How to choose an engagement ring

How to choose an engagement ring? We have asked several people, men and women.

Once upon a time, engagement rings were only made of yellow gold. It is the most traditional gold, the one that signals the value of the metal. Today, however, a yellow gold engagement ring has a slightly vintage feel, even if it always remains a classic. Someone prefers it this way, precisely because of its taste of a jewel from other times, but with a value that will remain intact for the future as well. In this case, however, it is better to choose a simple design, perhaps with a small diamond set.

Yellow gold. Once the engagement rings were made in yellow gold. It is the more traditional gold, which indicates that the value of the metal. Today, however, an engagement ring in yellow gold has a vintage feel. Some people prefer it so, just for its flavor jewel of other times. In this case , however, better to choose a simple design, perhaps with a small diamond.

Anello indossato della collezione Motion
Ring worn from PdPaola’s Motion collection

White gold. Beware: in reality there is the white gold. It is, you know, gold mixed with some metal without color, such as silver, nickel, manganese and/or (more rarely) palladium. Beware, then by those who proposed a ring in “pure white gold”. It is often coated with rhodium to give it a patina whiter and a brilliant finish. This type of ring after a few years it should be dipped again in a solution in order to maintain its white color and luster and replace the rhodium plating, otherwise it will return to the color of its main ingredient: yellow gold. It’s a hassle, but in reality the process is relatively inexpensive, and many jewelers offer this service for free.

Anello con diamante a taglio marquise
White gold ring with marquise cut diamond

Red and rose gold. The red gold is a alloy with copper. It’s not used traditional for engagement rings, less than complicated processes that combine white gold or yellow. An engagement ring in red gold, which is very fashionable for other types of jewelry, it is considered a bit too bling, inelegant. Of course, the design of the ring counts for a lot in the final judgment.

Anello doppio in oro rosa e diamanti indossato
Piaget, double ring in rose gold and diamonds worn

Platinum. This means that it has a natural white color, although slightly greyish. To be sold as a platinum ring should be composed of at least 90-95 per cent with this metal. Over time the color of the platinum does not tend to yellow, as for the white gold. But loses its glossy finish: some like it because that, by contrast, makes the diamond even more sparkling. Platinum, in any case, can be professionally polished to restore its original splendor, a process that is comparable in terms of cost of care for the white gold. In general, the color of white gold and platinum are similar, but not exactly the same thing: try to put a ring type on the same hand and you will see. White gold is more silvery, while platinum is more gray. The white diamonds beautifully complement them both, but beware: if your engagement ring is platinum, do not add a wedding band in white gold. Remain coordinated with the metal selected the first time is a better idea.

Anello in platino, morganite, diamanti
Platinum, morganite, diamond ring by Tomasz Donocik

The price. The biggest advantage of white gold than platinum is definitely the cost. Platinum is more expensive because it is more rare than gold. Every year there are only extracted 160 tons of platinum against 1,500 tons of gold. In addition, platinum is denser than the yellow metal: the same size ring will weigh significantly more platinum than gold (and precious metals are valued by weight). Broadly speaking, a gem in white gold costs about half an equivalent in platinum. So if you like the white and want to save, choose the gold.

Gioielleria Rocca a Bologna, ingresso
Rocca jewelry store in Bologna, entrance

Which gold to choose. Most of the engagement rings in gold are a 14 or 18 carat , usually marked with the initials 14k or 18k . The letter k means carat. The 14k gold is only 58.3 percent pure. The one on the 18k is 75 percent pure. The greater the amount karat, the purer the gold, but it is also less resistant. The gold in its purest form, in fact, is at 24k, but that state is too soft to use for jewelry complex: it deforms. Must be alloyed with other metals in order to harden and become resistant. To reinforce the gold is usually used in alloys nickel, but sometimes causes allergy. Platinum, however, is a strong metal, stronger and heavier than gold. Among other things, the platinum is more pure and is considered hypoallergenic. You can, however, also find white gold without nickel.

Mariah Carey con l'anello di alta gioielleria in oro bianco e diamanti. Photo: Koto Bolofo
Mariah Carey with the high jewelry ring in white gold and diamonds by Chopard. Photo: Koto Bolofo

Symbols. Gold historically indicates wealth, wisdom, and divine power. Remember the golden rules of the Bible? Or, the golden age or the golden years, which signify good times. And the 50th wedding anniversary is said to be one of the golden wedding. Gold is also considered by many as the traditional metal for wedding rings and engagement rings. Since it does not oxidize over time, helps to symbolize the pair of eternal harmony. Yet now it is platinum that seems to be the new symbol of wealth and prestige. Think of the “platinum credit card” which often has better benefits and privileges that the “credit card of gold.”  The choice is yours.

Anello con diamante a cuore indossato
Worn heart diamond ring

All about amethyst

The stone of February is the amethyst. But this gem also it like in the other 11 months of the year. Discover the qualities of the amethyst in this article ♦
Has always been considered a sort of talisman: Sumerians and Babylonians and Egyptians wore amulets made with amethyst for protection, and for the ancient Chinese was a material with which to store spices, healing balms and ointments. In nature this variety of quartz is found inside of stony masses and quarries, geodes, crystals containing groupings. One of the most famous is the one discovered in Brazil in the area of ​​Rio Grande Sol, 30 meters long and 15 meters completely covered with amethyst crystals width, so large that it must be dug in the ground. Amethyst is also the stone of February.

Anello della collezione Tiple-Trêfle. Oro bianco 18 carati, diamanti, ametista, zaffiri
Isabelle Langlois, anello della collezione Tiple-Trêfle. Oro bianco 18 carati, diamanti, ametista, zaffiri

The color range. It is truly remarkable, ranging from light pink to deep purple with many intermediate shades, as the example lavender or lilac, christened Rose de France, or the darkest shade almost bluish shades from red or pink typical of the stones from Russia , whose mines are now exhausted. Then there are amethysts Uruguay and Arizona with a deep blue-purple, the Zambian light purple. All owe their color to iron impurities. Some are two-tone, gold and purple, are called ametryne, and consist of quartz citrine and amethyst. Others, are green and are baptized prisiolite.

