All About Gems: Diamonds

All About Gems: Diamonds

Diamonds are forever and relatively speaking, they have been around forever!  The diamonds that are set into your beautiful diamond ring are in fact the oldest thing that you will ever own.  The “youngest” of these precious stones that you could be displaying on your finger would be approximately 50 million years old.  This age range for diamonds could be as old as 2.5 billion years, now that’s an antique!

Diamond

Diamonds through out their lifetime have carried several different and ornate histories.  They also carry numerous myths and legends that are associated with history.  Some outlandish myths about diamonds range from the stone having the ability to perform magic, have healing powers, grant protection for the bearer of the stone and in some instances induce poisoning.  Outlandish and remarkable become an understatement for the myths that surround this stone. Diamond, the name itself comes from 12th Century Greek meaning invincible or unconquerable for its hardness qualities. 

The myths and legendary tales of diamonds began as far back as Roman times.  Those stories were recorded in Roman literature.  Stories suggest that Romans believed that diamonds were in fact tears from the gods and splinters of falling stars.  Myths of this beautiful stone do not end there in Roman literature.  The Romans believed that Cupid’s faithful arrows were in fact tipped in diamonds and thus possessed the ability to have magical powers.  Diamonds also captured the attention of famous philosopher Plato.  He wrote of these gems as living organisms, which possessed celestial beings.  Romans loved to possess diamonds due to the fact that they believed the gem had broad magical powers.  Diamonds, amongst other powers were believed to cure life’s troubles and bring about power, strength, invincibility, bravery and courage to those lucky enough to behold the beautiful gem.

In mid-evil times, kings lead their men into battle donning a breast plate that was to be covered in diamonds along with other gems stones which each had a unique magical power.  Diamonds were important to this plate because they believed diamonds gave magical powers far beyond meaning and power of man.  Therefore, it was essential for kings above anyone else to be donned in diamonds. 

Diamonds were held in particular high esteem from 1214 to 1270 in France, when they were especially designated for use by the king only.  King Louis IX of France established a law that would grant the use of diamonds for the king.  This fact just indicates the rarity of diamonds of the time, and their overall worth through out time.  During this time, diamonds were used for representing honor, strength, invincibility and courage of the leader. 

During the 14th century, a small number of diamonds began to be seen in European regalia and jewelry designs.  Diamonds, at this time, were seen as a sign of love and devotion.  Many of the designs used pearls as an accent gem along with the diamond.  Although the popularity of diamonds was becoming more mainstream, noble and large diamonds were still privileged to Royals and houses of the affluent. 

Since the beginning of diamond’s popularity, they were said to contain numerous characteristics and were able to grant the beholder numerous qualities that they may not have possessed without the stone.  Some virtues that were instilled within the stone were that diamonds are supposed to impart virtue upon its holder, and bring a generous heart to the owner.  Diamonds were also said to bring their owners luck and success.  Diamonds through out their history were talisman, to ward off the potential of poisoning, and overall protection for the traveler. 

Overall the gem of diamond has a full and illustrious history of myths and legendary tales from its inception and its use in cultures.  There is an immense amount of knowledge and characteristics that surround this beautiful stone.  When purchasing diamonds be sure to keep in mind all the myths, legends, and folklore that surrounds this bright, shiny, beautiful gem!

Remembering Elizabeth Taylor

Remembering Elizabeth Taylor

Diamonds are forever and diamonds are a girl’s best friend. They are the closest of friends to fashion icon and ultimate jewelry collector, the late, Dame Elizabeth Taylor.  This morning Dame Elizabeth Taylor passed away. Through out her 79 years of life, Dame

Courtesy of HauteLiving

 Taylor had become a collector of many things, movie roles, men, awards, but none quite as special to her as her extraordinary collection of jewels. As a woman who loved and collected many wonderful jewelry pieces, we want to take the time and remember Elizabeth Taylor through her jewelry collection.  Taylor once wrote, “I’m fortunate to have some very important pieces of jewelry.  I don’t believe I own any of these pieces.  I believe I am their custodian, here to enjoy them, to give them the best treatment in the world, to watch after their safety and to love them”.  

Taylor’s much admired collection started with many gifts from her significant others.  They would surprise her with various baubles each adding excitement and sentimental value to her ever growing and immense collection.  Of her various gifts, Taylor collected pearls, rubies, emeralds, and of course her greatest love, diamonds.  Taylor received three major gifts of jewelry from her then husband Richard Burton.  Burton loved gifting Taylor with immense selections of jewelry.  

