Countries That Produce the Most Diamonds

Despite a market that accounts for more than a third of global demand for the gemstone, the U.S. does not have any significant natural diamond resources within its geographical borders. Instead, Russia supplied about a third of the total carats mined in 2015.

Diamond production levels have remained steady in recent years, but industry analysts have predicted a dip in demand due in part to shifting preferences among millennials. The generation is getting married later, if at all, and has unique preferences.

In October, the Diamond Producers Association – a group of seven major diamond retailers, including De Beers and Canada's Lucara – launched an advertising campaign targeting millennial consumers called "Real Is Rare." The industry organization, founded in 2015, even got celebrity Nick Cannon involved.

Diamond-mines-map

But diamonds may not be as rare as the trade organization makes them out to be. After a drop in production between 2008 and 2009, more than 120 million carats of diamond have been produced each year by a handful of countries, largely concentrated in sub-Saharan Africa. According to the U.S. Department of the Interior, there are also "substantial" reserves of the gemstone around the world.

 

Here are the countries that produced the most diamonds in 2015, according to the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme, a collaboration among government and industry organizations.

Country Diamond Production in 2015 (in carats) Average Value Per Carat
Russia 41.9 million $101
Botswana 20.8 million $144
Dem. Rep. of Congo 16.0 million $8
Australia 13.6 million $23
Canada 11.7 million $144
Angola 9.0 million $131
South Africa 7.2 million $193
Zimbabwe 3.5 million $50
Namibia 2.1 million $591
Sierra Leone 500,000 $309
 

The Hidden Meaning Behind Your Favorite Gemstones - Vogue

Gemstones-and-their-meaningsWhile fine jewelry is usually high in monetary value, what often makes it exceptional is that it’s steeped in significance. A piece of jewelry frequently has a particular aura that does not fade; it is with it that we mark the milestones of our lives—engagement, marriage, friendships, parenthood, birthdays, travels, traditions, and love.

Jewelry, some argue, emblematizes the sublime.

When we consider some of the materials jewelry is made with—metals derived from the earth’s crust and gemstones, which, like crystals, have significant metaphysical properties—it’s hard to deny the cosmic allure.

These materials have been honored, according to Maria Leach’s Standard Dictionary of Folklore, Mythology, and Legend, “back beyond recorded history.” Ancient Roman texts note that Cupid’s arrows were tipped with magical diamonds. In Eastern narratives, dragons were often depicted with flaming, wish-granting pearls under their chins or in their claws. In early written accounts, people adorned themselves with feathers, bones, shells, and colored pebbles. We now, of course, refer to these arrangements of naturally occurring materials as jewelry—and now, the colored pebbles are known as gemstones.

Here, a look at the history of some favorite gemstones and their mythological meanings.

Ruby
In Sanskrit, the word for ruby is ratnaraj, or “king of precious stones.” In ancient Hinduism, it was believed by some that those who offered fine rubies to the god Krishna could be reborn as emperors. Rubies were divided into four castes. The Brahmin, for example, granted the advantage of perfect safety. The stone is also mentioned at least four times in the Bible, usually as a representative of beauty and wisdom. Numerous early cultures believed, because of the stone’s likeness to the color of blood, that rubies held the power of life. Among European royalty and the upper classes, rubies were thought to guarantee good health, wealth, wisdom, and success in love. They’ve became some of the most sought-after gems.

 

Lapis
Lapis lazuli has always been associated with royalty and deities, and it may be where the idea of royal blue came from. Egyptians believed that it came from the heavens and provided protection in the afterlife, so they used it in their statues of the gods, in totemic objects, in jewelry, and in burial masks. In the epic poem Gilgamesh, Sumerians spent years traveling from one end of Asia to the other in order to mine and obtain the stone. Lapis is included in numerous other myths but has served practical purposes as well: Ancient Egyptians used it to create blue cosmetics, and during the Renaissance, painters ground the

via www.vogue.com


Pink Star diamond sets new world record in Hong Kong - BBC News

Pink Star diamondA rare diamond known as the Pink Star has been sold in Hong Kong for more than $71m (£57m), setting a new world record for any gemstone at auction.

The oval-shaped 59.6 carat stone was bought after just five minutes' bidding at Sotheby's, reports said.

It is the largest polished diamond in its class to go under the hammer.

It sold for $83m in Geneva in 2013 but the buyer later defaulted. The record until now was held by the Oppenheimer Blue, which sold for $50m last May.

Bidding for the gem, which was found by De Beers at a mine in Africa in 1999 and cut over a period of two years, began at $56m.

Sotheby's said the buyer was Hong Kong jewellery retailer Chow Tai Fook Jewellery.

Alexander Breckner, head of diamonds at jewellers "77 Diamonds", told the BBC that the stone was exceptional.

