Friday, 28 April 2017

Jewels by acclaimed contemporary Asian designers

Christie’s Magnificent Jewels auction on 30 May in Hong Kong brings together masterpieces created by world-renowned jewellery designers — Cindy Chao, Edmond Chin and Michelle Ong

Cindy Chao - Emerald Spring Butterfly Earrings

Edmond Chin - Ruby Ring

Michelle Ong

Thursday, 27 April 2017

Sapphire found in Tigrai State northern Ethiopia

In late January a new deposit of high-quality emeralds was reported in the rural villages of Kenticha and Dermi, in the Seba Boru district. The latest news is the discovery of gem sapphire in Tigrai State. According to Maerig Hadush, Tigrai state official of mining and energy, about six thousand local traditional miners are mining in the different locations.
The sapphire is being sold for between 2500 to 3500 Birr per gram in local markets. (about $20-$30 per carat)
Officials want the gemstones to be sold as Ethiopian sapphire in world markets. Reports suggest the stones are being smuggled out of the country and being marketed as Madagascar sapphire.

Black Argillite

Argillite Eagle box by Haida artist Bill Reid
Argillite is a fine-grained sedimentary rock composed predominantly of indurated clay particles. Argillaceous rocks are lithified muds and oozes.

The Haida carvings of Haida Gwaii (formerly the Queen Charlotte Islands) along the coast of British Columbia are famed aboriginal art treasures created from a type of a hard, fine black silt argillite.
Black argillite occurs in only one place in the world, at a quarry on Slatechuck Mountain near the town of Skidegate on Graham Island.

Graham Island is the largest island in the Haida Gwaii archipelago.

Argillite Otter Bowl by Lionel Samuels

Blue Diamonds in short supply

Blue diamonds outperformed the rest of the fancy-color market in the first quarter, as high demand for the stones continued to drive prices, according to the Fancy Color Research Foundation (FCRF). The price index for blue fancy-color diamond prices grew 1.9% from the previous quarter and jumped 5.7% from a year ago. This compared with a 0.2% price increase for all fancy-color diamonds since the previous quarter, 0.7% year on year.
The "Premier Blue"
Across all color segments, diamonds labeled “fancy intense” or “fancy vivid” gained value, partly offset by declines in diamonds that were just “fancy”.

A 92.15-carat diamond pendant worth up to $20 million will lead Christie’s “Magnificent Jewels” auction in Geneva next month. The heart-shaped, D-color, flawless diamond is the largest of its shape, color and clarity ever to be put up for auction. A 15.03-carat Burmese ruby set in a ring with diamonds is estimated $10 million to $15 million.

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Diamond Sales Strong at Sotheby’s New York

A pair of diamond earrings brought more than $5 million at Sotheby’s New York, helping the auction house record a total of $29 million in jewelry sales. The square emerald-cut, D-color, internally flawless diamonds, one of which weighed 20.29 carats and the other 20.02 carats sold for $5.3 million. An emerald-cut, 5.07-carat, fancy gray-blue, VVS2-clarity stone brought $1.6 million.

A pear-shaped, 11.19-carat, fancy pink, internally flawless diamond pendant went for $2.4 million.
The “Stotesbury” emerald-and-diamond ring, designed by Harry Winston, sold for $996,500.

Christie’s will hold its spring New York auction today, led by a 5.26-carat, fancy vivid purplish-pink diamond estimated at up to $3.5 million.

Piaget High Jewelry

Piaget is a Swiss luxury watchmaker and jeweller, founded in 1874 by Georges Piaget in the village of La Côte-aux-Fées. The company belongs to the Swiss Richemont group, specialists in the luxury goods industry.
The company was founded as a manufacturer of watch movements but began marketing its own line of watches in the 20th century.
After a decade and a half at the helm of Piaget, Philippe Léopold-Metzger is ramping up the production of jewellery, increasing the company’s focus on an important battleground for the industry. Luxury groups such as Richemont have devoted significant resources to expanding their jewellery brands.
Piaget's watch and jewelry designs "embody the eternal quest for technical mastery, transformed by boldness, expertise and imagination."

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Jewellery Investing - Hints and Tips

It may be tempting to think of jewellery as a safe haven of value. However, anyone considering jewellery as an investment needs to choose wisely.

The notion that jewellery retains its value is ingrained in cultures around the world with the implication that jewellery endures and retains its value over the long term.
The first caveat about jewellery is that if you buy new from a high end retailer, you will be losing from the start. The retailer usually imposes a 100% mark-up. Then there's the wholesaler's margin and the manufacturer's. You are also paying for marketing. Then there are taxes. If you sell the piece the next day you might get $.30 on the dollar. It might take many years to get back what you paid.
While brand-new jewellery fills a role in the market, wealth preservation isn't part of it. This general rule doesn't always apply to pieces designed by up-and-coming artists. To have any chance of acquiring jewellery that will be a good investment, you need to buy second-hand. Art Deco jewellery from 1920 to 1935, is worth considering. Anything signed by Cartier, Van Cleef and Arpels, Boucheron, Tiffany or similar will always be sought after because their pieces are of exceptional quality.

The worst possible 'investment' is jewellery containing lab created diamonds. There is virtually zero resale value for man-made diamonds.
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