Five Famous Pieces of Jewelry
1. THE GRAFF PINK
The Graff Pink is a pink diamond that falls within the top 1-2 percent of the world’s diamonds in terms of purity, as ranked by the Gemological Institute of America.
In 2010, legendary diamond collector Laurence Graff purchased this rare gem for a whopping $46 million at an auction in Switzerland. At the time, it set the record for the most money ever spent on a single diamond.
But even though the diamond was already renowned for its clarity and vibrant color, Graff wanted to refine the diamond even further. He noted that the diamond had 25 naturally-occurring flaws, and set out to fix them, risking it all to make the rare gem absolutely flawless.
Thankfully, Graff succeeded, eliminating the blemishes without shattering or damaging the precious stone.
Now that these improvements have been made, the stone is worth even more than the original $46 million Graff paid for it, but since it is one-of-a-kind, there really is no way to tell exactly how much it could go for should it end up on the market again.
Not surprisingly, Graff has no plan to part with this remarkable addition to his famous jewelry collection anytime soon.
2. THE L’INCOMPARABLE DIAMOND NECKLACE
This highly-coveted and ultra-elegant piece holds the record for the most valuable necklace in the world, making it one of the most famous jewels in history.
It was originally created by Mouawad, a highly-regarded Lebanese jeweller, and it features the world’s largest internally flawless diamond. Coming in at 407 carats, the feature diamond is a yellow-toned step-cut that is as much a piece of history as it is a dazzling, show-stopping adornment.
But perhaps the most interesting tibit about the L’Incomparable diamond necklace is the story of its origin. It was originally found by a young girl in the Democratic Republic of Congo, who discovered it while playing in a pile of rubble near her home. The young girl took the stone to her Uncle, who then sold it to a group of local African diamond dealers, who then sold it to a group of Lebanese buyers. Eventually, the stone ended up in the hands of luxury jeweller Mouawad.
The necklace is currently valued at an incredible $55 million, and remains a part of Mouawad’s highly revered diamond collection.
3. THE TIFFANY DIAMOND
Tiffany & Co is arguably the most recognized jewelry brand in America, and they are admired by many for their substantial collection of famous jewels and gemstones.
But the creme de la creme of the jewelry giant’s collection is the Tiffany diamond, a spectacular 128.54 carat yellow diamond that was originally discovered in South Africa in 1877.
Regarded as a symbol of the highest standards of quality and craftsmanship by the world’s most experienced and respected jewelry experts, the Tiffany diamond has only been worn by two women in its entire history.
The first to wear the brilliant diamond was Mrs. Sheldon Whitehouse at the 1957 Tiffany Ball held in Newport, Rhode Island.
The second to be adorned with the rare gem was none other than Audrey Hepburn, who wore it in a set of publicity photos for her film Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
Most recently, the stone was redesigned in a diamond necklace setting as a part of Tiffany & Co’s 175th anniversary celebration, and remains on display on the Main Floor of Tiffany’s Fifth Avenue flagship store.
4. THE OPPENHEIMER BLUE
Undoubtedly one of the most beautiful jewels in the world, the Oppenheimer Blue is a 14.62 carat blue diamond that has been enhanced with an emerald cut. In May of 2016, it set a world record for being the largest fancy vivid blue diamond (as classified by the Gemological Institute of America) to ever be sold at auction, securing an unbelievable $50.6 million.
What separates this exquisite gem from other famous jewelry pieces is it’s naturally-occuring, fancy vivid blue hue. It’s color is so rare, in fact, that the stone falls under the rare category of Type IIb diamonds, whose natural occurrence is less than 0.1 % of all naturally occurring diamonds.
This stunning jewel was sold at the Christie’s Geneva Magnificent Jewel Sale in May of 2016, fetching a final payout of $57.5 million from an unidentified bidder.
5. THE HOPE DIAMOND
You simply cannot compile a list of the most famous jewels in history without including the Hope diamond. It is part of one of the most famous necklaces known to man, and is currently insured for $250 million.
This resplendent, radiant diamond weighs 45.52 carats, and is admired for its rare blue color. The stone also has a long, intriguing history, having been sold to King Louis XIV of France in 1669, (along with approximately one thousand other diamonds) for 220,000 livres, which is the equivalent of 147 kilograms of pure gold.
Today, this priceless piece of jewelry remains on display at the National Museum of National History, to whom the stone was donated by its last owner, Harry Winston. Because of its sheer notoriety and value, the gem is encased with 3-inch glass and a mechanism that will cause the gem to drop out of sight at any threat.
Since the Hope diamond is incomparable to any other known diamond, it’s true value is difficult to determine, but one thing is for sure - this rare wonder will likely never be owned by a single buyer again.
Now that you are familiar with a few of the most famous jewels and gemstones that exist in the world today, it’s time to start thinking about how you’d like to protect your own valued pieces.
Sure, your wedding ring or family heirlooms may not need be insured for $250 million, but they still hold sentimental significance and are often one of the greatest investments you will make, outside of your home and vehicles.
If you’re interested in keeping your prized jewelry pieces protected, check out our small jewelry safe today