How to make the best choices when purchasing jewellery

Lifestyle How to make the best choices when purchasing jewellery

We were delighted to have jewellery designer Pablo Cimadevila offering his insights into how to make the best choices for your jewellery, as part of his jewellery workshop. The fascinating Pablo Cimadevila was left paraplegic at the age of 4 by a car accident, but he never let this hold him back. He was a Paralympic swimming champion before changing careers to become a jewellery designer, starring in a docu-reality show and now has over 400k followers on Instagram.

In this workshop, he explained what are the key metals used to make the best jewellery and their characteristics. He also explained how to classify diamonds using the 4 Cs – colour, clarity, cut and carat weight. He told anecdotes about gold and precious metals such as why the gold medallists bite their medals and answered questions.

He explained that the key materials used to make the majority of jewellery are metals and stones. The metals which are most used in jewellery making are the precious metals – gold, silver and platinum, but they need to be purified and processed before they are used. He explained how they measure the purity of a metal and where the words for the measurement come from.

In jewellery, they don’t use pure gold, as it is very soft and so it needs to be modified to be strong. They add 75% of pure gold and 25% of another metal, depending on the colour of gold you want. For example, for yellow gold, you add copper and silver to the gold to create 18 karat gold. He explained the karat measures for gold and what is the difference in the way they look or act. He also discussed silver and how they add copper to make it stronger and easier to work with and the levels of purity for the silver. Understanding the purity of the metals allows us to make better choices when we’re purchasing jewellery. When purchasing you should look for the makers mark and the mark which grades the metal and allows you to know the purity.

He then moved on to talking about diamonds, explaining why they sparkle and how to classify them using the 4 Cs – colour, clarity, cut and carat weight. The colour is graded from D to Z, from the clearest and most colourless, through to the most yellow. The clarity is measured and classified with 11 grades which goes from flawless without a single imperfection through to I3 which have clearly visible imperfections. He also explained and showed the different cuts of diamonds – round brilliant, princess, marquise, cushion, emerald, radiant, pear and oval and how the better they are cut, the more they shine. Last but not least he explained the carat weight and how diamonds are valued according to these 4 Cs and showed some stunning examples of diamonds.

He offered advice on how to choose an engagement ring and recommended using a jewellery designer to ensure the design and stone works for their hands and also for their preferences. He also advised that you should go to places that you trust to buy your pieces, so you know that they are correctly classified and valued.

His parting advice is – if you are going to buy a piece for someone else, make sure you are thinking of what they like and what they normally wear, so they will love it and it will fit into what they usually wear. Purchase diamonds which come with certification if possible and look for the makers mark and the purity mark to ensure you know what you are buying.

We hope that you find this workshop interesting and it has helped you to be informed when you next buy a special piece of jewellery for yourself, or a loved one. Please join us for more Private La Reserva Workshops and make sure you download the app the App Store or via Google Play so you can watch them live.

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