Diamond in the Rough

I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase “a diamond in the rough,” and if you haven’t, urban dictionary describes it as “somebody who appears dubious at first but then turns out to be exceptional.” So for example, if you think somebody is unqualified for a job but he then turns out extraordinary, you can call him a “diamond in the rough.”

This phrase originates from the rough diamond, which before it is cut and polished, looks very plain, rough and really nothing like that stunning bling your husband may have gotten you for valentines day! “Diamond Cutting” is not an easy science and requires specialized knowledge, tools, equipment, and techniques because of the diamond’s extreme hardness.

Planning is the first step in converting the rough diamond into a polished stone. During this phase, the jeweler will evaluate the possible turnaround time in cutting the diamond, and from an economic standpoint he will evaluate the possible return on investment he will get on the finished stone.

The second part, known as “weight retention,” is when an analysis is done on the rough diamond to find the best combination of finished stones as it relates to the per carat value.

Color retention is another important part of the process, since cutting can influence the color grade of the diamond and possibly raise the diamond’s value. Additionally, there are certain diamond shapes that will intensify the color of the diamond, such as the “radiant cut.”

Cleaving and Sawing are the mechanical actions done to the rough diamond to separate them into separate pieces so they can be finished as individual gems.

After the cleaving and sawing is done on the diamonds, the bruting process will occur in which the diamonds are set onto spinning axles turning in opposite directions and grind against each other to make each diamond a round shape.

Lastly, the polishing and final inspection will be done in which the diamond will be cleaned thoroughly and examined to make sure it meets the manufacturer’s standards.

So next time you hear the phrase “a diamond in the rough,” remember that its origins refer to the original unpolished, uncut stone we just spoke about!