Heidi Vornan is known for using black diamonds in her designs. 'Black diamonds are perfect for my luxurious and gloomy goth style. They give the right edginess. White diamonds are never that provocative. And you know, I don't like colors that much,' Heidi says laughing.
The use of black diamonds in jewelry is a pretty new phenomenon. First in the early 1990's Fawaz Gruosi (of the jewelry house de Grisogono) had the idea of polishing black diamonds and setting them on jewelry. And ta-da the impression was good, both daring and cool. Soon other famous designers like Stephen Webster and Michele Della Valle were using them too and all the cool celebrities were strutting on the red carpet in this new jewelry look. And come to think of that before the 90's the black diamonds had been considered suitable only for industrial use just like some decades ago black clothing was seen as proper only for mourning.
But what is a black diamond? A black diamond is a true diamond but it's believed to get its color from graphite impurities which are called inclusions in the trade. Graphite consists of the same coal atoms like diamond but in another crystal structure. Essentially a black diamond is so full of graphite inclusions that it causes the entire diamond to appear black. Well, sometimes not that entirely. And sometimes the even black color has been reached with some kind of enhancement like irradiation or heat treatment. Also some raw black diamonds are formed of clusters of smaller diamond crystals with the graphite impurities so that the material has not even structure and may contain cavities and cracks which lessens the beauty of the polished diamond. So keep in mind that there are different looking black diamonds when viewing one and use your own eyes. What is clean looking and symmetrical is usually good.
Mark that only the best black diamonds are used in the Heidi Vornan jewelry. Especially the dome-shaped rose cut black diamonds, her favorites, in which the light gives the most interesting play of reflections on the surface which consists of triangular facets in a geometric array.
Here are a few links to learn more about black diamonds: