Your Guide to Buying a Diamond Pendant

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How to Buy Diamond Pendants on eBay

Diamonds hold a unique place among precious gems. Symbols of enduring love and timeless beauty, they remain the stone of choice for engagement rings and bridal sets, but they also work beautifully in other jewelry. Diamond pendants range from subtle, understated sophistication to dazzling fashion statements bold and bright enough for a red carpet entrance. Precious gemstones are prized for more than their beauty alone. Diamonds are the hardest naturally occurring minerals known, so they are as durable as they are brilliant. Whether mounted alone or in a dramatic setting, a diamond pendant transcends fads; it will be as beautiful decades from now as it is today. Pendants featuring shapes and themes that have special meaning to their wearers are always in style, too. When shopping for diamond pendants on eBay, understanding how diamonds are graded and knowing the terminology jewelers use can help make the right decisions. As a gift, few presents have the dramatic impact of a diamond pendant set in precious metal. As a fashion statement, diamond jewelry is always elegantly appropriate.

Grading Diamond Pendants

Diamonds are one of the most carefully regulated and graded items available. Each stone is graded according to four characteristics colloquially known as the Four C's. These four properties determine the stone's value. In pendants with multiple diamonds, each stone is assessed and matched with others of similar quality. Sellers on eBay typically feature the pendant's vital statistics of cut, color, clarity, and carat weight in the description of the piece. For fine jewelry, certification documents are often included as part of the sale price; this paperwork contains the specifics about the diamonds in the pendant.

Cut

When jewelers talk about a diamond's cut, they do not mean its overall shape. In this sense, cut describes how well the diamond cutter shaped the stone. A diamond that is cut too shallowly allows light rays to leak from the bottom of the stone, diminishing its brilliance and giving it a glassy or icy appearance. A stone that is too deep through its center looks dull and dim. An ideally cut diamond is faceted to reflect as much light as possible through the table, the large central facet at the gem's crown.

Color

Most natural diamonds appear white or colorless at a glance, but a closer inspection from a trained gemologist often picks up a slight yellowish or brownish cast. Diamonds are graded from a D, pure white, to Z, noticeably colored. Most gem-quality diamonds sold fall within the range of F to I or J, but K, L, and M stones may be beautiful bargains. Yellow gold settings conceal any tint in the gemstone, and white gold or platinum settings highlight a white diamond's colorlessness. When shopping for a diamond pendant, match the gem's color to its setting. Some highly colored diamonds are more valuable than their clear counterparts. Rare hues such as pink, canary yellow, and blue diamonds are among the world's costliest gemstones. These diamonds are not measured on the traditional color scale. Jewelers sometimes refer to them as fancy diamonds.

Clarity

Every diamond is unique. Part of what makes each stone special is its collection of freckles and flaws. During its formation, the crystalline structure of the diamond may include a fleck of another mineral or a different form of carbon, leaving the gem with black dots or speckles inside it. These small flaws do not diminish the gem's overall fire, but they dim its brilliance and make the stone darker than a clearer stone of similar cut and color. Feathery veils of other minerals can cloud a diamond's clarity. Jewelers and gemologists have devised a rating scale for diamond clarity. The numbers within some categories denote finer divisions within each group; a lower number is a clearer stone. For example, an SI1 diamond is slightly clearer than an SI2 and markedly clearer than an I1. When shopping for a diamond pendant on eBay, make note of these abbreviations in the seller's description.

FL

Flawless

The rarest clarity designation, FL means the gem is flawless even under magnification.

IF

Internally Flawless

While the interior of the stone is flawless, it has tiny imperfections at its edge; these are visible only under magnification.

VVS1, VVS2

Very, Very Small Inclusions

Under a loupe's 10X magnification, VVS diamonds have almost invisible flaws in their hearts.

VS1, VS2

Very Small Inclusions

Imperfections in the diamond are readily visible with a jeweler's loupe but are invisible to unaided eyes.

SI1, SI2

Small Inclusions

A close inspection with unaided eyes reveals a few small inclusions.

I1, I2, I3

Inclusions

The feathers and freckles in the stone are visible without magnification and have a marked effect on the stone's overall appearance.

Carat Weight

Carats are the most common measurement of weight for gemstones. The measurement is equivalent to 100 points or 0.2 grams. A larger carat weight means a bigger stone. For diamond cluster pendants and multi-stone designs, the piece's total carat weight is usually featured, sometimes with notes about each gem's individual weight.

