Carat is the standard unit of weight used for gemstones. 1 carat = 0.2 grams, or 200 milligrams. The higher the carat, the more rare and more valuable the diamond. Just as currency is divided into smaller units, a carat is divided into 100 points. For example, half of a carat will weigh 0.50 carat (ct). A quarter of a carat will weigh 0.25 carats (ct), and so on.
Does size matter? Large diamonds are rarely found in nature so they are more valuable than smaller diamonds of the same colour and clarity. This means that the price of a diamond will increase exponentially as the carat size of the diamond increases. Diamonds of one carat or larger are so rare that they represent only 1% of all the diamonds mined worldwide. Many of the world’s largest diamonds were found in South Africa. “South Africa has produced some of the world’s largest, most valuable and memorable diamonds and today maintains its position as a top diamond producer,” says Yair Shimansky, Founder and CEO.
Carat weight can also be measured in grams
Though the carat weight of a diamond gives an indication of its size, weight and size should not be confused with one another: The size of a diamond is also dependent on its cut and shape. It is quite possible for two diamonds of the same carat weight to appear to be different sizes. Each individual diamond’s proportions (such as the table and depth percentages) must be taken into account to determine its size. A shallow diamond with a wide table may appear larger than a diamond with a deeper cut, and a narrower table, yet they may have an equal carat weight. An elongated shape such as a Marquise tends to maximise carat weight, as it makes the stone appear larger than that of a traditional round shape of a diamond of equal weight.
The term carat originates from the seed of the carob tree. In ancient times, before scales and units of mass were invented, diamond traders compared the weight of a diamond to the seeds of the carob tree. Each carob seed had a uniform weight, equal to 0.20 grams or 200 milligrams and hence determined the weight of the diamond. The carat metric was officially adopted by the United States in 1913, with other nations soon following suit. Today, the carat is a universal metric measure, with all nations adhering to the exact same measurement. That means that when you purchase a diamond, it will have the same carat weight everywhere in the world.
Shimansky offers a wide variety of diamond sizes to meet all your jewellery creation needs: From larger diamonds weighing over a carat, to the smallest of diamonds found in a micro setting, and everything in between. Shimansky diamonds are cut to maximise their beauty and their brilliance – not to emphasize their size. That means that all Shimansky diamonds, regardless of their size, are cut and polished with the same passion and attention to detail. Whatever the size of the diamond that captures your heart, you can rest assured that it was cut and polished with the utmost of care, and that it displays the maximum amount of fire, brilliance and scintillation.
Equally important to the cut, colour, clarity and carat weight of a diamond is the 5th C – Confidence.