A DATE WITH DE BEERS

U Magazine - - EXPOSURE - By SABINA EM­RIT

Our UK Editor Sabina Em­rit got up close and per­sonal on a date with De Beers, one of the world’s finest diamond jewel­ers.

My di­a­monds are like my own per­sonal mu­seum pieces, which I look a$er prob­a­bly the most within my jew­elry col­lec­tion. I am al­ways com­pli­mented on my di­a­monds, no mat­ter how sub­tle or how dec­o­rated they are. I have been fas­ci­nated by De Beers ever since I can re­mem­ber. Di­a­monds are my birth­stone, so I was al­ways a lit­tle spoilt with them. I knew of the pres­tige of the brand, no de­tails as such, but above all, I knew that a diamond from De Beers was a very spe­cial diamond in­deed. Rep­re­sent­ing love, hope, eter­nity and light & from the Greek word “adams” mean­ing in­vin­ci­ble & I al­ways re­mem­ber how my mother wore, and still wears her di­a­monds and how they lit up a room. ‘"e an­cient Ro­mans saw di­a­monds as en­gen­der­ing their be­liefs, di­a­monds were sliv­ers of the moon, splin­ters of fall­ing stars or the tears of the gods. Link­ing di­a­monds to ev­er­last­ing love, Eros’ ( Cu­pid’s) ar­rows, un­fail­ingly ir­re­sistible, were be­lieved to be tipped with di­a­monds. "rough De Beers, the diamond came to speak a uni­ver­sal lan­guage, con­vey­ing its mes­sage of love and lux­ury.’

ETHICS OF THE EARTH

"e ethics of di­a­monds and their source will be ques­tioned for­ever. De Beers state that ‘as part of their on­go­ing com­mit­ment they have fo­cused on im­prov­ing health, ed­u­ca­tion and liv­ing stan­dards in coun­tries in which they op­er­ate. With grow­ing con­cerns over con#ict di­a­monds, De Beers took the de­ci­sion to han­dle only di­a­monds of cer­tain ori­gin, guar­an­tee­ing to­tal in­tegrity, truth and trans­parency through­out the sup­ply chain, from the mine to the re­tailer. "e se­lec­tion process at De Beers is con­sid­ered the most rig­or­ous in the jew­elry world to­day; hav­ing to meet acutely ex­act­ing cri­te­ria as set out by the De Beers In­sti­tute of Di­a­monds.’

TECH­NOL­OGY

De Beers have even cre­ated tech­nol­ogy to fur­ther their com­mit­ment to pro­vid­ing their clien­tele with the best di­a­monds. "e ‘De Beers Iris’ is a ma­chine that ‘slows down what the eye sees in a #ash, a mov­ing light scan, al­low­ing the un­trained eye to see the sparkle, bril­liance and per­fec­tion of a De Beers diamond as if through the eyes of an in­dus­try ex­pert.’

NA­TURE’S SE­CRET: COL­ORED DI­A­MONDS

Not so long ago, peo­ple be­lieved that a col­ored diamond was an in­fe­rior stone, some­thing un­de­sir­able. But within two short decades, all of this has changed dra­mat­i­cally. De Beers refers to col­ored di­a­monds as ‘poetic pieces’ full of ‘great charisma’ & a per­fect de­scrip­tion. ‘Each piece is se­lected with pas­sion, in­tu­ition and an ex­pert eye, in col­ors that seem to crys­tallise the mists of time and en­cap­su­late the warmth of the sun on the earth, a cap­ti­vat­ing pal­ette of so$ shad­owy smoke grey, pow­dery me­tal­lic blue, mel­low ochre, jon­quil fad­ing into moss green, warm taupe, !ery ch­est­nut, or­angey-pur­plish pinks like sliv­ers of sun­sets. Prized as works of art, such di­a­monds, each hand-picked for its in­di­vid­u­al­ity and po­etry, are framed in time­less de­signs and hon­ored with ex­quis­ite cra$sman­ship.’ A col­ored diamond isn’t for ev­ery­one, and your fa­vorite color will con­nect with you in­stantly. But it’s fair to say that hav­ing seen the De Beers col­ors up close, and once try­ing them on, their unique and in­di­vid­ual beauty is truly out­stand­ing.

THE TAL­IS­MAN COL­LEC­TION

De Beers’ new­est and more mod­ern de­signs come from the Tal­is­man Col­lec­tion. "e pieces are a sight to be­hold, as though they’ve come from a dis­play at the Bri­tish Mu­seum. "e col­lec­tion seems del­i­cate yet tough & like the na­ture of rough di­a­monds. Whilst in the jew­elry world, we are so used to seek­ing the most bril­liant and bright di­a­monds, there is some­thing mod­estly spe­cial about these pieces when you re­mem­ber that di­a­monds come from the earth in a nat­u­rally raw and un­pol­ished form. When wear­ing pieces like the medal pen­dant, or even smaller like the bangle, you can’t help but feel like you’ve been trans­ported back in time to an an­cient and sa­cred world. "e stones are of a mix of col­ored di­a­monds from earth tones, to sug­ary pinks and browns. "ey are the per­fect ode to na­ture, sig­ni­fy­ing one of the ear­li­est be­liefs of di­a­monds & that they were mag­i­cal amulets and prized talismans with prop­er­ties be­lieved to give pro­tec­tion, con­fer strength and vic­tory, re­pel the forces of evil and in­voke good for­tune. ( Pieces start at £2,100).

LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT BE­YOND THE DIAMOND

UIf you be­lieve in love at !rst sight ( don’t we all?), then there’s no di'er­ence upon !rst meet­ing a new diamond. ‘ Diamond at­trac­tion is like fall­ing in love & an in­stinc­tive at­trac­tion, then deep­en­ing in to a bond, a re­la­tion­ship; the diamond be­comes a part of the wearer’s per­sona.’ De Beers de­scribe di­a­monds as only re­ally com­ing to life when they meet their owner. And the only way for a diamond to truly live is to be worn. El­iz­a­beth Tay­lor said of her jewels be­fore she passed away that she wanted them to go to peo­ple who wouldn’t keep them locked away but wear them fre­quently, for they were truly her best friends, and her long­est last­ing re­la­tion­ships. She chose not to leave them to friends or fam­ily, but to auc­tion them to buy­ers who would covet them just as much as she did.

In 2014, De Beers launched their ‘Mo­ments in Light’ cam­paign, a cel­e­bra­tion of cre­ative women who are mas­ters of their cra$. From cu­ra­tor and pho­tog­ra­phy Mary Mccart­ney to de­signer Alice Tem­perely, ex­hi­bi­tions and talks give in­spi­ra­tion from a brand that looks be­yond its jewels. ‘Mo­ments in Light’ sup­ports Women for Women, a char­ity that sup­ports women a'ected by war and con#ict.

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