Orecchini con ametista e diamanti
Orecchini con ametista e diamanti by Michele della Valle

Origin. There are many mineral sources, practically in almost all over the world, but the most important producers are Brazil, Uruguay, Madagascar and Zambia. A good quality stones are also found in the United States, South Korea and Austria.

Anello Sissi con agata intagliata e ametista
Anello Sissi di Sanalitro con agata intagliata e ametista

Rating. Until the 18th century it was considered a precious gem as much as a diamond, a sapphire, an emerald or a ruby. The most valuable specimens came from the Ural Mountains of Russia, but the discovery of large deposits in Brazil and other countries has largely decreased the price. Currently the main evaluation criterion is the color: the more intense and more uniform the quality. Attention to the nuances, must be neither brown nor gray.

Anello in oro bianco, diamanti, ametista e agata di Voga Gioielli
Anello in oro bianco, diamanti, ametista e agata di Voga Gioielli

Purity. It is a gem of type II, so it can have slight inclusions visible to the naked eye but if its dark color hides, it becomes more difficult in the pink variety, lavender or green. It is often found in large, it can be up to 20 carats, and is almost always natural because the heat treatment and thus the cost of such a convenient stone does not make sense.

Anello in oro rosa, rubellite e diamanti
Anello in oro rosa, rubellite e diamanti

Collana vinage in oro e argento con ametista
Collana vinage in oro e argento con ametista

Anello con ametista di 81 carati, 2014
Anello con ametista di 81 carati, 2014

Anello Aurora in oro, ametista, rodolite di Shaun Leane
Anello Aurora in oro, ametista, rodolite di Shaun Leane

How narrows or widens a ring

You can tighten a ring, or enlarge it: read when and how you can do it ♦

What to do when the favorite ring has become too narrow or too wide? You can ask at the goldsmith to return the gold eliminated in this operation? Because the cost is so different between one ring and another? Here are six questions and six answers.

1 How do you enlarge a ring?

The goldsmith opens the circumference with a saw very thin. Then he picks up (if it has to tighten) or add a piece of metal similar to that of the ring. With pliers, joins the two pieces. At this point welding the ring and then proceeds with different polishing phase with brushes previously immersed in three different abrasive pastes, up to obtain the desired surface.

Anello da allargare
Ring to enlarge

2 It should be every time added another gold to enlarge a ring?

Sometimes yes, sometimes no. If the ring has only need to widen up to less than a quarter of its original size and the metal is often, the jeweler may be able to modify your ring working on a mandrel and using the hammer to jeweler. But it is not likely to occur. Usually the ring is expanded with the addition of a small piece of gold or platinum. The ring is then welded again and polished.

Anello da stringere
Ring to tighten

3 How do you resize more little?

To resize a ring, a small section of the circular band is removed. Then the ring is shaped again and then welded. If there are stones on display, they must be tightened again in the griffe. There is a limit: if the stones can not be tightened there is the risk to falling out from the metal support.

Laboratorio orafo Cazzaniga Nobili
Cazzaniga Nobili goldsmith workshop

4 You may retrieve the gold deleted when you resize a ring?

The amount of gold that is removed in the reduction process is usually so small that it wouldn’t make sense for a refund. Also, sometimes the ring must be polished and the gold is transformed into a fine powder which is sucked. The reduction of a ring requires a lot of skill: the milligrams of gold to the jeweler who remain, are largely discounted by the price of his labor.

Decisamente da stringere
Definitely to tighten

5 Why is it more expensive to widen or tighten some rings than others?

The cost of labor depends very much on the amount of work and by the size of the ring, on the weight and type of metal. To work the platinum is more expensive than gold, because it takes more heat and more attention. It is usually more expensive also work on rings with stones, that need special care. For example, only diamond, sapphire, ruby can withstand the heat of a welding flame. Other gems or should be removed from the ring, or require the use of a laser, because if they are heated, they burn and are hopelessly ruined. The more work and equipment needed for these rings raise the cost of the operation.

Controllate le misure della dita
Check your finger size

6 The size of the finger is different from store to store. Why?

Rings and fingers are measured with spindles. Between one and the other can be a different calibration and, therefore, may be a different measure of the circumference. The variation is usually between 1/4 and 1/2 of the size. In addition, the fingers can also change size depending on weather conditions (shaking with the cold, the heat swell), or due to the condition of health, or weight, and even the time of day.

How to wear the choker

The chocker, a jewel that has come back into fashion in recent years. That’s when to wear it ♦

The chocker, also called collier de chien, gargantilla or girocollo, is back. Because lights up the face, hides flaws and especially dress up. It knows well Nicole Kidman, seen at the Music Awards with a model in platinum and big diamonds by Fred Leighton. And so did an icon of youth and beauty like Princess Diana, who often wore chockers, even in official photos: three, six, eight threads of pearls, closed by precious stones’s clasps surrounded by diamonds.

La principessa Diana con girocollo di perle con zaffiro blu
Princess Diana with blue sapphire pearl choker

In large and different sizes Chanel new version pearls, strictly false as bubbles in molten glass or metallic. And also others fashion’s big names has used chockers on the catwalk: those of Roberto Cavalli are in panther style, Alexander McQueen, on the other hand, focuses on flowers, but made of steel, while the ones by Maison Martin Margiela would fit on Star Wars soldiers. In the world of jewelry they have with big mesh encrusted with crystals or with all types of colorful chains. So, any style is fine as long as dresses the neck. Also because after a certain age it is almost mandatory not to attention to wrinkles with a normal necklace. Then you might as well act in advance.

