Fancy colored diamonds are diamonds that are not on the traditional industry’s D-to-Z color-grading scale. Diamond is the only gem made of a single element, typically about 99.95 % carbon. The other 0.05 percent can include trace elements, which can influence its color or crystal shape. It is because of these impurities, such as nitrogen and boron, that diamonds can also be found in a wide variety of colors. Yellow and brown diamonds are most commonly found, while red, blue, pink and green diamonds are among the rarest of all fancy colors. In diamonds rarity equates to value, so the rarer the color and the more intensely it shows, the higher the value. Fancy colored diamonds are only to be found in very limited areas. Only 1 in 10,000 diamonds is a fancy color diamond.
With diamonds in the normal D-to-Z color range, value is based on the absence of color, so as the color becomes more obvious, their value will decrease. Just the opposite happens with fancy colored diamonds, where their value will increase with color intensity, purity, and rarity. For example, yellow or brown diamonds that fall within the D-to-Z color range are less expensive than regular diamonds. However, yellow or brown fancy colored diamonds that are more vivid may be more expensive than regular diamonds
Unlike regular diamonds which derive their value from a combination of the 4Cs, the dominant value factor for fancy colored diamonds is color. Even diamonds with numerous inclusions that result in a low clarity grade are prized if they display attractive face-up color. Fancy colored diamonds are graded along three different axes which describe how intense and how bright their color is: Hue (the actual color), Tone (the relative lightness or darkness of the color), and Saturation (how strong or weak the color is). Hue is most often described as a combination of two or more colors when the first color is the modifying color, and the second color is the primary color (i.e., Orangy Yellow). GIA grades the hue or color of fancy colored diamonds in an increasing color strength scale from Faint, Very Light, Light, Fancy Light, Fancy, Fancy Intense, Fancy Vivid, Fancy Dark, and Fancy Deep.