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Jewellery

One Hundred Years Of Baselworld Watches & Jewellery

Although only 29 Swiss watchmaking and jewellery brands attended the first ever show in 1917, this year’s Baselworld played host to no fewer than 220 companies. And as this major event in the sector draws once again to a close, Swiss exhibitors have amply proved their ability to marshall their powers of innovation and excellence and resist the current turbulence in the market.

The Sapphire Queen

This week marks a milestone for Queen Elizabeth II- she ascended the throne on the 6th February 1952- she has reigned for 65 years, longer than any other monarch in British history and this milestone has been declared her Sapphire Jubilee. Sapphires suit Her Majesty, matching the colour of her eyes and skin tone, so here we take a look at some of the most impressive pieces in her collection.

Faberge Snowflakes

The depths of winter in which we now find ourselves has served as inspiration to many artists and designers. The snowflake, with its perfect symmetry and tantalisingly beautiful crystal structure has been rendered many times over in diamonds by artist jewellers throughout the last century. One jeweller, however, was key in popularising the motif in the 20th century: Carl Fabergé. He took the concept of ice and snow and made it his own, and how fitting that this should be done by a Russian jeweller, a country where the extremes of winter are harsher than most of us are used to.

The Importance of Cut in Gemstones

Colour, Carat, Clarity and Cut... these are the four important characteristics by which gemstones (especially diamonds) are judged. Of the four, cut is the most important one, the one that brings the other three qualities together. Sacrifice cut for carat weight and you have a stone with poor colour diffusion and bad light reflecting properties. If the stone is not studied properly and the inclusions are not well disguised within a stone, the value plummets.

Gossamer Beauty: Opals

Beautiful, mysterious opals... these very unique gems are top of the scale when it comes to superstitions associated with precious stones. They are traditionally the birthstone for October and their multi colour light refracting properties have inspired devotion and irrational fear in equal measure through the ages.

Dancing With Vivacity: The Briolette Cut

The briolette is one of the oldest cuts used in gem faceting, reaching its height of popularity in the 17th century. A briolette cut is a pear shaped stone whose surface is entirely cut with small, triangular facets. It was developed in India and before the full refractive properties of diamonds were fully understood, in the 16th century it was probably the cut that reflected most light out of the stone. The name probably comes from the Italian word ‘brio’, or vivacity, which is probably the most loquacious way of describing the way this cut reflects light, especially in diamonds.

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