Katy Perry con choker di diamanti brown
Katy Perry with brown diamond choker

When to wear it. There is no rule establishing when to wear a crew neck. In short, any style is fine as long as it decorates the neck. But there are rules that advise when not to wear a crew neck. For example, when the neck is not your strong point: if you have a short, thick, not slender neck or a double chin, this kind of necklace may make your look worse. On the contrary, a high choker can be used to hide wrinkles after a certain age. But pay attention to the model: a shape that is too small could cause the opposite effect.

Kim Kardashian con un girocollo firmato Lorraine Schwartz
Kim Kardashian with a choker by Lorraine Schwartz

How to choose a choker. The collier de chien is a challenging jewel: impossible not to notice. This is why the choice of a choker must be carefully considered. First of all: do you have a fairly thin and slender neck? If the answer is yes then the choker is for you. But be careful not to overdo it: a choker made of one or many strands of pearls, in Princess Diana style, is suitable for a rather elegant dress. Chains and groumettes are associated with sportswear or very pop and, in any case, they are not recommended for women over 40 (personal opinion, mind you). In general, a large, very eye-catching choker should not be worn together with other equally important jewels, as big earrings or cocktail rings.


Collana della demi-parure di Scavia composta da girocollo e orecchini con rubini birmani (36 carati), smeraldi colombiani (45 ct) e zaffiri (64 ct)
Scavia demi-parure necklace composed of choker and earrings with Burmese rubies (36 carats), Colombian emeralds (45 ct) and sapphires (64 ct)
Collana Butterflies, oro rosa, diamanti, pietre di colore come ametista, peridoto, spinello
Bulgari, Butterflies choker necklace, rose gold, diamonds, colored stones such as amethyst, peridot, spinel
Girocollo Piaget per Jessica Chastain
Piaget choker for Jessica Chastain
Collana girocollo con diamanti e perle
Yoko London, diamond and pearl choker necklace
Illario, girocollo in oro, madreperla e diamanti
Illario, necklace in gold, mother of pearl and diamonds
Collana girocollo con peridoti e iolite
Marina J, choker necklace with peridots and iolite
Girocollo Glycines di Philippe Wolfers, Art Nouveau. Oro, tormalina intagliata, opale intagliato, rubini, granato
Glycines choker by Philippe Wolfers, Art Nouveau. Gold, carved tourmaline, carved opal, rubies, garnet
Dita Von Teese con girocollo di Pasquale Bruni
Dita Von Teese with crew neck by Pasquale Bruni
Girocollo in diamanti in oro bianco, formato da corolle di fiori a scalare con incastonati diamanti taglio brillante di 31,36 carati
Diamond necklace in white gold, made up of graduated flower corollas set with brilliant-cut diamonds of 31.36 carats
Girocollo con diamanti
Samer Halimeh, diamond choker
Girocollo con diamanti e rubini
Zsa Zsa Gabor, with a necklace with diamonds and rubies

Sabyasachi, the maharaja of jewels

Tomorrow’s jewelery of India is the same as yesterday’s India: the opulent jewelry by Sabyasachi ♦ ︎

“Ethnic wear for the global nomad”. Wear robe-related clothes in an increasingly global and moving world. Prophet of this wisdom is Sabyasachi Mukherjee, Indian fashion designer, of Kolkata. His collections of clothes give that opulence that is admired in old prints or vintage photographs: embroidered, baroque, rich fabrics. But it would be wrong to consider it as a simple stylist. He is, instead, a man of multiple interests as well as a designer. From food to culture, from movie (Bollywood) to literature: Sabyasachi is a sort of Renaissance character in Indian interpretation.
In 2008, the designer widened his work on jewelery.

Bracciale in oro con gemme e diamanti
Mangrove bracelet in gold with gems and diamonds

An example of his jewelery is the Mangrove bracelet, made in homage to the great Indian artisan tradition and to the various species of endangered trees found along the Ganges and in the mangroves of the Sundarbans. The bracelet has hand-engraved details and is made of 18k gold with multi-colored gemstones and diamonds. The back is studded with EF VVS VS graded diamonds.

Collana in oro con pietre dure
Gold necklace with semiprecious stones

But not fashion-jewelry, that is, jewelery produced in series, made with cheap materials and with embossed the brand. The collections of Sabyasachi are inspired by deep and precious India, rich in stones like diamonds and emeralds, but cut in a traditional way or, better, not cut with classic faceted shapes. Polki diamonds, like those used by the maharajas of a time, sewn on robes of nobles during the Moghul dynasty. In short, just look at these images (spread on Instagram) to make a dip in the depths of India’s most traditional. “Growing up, I spent hours digging in my mother’s and grandmother’s jewelery lockers. Their taste was simply delicious. Perhaps, that’s why I’m disappointed: where did all this art go?” So he thought about him to revive the tradition.

Collana della collezioe Tropic of Caluctta
Necklace from the Tropic of Calcutta collection
Collana con smeraldo intagliato, rubini, diamanti
Necklace with carved emerald, rubies, diamonds
Orecchini in oro e diamanti
Gold and diamond earrings
Orecchini in oro 18 carati, diamanti, opali
Earrings in 18k gold, diamonds, opals
Modella con abito, accessori e gioielli Sabyasachi
Model wearing Sabyasachi dress, accessories and jewelry

Adjustable necklaces

Adjustable necklaces, necklaces with a knot, necklaces with the string: this is why to choose this type of jewel ♦

Almost always long and thin, sometimes very precious, necklaces of this type are back in fashion. But, in reality, has it ever been forgotten? In any case, it is good news for those who love sexy jewelry, as its shape highlights the contour of the body with a drape delicately resting on the décolleté. Adjustable necklaces have an obvious advantage: they adapt to the surface and size of the wearer’s body. Not only. An adjustable necklace also changes shape and can be worn in different ways depending on the clothing and circumstance.

