Stones

Selecting diamonds: reflecting the excellence of the Maison

The Gemological Institute of America (GIA), an internationally recognized institution, has established a set of standards for certifying diamonds known as the 4Cs: Color – Clarity – Cut – Carat. These criteria determine stones’ quality and value. True to Van Cleef & Arpels’ tradition of excellence, the Maison applies a two-tier selection process in choosing its diamonds. All preselected stones meet the internationally recognized 4Cs of diamond quality.

This step, which consists of an objective assessment of quality, is carried out together with an in-depth visual examination by Van Cleef & Arpels’ expert gemologists. Going beyond scientific criteria in their study of diamonds, they adhere to the Maison’s demanding standards and individual taste, focusing on the stone’s beauty and character: the spiritual quality that makes a specific gem stand out among others. Van Cleef & Arpels is thus one of the few Maisons to offer diamonds of such remarkable quality, both for center and pavé stones.

Color

The whiter the diamond, the rarer it is. Van Cleef & Arpels exclusively selects stones of the highest color grades: D (colorless +), E (colorless) and F (extra white +), on a scale from D to Z. For its center stones, the Maison only uses category D and E stones.

  • Table of color grades, the 5Cs, Van Cleef & Arpels
  • Colerette Mystérieuse necklace, emeraude cut diamond, 25 Mystery Set collection, gouaché, Van Cleef & Arpels

    Colerette Mystérieuse necklace, emeraude cut diamond, 25 Mystery Set collection, gouaché

  • Colerette Mystérieuse necklace, emeraude cut diamond, 25 Mystery Set collection, Van Cleef & Arpels

    Colerette Mystérieuse necklace, emeraude cut diamond, 25 Mystery Set collection

Clarity

Clarity refers to the number, size, nature and position of inclusions (internal and external imperfections) in the stone. A diamond is considered clear if no flaw can be seen under 10x magnification. Van Cleef & Arpels’ expert gemologists only select the purest diamonds, those in categories ranging from FL (Flawless) to VVS2 (Very Very Slightly included).

  • Table of color grades, the 5Cs, Van Cleef & Arpels

Carats

The weight of a diamond is expressed using a worldwide standard unit of measure: the carat. One carat is equal to 0.20 grams. For its central stones, the Maison selects diamonds of at least 0.30 carats.

  • Table of color grades, the 5Cs, Van Cleef & Arpels

Cut

A diamond’s cut refers to its shape, proportions and facets. Of the numerous existing diamond shapes, the best known are the brilliant, oval, marquise, pear-shaped, heart-shaped, emerald, princess and cushion cuts. All cuts are carefully studied to enhance the brilliance of the stone and accentuate the way light plays off the facets. Only “excellent” and “very good” cuts are selected. The Maison’s experts strive to reveal the full sparkle and fire of the gem by focusing on symmetry, the quality of the polish and the finishes of the cut.

  • Table of color grades, the 5Cs, Van Cleef & Arpels