond replacement or restoration to make your piece look like new again.
Our guide walks you through how a diamond replacement works and why you should consider it for your jewels.
What Makes a Diamond So Valuable
Diamonds are so valuable because of how much that goes into their creation. The billions of years it takes to form these stones give them unique qualities.
The cut of a diamond is arguably the most important quality this stone has. A well-cut diamond will have intense sparkle and fire. In contrast, a high-quality diamond with a poor cut will look dull.
The cut of a diamond relates to how the facets reflect light. A well-cut diamond has perfect symmetry, high polish, and is well proportioned.
A well-cut diamond can hide inclusions and make the diamond look bigger than it is. An excellent cut diamond reflects light better and can make a diamond seem whiter.
The clarity of a diamond refers to the flaws you see in a diamond. These flaws are categorized as blemishes or inclusions.
A blemish is a scratch or chip on the surface of the diamond. Inclusions are small flaws inside the diamond. For a diamond to be flawless, it can’t have any blemishes or inclusions.
The following is the scale used to rate the clarity of a diamond:
- Fl (flawless)
- IF (internally flawless)
- VVSI & VVS2 (very, very slightly included)
- SI1 & SI2 (slightly included)
- I1, I2 (included)
You may think a diamond needs to be free from inclusions to have a high clarity grade. In fact, the size of a diamond can impact how visible inclusion is.
You measure a diamond using a system of measurement called a carat. One carat is 200 milligrams or .2 grams.
Most people hype up a diamond’s carat weight and think that bigger is better, but this is not always the case. Diamonds often get cut in such a way as to preserve carat weight and lose brilliance. This means that some of the bigger stones can look dull and included.
You may think that diamonds are colorless, but they come in various colors. Most people believe that diamonds that are closer to colorless have the most sparkle. This couldn’t be farther from the truth.
Diamonds come in a whole rainbow of colors. A diamond rated “D” is colorless, and the scale measures to a yellow “Z.” Any diamond that has a higher intensity than a “Z” gets a fancy color grade instead.
What Is Jewelry Restoration
You can bring jewelry that is either broken due to age or wear back to its original beauty through restoration. An expert jeweler will examine the piece and work to bring it back to life or make it a new item.
When you bring in a piece for restoration, you will first make an appointment with your jeweler. You’ll bring your piece in so they can examine it in person.
Next, your jeweler will take the piece and clean it to make sure there is nothing else that needs fixing. They will then spend some time repairing your jewelry. Finally, you’ll get to pick your jewelry up and enjoy wearing it again.
Stone Replacement Cost
If your beloved ring has lost a stone, there won’t be a set price to fix it. Before your jeweler can give you a cost estimate, they’ll need a replacement stone to fit the broken piece. Four different factors go into the final cost estimate of replacing a diamond.
The size of the stone you are replacing has a lot to do with the cost of the replacement. You may think you have a tiny stone, but it may be bigger than you think.
A jeweler will have to figure out the diameter of the missing diamond. The bigger the diamond that needs replacing, the higher the price will be.
Another feature that will factor into the replacement cost is the quality of the diamond. Your jeweler will have to find a diamond with the same clarity and color as the other stone in the piece. If they don’t match the diamond, it can look very out of place if there are other diamonds.
If the stone you need to replace is in the center of a ring or jewelry piece, finding a replacement can be tricky. Your jeweler will have to use their skills to figure out the original stone’s color, cut, and carat weight. The higher the quality of the diamond, the more expensive the replacement cost will be.
It can be challenging for your jeweler to find a diamond that perfectly matches your jewelry piece. They may have to cut a stone down more to ensure it can fit the space the old diamond once sat in. The labor it takes to cut a diamond down will bump your final price.
Diamond jewelry comes in many styles of settings. A simple setting will be less expensive to fix than a more complex one.
The following are some of the most popular types of diamond jewelry settings:
- prong setting
- shared prong setting
- channel setting
- bar channel setting
- pave setting
- bezel setting
A channel set ring will take more work than a more straightforward prong-set ring.
How Long Does Stone Replacement Take
If the stone you are replacing is small, your diamond restoration may only take a day or two. If you need the center stone replaced, that process takes more time.
Your jeweler may need to find the correct replacement stone, cut it, and set it. Other factors can impact the overall turnaround time too. Often, you won’t be the only person in line to have your jewelry fixed.
Diamond Replacement Options
If your diamond is beyond repair and you don’t have the money to fix it, all hope is not lost. Consider an alternative gem replacement option and turn your piece into something new.
A diamond alternative is any stone that is not a diamond. Some diamond alternatives mimic diamonds, and others are entirely different stones.
Diamond Alternative Pros
You’ll have a ring unlike anyone else when you choose a diamond alternative. Choose a center stone in a bright color to stand out.
Many times, these alternatives cost less than a diamond. These stones are a good choice if you work within a budget.
If you choose a diamond alternative for an engagement ring, you aren’t alone. Many royalties and other famous people have selected an alternative center stone.
Diamond Alternative Cons
Diamonds are the hardest stone on Earth. Many stones are a close second, but none will ever be as durable as a diamond.
A diamond is known for how much it sparkles and shines. It’s hard to match this brilliance with another stone.
Here are some of the most popular alternatives you can choose for a diamond.
This diamond alternative is almost as hard as a diamond. It mimics the color, shapes, and sizes of diamonds.
Moissanite differs from diamonds in its facets and internal color. Their fire is rainbow in color instead of white.
Another durable stone choice is the beautiful sapphire. You’ll usually find these stones in blue, although they come in many other shades.
Many famous rings, like Princess Di’s engagement ring, feature this blue stone. Sapphire’s are a stunning but less expensive choice for your ring.
These deep green gemstones are rare and stunning. A high-quality emerald can cost as much as a diamond, but there are manufactured emeralds that are cheaper.
Emeralds have natural inclusions in them. These inclusions are more desirable as people like the organic, natural look they give the stone.
Give New Life to Your Jewelry With Diamond Replacement
Even though diamonds are the hardest mineral on Earth, they’re not indestructible. If your beloved jewelry gets scratched or broken, a diamond replacement can make it look new.
If you want to fix your jewelry to give it a new life, Daniel & Co can help. Contact us today to get the process started.