Also read: how to choose the necklace

Collana Aria indossata
Nanis, Aria adjustable necklace worn

Of course, it depends on how it is worn because originally they were nothing more than a long thread of gold or pearls, more or less thick and broad, without any closure, to be turned several times around the neck, or to be knotted simply or with an adjustable clip to be placed at a strategic point. Like the vintage Cartier jewel, dated 1965, made with flat round links and a drop-shaped clasp, or the long double string of Chanel eighties beads.

Collana con pendente cone inserto in pelle
Necklace with pendant with leather insert by 12PM

You need to be careful when choosing the adjustable necklace. At the time of purchase it is best to check whether the mechanism that allows you to vary the length of the necklace is really efficient and, above all, does not appear to be too delicate: it would be disappointing to have to take the necklace to the jeweler to have the locking system repaired.
Collana indossata Magnetica System
Extendable Magnetica System necklace worn by Breil

Another important aspect is to use the adjustable necklace appropriately. A jewel of this type is interesting precisely because it adapts to the body and dress, but before choosing the length of the necklace, do several tests in front of the mirror, to establish what the right size really is: after all, you have chosen a jewel of this type precisely because of this.

Collana in diamanti e smeraldi, indossata a Baselworld
Jacob & Co diamond and emerald necklace, worn

The models of the past perfectly coexist next to the new millennium versions with revisited iconic logos and motifs, while one of the most luxurious places belongs to Bulgari with its famous snake in diamonds, turquoise emeralds, presented at the 2012 Biennale of Antiquarians. , shows how this type of necklace has never completely disappeared, but certainly now, especially overseas, it is a must have. Here is a selection of the most interesting pieces.

Collana in oro bianco e giallo con diamanti e smeraldi
Antonini, white and yellow gold necklace with diamonds and emeralds
Collana della collezione Zyp
Tirisi, necklace from the Zyp collection
Cartier, collier a forma di coccodrillo in oro bianco, diamanti e smeraldi
Cartier, crocodile-shaped necklace in white gold, diamonds and emeralds
Collana Marble Marquetry con diamanti e zaffiri
Harry Winston, Marble Marquetry necklace with diamonds and sapphires
Salvini, collana regolabile della collezione Daphne
Salvini, adjustable necklace from the Daphne collection
Autore, Best in Pearls con una collana di perle dei Mari del Sud
Autore,Best in Pearls with a necklace of South Sea pearls
Pendente con smeraldo colombiano del peso di circa 16 ct montato su collana in oro bianco 18 carati con diamanti taglio brillante del peso totale di circa 6,10 carati. Lunghezza collana 44 cm (chiusura regolabile)
Pendant with Colombian emerald weighing approximately 16 ct mounted on an 18k white gold necklace with brilliant-cut diamonds weighing approximately 6.10 carats in total. Necklace length 44 cm (adjustable closure)

Chains and gourmettes

Can you distinguish between different types of chains? Not all jewelry chains are created equal. Here’s how to choose a chain.

The most used chain for bracelets is the gourmette. But do you know what a gourmette is? Here’s what you need to know about one of the most used jewelry chains.

There is chain and chain: in love it is a feared and desired bond, in jewelry one of the most used forms for bracelets and necklaces. But beware: they are not all the same. One of the most used forms is the gourmette: for example, Pomellato, Roberto Coin and many others brands dedicated collections to this type of chain, but all jewelers have chains of this type in their catalog. The curb chain has an ancient origin. The most ancient example ever discovered of gourmette dates back to 2500 BC and was made with a technique called fox tail, which is still very current.

Gourmette e1565356458849
Gourmette or grumetta braided oval links often diamond-cut so as to lay them flat along the surface

But what is the characteristic of a gourmette? Compared to a normal chain, changes a little the shape. For gourmette, in fact, we mean a jewelery chain that has flattened rings with smooth sides. In some cases the surfaces can also be different: for example, on one side of the chain the metal can be shiny and smooth, on the other side more rough and opaque. But there is no precise rule.

Bracciale e anello in oro bianco e diamanti
Roberto Coin, bracelet and ring in white gold and diamonds

Often the chains have a small tag engraved with a name, usually that of the person wearing the jewel. In other cases, instead, a date is engraved, for example, that of birth. But the tag is not necessary for a wide chain bracelet or necklace. The gourmettes are often in silver or white gold. The most conspicuous yellow gold is less used (but much appreciated by rappers, for example). The curb chain is mainly used to make bracelets. But for some time there have been those who have decided that it can be worn very well as a necklace: this was also chosen in this case by many artists of the musical world.

Madonna con grande catena al collo
Madonna with large chain around her neck

How to choose a chain

Chains are not all the same. And not just because of their size or the style with which the different rings are made. Before buying a chain, pay attention to the quality of the jewel. The shirt must be soft, pleasant to wear. It must be as flexible as possible, without joints that get stuck if they need to be bent. Above all, a chain must not have protruding points that can attach to your dress (or perhaps to that of others). Some chains are designed to be combined with pendants: an idea that must also be comfortable once the bracelet or necklace is worn.

Gioielli a forma di catena della linea Fraleoni Rainbow
Chain-shaped jewelery from the Fraleoni Rainbow line

How to clean a chain?

Simple: like all the other jewels, that is with water, a couple of drops of liquid soap and a soft bristle toothbrush. Leave to soak in a bowl for about ten minutes and then rub with the toothbrush, then rinse. Be careful, however, that the chain is not plated or gilded with a galvanic bath. In this case there is a risk of damaging the surface: better to rinse the jewel without the risk of scratching it.

Gourmette di Cartier in or giallo
Gourmette by Cartier in yellow gold
Kim Kardashian con maxi catena
Kim Kardashian with maxi gourmette chain
Gourmette di Pomellato
Gourmette by Pomellato
Lily Collins contagiata dalla maxi catena mania
Lily Collins with the maxi chain mania

The Silvio Ancora’s Class

Jewelry by Ancora Gioielli, made in his goldsmith workshop in Valenza ♦ ︎

Since 1989 Silvio Ancora (the name is pronounced with the accent on “a”) works in his laboratory in Valenza. Do you know him? Difficult if you are not in the industry, if you do not work for some great brand that has had the opportunity to work with him, if you have not commissioned a custom jewel. Because Silvio Ancora’s peculiarity is to work again as a time, with methods and skills that are part of tradition and are taught on the field.

