My name is Jim Rayburn.read more
I've been involved in the diamond, gemstone, and custom jewelry industry for decades. Although I started in Brazil, then with a shop in Colorado, today I have enthusiastic customers from Maine to California, Washington State to Florida, and a few places in Europe. Simply from referrals, this network of customers grew, one at a time. I also have customers who live and work right next to the New York Diamond District. There's a reason why they come to me. This is not a "click to buy," shopping cart website. I prefer to converse before we begin your unique and most important project. We'll discuss styles, stones, and budgets, and take it from there. If you're an expert in gemology, that's great, but if you don't know a diamond from an ice cube, it's not a problem. I'll help you every step of the way.
Welcome From Jim
Respecting copyright laws, most any design is possible, or modifiable. If you already have a style in mind, please send a picture, rendering, or a URL link, along with metal type, metal color, and finger size. If you're unsure of the finger size, we'll resolve this later. After we discuss your budget goals, settle on the design, shape, size, and quality of the diamond(s) desired, I'll furnish you a project cost estimate.
Need inspiration? Browse some available styles by clicking on one or more of the links below to review a multitude of design options. These are links to jewelry manufacturers who do not sell directly to the public. Usually, prices aren't listed but any prices you may see are suggested retail, not what my customers would pay:
You can find several examples of my work below. This rings were designed and built by Jim Rayburn.
Pendants & Necklaces
Please browse the list of links below to find the style you prefer. These are jewelry manufacturers that do not sell directly to the public so no prices are displayed as a rule. Send me the URL and style number and I'll respond with availability and price:
Bracelets & Tennis Bracelets
This site has prices listed but significant discounts are offered my customers.
Amount of discount depends on item of interest, total carat weight and
quality of stones, etc. Send style number, carat weight chosen, stone quality
selected, and length preferred (7 inches is standard).
Want some real diamond studs with nice stones but feeling short on budget? These have much the same look as big, bright, very white, two carat round diamonds (each side) - very pretty and a fraction of the cost of quality single stones. 14Kt white gold, 0.86 carat total weight, 0.30" L x 0.30" W. Stones are SI-2 to SI-3, G to H color (eye clean and white). Item # SC37214147V2. Retails for $1,600.00 on up, depending upon store. Special price on this website is $969.00, includes shipping. Caution - will knock her socks off. Matching pendant available.
Scroll to the bottom to view this style!
Browse other earring styles via the links below. These are styles from jewelry manufacturers that do not sell directly to the public so no prices are displayed. Email your style preference and I'll respond with a discounted price:
The 4 C's
CUTThe quality of the cut is arguably the most important factor in determining a diamond's beauty. Over the years many people have gotten the impression that a diamond's clarity merits a great deal of emphasis. Truth is, as long as a diamond shows no visible inclusions to the naked eye, its clarity doesn't show. How well a diamond is cut, however, most determines the beauty to everyone who looks at it.
Determining a diamond's cut grade is not an exact science. The American Gemological Society has by far and away the most intricate grading system, analyzing the most factors. It is also the most complex grading system. What the AGS grades as a Triple Zero Cut (using a zero to five sliding scale, zero being the best) is a top of the line Ideal Cut in anyone's book (with rare exception). The GIA labs (Gemological Institute of America) use an entirely different grading system: Excellent, Very Good, Good, Fair, Poor.
All of this to say, there are different definitions within the industry about what defines an Excellent or Ideal Cut, even amongst the top, most respected labs. And that's to say nothing of all the different labs that are grading diamonds these days. Generally speaking, one can loosely define the various cut grades as I've done below:
Ideal cut, or Excellent Cut: Represents approximately the top 3 to 4% of diamonds used in fine jewelry. An Ideal Cut or Excellent Cut reflects nearly all of the light that enters the diamond and it has the most "fire, flash, and sparkle"
Cut Grades - for round diamonds
Very good cut: A Very Good Cut grade represents roughly the top 14 to 16% of diamonds used in fine jewelry. Its reflectivity approaches that of the ideal cut.
Good cut: A stone with a Good Cut grade reflects most of the light that enters it. A large percentage of attractive, pretty diamonds fall into this category.
Fair cut: A diamond with a Fair Cut grade is either too wide and shallow or too narrow and deep, as a rule. They will not reflect light as the gems with higher cut grades do.
Poor cut: Poorly cut diamonds are usually so deep and narrow, or shallow and wide, that they lose most of the light out the underside. Those that are too shallow and wide are often said to have a "Fish Eye Effect." Who would want a poorly cut diamond with a dead, Fish Eye look?
Note: For anyone wishing to delve into this subject at deeper levels, contact me and I'll send more information.
