Diamond accents, diamond chips and tiny diamonds explained
At least once a week, I have a conversation with a visitor to our showroom who mentions the “diamond chips” in their ring. Upon closer inspection, I find either of two things. Sometimes the reference relates to tiny diamonds—perfectly cut and set into the item. At other times, I find small chips, almost flakes of diamond. In this last scenario, a small diamond can appear as a chip, when broken, with a remaining flake of diamond left in place. Occasionally, small ‘Antique’ style Rose Cut diamonds, very roughly cut appear within the ring.
Broken diamonds can sometimes appear like chips within a ring
Owing to the number of conversations we have mentioning ‘diamond chips,’ I decided to put a little more information together about tiny diamonds, diamond chips, diamond flakes, small, broken diamonds and diamond accents. Furthermore, wherever possible, I will include some photography for reference.
What are tiny diamonds?
Tiny diamonds, or small diamonds typically come from rough diamonds cut in sizes from under 1mm diameter to approximately 1.7mm in diameter. There are two main types of tiny diamond. It is possible to purchase small diamonds in single quantities, mixed parcels or parcels of equally sized diamonds.
Full-Cut diamonds, or Stars
Fully round brilliant-cut diamonds, referred to by diamond merchants as ‘Stars’ typically weigh from under 0.005cts (1mm) to 0.02cts (1.7mm). Most modern jewellery set with small diamonds today contains this type of diamond. Diamonds feature the same 57 facet arrangement as larger round brilliant-cut diamonds.
Single-cut diamonds, also referred to as 8-cut diamonds.
Fewer single-cut diamonds are cut today. Single cut diamonds were once used in the majority of diamond cluster rings. With less facets, single-cut diamonds feature an arrangement of 8 facets around the upper section and 8 facets around the lower section of the diamond. With less sparkle, 8-cut diamonds were less expensive. Today, however, smaller diamonds cut into brilliant-cuts demand higher prices. As a result full-cut diamonds are more profitable. Whilst we can source single-cut diamonds, larger sizes above 1.5mm can be pricier and more difficult to source today.
Small Rose-Cut diamonds
Smaller sizes of Rose-Cut diamonds sometimes appear in jewellery. This is especially true of older, Antique diamond rings, set with Older styles of diamond cut. Larger Rose-cut diamonds may appear beautifully faceted, but smaller Rose-cut diamonds often look more like chips. diamond flakes— misshapen with few facets. They resemble mere slivers, small, poorly cut Rose-cut diamonds are very difficult to replace and match.
Diamond accents give jewellery additional sparkle to an item of jewellery. They add further interest and enhance the design of a piece of jewellery. Unlike side stones, and diamond shoulders, diamond accents appear small and understated. Tiny diamonds as small as 1mm remain popular for use as diamond accents. They appear in the tips of claws or flush set into engagement ring bands. Alternatively, they may appear below the main setting, or even set within the bail of a pendant. Diamond accents add beauty without taking away the simplicity of a jewellery design.
Diamond accent engagement rings
A small selection of our diamond engagement rings feature diamond accents. Please feel welcome to contact us for suggestions on diamond accent engagement rings. Alternatively, read our dedicated page on diamond accented engagement rings.
Replacing tiny broken diamonds in jewellery
We regularly assist jewellers and private clients with replacement diamonds—matching small diamonds and re-setting them into items of jewellery. Small diamonds may be broken due to damage. We can often provide help replacing diamonds along with the work necessary to repair settings and restore the item. Please contact us for help and guidance on this side of our work.