Anello Dream con rubino, zaffiri e diamanti. Copyright:
Dream ring with ruby, sapphires and diamonds. Copyright:

A fairly narrow field, in fact, because the jewels offered by the small Maison are of high-end, with the use of gold and precious stones or precious stones. The style is Italian, classic forms combined with some fancy flying, but without exceeding in extravagance. Here are some examples of his work.

Anello Petals con acquamarina e zaffiri blu. Copyright:
Petals ring with aquamarine and blue sapphires. Copyright:
Anello con quarzo, zaffiri e diamanti. Copyright:
Ring with quartz, sapphires and diamonds. Copyright:
Anello in oro bianco con pavé di diamanti e zaffiro blu
White gold ring with pavé diamonds and blue sapphire
Anello in oro bianco, ametista, topazio, quarzo
Ring in white gold, amethyst, topaz, quartz
Orecchini in oro, tormaline, diamanti
Gold earrings, tourmalines, diamonds

Marcello Bread literally

Marcello Pane, the ancient Neapolitan tradition in modern key with the Letters collection ♦︎

The ancient tradition of Neapolitan jewelery also goes through the Marcello Pane brand. The company boasts an ancient birth in 1899. Today the company is led by Ettore and Marcello Pane, descendants of the founder of the small house. Meanwhile, it has moved from the crafts to the industrial scale: the jewels of the Marcello Pane collections are made in the goldsmith’s center of Caserta, near Naples. This shift from craft to one with more modern machining means has allowed to reduce costs.

Anello con cuore stilizzato, collezione Essential
Anello con cuore stilizzato, collezione Essential

The Marcello Pane collections follow two roads: the most traditional one with gold jewelry, and the most affordable price with silver, along with pearls, while the diamonds alternate with the crystals. One of the most popular collections, for example, is one that uses the most alpha alphabet letters in the most classic ways to make names or simply initials. The Essential and Itaca collections use silver with a particular sandblasted finish that enhances the surface of the jewels, with or without gold plating.

Bracciale in argento con elementi sabbiati della collezione Itaca
Bracciale in argento con elementi sabbiati della collezione Itaca
Orecchini della collezione Essential
Orecchini della collezione Essential
Orecchini in argento con elementi sabbiati della collezione Itaca
Orecchini in argento con elementi sabbiati della collezione Itaca
Bracciale rigido in argento con elementi sabbiati della collezione Itaca
Bracciale rigido in argento con elementi sabbiati della collezione Itaca
Girocollo Ellisse
Girocollo Ellisse
Collana con cuore stilizzato, collezione Essential
Collana con cuore stilizzato, collezione Essential

Neha Dani, rhodium, titanium and fireworks

The precious jewels with flowers and leaves of the Indian designer Neha Dani. Also with Titanium Collection ♦

From her office in New Delhi to the boutiques of Europe and the US: Neha Dani is a designer (but perhaps it would be better to call an artist of jewelry), which has succeeded in becoming an international signature. Take a look at the jewels on this page and you’ll understand why. Someone wrinkles the nose to the use of rhodium to give particular nuances to the metal, but in reality this is just a detail of what is the creative process of Neha Dani.

Anello Amishi ispirato alle fronde delle palme. I dettagli sono incisi nella cera dall'artista, aggiungendo e scolpendo il materiale fino a ottenere la forma finale perfetta dell'anello
Amishi ring inspired by palm fronds. Details are etched into the wax by the artist, adding and sculpting material until the perfect final shape of the ring is achieved

The jewels created are unique pieces which exalt the precious stones used around the 18-carat gold structure. Although the shapes may appear abstract, the themes of the natural world and human emotions are present in each piece: dried leaves and petals of flowers are among those that occur most often in the creations of Indian designers. The contours of necklaces or rings are flexed, as if they were bent by the wind: a choice that gives lightness to even the most elaborate jewels. Dani is a member of Gemological of England and has a diploma from the Gemological Institute of America. The price of her jewelry starts at about $ 18,000.

Bracciale Bonita in oro 18 carati con rodio blu, diamanti e zaffiri blu
Bonita bracelet in 18k gold with blue rhodium, diamonds and blue sapphires
Orecchini Talia con zaffiri blu e diamanti
Talia earrings with blue sapphires and diamonds
Orecchini Erith in oro rosa, con diamanti brown di diverse sfumature
Erith earrings in rose gold, with brown diamonds of different shades
Anello Nerida in oro bianco e diamanti, con al centro un diamante taglio rosa di 4,21 carati
Nerida ring in white gold and diamonds, with a 4.21 carat rose-cut diamond in the centre
Orecchini con diamanti e oro brunito
Earrings with diamonds and burnished gold
Anello Myra in oro rodiato verde, diamanti e tsavorite
Myra ring in green rhodium-plated gold, diamonds and tsavorite
Neha Dani
Neha Dani

The meaning of animal-shaped jewelry

Animal-shaped jewelery has always been a recurring motif in jewellery. And they also have hidden meanings, that’s what they are.

Animals have always been an inspiring motif in jewelry. Not only that: each animal also offers a hidden or symbolic meaning. In short, anyone who wears a jewel in the shape of an animal communicates something. The Flamingo brooch of Cartier that belonged to the Duchess of Windsor has made history, like the panther in all its versions. The secreted turtles and the embroidered wings of Buccellati birds are objects of art. While the cartoon-style animals of Van Cleef & Arpels designed in 1954 for a young audience and revived half a century later, they soon became classics, so much so that they induced Grace of Monaco, Jacqueline Onassis and the Parisian upper class bourgeoisie to collect them.