Natural vs. Lab-Created Diamonds

Within the past decade, lab-created diamonds have appeared on the market. They are chemically identical to natural diamonds, but they have few to no internal flaws. They are also often tinted because of the processes used to create them. Although they are clearly sold as lab-created diamonds, they are genuine and distinct from simulated diamonds, moissanite, or cubic zirconia. When shopping for diamond pendants, synthesized gems may be one option for finding a beautiful stone at a lower cost. Some people also enjoy them for their unusual origins, so consider lab diamonds as an alternative to natural stones. By using eBay's search feature at the top of the page, it is possible to shop specifically for lab-created diamond jewelry.

Styles of Diamond Pendants

A diamond pendant can be dramatic enough for evening wear or simple enough for casual elegance. Some diamond jewelry has special significance to its wearer; religious symbols, initials, hearts, and other designs often have deeper meaning.

Diamond Solitaire Pendants

The simplest diamond pendants showcase a single spectacular gemstone. A diamond solitaire pendant is always an appropriate choice. Settings for diamond solitaire pendants range from simple to showy. Prong mounts highlight the gem and show very little metal surrounding it. Bezel settings, another popular choice, surround the diamond in a thin band of metal for a smooth, contemporary style. Other diamond solitaire styles place more emphasis on the setting with an ornate filigree border or an engraved bail, the metal piece that holds the pendant on its chain. Illusion settings surround a smaller diamond with a faceted surface that maximizes its shine. When shopping for a diamond solitaire, the quality of the stone is paramount. The pendant's beauty lies in its simplicity, so choose a diamond of good clarity and cut to make it shine.

Diamond Cluster Pendants

Diamond clusters are groupings of smaller stones that have the impact of a much larger diamond at a more affordable price. Cluster styles may resemble the round, oval, or pear shapes of diamond solitaires, or they may be fanciful organic or geometric shapes. Flowers, stars, and stylized snowflakes are appealing designs for cluster pendants. As with diamond solitaires, setting styles vary; while most cluster pendants incorporate pronged styles, others use groupings of bezel-set or channel-set stones for a smoother look.

Three-Stone and Journey Pendants

Said to represent the past, present, and future, three-stone pendant designs are often given as romantic gifts. The three diamonds often form a vertical line, but other styles group them into triangles or a horizontal row of gems. Stylish variations on the theme incorporate sleek channel settings or decorative metalwork that complements the trio of diamonds. Diamond journey pendants have a similar theme. A curving row of diamonds in graduated sizes represents the path life takes; each diamond is larger than the last to emphasize that the best is yet to come. With its sinuous, elegant curves and sizable diamonds, the design is beautiful even without knowing its symbolic meaning.

Hearts, Flowers, and Other Themes

Diamonds grace thousands of pendant designs. Any symbol, initial, or figure becomes more elegant when glittering diamonds cover it. Hearts are perennially popular for their association with romantic love. Dozens of heart designs include diamonds to proclaim a lasting affection. Flowers are another traditional motif that often appear in diamonds. Initials and names adorned with diamonds never go out of style, either. Recently, many fine jewelry designers have drawn inspiration from the fun styles of fashion jewelry, creating apples, skulls, and shamrocks in pave-set diamonds. Crosses, Stars of David, and other religious symbols make beautiful and meaningful pendants. Diamonds add sparkle to these expressions of faith.

Tips for Buying Diamond Pendants on eBay

When shopping for a diamond pendant on eBay, note the cut, color, and clarity of the gems as well as their total carat weight. A smaller diamond solitaire of excellent quality often makes a more dramatic impact than a larger diamond of lesser clarity. Many sellers include a slim chain with a pendant, but others do not. If the pendant is meant as a gift or will be worn as soon as it is delivered, ensure that a chain goes with it. Another option is to order a matching chain when buying the pendant. Choosing a chain separately is a good way to keep the necklace length proportionate with the pendant. A diamond solitaire, for example, looks best on a choker or princess length, about 14 to 18 inches long. When buying a pendant as a gift, pick the metal the recipient wears most often. Note whether most of the person's jewelry is yellow gold, white gold, or platinum and select a pendant to match the rest of the jewelry wardrobe. Shopping on eBay provides advantages such as free shipping, authorized sellers, and an extensive Buyer Protection Policy. Many sellers also offer documentation on diamonds, so read the seller's description thoroughly to find out what is included in the purchase price.

Finding Diamond Pendants on eBay

The Jewelry & Watches department at eBay is accessible via two tabs, the All Categories tab and the Fashion portal on the site's main page. Within the jewelry department, find the Fine Jewelry tab and mouse over it to reveal the Fine Necklaces & Pendants sub-category. Within this section, select diamonds as the stone of choice.

Conclusion

A dazzling diamond pendant can be an expression of love, a symbol of faith, or an eye-catching fashion statement. The selection of diamond pendants on eBay ensures a good match for every taste and style. Sophisticated solitaires and fun fashion jewelry embellished with diamonds also fit a range of budgets.

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