The Carat weight is arguably the simplest of the 4 Cs, it is the only diamond grading criteria that can be determined in an objective fashion. The carat weight of a diamond is denoted by ‘ct.’ Whether you have a set carat weight in mind for your diamond ring, engagement ring, wedding ring or other diamond jewellery, learn more about the importance of size when purchasing a diamond.
The term ‘carat’ is derived from the ‘carob’ seeds found in the Mediterranean. Historically, these seeds were dried and used in the weighing of diamonds because the seeds have a consistent weight of approximately 0.2 gram. Since 1907, the metric carat has been widely adopted meaning that the weight equivalent of a 1ct diamond is 0.2 gram.
People within the diamond trade often refer to diamond weights in ‘points.’ Each carat is split into 100 points, therefore a half carat diamond will be described as 50 points.
It is important to distinguish a diamond’s carat weight from a metal’s carat weight. One is a gemstone’s weight and the other is the measure of the content of gold in a piece of jewellery. Therefore, it is not uncommon to see the two terms in the same sentence, for example ‘An 18ct gold 1ct diamond solitaire ring.’
All other diamond quality factors being equal, the greater the carat weight the higher the price of the stone. Larger stones with exceptional colour, clarity and cut are incredibly rate, and so it is often preferable to opt for a smaller carat weight in order to keep desirable cut, colour and clarity grades.