"It's the largest pink diamond ever found in the history of humankind. It's an incredible colour to it.

"And the sheer size of the stone already makes it so rare and so beautiful."

via www.bbc.com


The journey of one of the rarest, largest diamonds - CNN.com

Cullinan Heritage rough diamondWhat do you do with one of the world's largest rough diamonds?  You chip away at it - - for some 47,000 man hours and then turn it into one lavish neckpiece, featuring 11,551 diamonds.

Follow this link to see a photo gallery that depicts a visual journey -- from the origins of where one of the world's rarest and largest diamonds was unearthed, to how it formed the core of an absurdly lavish necklace, made of 11,551 diamonds and hundreds of pieces of jade and jadeite. The piece was designed as a collaboration between jewelry designer Wallace Chan and Hong Kong's largest jewelry retailer, Chow Tai Fook.

via www.cnn.com


Two Large Rough Diamonds Found in Lesotho

New York--Two large diamonds have been uncovered in Africa in as many weeks, putting an end to the drought of big diamond finds the industry seems to have been experiencing.
Lesotho diamonds
Gem Diamonds uncovered the 114-carat D color, Type II rough diamond on the left at Letšeng while Firestone Diamonds found the 110-carat light yellow rough diamond at right at its Liqhobong project.

Mining company Gem Diamonds Ltd. announced the recovery of a 114-carat rough diamond from its Letšeng mine in Lesotho on Friday.

The company described it as a D color, Type II diamond of “exceptional quality.”

The Letšeng mine is known for producing large, high-quality white diamonds, selling at an average price of $2,000 per carat, according to Bloomberg, which is the highest in the industry.

It is the deposit responsible for producing the 357-carat chunk of rough that was cut into the 118.78-carat “Graff Venus,” the world’s largest flawless heart-shaped diamond.

Since Gem Diamonds acquired Letšeng in 2006, the mine has produced four of the 20 largest gem-quality white diamonds ever recorded, though last year it only recovered five stones bigger than 100 carats, less than half what it found the year prior.

The news of Gem’s find came on the heels of another big diamond find from a rival miner in Lesotho, a small kingdom within a country that’s located in the southeastern portion of South Africa.

On April 5, Firestone Diamonds said it had unearthed a 110-carat diamond, its biggest discovery so far, at its new mine in Lesotho.

The light yellow stone was discovered at the Liqhobong project, confirming its beliefs that the deposit has the potential for large diamonds, the company said.

Firestone has spent $185 million to build up the mine, which just began production in October.

In addition to its Liqhobong mine in Lesotho, Firestone also owns and operates the BK11 kimberlite mine in northern Botswana.

via www.nationaljeweler.com


The Pink Star’ Sells for $71M at Sotheby’s

Hong Kong--The 59.60-carat ‘Pink Star’ diamond has, once again, become the most expensive jewel ever sold at auction, and maybe this time it will stick.

Pink-Star-1The Pink Star is a 59.60-carat oval mixed-cut Type IIa pink diamond and is the largest internally flawless fancy vivid pink diamond the Gemological Institute of America has ever graded. The diamond came from a 132.5-carat piece of rough mined by De Beers in Africa in 1999 and was cut and polished over a two-year period.

Chow Tai Fook paid $71.2 million for the stone on Tuesday at Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels and Jadeite sale in Hong Kong. The Hong Kong-based retailer and manufacturer edged out two other buyers to snag the stone, Sotheby’s said.

Sotheby’s experts had estimated before the sale that The Pink Star would sell for more than $60 million.

It set a new world record price for any jewel sold at auction, surpassing the rectangular-cut, 14.62-carat “Oppenheimer Blue,” which sold for $57.5 million at Christie’s Geneva last May.

This isn’t the first time The Pink Star has found a buyer at auction, though the first sale fell through.

The nearly 60-carat pink stone went up for auction in November 2013 at Sotheby’s Geneva, where four different bidders competed for it. New York diamond cutter Isaac Wolf placed the winning bid of $83 million, which, at the time, marked a new auction record for any jewel ever sold at auction.

In February 2014, though, Wolf defaulted on the payment for the diamond he had named “The Pink Dream” and as a result, Sotheby’s had to take the stone back into its inventory because it had been sold under an auction guarantee.

Last summer, the auction house formed a partnership with Diacore and Mellen Inc. to acquire an ownership interest in the diamond, meaning that when the stone sold, proceeds would be split among the three companies per their ownership percentage.


887 Carat Emerald Goes Up for Auction | JCK

Also for sale at Guernsey’s: 17 emeralds from a famed Spanish shipwreck

887 carat la Gloria EmeraldThe la Gloria, an 887 ct. “museum-quality” stone believed to be the largest rough emerald in the United States, is among the rare emeralds going up for sale by Guernsey’s at an Apr. 25 auction run in New York City.

