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Monday, February 28, 2011

The Oscars Red Carpet Jewelry Fashion

Amy Adams wins the “Red Carpet Bling” award wearing $1.35 million worth of emerald and diamond jewelry from Cartier, including a platinum and diamond emerald haute joaillerie secret watch bracelet worth $1.025 million. The bracelet features a 30.75 carat carved emerald and 575 diamonds (15.38 cts.). It’s matched with platinum and diamond ct. stud earrings worth $35,000.

An inability to sign into Twitter yesterday combined with wanting to actually watch the Oscars led to this listing of red carpet jewelry to appear a bit late. There was much blogging and tweeting last night and from my reading the vast majority of experts and passionate enthusiasts were happy with the selection of jewelry at last night’s event. I hope you enjoy this rundown of Oscar jewelry looks as much as you no doubt enjoyed the other excellent coverage on the Web.

Best Actress winner Natalie Portman accessorizes with Tiffany's jewelry, including a Tiffany rubellite tassel earrings set with rose-cut diamonds, an Elsa Peretti Diamonds by the yard bracelet. In addition, she wore diamond earrings as hair accessories and a diamond ring by Jean Schlumberger.

Portman's Black Swan co-star Mila Kunis wears Neil Lane diamond and platinum cocktail ring, line bracelet, bangle and earrings totaling 30 carats.

Supporting actress winner Melissa Leo in a Forevermark 2.05-ct. diamond drop earrings paired with a 10-ct. Forevermark diamond flower ring.

Anne Hathaway, in a $10 million, 94-ct. Tiffany Lucida Star Diamond necklace. The necklace was paired with 10-ct. diamond earrings from Tiffany, and a 5-ct. diamond ring.

Dame Helen Mirren on the red carpet in a vintage platinum necklace from 1907 set with diamonds and pearls and a large diamond and platinum bracelet from Cartier’s Archive Museum Collection.

Nicole Kidman in a 150-ct. 19th Century Riviere diamond necklace by Fred Leighton.

True Grit star Hailee Steinfeld wears platinum and 10-ct. diamond headband, and a platinum and diamond ring by Fred Leighton.

Sandra Bullock in diamond and platinum stud earrings with vintage platinum and diamond bangles by Harry Winston.

Gwyneth Paltrow in earrings, a brooch, and a ring from Louis Vuitton’s jewelry collection, L’Ame du Voyage.

Cate Blanchett in Van Cleef & Arpels jewelry.

Presenter Hilary Swank in Anna Hu jewels on the red carpet.


Best Actress nominee Michelle Williams wearing Harry Winston earrings.

Penelope Cruz in a 10-ct. pink sapphire ring with two carat diamonds by Chopard.

Reese Witherspoon in 35-ct. emerald drop earrings by Neil Lane.

Celine Dion in Van Cleef & Arpels jewelry.

Marisa Tomei in Van Cleef & Arpels sapphire, diamond and emerald earrings.

Kate Winslet accessorizes wears Tiffany.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

‘Prince’ Anhalt to Wear $200,000 worth of Jewelry for the Oscars

I’m not too proud to hit into the TMZ video vault on occassion and what better time to go into that treasure trove than on the day of Oscars, even if this story is laced with a bit of crazy.

Frédéric Prinz von Anhalt, better known as Zsa Zsa Gabor’s husband, will be attending the Oscars, so he says, or maybe he will be attending one or more of the Oscar parties. Whatever, he needed some serious bling for the big night so he went to Beverly Hills jeweler, Raju Rasiah, to borrow some $200,000 worth of jewelry, including diamond-encrusted platinum rings, a diamond bracelet, and a diamond watch, TMZ reports.

In a video interview (no embed available) with von Anhalt in the jeweler’s store Saturday to show the goods to TMZ, the “prince” admits he isn’t wealthy enough to buy the jewelry but advises, “You can do many things with a jeweler,” he said. “A little advice for Lindsay Lohan, the next time you (leave) with a piece of jewelry, go to a good expensive jeweler on Rodeo Drive and get a good piece because you’re doing the same time when you get caught.”

Kirsten Dunst Poses Nude for Bulgari’s New Ad Campaign


Actress Kirsten Dunst has been out of the spotlight for at least a year but now she’s back in a big way by baring all for a new Bulgari fragrance and jewelry advertisement.

With Florence’s Boboli Gardens as the backdrop, Dunst wears little more than purple fabric, jewels from the Italian luxury jeweler’s new Mediterranean Eden Collection and a large bottle of Mon Jasmin Noir, the company’s new fragrance. She lies seductively with her co-star: a (presumably stuffed) lion. The advertisement campaign was shot by Mert Alas & Marcus Piggott.

You may remember a similar ad campaign with actress Juilanne Moore lying seductively covered with nothing but a handbag, Bulgari jewels and two live lion cubs. An oversized billboard of the ad was slated to run on Doge's Palace overlooking St. Mark's Square in Venice. But the mayor deemed the ad inappropriate for the location.

The Bulgari ad campaign will make its debut in the April issues of fashion magazines and the Mediterranean Eden Collection will be in Bulgari stores worldwide by May, according to media reports. There are no reports of a picture from the new campaign appearing in St. Mark’s Square.

You can view more photographs from the campaign here.

Friday, February 25, 2011

2011 Niche Award Winners in Jewelry Design

Oceanic Bangle Bracelet

The winners of the 2011 Niche Awards for jewelry were announced February 18 during the Buyers Market of American Craft show in Philadelphia. The Niche Awards annually celebrate excellence and innovation in American and Canadian craft. They are sponsored by the trade publication, Niche.

