ct Used to describe the weight of a single diamond
ctTW Total weight meaning more than one diamond
It is important to recognise that two stones may have the same carats, meaning they have the same weight measurement, and yet they are entirely different in size and appearance due to the actual density of the stone. The denser a stone is, the more weight it has, sometimes a smaller stone will weigh more than a larger stone because of its density. For example, a two carat diamond will not always be twice the size of a one carat diamond.
When selecting your diamond ring, you can choose between a single, solitaire style setting (a single diamond on the ring) and a setting that has multiple, smaller stones to make up the ring (a cluster). The value of a solitaire with a single one carat diamond will be more than if you buy a ring that has two diamonds that add up to one carat. Larger sized diamonds are much more rare, meaning they have a higher value than if purchasing the same amount of diamond carats in smaller stones.
So how do you determine what size diamond to buy? Do you want a diamond carat of 1, or 2, or do you want a ring with multiple, smaller stones? The answer to this will depend greatly on your budget as well as the person who will be wearing the ring.
A diamond will look larger on a slender finger, so keep that in mind if the wearer of the ring has thin hands. The actual diamond carat measurement is probably not as much of a concern as the appearance, shape, and setting of the ring. It is far more important to select a ring that is pleasing to look at than it is to buy one with the most carats you can afford.
Determine how much money you have to spend, and then decide on the cut of the diamond. Once you have these two pieces of information, you can start browsing the diamonds in your price range, in the style you want, and find out what diamond carat you are in the market to buy.
Meaning White or Near Colourless. Some can be more colour sensitive than others. H is considered a high standard diamond colour grade and is one of the most attractive because of its price point versus quality. The differences between a Grade G is hardly noticeable. However, you might notice a difference at higher levels (like D, E and F).
The minimum diamond clarity at allthingsgold is SI2. For more information here's a detailed breakdown of the different types:
SI2: Is considered 'eye clean'. There might be inclusions (Imperfections) to the trained naked eye. However, there are no guarantees. There are definite 'Imperfections' under a microscope at 10x zoom.
SI1: An SI1 diamond has better clarity than SI2, typically there should be no imperfections to the naked eye, but still there are inclusions under a microscope at 10x zoom.
VS: Meaning very slight Inclusions. The naked eye will see no flaws. The diamond will have minor inclusions only visible by a skilled grader under 10x zoom microscope.
VVS: Meaning very very slight Inclusions. Any flaws are incredibly difficult to see for even the most experienced diamond grader to find at 10 x magnification.