How to Evaluate Color in Colombian Emeralds

How to Evaluate Color in Colombian Emeralds

Colombian Emerald White Gold Ring in White Background - leewasson.com

How to Evaluate Color in Colombian Emeralds

We Evaluate Colombian Emeralds Color against a White Background.
Why? Because white is a constant we can compare all different shades of green against.

Emeralds are prisms cut with facets collecting and reflecting color from within as well as the colors surrounding it.
Therefore, we in the Emerald industry minimize colors in the environment affecting the quality of the Green we are Evaluating. That is one of the reasons for the white paper packets we carry Emeralds in. It’s the same reason for the white walls in my office and the large white paper pad on my desk. Furthermore, using tweezers to hold an emerald isolates the stone from the warm color imparted by your fingers!
See how to handle Emeralds HERE and watch: How to look at a Colombian Emerald.
All of this isolates the Emerald from the surrounding Colors while we are observing it, illuminated by Sunlight.

What is an Emerald - Lee WassonHow Cut Affects the Color of an Emerald

Colombian Emeralds are Cut to receive light from their surroundings through the Face or Top of the stone.
This light is then reflected within the stone gathering the distinctive Greens of the Colombian Emerald. Then, the Cut of the emerald concentrates and directs the green flashes and sparkle through the Face of the emerald back to You.
See more about the Cut of a Colombian Emerald HERE

So…
You are looking at an emerald (using tweezers) and seeing countless flashes and innumerable shades of green. All of which are sparkling back at you as light refracts from within the stone.
See an example HERE

What do we want to know about a Colombian Emeralds Color?

First, we want to know how deep of green it is, also it’s tone and hue of color. The problem is, it’s impossible to say looking at an emerald face up. Some facets appear Darker,
other facets reflect Lighter tones of lovely green. 
A tiny movement and it looks as if it has a gorgeous Bluish green tone to it. From a different angle you notice a soft Yellowish green hue and from still another it’s the opposite.

Confusing?

Yes, very much so, even for a professional such as myself with over 4 decades of experience.
Every Colombian Emerald´s color is unique.
Its evaluation is subjective and requires years of experience, continuous viewing and comparison.
First, we want to observe an emeralds color face up as we will see it once set in a piece of jewelry.
But, by doing so, you really can’t define what color it is because it’s constantly shifting.

Now, Don’t Get Frustrated…

There Is a Secret!

I will teach you the Secret, and you will how to Evaluate Color in Colombian Emeralds in our next Blog, see you then!

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Lee Wasson

by Lee Wasson

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