Thursday, 30 June 2016

Chaumet Fine Jewels

Marie-Étienne Nitot (1750-1809) settled in Paris in 1780 after having served his apprenticeship at Auber, then jeweller to Queen Marie-Antoinette. His aristocratic clientele remained loyal to him until the French Revolution in 1789.

He later became the official jeweller of Napoleon in 1802. Nitot created the jewellery that would offer the French Empire it's splendour and power.
The jewellery for Napoleon’s wedding to Joséphine de Beauharnais, and later to Marie Louise de Habsburg-Lorraine, was created by Nitot. He designed and set Napoleon’s coronation crown, the hilt of his sword as well as many other pieces for the court.

François Regnault Nitot took over his father’s jewellery House on his death in 1809 and continued his activity until the fall of the Empire in 1815. Napoleon’s exile caused Nitot, a fervent royalist, to withdraw from the jewellery House, selling the business to his foreman.

French Tiara given to Josephine by Napoleon.

Crown of Empress Eugenie

Coronation crown of Napoleon

Napoleon's Iron Crown of Lombardy Ring
Chaumet was bought in October 1999 by LVMH. After an unsuccessful attempt to penetrate the American market in the end of the 1990s, the company opened stores in Asia to fuel growth.

Chaumet is now part of the watch and jewellery brands that includes TAG Heuer, Zenith, Fred, Hublot, Montres Christian Dior, and De Beers Diamond Jewellers (a joint venture between the LVMH and De Beers groups).


Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Lesedi La Rona diamond fails to Sell

Vancouver-based Lucara Diamond Corp. has failed to sell the tennis-ball sized diamond it discovered at its Botswana mine last November. The 1,109-carat Lesedi La Rona diamond drew a high bid of $61 million US at the Sotheby's auction in London, falling short of the reserve price.
The biggest diamond to be discovered in more than a century has left Dubai to visit four more cities before being auctioned by Sotheby’s on June 29th. A discrete gathering was held at The Armani Hotel in Dubai, where Lesedi La Rona, or “The Lady", as it’s known to members of the company that discovered it, was on display.

Its stop in Dubai was part of a global tour during which it has already visited Singapore and Hong Kong. It is due to visit four more cities before ending up at an auction at Sotheby’s.

Lucara Diamond Corp. sold an 813-carat diamond for $63 million last month, making it the most expensive rough gem on record and raising the prospects for the sale of the Lesedi la Rona.
The sale of The Constellation was worth $77,649 a carat and Lucara will retain a 10 percent interest in the net profit received in the polished products.
http://highlifelivingluxury.blogspot.ca/2016/04/lucaras-1111-carat-lesedi-la-rona.html

Sunday, 26 June 2016

Ring that Trump gave to Marla Maples up for auction

A large diamond engagement ring that Donald Trump gave his second wife is going up for auction for an estimated $300,000.

The 7.45-carat emerald-cut, Harry Winston-designed ring is about the size of a postage stamp. Marla Maples sold it at auction after she and Trump divorced in 1999. It fetched $110,000.
Donald Trump has been doling out diamond cuff links but they’re actually worthless fakes. At least three recipients later learned that the glittery gifts were valuable as mementos but nothing else.

Actor Charlie Sheen recently called out The Donald for the ruse, saying Trump once gave him cuff links as a wedding present and boasted that they were platinum diamond Harry Winston. They are actually cheap pewter and bad zirconia. Trump markets his own line of cuff links through his “Donald J. Trump Signature Collection’’ that are made of metal in China and go for as little as $39.99

Saturday, 25 June 2016

Picasso and Modigliani Lead Sotheby's Impressionist and Modern Sale


Pablo Picasso, Femme assise, 1909. £43.3 million. ($63.6 million)
Sotheby's opened the summer auctions with a 27-lot Impressionist and modern art sale. It had a pre-sale estimate of £81.25 to £101.4 million ($119 to $149 million).

At the end of the night, it had cleared the top hurdle with a £103.3 million ($151 million) total.
An 1890 still life by Paul Gauguin sold for £3.4 million ($5 million).

Amedeo Modigliani's 1919 portrait, Jeanne Hebuterne (au foulard). £38.5 million ($56.6 million)
Making up a large percentage of the estimated value of the sale was a life-size cast of Auguste Rodin's Eve, conceived in 1881 but cast sometime between 1925 and 1940. The estimate, at £8-12 million ($11.7 to 17.6 million), was the highest ever for a posthumously cast Rodin bronze. It failed to find a buyer.
Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Un Jardin à Sorrente (1881). £581,000 ($852,000).
Georg Scholz's Nachtlicher Larm (Nightly Noise), 1919, a nightmarish memory of the terror of the First World War brought £449,000 ($658,000).


Friday, 24 June 2016

Gems from Space

A tiny fraction of meteorites on Earth contain strikingly beautiful, translucent, olive-green crystals embedded in an iron-nickel matrix.

Called pallasites, these "space gems" have fascinated scientists since they were first identified as originating from outer space more than 200 years ago.
Impactites are often colorful glasses that can be faceted, cut into cabochons, or carved into small sculptures.

The highest quality "as found" specimens are of greatest interest to scientists, meteorite collectors, and mineral collectors. The best gem-quality materials generally go to a small number of designer jewelers who use them to create one-of-a-kind pieces.
Smaller and lower quality items fall into the novelty gem and collectibles markets. The largest demand for extraterrestrial gem materials comes from people interested in alternative and complementary medicine.

They believe that these materials have special properties that are helpful in promoting wellness.
Pallasite Peridot. A faceted piece of gem-quality olivine, known as peridot in the gem trade, that was removed from a pallasite meteorite. Extraterrestrial peridot is one of the rarest gem materials on Earth.
Moldavite (also called Bouteille Stone) is an amorphous glassy material, a mineraloid, that is usually olive green in color.

It is thought to have formed during an asteroid impact about 15 million years ago in central Europe. The impacting body hit with a high enough velocity to melt and splatter the target rock across a strewn field that includes portions of what is now the Czech Republic, Austria, and Germany.

A moldavite tektite

Tasmanian Darwin Glass Tektite
Libyan Desert Glass is a material that is thought to have formed during a meteorite impact in the Libyan desert about 26 million years ago near what is now the border between Egypt and Libya. One theory has the meteorite exploding in an air burst that flash-melted sand and other material on Earth's surface below. Many pieces of glass have shallow surface indentations, similar to the regmaglypts of meteorites, that suggest ablation as the glass moved rapidly through Earth's atmosphere. Like moldavite, desert glass is considered to be an impactite.
Over 3300 years ago, the ancient Egyptians knew about Libyan Desert Glass and held it in high regard. The pendant shown was one of several buried with King Tutankhamun (King Tut) who ruled between 1332 and 1323 BC.

Tektites are fragments of ejecta produced when a large extraterrestrial object strikes the Earth. The heat of the impact flash melts rock in the impact area and ejects it in the molten state. These molten masses solidify in flight and fall to Earth in the area around the imact. The impact that produced the tektites of the Indochina strewn field occurred about 800,000 years ago.