Fancy Color Diamonds

Rarer Than Rare: Colored Diamonds That Give ‘Fancy’ A New Meaning

Incredibly precious and breathtakingly beautiful, rare fancy color diamonds are an extraordinary testament to the magic of Mother Nature. Of all the diamonds mined in any given year, only one in 10,000 is a fancy color diamond, and, of those, just a handful meet Tiffany’s exceptional standards. Unlike other colored gemstones, rare fancy color diamonds showcase vibrant, saturated hues that are brought to life with scintillation, fire and brilliance in an unmatched display of beauty. While fancy color diamonds have been in existence just as long as white diamonds, it has been only been the past 40 or so years that they have been elevated to their rightful place of prominence in the world of high jewelry.

Tiffany’s unparalleled rare fancy color diamonds span a wide spectrum of hues, from cherry blossom pinks and reds to warm yellows and oranges, purples and electric blues and verdant greens. Rare fancy color diamonds possess all the characteristics that make colorless diamonds so beautiful: the fire, brilliance, sparkle and incredible surface luster, with the extraordinary bonus of vibrant color. They are diamonds that exhibit any color outside of the normal D–Z color range, or a yellow diamond that exhibits more color than the Z master stone.

Many of Tiffany’s rare fancy color diamonds are assigned color grades at the Tiffany Gemological Laboratory. The grades are based on three criteria: hue, the basic body color; tone, the lightness or darkness of the hue; and saturation, the purity of the hue and the amount and quality of modifying shades.

Tiffany has a long history of crafting the world’s most exceptional fancy yellow diamonds—a storied relationship that dates back to the purchase of the famous 128.54-carat Tiffany Diamond in 1878. All Tiffany yellow diamonds are natural, with no enhancements or treatments, and Tiffany yellow diamonds fall within only three grades which are a metric of rarity, not necessarily beauty: fancy yellow diamonds, fancy intense yellow diamonds and fancy vivid yellow diamonds. While still incredibly rare, yellow is the most abundant of the fancy colors.

Fancy color diamonds have played a prominent role in Tiffany’s award-winning exhibits at the great world’s fairs from 1876 to 1915. As described by Tiffany design director emeritus, John Loring, in his book, Tiffany Diamonds, the exhibit for the 1889 Paris Exposition was “the most extraordinary collection of jewels ever produced by an American jewelry house.” The collection’s astonishing array of rare fancy color diamonds included the Colonial necklace, with the 77-carat yellow Tiffany II Diamond. Tiffany’s 56 prizes at the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago included gold medals for a jewelry collection that featured a brooch with a 16.25-carat fancy blue diamond and a brooch with a 16.69-carat fancy black diamond from Brazil.

As the leading authority in diamonds and gemstones for over 170 years, Tiffany handcrafts the highest quality, responsibly sourced gems—offering only the rarest fancy color diamonds to clients around the world.

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