A diamond does not have to be perfectly clear to be breathtaking. Sometimes, it’s the unexpected which really draws us in. I invite you to stare into the galaxy of a salt and pepper diamond, or indulge in the translucent shimmer of an icy rose cut. The delightfully imperfect nature of rustic diamonds has a sensual, understated appeal.
Out in the wild this type of diamond goes by many names. Sometimes called icy, rustic, salt and pepper or opaque, these monikers are usually determined by their color palette or inclusion patterns. Whichever label you prefer, it’s certain that these diamonds have blossomed in popularity over the last decade.
Rustic diamonds are not new. These rough crystals were once thought to be unusable due to their inclusions. Diamond cutters treated them as cast offs as they cut away to clear crystals. Eventually, they were finally seen for their natural interest and beauty. They began faceting and polishing the imperfect rough into unique shapes which designers quickly embraced.
I find rustic diamonds infinitely intriguing. I am drawn to their muted color palette, and inspired by the unique patterns and inclusions within the crystal. Each one is like a fingerprint. No two are identical.
You’ll often find these diamonds in rose cut shapes, with flat backs and a domed, faceted surface. But this unique rough can be purchased in the raw, in diamond slices, and in custom cut shapes.
To answer more questions about the terminology, makeup and origins of rustic diamonds, we turned to our trusty partners at Rough Diamond World who cut and supply these unique gems to jewelry designers.
RDW: There are no "proper" terms. I have heard rustic, translucent, ice, and salt & pepper among the terms used to describe these diamonds.
RDW: A raw diamond is completely unpolished, as it came out in nature. A rustic is a polished diamond with a raw feel.
RDW: The inclusions determine the characteristics and colors of these diamonds.The most popular at the moment is Salt and Pepper.
The reddish tones are usually iron inclusions although truly red diamonds take their color from a defect in their growth structure bending light to appear red. Yellow most commonly comes from Nitrogen in the diamond. Blues and grey without inclusions are from Boron and greens are usually a natural irradiation from deep inside the Earth.
RDW: The most important quality characteristic is the polish of these diamonds. There should be no quality issues potentially causing a stone to chip or break in the higher price goods.
RDW: All of our diamonds are conflict free. We strictly adhere to the Kimberly process, and our factory is certified with the Indian government [where they are cut] for fair trade practices.
RDW: All diamonds resonate brilliantly compared to any other gemstone. What has often been overlooked in market clean white diamonds is that the characteristics that have previously been thought of as "flaws" are also beautiful and make every one of these stones unique!
RDW: We offer all kind of diamonds from the rough to the polished. If you can think it, we can make it! or at least will do our best trying!!!