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Understanding Jewelry Terms A to Z

Here are some jewelry terms you may like to know more about. Do let us know if we missed any, and you would like us to add to this list.


A stiff bracelet or anklet

Bench Jeweler

An artisan who uses jewelry-making skills to make and repair jewelry


An item made for a particular customer or user. Also known as custom or custom made.


The amount of light reflecting out of the crown of the stone to your eye


Small, often rectangular, step-cut diamonds with straight or tapered edges

Beveled edge

An angled cut on a piece of jewelry for aesthetic purposes or for comfort


Imperfections that occur on the surface of a diamond


The appearance, or extent, of internal and external reflections of “white” light seen in a polished diamond

Bridal set

A set consisting of an engagement ring and matching band

CAD jewelry design

Computer-aided design; the use of computer software programs to create 2D or 3D models for jewelry design


The process by which a wax pattern is made into a jewelry mold and then filled with molten metal or silver to create a piece of jewelry

Comfort Fit

The inside edge of a ring is slightly rounded for comfort

Conflict-free diamond

A diamond that's mined and shipped without connection to rebel or terrorist groups


The top of a diamond. Its main function is to disperse the light that enters the diamond into white light, which gives the stone its brilliance.

Cubic Zirconia

A colorless, synthetic gemstone made of the cubic crystalline form of zirconium dioxide


A bracelet that does not close on the wrist but rests on the wrist with a gap or open area on the inside of the wrist


The small area at the bottom of a diamond's pavilion

Ethical sourcing

A process of ensuring products are obtained in a responsible and sustainable way, that the workers involved in making them are safe and treated fairly, and that environmental and social impacts are taken into consideration during the sourcing process

Eye-clean diamonds

Diamonds that don't have any inclusions and blemishes visible to the naked eye


Trade between companies in developed countries and producers in developing countries in which fair prices are paid to the producers

The 4 C’s

The color, cut, clarity, and carat (weight) attributes of diamonds used to determine the value


A precious or semiprecious stone, especially one cut, polished, and used in a piece of jewelry


The study of precious stones

Gemological Institute of America (GIA)

An independent nonprofit that protects the gem and jewelry buying public through research, education, and laboratory services

GIA Graduate Gemologist

A jeweler who has completed one of the most prestigious programs in the industry. They are trained with the most comprehensive knowledge of diamonds and colored stones, as well as technical expertise and practical skills to evaluate gemstones by the four C’s.


The part of the stone that creates the outline when looking at it from the top

Halo setting

A setting that encircles a center gemstone in a collection of round pavé or micro-pavé diamonds, or faceted color gemstones


A valuable object that has belonged to a family for several generations


A fault, blemish, or undesirable feature


A measure of the purity of gold, pure gold being 24 karats

The Kimberley Process

A process implemented to prevent "conflict diamonds" from entering the mainstream rough diamond market


A necklace featuring an often-ornate and typically elongated pendant.


A small magnifying glass used by jewelers and watchmakers


The appearance of a gem’s surface when it reflects light. Lusters can be resinous, pearly, or waxy—describing gemstone luster involves some subjectivity.


Materials used in the creation of fine jewelry, including gold, platinum, palladium, titanium, silver, tungsten, and stainless steel

Natural stones

Valuable organic materials from the earth, such as ruby, sapphire, emerald, aquamarine, tourmaline, and quartz stones


The part of the diamond that reflects the light that passes through the crown and back into the eyes

Pearl luster

The appearance of a pearl’s surface when it reflects lights. A high luster pearl looks illuminated from within. Pearls with very high luster quality are the most valuable.


A rare and precious bright white metal that is durable and hypoallergenic


A necklace made of a single type and shape of gemstone that graduates in size.


The flat surface on the very top of a stone that resembles an actual tabletop