Of the Four Cs, clarity is the easiest to understand and generally has the least impact on a diamond's appearance. Clarity refers to the tiny, natural imperfections that occur in almost all diamonds. These are usually called "inclusions" when internal and blemishes when external. Diamonds with the fewest and smallest inclusions receive the highest clarity grades. Because these imperfections tend to be microscopic, as a rule they do not affect a diamond's beauty or appearance. These clarity grades are determined under 10X microscopic power.
The Grading System
FL - Flawless, no inclusions and no blemishes visible under 10X magnification.
IF - Internally flawless, no inclusions visible under 10X magnification.
VVS-1 - Very, very slightly included (VVS1 and VVS2) Inclusions so slight they are difficult for a skilled grader to see under 10x magnification.
VVS-2 - Inclusions so slight they are difficult for a skilled grader to see under 10x magnification.
VS-1 - Very slightly included (VS1 and VS2) Inclusions are observed with effort under 10x magnification, and they are characterized as minor.
VS-2 - see definition above
SI-1 - Slightly included, inclusions are noticeable under 10x magnification. Most SI-1 grade stones are eye clean and no inclusions are visible without magnification.
SI-2 - Slightly included but more so than SI-1 stones. Many SI-2 clarity stones are eye clean and no inclusions are visible without magnification.
I-1 - Usually an I-1 clarity diamond has one or more inclusions that are visible without magnification. There is quite a difference though between an I-1 stone with a difficult to see white inclusion and another that may have an easily seen black inclusion.
I-2 - Very included with easily seen inclusions visible without magnification.
I-3 - Very, very included with lots of visible inclusions easily seen without magnification.
Note: I-1, I-2, and I-3 clarity stones have inclusions that are obvious under 10x magnification and sometimes transparency and brilliance are affected. I have never personally used a diamond with I-2 or I-3 clarity in any piece of jewelry. Often times, when budgets are very limited, a well-cut, white, top of the line I-1 clarity stone can solve a financial problem and not sacrifice the beauty or "fire." Sometimes the inclusion or inclusions that are visible are just barely so. There's a big difference between a diamond with a white inclusion on the outer edge and a diamond with a dark inclusion in the center. There are very pretty, nearly eye clean, I-1 clarity stones that save considerable money. In addition, there are clarity-enhanced stones, laser drilled stones, etc. These make for various ways to save money without sacrificing beauty if the budget is tight. More information on request.
Diamond carat weight is the measurement of how much a diamond weighs. A metric "carat" is defined as 200 milligrams or one-fifth of a gram. Each carat can be subdivided into 100 'points.' This allows very precise measurements to the hundredth decimal place. A jeweler may describe the weight of a diamond below one carat by its 'points' alone. For instance, the jeweler may refer to a diamond that weighs 0.50 carats as a 'fifty pointer.' Diamond weights greater than one carat are expressed in carats and decimals.
(Note - a round diamond weighing 0.95 carats, with an ideal or excellent cut grade, may seem to be bigger to the eye than many diamonds of one carat and more that have a lower cut grade. It's not just weight that matters, it's the appearance)
The diamond color evaluation of most gem-quality diamonds is based on the absence of color. A chemically pure and structurally perfect diamond has no hue, like a drop of pure water. The D-to-Z diamond color-grading system measures the degree of colorlessness by comparing a stone under controlled lighting and precise viewing conditions to a master set of stones with known color grades. The scale begins with the letter D, representing colorless, and continues, with increasing presence of color, to the letter Z. Many of these color distinctions are so subtle that they are invisible to the untrained eye. Other factors being equal, the whiter the diamond the more desirable and valuable it is.
D - E - F Extremely white, colorless
G Very white and very attractive
H White, very attractive
I Very, very slight hint of yellow, considered white
J Noticeable yet slight tint of yellow
K - Z Increasing yellow tint as scale moves towards Z
Note: I acquire the whitest and best cut stones on every project I do, as far as the budget allows
Many customers tell me, "Jim, here's a picture of a style she likes. I want something like this but I'm really lost with all the rest. My comfortable budget is 'X.' Can you help me?" Yes, I can, and at the end of the day your love will think you really knew your way around this territory. If you are rushed, you will find several links to jewelry manufacturers with hundreds of designs in every type of jewelry: rings, earrings, pendants, bracelets, necklaces, you name it. Any prices that appear will be retail prices, NOT your price. Normally, prices will not appear, as these are manufacturers who do not sell to the public. Email me with the style number of interest and I'll reply with the information. Many times it can ship before day's end. Acquiring a beautiful, quality piece of jewelry and not overpaying for it is quite a challenge. Few people pull it off, frankly, as it's a diamond buying jungle out there with lots of dangers. Let me guide you through the forest. We'll emerge with a quality, beautiful piece at a price other people will envy. So let's get started with an email. Send me your phone number and the best time to call and I'll be in touch with you right away.