Lab Created Diamonds bring new twist to jewelry shopping

Miner's North Jewelers in Traverse City.

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich WPBN/WGTU --One from below ground, the other above. Now, they’re both inside Miners North Jewelers in Traverse City.

“Created diamonds are exactly the same chemical composition as natural diamonds," said Miners North General Manager Jeff Guntzviller. "They’re just grown in a lab. I’m a graduate gemologist and just looking under a microscope with traditional gemological equipment, you can’t tell the difference. You need more advanced expensive equipment.”

The process of lab created diamonds was started in the 1950’s by General Electric, but only recently has the technique been fine tuned.

“It’s just gotten to the point where they’re gem quality where they’ll able to be sold as jewelry,” said Guntzviller. He also says there’s only 10 to 12 companies in the world that make lab created diamonds, and it’s such an expensive process there’s still less lab created diamonds than mined diamonds.

“At this point, it’s not like they’re being produced extremely fast or anything," Guntviller said. "They’re rare, hard to make, it’s expensive.”

In fact, one diamond takes about two to four weeks to produce. However despite the rarity, they can be a more cost effective option than mined diamonds

“Averaged out, with all the sizes and different things we sell, you might save 25 to 30 percent comparing apples to apples"

Overall, Guntzviller says for anyone buying a diamond, it’s a great new option that you have to see for yourself.

“It’s been an extremely hard engineering process to get to where we are today. It’s exciting and something that's new, a new option that you really have to just see.”

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