That golf ball–size stone, along with 17 emeralds discovered from the wreck of Spanish galleon Nuestra Señora de Atocha, all come from the collection of noted emerald authority Marcial de Gomar.

“It’s very rare for an auction to spotlight emeralds,” says Arlan Ettinger, founder and president of Guernsey’s. “We feel this will be an extraordinary event.”

The la Gloria hails from the Muzo mine in Colombia, known for producing large emeralds. It’s sat in de Gomar’s collection for many years, and this is its first time on the market. And while the collector feels it could produce a 400 ct. polished stone, he has always believed it shouldn’t be cut.

“[There’s a] little piece of calcite on the end [that] is a tip to its provenance,” de Gomar says. “It tells you what country it comes from, what mine it comes from. All that is very significant. I wouldn’t want it to be cut. I’d like for it to be kept as is. It should be in a state museum somewhere.”

The stone is named for a now-deceased attorney that represented de Gomar in litigation over the Atocha.

Xcorona-de-muzoThe 17 gemstones from the Atocha include the Corona de Muzo (below), which features a 24.34 ct. emerald cut; the Reina del Mar, a 4.39 ct. round; and a 26.72 ct. piece of rough. All those stones are believed to have come from Muzo as well.

The Atocha sank in 1622, off the coast of Florida while bound for Spain. In the 1980s, treasure hunter Mel Fisher discovered portions of the wreckage, setting off an epic legal battle with the state of Florida.

Ettinger says most of the items will be sold without reserve (though not la Gloria). “That makes it more exciting,” he says.

The auction house is still working on an estimate for the headline stone but expects it to fetch “many millions.”

via www.jckonline.com


Diamond Earrings for Valentines or Your Special Anniversary

RB 2.24 tcw-3If you are looking for an exceptional gift for Valentine’s Day or a Special Anniversary, consider diamond earrings.  We find that our clients who have round diamond stud earrings wear them every day as they look great in the office, at a party, shopping and running errands, or when wearing jeans at home.

 

RB 2.11 tcw 3-prong-2The secret to beautiful diamond earrings is to get diamonds with the best cut possible to maximize their brilliance, fire and sparkle.  We seek round GIA graded diamonds with Excellent GIA cut grade and Excellent HCA (Holloway Cut Advisor) ratings to provide dazzling diamonds seldom every seen in a jewelry store.

 

To keep the focus on the diamond we recommend three-prong “Martini (cocktail) style” mountings and for security we recommend Versa posts and Guardian™ clutch backs.  Most lost earrings are due to faulty friction or screw backs so the clutch style of backs is superior.

Fill out the Diamond Search Request Form so we know what type of diamonds you want...

Or, give us a call toll free at 888-477-8385


Beautiful Asscher Cut Diamond Ring Added to Special Offers

AS 1.51 ct 0.28 AD-18We have added this beautiful Asscher cut diamond ring to our list of special offers.

Diamond Ring with a 1.51-carat square emerald (Asscher) cut diamond graded E color, VS2 clarity, depth 69.7%, table 57%, Excellent polish, Excellent symmetry, No fluorescence, measuring 6.45 x 6.21 x 4.33 mm with a ratio of 1.03 (ref: GIA 16938804, dated 03/31/2008) set in a split-prong custom platinum mounting (Stamped “PLAT”) with a total of 18 pave-set round diamonds (0.28 total carat weight) going half way down the top of the 2.1 mm wide shank.

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At Arkansas' Crater of Diamonds State Park, dad and daughter find 2.03 carat diamond - CNN.com

There are those who go to the Crater of Diamonds State Park, armed with shovels and buckets and kneepads and maps to spend the day meticulously digging for diamonds.
Father-and-daughter-find-large-diamond-split-exlarge-169
 
And then there's Dan Frederick and his daughter Lauren, who less than an hour after setting foot in the park for the first time, found a 2.03 carat diamond just lying there, staring back at them.
 
Father-and-daughter-find-large-diamond-medium-plus-169The state park in Arkansas is the only diamond-producing site in the world where anyone can come look for the gems -- and keep whatever they spot.
 
But the Frederick find is pretty unusual.  For one thing, the diamonds are spread out over 37.5 acres of the park. The Fredericks found theirs last week just three feet in front of them.

"Dan Frederick has proven, once again, that it is possible to find large, beautiful diamonds while surface searching. This is an example of a diamond that all park visitors dream of taking home," said Park official Betty Coors.
 
The diamond is pearly white in color and shaped like a triangle. The Fredericks decided to name it "Lucky Diamond."   Exactly how much the diamond is worth depends on its clarity, cut, color and carat (the four 4Cs), but it's a safe bet it's worth much, much more than the $16 the Fredericks spent on admission.