Are diamonds no longer a girl’s best friend? Or have they been relegated to second place in favour of coloured stones?
The signs are they have been supplanted by coloured gemstones as this year’s ‘must have’ jewellery, according to experts.
Being in the jewellery trade for over three decades, as the CEO of the Asprey Group, which included Garrard, Mappin & Webb, Hamilton & Inches and Renée Boivin in Paris, I was always in favour of coloured stones as opposed to diamonds, firstly as by nature I considered colour more alluring and as a long-term investment more likely to increase in value with the passage of time.
For contrary to general knowledge, diamonds are plentiful but exploration firmly kept under tight control in order to keep prices up.
Bonhams, the auctioneers, said that coloured gemstone prices are up 2,200 % in a decade and are rising faster than diamond prices, which have started to ‘soften’.
The boom in popularity has led its experts to proclaim 2015 the ‘year of the coloured gemstone’.
Jean Ghika, head of Bonhams Jewellery in the UK and Europe, said: ‘There is a new move towards colour. Women are bolder in their choices and looking at alternatives to diamonds when it comes to engagement rings and everyday jewellery. As ever, fashion is partly celebrity-led and we are seeing some of the world’s biggest stars looking stunning in coloured gemstones on the red carpet.’
She added: ‘Some gemstones were selling at auction for more than six times their valuation. Recent gemstone sales by Bonhams have included a sapphire and diamond ring set with a cushion-shaped Sri Lankan sapphire, weighing 30.08 carats, which sold for £326,500 against a pre-sale estimate of £80,000-120,000. Ten years ago a similar-sized ring sold for £15,000 at today’s prices.’
I can understand why emeralds, rubies and sapphires of gem quality, which are rare to find, are very desirable to have. Their sparkle is magical and they seem to bring to the wearer a scenic joie de vivre which is hard to explain.
For aspiring girls, opt for colour, be wise and jolly, and give a new meaning to your life. You will look even more beautiful and, believe it or not, your prurience will get a jolt from heaven.