Anello animalier di Leo Pizzo
Ring from the animalier line by Leo Pizzo. Copyright:

Even the gold fish with the flexible tail and the ruby ​​eyes of Jean Schlumberger is a milestone in jewelry, which for Tiffany has designed beautiful shells. And what about the snake of Bulgari? Since 1977 it is one of the most sold subjects of the brand. And again lions, frogs, bears, caterpillars, crabs and chameleons: the animal theme has always inspired the great jewelers (Vhernier, de Grisogono, Leo Pizzo, Chantecler always include them in their collections) and wins over customers.

For example, Diana Vreeland who fashioned it (she was the legendary editor of Harper’s Bazaar) required her editors to insert a snake into the articles and she herself wore jewels with this shape. But one of his favorites was the gold zebra bracelet, black and white enamel and diamonds, one of David Webb’s masterpieces, the quintessence of American jewelry. And there are many designers who are infected by this theme (as you can see from this gallery), even the most avant-garde ones. Here is a selection of the most creative, to keep an eye on.

The meaning of animal-shaped jewelry

Bee. These insects are associated with industriousness, organizational capacity, and in some way rationality. Bees are a good example to follow. But in the past, bees were also a sign of knowledge, wisdom and, in the Middle Ages, bees were a symbol of purity and even the spiritual world.

Delfina Delettrez: anello Ape in oro giallo 9 carati e smalto giallo e nero con una perla d'acqua dolce
Delfina Delettrez: Ape ring in 9k yellow gold and yellow and black enamel with a freshwater pearl

Eagle. A bird that is a symbol of courage and pride. It is no coincidence that the eagle has been widely used in heraldry and has become part of the coats of arms of many states, even in the two-headed version. Strength, speed, audacity: the eagle has retained this symbolism which comes directly from ancient Greek mythology.

Il bracciale spirato al tema dell’aquila è realizzato in oro, tasvorite, diamanti bianchi, gialli e brown, smeraldi (oltre 18 carati)
Youra Jewelry: the bracelet inspired by the eagle theme is made of gold, tasvorite, white, yellow and brown diamonds, emeralds (over 18 carats)

Dog. Loyalty, dedication, friendship: the dog does not betray and keeps its love for its master-partner intact over the years. Do we need to add anything else?

Van Cleef & Arpels, spilla cane
Van Cleef & Arpels, dog brooch

Snail. It is highly appreciated in the jewelry world for its spiral shell shape. True, the snail is slow. Precisely for this reason it has also become the symbol of those who do not want to adapt to the frenetic everyday routine. Furthermore, they also symbolize the ability to be self-sufficient: they always carry their home with them.

Ciondolo a forma di lumaca in oro bianco e alessandrite
Snail-shaped pendant in white gold and alexandrite

Swan. Elegant, but also pure. The swan has been associated with an innocent and delicate femininity. But also sensual, as evidenced by the myth of Leda seduced by Jupiter in the form of a swan. And, be careful: when swans get angry they can become dangerous.

Collezione Animal World, il Cigno nero
Animal World collection, the Black Swan by Master Exclusive Jewellery

Dolphin. Intelligent and friendly animals, they are associated with the sea, with freedom. Not only that: symbolically, dolphins are also indicated as the heirs, at least according to the history of France before the Revolution of the late eighteenth century.

Ciondolo delfino in oro 14 carati
Dolphin pendant in 14k gold

Butterfly. One of the most used models in jewelry: light, beautiful and (perhaps) elusive. A bit like how many women describe themselves, even if the butterfly also retains the idea of fleetingness and delicacy. Many jewelry designers have tried their hand at this symbol of sophistication.

Butterfly Collection, versione con piccoli diamanti e oro
Sicis, Butterfly Collection, version with small diamonds and gold

Rooster. If you have a rooster-shaped jewel it means that you like the strong courage of the male who imposes his strength and personality in the midst of the female world. But it may simply be its colorful feathers that make you appreciate this animal.

Roberto Coin, anello per l'anno del Gallo
Roberto Coin, ring for the year of the rooster

Cat. He is adored at home and many women who love their cat would like to have him always on their lap purring. It is inevitable that this astute, noble, independent and adorable pet was among the most represented in jewelry.

Spilla di Fabergé con diamanti, zaffiri rosa e tormalina
Fabergé cat-shaped brooch with diamonds, pink sapphires and tourmaline

Owl or owl. This bird in ancient Greece was the symbol of the goddess Minerva. He is considered a symbol of wisdom and cunning, while his ability to see in the dark has associated him with the concept of foresight: a quality that, unfortunately, is very rare in common life.

Alta orologeria: bracciale Gufo in oro bianco etico 18 carati, con diamanti taglio brillante e trapezio, zaffiri multicolori taglio trapezio
Fine watchmaking: Owl bracelet in 18k ethical white gold, with brilliant-cut and trapezoid-cut diamonds, multi-coloured trapezoid-cut sapphires by Chopard

Lion. Everyone knows the symbolism linked to the lion: pride, nobility, but also strength and the desire to impose oneself on others. A jewel in the shape of a lion, of course, can also indicate belonging to the zodiac sign that falls in mid-summer.

José Maria Goñi, spilla a forma di leone in oro, smeraldi, diamanti bianchi, gialli e champagne. Copyright:
José Maria Goñi, lion-shaped brooch in gold, emeralds, white, yellow and champagne diamonds. Copyright:

Panther. One of the classics of jewelry, which has become a motif that distinguishes Cartier with its Panthère line. Cunning, strength, sensuality and the ability to surprise are the characteristics associated with this feline. In ancient times the panther was considered an almost perfect animal and, surprisingly, with an intense scent.

