Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Hatton Garden Arrests, $20 Million Jewel Heist in Cannes & Record Breaking Kashmir Sapphire

  Its the gorgeous month of May which means two things, its THE month of emeralds (yea) and also the exciting event of the Cannes Film Festival. But whats a film festival without a little drama? It seems that news of robberies have been occurring more frequently lately and usually centered around a red carpet event.  Cannes film festival started this year on May 13th and runs until May 24th.

 A week before the festivities were to begin a theft happened at Cartier to the tune of $20 Million dollars. A man had entered the store wearing a senior citizens mask and sporting a machine gun. They had managed to penetrate the stores security system and security detail at 11am on last Tuesday. two accomplices came in hiding their faces with scarves and one person keeping watch outside the store. They held up the two employees and one customer in the store. They had taken the jewels and had placed them in a leather briefcase. They sped off in a Mercedes Benz that was reported stolen in March. The car was later found abandoned and on fire, almost their trademark now. There hasn't been any public acknowledgment of the actual items that were taken. Is it possible this could be the work of the Pink Panther Gang again?

 In July of 2013 at the time the largest theft of gems and jewelry had occurred to the cost of $136 Million dollars. A door that was supposed to be locked was open ( unlocked ) and a person wearing a helmet and carrying a gun had walked out of the  Carlton Intercontinental Hotel  where they were exhibiting a collection of Lev Leviev jewelry and gems. Reports estimate that 72 pieces (including rings, pendants and earrings) were stolen, with 34 items considered “exceptional.” That case has never been solved.

Cannes is also a great event to view celebrities in a fabulous array of jewels and fashions. Lasting 11 days many movie stars pack several outfits and jewels for various parties and events and of course premieres.  Its a great way to view some exceptional jewels!

Julianne Moore looked flawless at Cannes wearing emerald and diamond Chopard earrings
Fan Bing Bing dazzled in Chopard diamond and emerald earrings
Naomi watts at the premiere of Mad Max, Fury Road wearing platinum, emerald and diamond earrings by Bulgari High Jewellery
The Chopard party featured a bevy of stars dancing the night away in some jaw dropping jewels. What fun they must of had! But I couldnt imagine an event, outfit changes etc for 11 days!

An exceptional canary diamond collar necklace

Hardly any make up, but who needs it when youre dripping in diamonds and luscious pearls~

Stunning sapphire and diamond pendant earrings
And on the same subject, the UK Metropolitan police have raided 12 addresses (one with a large amount of high value jewelry) with the help of 200 officers and have arrested 9 men ranging in age from 48 to 76  in connection with the famous Hatton Garden burglary that happened over the bank Holiday of April 3rd.

The vault wall that was bored thru to get to the safety deposit boxes
 "A number of large bags containing significant amounts of high value property have been recovered from one address," the force said in a statement. "Officers are confident these are items stolen during the burglary."

The suspects were arrested for "conspiracy to burgle", got to love the Brits~

39.05cts Kashmir Sapphire sold for $7.3 Million
Records can be broken when you have extraordinary gems being auctioned. Christies surpassed pre auction estimates and selling an amount of $97Million dollars. 15 items sold for over a million. One incredible Kashmir sapphire weighing 35.09cts sold for a record breaking $7.3 Million dollars. Thats a little over $200,000/carat!

Rahul Kadakia, International Head of Christie's Jewellery Department, declared: “The inexorable rise in demand for coloured gemstones and pearls continued this evening. A 35.09 carat Kashmir sapphire established a new world record of over $200,000 per carat. A single strand of natural pearls changed hands for $3.8 million and a 5.18 carat vivid pink diamond sold for $10.7 million. We now look forward to exciting sales in Paris, Hong Kong, London and New York during the next month.”

An incredible pair of Colombian emerald and gold bangles sold for $1.7Million dollars. From what I from what I have researched, they are from royal provenance. The matching color and hue of the emeralds is magnificent and also the fact that they are over 100 years old and in excellent condition.

