As of late we have been loving alternatives to the traditional classic colorless center diamond. Traditionally, clients will come to us requesting white diamonds that are of J color and above. This way the diamond does not have any yellow undertone to it and looks white. However, there is another breed of technically white diamonds that often is overlooked. These are X Y Z colored diamonds and they make amazing options for a budget friendly center diamond
Even a one-carat diamond requires billions of carbon atoms to bond, and all of those atoms must be carbon to create a colorless diamond. The smallest deviation or addition in nature creates a colored diamond: a bit of boron makes a blue diamond; nitrogen makes a yellow diamond; natural radiation form nearby rocks trap electrons to create a green surface color; pink or red shades are thought to be due to changes to the electron structure during the voyage to the surface.
The Color Scale for white diamonds starts at D being the whitest and goes in alphabetical order all the way down to Z. Diamonds that are in the X, Y, Z color range exhibit a yellow hue to them. The yellow color comes from inclusion of nitrogen as the rough diamond sits in the earth. Nitrogen atoms are similar enough to carbon atoms that they easily take carbon’s place in the formation process. This type of diamond is not to be confused with fancy yellow diamonds. Fancy yellow diamonds extend past the X Y Z scale into the fancy light and beyond range which directly comes after X Y Z. Fancy yellow diamonds are extremely sought after because they are rare and give a striking yellow tone. If yellow is your favorite color and you are on a budget, considering an X Y Z colored diamond is an amazing alternative.
Pricing With XYZ color diamonds you are going to save a lot compared with buying a stark white diamond at near colorless and colorless range. Essentially you can get a higher carat weight and higher clarity grade at a lower price point. However, keep in mind these light yellow diamonds will be more expensive than a diamond in the “K” to “P” color range as these will not be as attractive the eye. This princess cut yellow diamond custom engagement ring has the bottom prongs done in yellow to increase the yellow appearance of the XYZ center. Adding a yellow gold band to the white gold halo makes a perfect blend of colors and metals. Imagine that here you are getting a 1.5 carat diamond with a setting in the $6500 range vs the $10,000+ range for a white diamond.
Even with this intricate set up which features a light yellow pear shape diamond in halo with a split band, you can get a close to 2 carat pear shape in the center for under $10,000 including the setting.
Setting ideas These XYZ diamonds make amazing center diamond options for so many of our custom ring designs. The main thing we would stress is that to really intensify the yellow look of the diamond it is best to set it against a yellow backdrop. We love the look of setting a yellow diamond in a white gold or platinum halo design. The stark white contrast of the white diamonds on the halo really make the center yellow diamond pop. Check out this double halo designs to the right or if you prefer a single halo around a yellow center diamond then this custom ring from Lauren B is a winner.
Both of these really increase the surface area of the ring giving it extra sparkle. Another to note is that the we have created the basket where the diamond sits to be completely yellow gold. This works really well to give the yellow diamond more intensity. In this type of set up it actually begins to appear more like a fancy yellow diamond but for a fraction of the price!
Be mindful that it is usually a good idea to have the prongs holding the diamond in yellow as well even if the halo is done in white gold. This way the prongs blend in seamlessly with the yellow tone of the diamond. For more videos of yellow diamond engagement rings from Lauren B watch our video gallery here. It is easy to overlook these beautiful gems however if you love the color yellow these make amazing diamond engagement ring options at a price that you will smile at.