Anello in oro bianco, con 365 diamanti taglio brillante, 255 carati, smeraldi, onice. Prezzo: 60.000 euro
Cartier, Panthere ring in white gold, with 365 brilliant-cut diamonds, 255 carats, emeralds, onyx

Peacock. It is an exotic animal, more widespread in Asia and, in its male version, the one with the large tail of colored feathers, associated with the concept of regal beauty. In Hinduism, the Indian peacock is the mount of the god of war, Kartikeya, and the warrior goddess Kaumari, and is also depicted around the goddess Santoshi.

Spilla piuma di pavone in titanio, con spinelli, giada bianca, smeraldi, diamanti.
Peacock feather brooch in titanium, with spinels, white jade, emeralds, diamonds by Osi Vitoria. Copyright:

Scarab. This small insect was favored and venerated by the ancient Egyptians, who credited it with magical virtues. Now it is no longer worshiped, but on the other hand it is considered a lucky charm.

Aurélie Bidermann. orecchini Scarabeo in oro giallo 18 carati, rubini, zaffiri, diamanti bianchi, ametiste e tzavoriti
Aurélie Bidermann. Scarabeo earrings in 18k yellow gold, rubies, sapphires, white diamonds, amethysts and tsavorites

Monkey. The animal most similar to the human race, at least in one aspect: monkeys are vain as well as mischievous. A jewel that has the appearance of a monkey plays precisely on these two aspects.

Anello Scimmia, oro, tsavoriti granati, zaffiri arancioni, ametiste e diamanti
Carrera Y Carrera, Monkey ring, gold, garnet tsavorites, orange sapphires, amethysts and diamonds

Snake. Snake-shaped jewels are among the most famous of high jewellery. The association of this animal with the concept of sin is inevitable, according to the biblical story. But not only that: the snake is also cunning and, when used in jewellery, often takes the shape of a spiral, also a symbol of spirituality and knowledge.

Il celebre bracciale serpente, in versione orologio
Bulgari, the famous snake bracelet, in a watch version

All about garnet

Garnet is one of the most used stones in jewelry. But can you distinguish it? Here’s what you need to know about the garnet, stone of the month of January, which actually brings together many different types ♦

It’s easy to say garnet. Actually this stone is classified in different ways and confused with other with the same color. It’s an old habit: in the past the only criteria to describe a stone was, in a generic way, the color. So all the red gems were recognized as rubies, from the Latin meaning of rubeus: red, in fact. No wonder, then, that for 700 years the central stone of the crown of England, 170 carats, has been called “the Black Prince’s Ruby,” despite being a magnificent spinel, which is not a garnet stone but it’s looks like. Even some varieties of garnet in the past have been mistakenly categorized as rubies. The matter is further complicated, however, because not only it has many colors such as purple, brown, orange, yellow and green, but it is often sold under the trade name and not the scientific one. So, nature abounds colored gemstones and yet it was not always easy to catalog them. How to distinguish and choose them? Here you have a little guide.

Pendente in oro giallo, con granati mandarino, diamanti e smalto
Yellow gold pendant, with mandarin garnets, diamonds and enamel


It is a variety of garnet. From the geological point of view, the stone is made 55% of pyrope and 37% of the almandine. The garnet differs from ruby not only for its composition, but also how it behaves under the light: from a natural ruby emerge a double rainbow with various shades of red and blue, while the rhodolite is even more brilliant and alive, and will show only a rainbow with green and yellow. Caution: rhodolite can be synthesized in the laboratory, but it is one of the few stones to never be treated artificially. Its name derives from the greek rhodo (pink) and lithos (stone) and was coined by George Frederick Kunz for its resemblance to the flower color of the rhododendron mountain.

Color: compared to the other red garnets is slightly lighter and that’s why is confused with ruby, but has some hues of purple and purpura. No coincidence that the most popular colors are red-purple and raspberry discovery in 1987, the hue of the fruit.

Sources : was discovered in North Carolina, but the major deposits are in Sri Lanka, Tanzania, where in the Kangala region was identified the Raspberry variety and in the one pale purple in Umba valley, Zimbabwe and Brazil. From the Orissa Indian region and only from there comes the grape garnet with the same colour of a good amethyst.

Anello con rodolite e zaffiri blu
Ring with rhodolite and blue sapphires

Almandine garnet

The presence of metals such as manganese and calcium gives the garnet many colors, but when the component is predominant almandine, appearance is dark red, sometimes brownish. And this is the best known variety, with the name of the Mozambique garnet, named by the East African country of origin. Cited in Greek mythology, praised in the Jewish and Muslim tradition and used by the Vikings for the funeral ornaments, is rather hard and with a high refractive index. Sometimes is called Oriental Garnet.

Sources: Mozambique, India and Brazil.

Naomi Sarna, anello con granato almandino intagliato
Naomi Sarna, carved almandine garnet ring


The name comes from Spessart, Bavarian village where it was discovered the mid-nineteenth century. Initially little used in jewelry because it is very rare, after the discovery of another field in Namibia, its spread has grown tremendously, because it is the variety of garnet that has the highest refractive index after diamond. Feature that makes it one of the most versatile gems.

Colour: from manganese derives its characteristic orange primary color while the presence of iron gives the red shades and turns it to orange red, golden orange, orange yellow or dark red. The Mandarin Garnet is the most valuable variety of Spessartine, discovered in Kunene, Namibia.

Vhernier, spessartite al centro del collier Orange Velvet
Vhernier, Spessartite in the center of the Orange Velvet necklace

Sources: if the Spessart mine is now exhausted, Namibia continues to be the reference point along with Nigeria, while other deposits are in Australia, Brazil, Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Tanzania and Zambia.


It is the trade name of Garnet Grossularia Green, coined in 1974 by British geologist Campbell R. Bridges and Henry B. Platt, two consultants of Tiffany, in honor of the Tsavo National Park in Kenya, the place of discovery.

