All About Diamond Color

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While we are proud to offer a variety of unique vintage engagement rings featuring colored gemstones & fancy metalwork, most of our sales have one sparkly thing in common: diamonds. For the past 100+ years, diamonds have been the traditional, go-to choice for engagement rings. Their durability and classic brilliance have long been associated with making that forever commitment. Almost all of the diamonds that we carry on our website are vintage, meaning they were not laser cut like today's modern diamonds. In fact, some of our most popular and sought after diamonds are Old Mine Cut diamonds, which were hand cut without any electricity! Old Mine Cut diamonds have an incredibly romantic and mysterious sparkle, shining most beautifully under soft candlelight.


When shopping for any diamond, vintage or modern, it is important to take into consideration the four C's — clarity, color, cut and carat. We believe that color is the most misunderstood of all four. A lot of people think that any color in a diamond is a bad thing. We could not disagree more!

High Point | Trumpet & Horn Huxley | Trumpet & Horn Boca Grande | Trumpet & Horn Image Map

Diamond color is graded on a scale that compares each diamond to a “Master Set” of pre-color graded diamonds. The scale begins at “D” (meaning the diamond is completely colorless) and ends with Z (meaning the diamond is quite yellow or brown). A truly colorless diamond is extremely rare. Most diamonds have some degree of yellow (or brown) in them, even if they look white to the eye.

colorless ring collection Fairbell | Trumpet & Horn Queen's Park | Trumpet & Horn Lake Forest | Trumpet & Horn Lockhaven | Trumpet & Horn Image Map

Most vintage diamonds fall into the "near colorless scale". The differences in color are so slight that most people, unless they are trained to look for it, don't even notice any difference. The proportions of older diamonds often work to mask their color as well. When viewed from the top, vintage diamonds actually tend to look whiter than the color grade assigned to them.

colorles k-m ring collection Phinney Ridge | Trumpet & Horn Dartmouth | Trumpet & Horn Scotland | Trumpet & Horn Image Map

Diamond that cast a "faint yellow hue" start to show a little bit of an off-white color to the naked eye. The color is drawn out more significantly depending on what type of metal the stone is set in. For example, a stone set in yellow gold will cast a more yellow hue than a stone set in white gold, platinum, or silver. In fact many yellow gold Victorian rings are actually "silver-topped", meaning that the diamond itself is set in silver so that it reflects a more white shine.

very light yellow ring collection Paddington | Trumpet & Horn Darwin | Trumpet & Horn Hancock | Trumpet & Horn Beverly Hills | Trumpet & Horn Greenhaven | Trumpet & Horn Cheviot Hills | Trumpet & Horn Image Map

We cannot get enough of "very light yellow" diamonds. The warm tones that antique diamonds sometimes exude are testimonies to their authenticity and history. As you can see by the pictures above, it is important to keep in mind that each diamond will strike each individual differently. Diamonds that look exactly the same on paper look completely different in person. The best part is that you'll know your diamond when you see it! fancy yellow ring collection

Sunny Springs | Trumpet & Horn Image Map

When a diamond is yellower than a “Z” rating, it is then considered a “fancy” colored diamond, and its value actually increases. Diamonds can also be found in other colors like pink, blue, red, and purple - any “fancy” color diamond with a bright, strong color is extremely rare and therefore very valuable, desirable, and expensive!


At Trumpet and Horn, we simply adore vintage diamonds and nothing else will ever do. All of the antique and vintage diamonds in our classic diamond engagement rings are unique to their own time period, which makes wearing one even more special! Whatever diamond color you choose to go with, all that matters is that you and your partner love it. Every vintage diamond is just as unique as she is, so follow your heart and choose one that speaks to you loudest! As always, our concierge is available to help you make the perfect choice that she's sure to love for a lifetime! ♥

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