Taylor Burton Diamond Courtesy of Life Magazine

Of those three extravagant gifts that Taylor received from Burton, was the Krupp Diamond.  Once owned by Vera Krupp, the Krupp diamond itself is an asscher cut diamond set into a ring which boasts a stunning 33.19 carats.  It is considered to be one of the most flawless diamonds in the world and rarely left the finger of Ms. Taylor.  Secondly, Elizabeth Taylor was gifted a La Peregrina Pearl.  This incredible pearl, which was set in a necklace, is 50 carats total and once belonged to Mary I of England.  This historical relevance was important to both Taylor and Burton, often making jewelry purchases based on the historical background of the piece.  Lastly, Taylor received what is now named the “Taylor-Burton Diamond” from Mr. Richard Burton.  This stunner is an amazing 69.42 carats total and cost 1.1 million dollars at the time of purchase.  The pear shaped bauble was originally set into a ring to grace Ms. Taylor’s finger, but after the weight of the one inch thick diamond was realized, it was later turned into a necklace to adorn Ms. Taylor.  When worn is pubic, Elizabeth was adorned with two other accessories, armed guards, for the safety and security of both the diamond and Ms. Taylor. 

Dame Elizabeth Taylor’s collection does not end there.  Her extensive collection includes a massive yellow heart shaped diamond necklace, called the Taj Mahal, also a gift from Burton.  Among her extensive collection, the most notable pieces in which Elizabeth Taylor collected an antique diamond tiara, 29 carat diamond engagement ring, and an antique belle époque diamond necklace.  Bringing about the historical presence to her famous gems, Taylor also collected many historically famous pieces of jewelry.  A sample of those includes the Duchess of Windsor’s diamond brooch, the Grand Duchess of Russia’s emeralds and the Prince of Wales Insignia, along with countless pearls, emeralds, rubies and diamonds. 

Ms. Taylor’s immense love affair with jewelry did not quite end there.  She lent her expertise and her love of all jewels to different jewelry lines, in order to spread the joy and excitement to all.  Her desire was to make everyone be the custodians of baubles if they 

Krupp Diamond Courtesy of Antique Jewelry Investor

so choose and would love to add to their own personal collections.  Elizabeth Taylor also wrote a book in 2002, called, My Love Affair with Jewelry.  She wished to expose everyone to her extensive collection and give a glimpse of precious pieces.  Ms. Taylor is quoted as saying, “I knew that I wanted to give others a glimpse of the thrills and pure happiness that these beautiful creations have given me”. 

Countless baubles, an immense amount of love, and care describe the overall collection of Dame Elizabeth Taylor.   Through her life many things entered and left and many changes occurred but one great love remained, her great love for jewelry and her desire to collect and care for them.   Diamonds are a girl’s best friend and most certainly were Elizabeth Taylor’s best friend.

Comfort Fit Wedding Bands

Comfort Fit Wedding Bands

Classic

Are you currently looking for the perfect band with the perfect fit?  Wondering how to create the most comfort in wedding bands?  Wondering why ‘comfort fit’ is comfort fit and different from all other bands out there?  Look no further, we have all the answers to those questions, right here!

Comfort bands, by definition, are exactly what their name states, ‘comfort fit’.  The rings are made with rounded inside edges, in order to slide on the finger better and maintain overall comfort.  The style is popular among men and women who are looking for a little added comfort for their precious band. Another style is heavy comfort fit bands. They are thicker and more rounded comfort fit bands.  It also gives the band more ‘heft’ and weight.  It gives the individual wearing the band security that the band is there, yet the comfort in which they desire.  This is becoming a popular choice among everyone who chooses to wear a wedding band. Comparing the comfort fit and heavy comfort fit with the non-comfort fit bands, there is a difference. Non-comfort fit bands have a straight edge and not rounded.  Although, still stylish and wearable, it does not have the same comfort level as the comfort fit bands.

Comfort fit bands are preferred over non-comfort fit because they provide an ease to wearing rings.  The edges are rounded and do not pinch the skin.  It slides on easily for all day wear.  With this feature, comfort fit wedding bands are the perfect choice for individuals who do not wear jewelry on a daily basis or do not wear any jewelry.  Comfort fit bands are recommended to these individuals. It will add comfort to all day wear of the band.

Contemporary

WeddingBands.com offers heavy comfort fit bands in a range of styles.  There are plain wedding rings, classic wedding rings, contemporary wedding rings and handmade wedding rings with the comfort fit feature.

Whether you’re looking for a comfort fit, heavy comfort fit or even a non-comfort fit band, WeddingBands.com has the perfect solution for you!  Everything from Classic to Contemporary, you will be sure to find the perfect band for you.  Make your big day even more special with the perfect and comfortable wedding band!

