Melee diamonds are very small diamonds used on jewelry to add sparkle to the design. While they are most frequently used in combination with a beautiful center diamond, or another gemstone, melee diamonds can also be used alone on eternity bands for example.
We’ll explain everything you need to know about melee diamonds in the article below.
- Characteristics of melee diamonds
- On what type of jewellery are melee diamonds used?
- Single and Full Cut melee diamonds
- Where does the term melee diamonds come from?
- How are melee diamonds priced?
- What to look out for when buying melee diamonds?
Characteristics of melee diamonds
Melee diamonds are small diamonds used to add sparkle and shine to a piece of jewellery. Their carat weight can vary, GIA has defined that melee diamonds are sized between 0.001 carats and 0.2 carats. While one melee diamond is very small and unnoticeable by itself, by using many different ones, the overall jewellery design is elevated and has that extra touch.
Melee diamonds can rarely be bought separately or by the dozen. Reputable diamond sellers will group melee diamonds of similar quality and bundle these to sell to another jewellery manufacturer.
Most melee diamonds are colourless and shaped such as a round brilliant diamond, in fact these are the most frequently used melee diamonds. However, they can appear in other colours, gemstones and shapes. Imagine small pink melee sapphires or even tiny rubies to adorn the band of a special engagement ring.
Besides round melee diamonds, other shapes such as princess, tapered and straight baguettes and trillion shapes are also used.
On what type of jewellery are melee diamonds used?
Melee diamonds can be used on any type of jewellery, either to compliment a center stone or to make a simple piece of jewellery more sparkly.
They are perfect to use on a halo setting, where melee diamonds are set around a beautiful center stone, or on the ring band with a pave or channel setting. Additionally, eternity bands can be adorned with a line of melee diamonds, creating the illusion that the ring never ends.
Single vs Full cut melee diamonds
As previously mentioned, round brilliant cut melee diamonds are the most common. There are two ways of cutting these: the single and the full cut. The full cut melees are cut the same way a larger round brilliant would be, with 57 or 58 facets. The single cut however is a much more simplified method which only entails 17 facets, 1 on the table, 8 crown facets and 8 pavillion facets. This technique takes away much of the sparkle and brilliance a full cut diamond has.
Nowadays the machinery used to cut these melee diamonds are so advanced and detailed, that there is no incentive to offer single cut melee diamonds.
Where does the term melee diamonds come from?
Why are melee diamonds not simply called small diamonds? The word “melee” is derived from the French verb “mêler”, which means to mix. This refers to the fact that these diamonds are usually sold in bulk: loads of diamonds mixed together, or melee diamonds.
How are melee diamonds priced?
Melee diamonds are prices using the same methods as larger diamonds, based on the 4 C’s. A single melee diamond isn’t so valuable, because it’s so small. That’s why they are usually sold in parcels containing hundreds tiny melee diamonds and priced per carat weight bundles together.
Each parcel contains parcel diamonds that are all similar in clarity, cut, colour and carat. Based on these 4 criteria points, a price per carats will be determined. Usually, melee diamonds have a price per carat ranging between 300 $ and 1000 $.
What to look out for when buying melee diamonds?
Melee diamonds are usually not individually graded because of economic reasons. The time and money spend to have each melee diamond graded would outweigh the price of the stone itself. They are sold in a parcel containing hundreds of these small melee diamonds. That’s where unreliable diamond sellers could take advantage of you if you don’t know enough about diamonds. You might end up buying a parcel of melee diamonds worth less than the value given by the seller. That’s why we always recommend to only buy from reputable diamonds manufacturers such as Uniglo diamonds.
Another important inconvenient when buying jewellery containing melee diamonds, is that an unreputable seller might have used diamond chips instead of melee diamonds. Diamond chips are small diamonds which have not been properly cut and polished like melee diamonds. They are not facetted and have an uneven shape compared to a facetted melee diamond. In the end, there is a big difference in light and sparkle between a diamond chip and melee diamond.
Although melee diamonds are tiny, it’s still important to buy those in a good quality, which will ultimately elevate your jewellery piece with more brightness and sparkle. Do you have any more questions about melee diamonds after reading this article? Don’t hesitate to contact uniglo diamonds.
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