Colombian emerald & gold bangles sold for $1.7 Million

Another celebrity has jumped on the making jewelry (or lending their name band wagon). Angie Harmon is known for her acting role on the crime drama "Rizzloi and Isles". When she had learned about "Red Earth" an ethical and lifestyle brand that supports artists around the world she had decided she wanted to be a part of the brand and to help other artists. It nice to see someone in a position to help so many people.

 She designs the pieces of jewelry (retail prices starting at $30) and are created by artisans that are contracted for the work. Here is a link to the website, http://redearthshop.com/product-category/angie-harmon-x-red-earth/.


"Yes, it's a creative outlet, but it's about exposing the talent and giving the credit to these artist and designers in Africa," Harmon says. The rugged-yet-elegant pieces have a modern edge, but it's the love and hard work put into every piece that makes the line unique. "That's what makes it so special," Harmon says.

A selection of Angie Harmons designs on Red Earth

 The full line of accessories are created in bone and brass. There's also a brief bio and picture of the jeweler that made the pieces. A beautifully created line of jewels that benefit many~

                                                     Keep sparkling until next time~

Saturday, May 2, 2015

$22 Million Dollar Diamond, World Record Pearls & Historic Pink Diamond

Sothebys held an auction on April 21st where the second highest diamond carat weight diamond was sold for a record of $22 Million dollars. This remarkable diamond is classified as a type IIA diamond, D color and internally flawless and was mined by DeBeers in South Africa. People that have seen the stone in person compare the colorless stone to the color of a piece of ice, with a hefty price tag. This time around Mr Laurence Graff wasn't not the purchaser of this stone. Both the seller and the purchaser have decided to remain anonymous. Shame on the curious people that have been anticipated the sale of this record breaking stone.This diamond is one of 6 that is over 100 carats that has come to auction.

The 100 carat emerald cut diamond, as of now, it hasnt been given a name, usually by the new owner

The uncut rough weighed over 200 carats and took over a year to have the stone cut and polished.  This is the same mine that has produced many of the gems that is in the Royal collection at the Tower of London.

Original rough weighed 200 carats prior to being cut and polished
Recently a large rough of diamond was unearthed by Lucara diamond mines (based in Canada) at the Karow mine in Botswana. It is classified as a type IIa.   This magnificent piece of rough weighs an impressive 341.9 carats! Once cut and polished its possible for this stone to weigh 150 -200carats.This is the third piece of rough over 100 carats that has been mined at this location. Two other roughs were mined last year. It hasnt been released as to when this stone will be auctioned. Lucara Diamond Corp. is based in Vancouver. The company has the Karowe Mine in Botswana and the Mothae Project in Lesotho, which is operates in a 75-25 percent partnership with the government of the kingdom
341.9cts rough recently unearthed at the Karow mine in Botswana
 Record prices are being reached for many jewels that you would think wouldn't reach that level of pricing. A superb strand of multi colored natural pearls sold at Christies New York location for a world record breaking price of $5 Million Dollars. The pearls are natural and are saltwater as well. The pearls range in size from 4.90mm to 12.65mm.

World record breaking pearls sold for $5 Million Dollars at Christies
The stories that go hand in hand with the exceptional jewels that are seen at the auctions can be almost more captivating that the actually items themselves. Huguette M.Clark was born in France in 1904 to a business tycoon and copper baron William Clark . He was the second richest man in America behind Nelson D. Rockefeller. She had amassed millions upon millions of dollars and properties that she had never spent a night in and jewels that would make any art curator jealous.

Huguette Clarks pink diamond, recently recut from 9 cts to 8.72tcw

A stunning image of a young Huguette Clark
  When Huguette ( she had secretly gone by the moniker of Harriet)  had passed away at the age of 104 in 2012. She lad lived with her mother in her New York 5 avenue apartment until her mother had passed away in 1963. They each had lived separate lives and at times would have family and friends visit. After her mother  had passed away she had lived with her Irish caregiver, until she too had passed away in 1980. After that she went to she had been living as a recluse for the last 80 years, 20 of those years in New York hospitals.