Judging was based on three main criteria:

• technical excellence, both in surface design and form
• a distinct quality of unique, original and creative thought
• market viability (professional entries only)

There will be more stories in the coming days from the BMAC show (held February 17-21). For now, the professional and student Niche award winners are as follows:

PROFESSIONAL AWARDS
 
Jewelry: Fashion
Swing
Wiwat Kamolpornwijit
Alexandria, Va.







 Jewelry: Fine
Fluted
Erik Stewart
Tucson, Ariz.





Jewelry: Gold (two winners)
Mother’s Brooch
Juan Carlos Caballero-Perez
Henrietta, N.Y.







 Mandala Ring #2
Jason Dow
Honolulu, Hawaii





Jewelry: Gold with Stones
Circle Disk Brooch with Gold and Pearls
Sadie Wang
Silver Point, Tenn.







 Jewelry: Sculpture to Wear
Oceanic Bangle Bracelet
Kevin O’Grady
Scottsdale, Ariz.


 
 Jewelry: Silver
Lunar Cycle Necklace
Genevieve Yang
Santa Rosa, Calif.




 Jewelry: Silver with Stones
Daisy Diamond Stem
Patricia Tschetter
Dallas







 Jewelry: Wedding
Orange Diamond Ceramic Engagement Ring
Etienne Perret
Camden, Maine




 STUDENT AWARDS

Jewelry: Fashion (two winners)
Finally Coming Home
Andrew Kuebeck
University of Indiana







 Night Blossom Brooch
Bongsang Cho
Savannah College of Art and Design




 Jewelry: Fine
The Laurel
Youngjoo Yoo
University of Iowa







Jewelry: Sculpture to Wear (two winners)
Untitled
Young Eun Tammy Kim
California State University





 
Patterns of Being
Sarah West
East Carolina University





In addition to jewelry, awards were given out in the following categories: Clocks, Ceramics, Fiber, Glass, Metal, Wood and Jewelry.

110-ct. Yellow Diamond on Display in London


The world’s largest known vivid yellow pear-shape diamond is now on display at London’s Natural History Museum. Known as the Sun-Drop, the 110-ct. diamond, mined in Africa, has been lent to the museum by Cora International—the diamond company that crafted the original rough diamond.

The famous gem was placed on display today in the museum’s “Vault,” a gallery for its “rarest, unique and most valuable treasures.” It’s slated to be in the museum for up to 6 months.

The Sun-Drop is yellow because there is a very small amount of nitrogen in its carbon structure, said Alan Hart, head of Collections in the Museum’s Mineralogy Department.

“Diamonds with a strong saturated color represent only a tiny percentage of all natural diamonds, which makes them particularly interesting from a scientific perspective,” Hart said. “In addition, extremely large diamonds (over 100 carats) with exceptional colors are historically significant as so few exist, so we are delighted to be able to show the Cora Sun-Drop to our visitors.”

Model and actress Jerry Hall took part in a photo shoot with the diamond on opening day, which can be seen in the video below.

A shout out to Toronto jewelry designer, Reena Ahluwalia, for turning me on to this story.

What I learned in Tucson

The sunset outside the Tucson Convention Center

I’ve been covering the jewelry industry for 10 years and I have never been to the Tucson gem shows. It was an eye opening experience in many ways and I gained more hands-on knowledge in my eight days in Tucson than I did at any other time working in the industry. There are approximately 36 gems, minerals, fossil and jewelry shows in Tucson over a three-week period, with a few shows beginning earlier. The following is a short list of some of the things I learned:

The Mineral and Fossil Shows Rock. Where else can you find pieces of Quartz bigger than Shaquille O’Neal, amethyst the size of a coffin and fossilized specimens ranging from alligator heads to prehistoric insects?

It’s a place where you can walk into a hotel room and find a 450-pound Meteorite. Not only that, you then can learn that it produces a gem-quality mineral called peridot, also available on Earth. The outer space version of the gem has been given the name, Palladot.

It’s a place where hotel and motel room double as living spaces and showrooms. Brings new meaning to the term, mi casa su casa.

The Centurion Show is the easiest luxury jewelry show to work. This exclusive gathering of luxury jewelry designers, manufacturers and retailers provided me with ample time to view new and exciting products. It’s not typical of the shows in Tucson but it is in the state during the same time so I included it.

If you ever have a chance to join Lois Berger’s Pearl Walk, do it. She holds it annually during the AGTA GemFair. It’s an up-close view of the pearl industry.

Passion. It’s a word that’s thrown about the jewelry industry like candy to kids during Halloween. But it’s a word you never hear in Tucson. That’s because the passion is as obvious as water is to a fish.

If you ever get a chance to see Gary Roskin’s presentation on the Hope and Wittelsbach-Graff diamonds, do it. He was one of 10 gem experts to examine and photograph the two famous deep blue diamonds as these experts tried to determine whether these two diamonds, each with their own remarkable history, are from the same source.

Below are some photos from my time in Tucson:

A giant quartz outside the Riverpark Inn where the Pueblo Gem & Mineral Show was held.

A giant amethyst outside the Riverpark Inn.

Various fossilized heads

Fossilized prehistoric insects

A 450-pound meteorite in the Riverpark Inn hotel room/showroom of Charles Ellias.

The Palladot jewel-quality gems from the meteorite.

The hotel/showrooms of the Hotel Tucson City Center, home of the Arizona Mineral & Fossil Show.

The passionate buyers at the Arizona Mineral & Fossil Show.

Gary Roskin and Lois Berger at the Accredited Gemologists Association's Gala Dinner Dance, Feb. 2.

Agate slices

Peeking out of the shadows.

Gold

Prehistoric fossilized fish

Petrified wood