A loose diamond is, as it sounds, a diamond that has not yet been mounted or inlaid into a piece of jewelry. However, do not confuse a loose diamond with a rough diamond or uncut diamond. The latter refer to diamonds as they are found in the ground, and very often they can look like grubby pebbles, giving no indication of the icy fire burning within the heart of the crystal.
Loose diamonds have been cut and polished, and will very likely look magnificent!
Who Buys Loose Diamonds?
Anyone can buy a loose diamond if the fancy takes them – many jewelers do sell the loose stones, even though these will not be on display. You will have to ask to see loose diamonds, and you will then most likely have to submit to a brief search and whatever security protocols the jeweler has in place.
Jewelers buy loose stones, of all types, not just diamonds, to make their own pieces, either standard pieces that sell reasonably well for decent profit or ‘eye-catchers’ ornate and elaborate (and expensive!) pieces that will go in the window to grab the attention of well-to-do passers-by.
Investors often buy diamonds to store as a form of currency. Diamonds are small, lightweight, and redeemable for market value in almost every country in the world. Sometimes criminals will use diamonds for similar reasons, a fact which gives loose diamonds something of an air of dark glamor about them!
Couples are another group of people who sometimes buy loose diamonds, often to have truly unique engagement rings or gifts made up for each other.
Advantage of Buying Loose Diamonds
Seeing a diamond out of its setting is an excellent way to see exactly what you are buying. Obviously, when designing a piece of jewelry, any flaws in the stone are going to be placed to make the stone look its best. Seeing the loose stone, preferably against a sheet of pure white paper, will allow you to examine it thoroughly. You will be able to see the subtle – but significant – differences between a D grade stone and an H – differences which, once mounted against a metal setting, will become all but invisible, despite the large price difference between the two stones.
Many places that sell loose diamonds will also set them, sometimes for a discounted price, so you are able to have the perfect diamond in your chosen setting without having to wait very much longer than if you picked a piece from the display cabinet.
When Not to Buy a Loose Stone
Buying a diamond is an exciting proposition, but it can turn sour if you do not know enough to choose properly! Ask an expert to go with you, or study up on the four Cs and be sure you can recognize a satisfactory stone from a good one. If you are determined to choose the stone or stones yourself, take the time to learn the facts of diamond dealing: the four Cs as mentioned above, why a small and perfect stone is better than a big flawed one, and which cut will work best with your chosen purpose for the loose diamond.
Buying diamonds online is becoming more prevalent. The beauty of choosing your diamond from an online site is that you will be able to read the specifications of each stone before you commit to buying it, from the cut, to the color, even to recommendations for the setting of the stone – allowing even amateurs to do very well with their choices. Many online diamond dealers will provide certification from internationally recognized labs, HD Video as well as light performance images to help you make your decision easier.