Her jewels were sold in 11 lots in 2012 by Christies. All stunning and had been untouched in the vault in their original boxes since 1940's. One of the most anticipated was a light pink diamond ring affectionately called the "Clark Pink". The ring was sold for $15.7 Million dollars in April of 2012. The ring was sold to U.S. diamond, gem and jewelry specialist Brett Stettner of Stettner Investment Diamonds. He started his diamond company in 1995. The stone was removed from the setting and had been recut to 8.72cts and has now been classified as fancy intense pink diamond by GIA. Not only increasing the value of this record breaking diamond, but also the color grade. It was graded originally as a purplish pink diamond.

Brett Stetner of Stettner Diamonds, previous owner of the Clark Pink

The recut "Clark Pink" from 9.0cts to 8.72cts

Nothing is more epitomes with Royalty than the famous Faberge eggs. Faberge is returning to its roots by creating the first Faberge egg since the 1900's by celebrating 100 years since the last delivery of an egg.  The last egg commissioned by Tsar Nicholas was in 1916 before his abdication from the throne in February 1917. It was called the "Steel Military Egg" It was going to be a gift to his wife Alexandra.  Faberge had to stop production on any new pieces as all of his craftsmen were fighting on the front lines of the war. And not having any materials to create new pieces with as gold and silver were forbidden for jewelers to use. The Steel Military Egg was never sold and is one of ten Imperial Easter Eggs on display at the Kremlin Armory in Moscow.

"Steel Military Egg" Faberge 1916 created with using gold, steel, silk, jade, white and orange enamel.
 The Pearl Egg that was created by Faberge features 139 natural seawater pearls from the Gulf in Qatar. These pearls come from the personal collection of  Hussain Alfardan. He is one of the largest collectors of pearls and is the CEO of Alfardan Group in Qatar.

The magnificent Fabrege Pearl Egg, valued at $2 Million Dollars
 It took 20 skilled masters two years and over 3,300 diamonds, 139 natural sea water pearls, carved rock crystal and mother-of-pearl set on white and yellow gold. The base features white pearls, diamonds and mother-of-pearl in a scallop-motif design.

Hussain Alfardan and Robert Benvenuto President adn COO of Fabrege at the unveiling of the Pearl Egg in Qatar

The six "petals" open to reveal a lustrous 12.17cts gray pearl in the center of the egg. Its value is estimated at $2 Million dollars and was purchased by Hussain Alfardan.

Inside is a 12.17cts gray pearl

 Robert Procop who is a jewelry in the very exclusive area of Beverly Hills. He collaborated with Angelina Jolie in 2013 to create a line of jewelry with 100% of the profits are going to her charity, "Education Partnership for Children of Conflict'. Now his beautiful designs are in collaboration with another actress hoping to help another charity. Brooke Shields had met Robert over 30 years ago when Brooke and her mother were doing a book signing on Rodeo Drive. Their creative paths crossed last year when they began on working on a line of jewelry.  It was recently discovered that Brooke has Royal blood in her veins, and she is a descendant of Louis XIV.  The line is called legacy Brooke and benefits "House of Ruth" that helps women to recover from domestic violence and or sexual assault. Robert has been helping this organization for 25 years.

 Brooke had said, “I had just come back from charting my genealogy and finding the French component of my ancestry,” says Shields, who learned that she’s a descendant of Louis XIV. “We started playing with heirloom pieces, things I loved from going to the antique jewelry fairs.” Two years, hundreds of sketches, and one soldering lesson for Shields later (“Let’s just say I need a little more work,” the actress laughs) now the items will debut in June and will be in stores in September.

The pieces are lovely as you can see Roberts amazing design style with the use of Brookes favorite gemstones. Using amethysts, peridot, blue topaz, and tourmaline in smooth unfaceted cabochons make the jewels seem timeless and elegant. 

Sugar loaf amethysts set in 18k gold with diamonds

21.35cts of green sugarloaf tourmaline set in 18k with 0.97pts of diamonds $12,000

 The retail prices range from $5,000 - $200,000.  A superb collection that will benefit many women and families to get back on their feet~

                                                    Keep sparkling until next time!