10 Tips to Buying Jewelry Online

10 Tips to Buying Jewelry Online

The holiday season is fast approaching and many of you will be busy with work, holiday parties, decorating, and any other daily activities we all have. Many of us do not have the time to go to the stores and shop. Times have changed and we all turn to the internet for gifts, daily shopping, information, even buying jewelry. Who would have thought people would buy jewelry online? Not a place where most people think to buy, but its true, people buy jewelry online all the time. So, how can you make sure you are getting what you paid for and what you want?  It’s just like shopping for jewelry in the stores. You need to understand what you are buying, where you are buying from, and all the other little details that come with buying jewelry.  Here are some guidelines to buying jewelry online:

  1. Read the description carefully. The pictures look great, but we all know that pictures (even when we take pictures of ourselves) are different compared to the actual object.  Online jewelers do their very best to take accurate pictures of the piece they are selling.  However, the lighting, angle, and zoom can show the piece differently.  In this case, it’s important to read the description carefully.  This will help match the image with the picture more accurately. If you are still questioning the image, call the company. They will help explain the product.
  2. Always understand the terminology used in the description. When buying jewelry it is important to understand all the language used in the description. If you do not understand the information, call the company or search for more answers.  A lot of jewelry websites have sections specifically catered for information. Information on diamonds, colored gemstones, precious metals, etc. Look at their information sections. It really helps to read through these sections. You will learn quite a bit and you can make a more sound decision.
  3. Know the return policy. Before you hit the purchase button, carefully read the return policy. You will know what can or cannot be returned, what will be refunded back to you, and possibly more information on their products and services.
  4. Know the guarantee. Understand how the online jeweler is backing up their products. Buying online can be scary but with the right guarantee and return policy, jewelers make it easier for people to feel comfortable buying online. It’s good to know how they treat manufacturing and workmanship defects and how they will service their products in the future. A good company will back up their products and any manufacturing and workmanship defects.  They won’t just end the relationship after the purchase is made. It should be a continuous relationship just like a normal brick-n-mortar jeweler. Remember when you purchase from the online company, deal with them for any adjustments or repairs on the jewelry piece. This generally helps sustain the guarantee the online jeweler provides.
  5. Learn about the company. It is always a good idea to read about the history of the company. Learn about their experience in the jewelry industry or how long they have been around in business. A lot of good online jewelers generally have experience or hired experience in the jewelry industry. It’s always great to buy from a company that has been in business for years, especially if it’s online. If there is no history, call and ask them. Talking to a real person and getting a feel for how the company really operates will help make your decision.
  6. Read the testimonials, customer reviews, or feedback. It’s always great to hear about other people’s experiences with the company. Testimonials and customer reviews are great because people express their true opinions. You learn bits and pieces about the company’s customer service, their return policies, the quality of their jewelry, and more. It’s a great way to get an un-biased opinion.

    Diamond Anniversary Ring

    Eternity Ring or Diamond Anniversary Ring

  7. Don’t just look at the price. The price may look great, but you need to understand the product being sold. This goes back to understanding the description.  It’s great to see 70% off on jewelry items or really cheap jewelry, but is it really worth the buy when the diamonds are heavily included (poor quality), a pendant that’s hollow, or a ring that’s very thin. I don’t think so. Look at the description, understand what you are receiving. For example, when buying rings, learn the weight, the thickness, and width of the ring. This will help compare prices more easily. And for diamonds, learn about the clarity and color. All very important, because the price can sometimes be deceiving for the actual piece being purchased.
  8. Buy ahead of time! With the holiday season fast approaching or any special occasion, it is always better to plan for the purchase. Yes, internet shopping is easy and quick. And the “online store” is open 24/7, but make sure you plan for any manufacturing time, delivery time, exchanges, and any possible delays that may occur (i.e. shipping or manufacturing).  Some websites stock and others manufacture. For example, generally rings are manufactured because stocking all the options the website carries, with all the different sizes and different metals will be crazy.  So, most rings are manufactured to the size and style ordered. Other jewelry items are made more quickly, but in the end it’s always better to plan ahead, because there could be shipping delays.
  9. Make sure the site is secure.  One of the most important aspects of shopping online is site security. You don’t want to buy from a company that does not secure their information or make it safe for you to buy their products. Site security does not only apply for jewelry sites but anything purchased online. To determine if the site has secured shopping, look at their security policy, secure shopping or look for a third party seal like VeriSign, GeoTrust, etc. Another good indication of a secured site is looking at the URL name. At the point of check out make sure the website begins with “https”.  Yes, this is basic internet knowledge now but you would be surprised at how many people still buy from unsecured sites.
  10. Last but not least, always print out a receipt or check your email before you close that confirmation screen!I know a lot of us are trying to go paperless or paper free, but when buying jewelry online, it is better to print out the receipt or check your email to make sure a confirmation was sent. Keep it for your records, at least until you decide to keep the jewelry piece.  Most online jewelers can find your order through other means, but it’s always a good idea to keep your jewelry confirmations together.

Now that you know 10 tips to buying jewelry online; go grab your phone, laptop, or computer and comfortably learn and search for jewelry. There are a lot of wonderful jewelry sites out there, offering very useful information. Until next time, please remember learn about the jewelry you are buying, it will make the whole experience better!