Selim Mouzannar, orecchini con tsavoriti, avorio, smalto, diamanti
Selim Mouzannar, earrings with tsavorite garnets, ivory, enamel, diamonds

Colour: owes its color to the presence of vanadium and chromium in small part, the same elements that give the emerald its colors. If a larger amount of vanadium accentuates the green Tsavorite, a yellowish tinge instead indicates the presence of iron. The green runs from vivid and clear to deep and velvety and, like all garnets, has a beautiful sheen, thanks to the high refractive index. Compared to emerald but has fewer inclusions and can also be flawless to the naked eye.

Sources: more rare emerald it has two major mining sites, the Scorpion mine near the Tsavo National Park in Kenya and the Merelani hills in Arusha region in Tanziana. And a small field in the province of Tulear in Madagascar.

Demantoid Garnet

A variety of Andradite Garnet, discovered in the Urals in 1849, has an exceptional brightness and its name was borrowed from German Demant because as diamond-like sparkle. Passion jeweler Carl Faberge, who just could it inserted in its creation and contributed to his legendary reputation, was coveted by many even by the head of Tiffany gemologist, George Frederick Kunz, who went to Russia with the aim to buy all specimens on the market. The Soviet revolution it blocked the mire and marketing, but many years later, in 1991, thanks to the filming of the activities mineriarie in the Urals and the discovery of other deposits in Namibia, came to the fore.

Una varietà verde della andradite, minerale che è uno delle più preziose varietà del granato Demantoide
A green variety of andradite, a mineral which is one of the most precious types of Demantoid garnet

Colour: depending on the amount of chromium and iron, varies from deep green to yellowish green to yellow or olive green. In practice, the greater the presence of iron is more yellow the stone. And although green forest is the reference tone, in the case of the Demantoid what really counts is the fire, that the variety and intensity of the play of colors when it reflects the light.

Sources: the Urals come specimens of intense green color with a peculiarity, the inclusions ponytail, that make them special, while the stones of Namibia are clearer and without inclusions.

Valuation: garnet is a type II gem, which may contain a few minor inclusions visible to the naked eye, which are tolerable if they compromise the beauty of the stone. However, there are examples impeccable in darker shades, whatever the color and smaller.

Anello con granato mandarino e zaffiri rosa
Ring with mandarin garnet and pink sapphires
Bracciale in oro bianco, diamanti e granato
Bracelet in white gold, diamonds and garnet
Pendente Demeter con granato mandarino e diamanti
Demeter pendant with mandarin garnet and diamonds
Anello in oro giallo con granato mandarino e smalto nero
Yellow gold ring with mandarin garnet and black enamel
Anello con tsavorite al centro, opale di fuoco, ametista, apatite, zaffiro
Ring with tsavorite in the center, fire opal, amethyst, apatite, sapphire
Anello con spessartite abochon di 32 carati, diamanti, zaffiri rosa, topazio imperiale, acquamarina, labradorite, andalusite
Ring with 32-carat cabochon famartite, diamonds, pink sapphires, imperial topaz, aquamarine, labradorite, andalusite

Codognato, the art of jewelry in Venice

From Pop Art to the art of ancient Venice: myths and jewels of Attilio Codognato ♦

He was friends with Andy Warhol, which he attended for a long time in New York, and of Roy Lichtenstein. Of the two standard bearers of Pop Art, but not only them, he papered his house in Venice. Yet it is from the cultural roots of the most beautiful lagoon city in the world that Attilio Codognato, who passed away in November 2023, drew inspiration for his jewels. Or, rather, this is what the jewelery shop in Piazza San Marco does, opened by his grandfather, Simeone Codognato in 1866, which continues to offer small glimpses of the art of the sixteenth and seventeenth century Venice, but in miniature.​

Spilla Moro con smeraldi e rubini
Spilla Moro con smeraldi e rubini

Two, in particular, forms of jewelry that Codognato did become icons: the «moretto», traditional figure, that recurs in the paintings of the Venetian Renaissance, and the skull of “memento mori”, which in the past was a warning to ponder: remember that you have to die. Although the subject is macabre, the craftsmanship, luxury, artistic interpretation and transposition in the form of jewelry, they have been successful. And thanks to its attachment to tradition the now jewelry is part of the Venetian landscape. In short, a mix of gold, archeology, passion for art are the elements of the recipe of what is one of the oldest Italian jewelers. Rudy Serra

Spilla con smeraldo intagliato e diamanti
Spilla con smeraldo intagliato e diamanti
Spilla serpente in oro 18 carati e diamanti
Spilla serpente in oro 18 carati e diamanti
Anello in oro con smalto, diamanti, teschio e corona
Anello in oro con smalto, diamanti, teschio e corona
Bracciale Salamandra in oro rosa con rubini e diamanti
Bracciale Salamandra in oro rosa con rubini e diamanti
Attilio Codognato, anello Memento Mori
Attilio Codognato, anello Memento Mori
Bracciale serpente in oro, zaffiro, smeraldo, diamanti. Anni Cinquanta
Bracciale serpente in oro, zaffiro, smeraldo, diamanti. Anni Cinquanta

The rare stone that few know: csarite or zultanite

A fascinating stone, but rare and little known: the csarite or zultanite. It costs like an emerald and can change color ♦ ︎

It is called zultanite or csarite and it is for gemmologists a variety of diaspore (not to be confused with jasper), ie aluminum hydroxide. The csarite is extracted in a single mine in the world, in Turkey: for this reason it is a rather rare stone. The name, zultanite or csarite, is a brand: it has not been established by gemologists, but by the company that owns the mine, the Milenyum Mining. It was discovered only at the beginning of the nineteenth century and the difficulty of processing has delayed its success: only a small part of the mineral is usable for jewelery and it is difficult to turn it into a stone with facets. Today, however, csarite has been used in jewelry also worn by many Hollywood stars for the Oscar night.

Anello con csarite
Anello con csarite

Features. The csarite is a shimmering stone, with shades ranging from yellow to cognac, pink or red. The most intense red hues are caused by high concentrations of manganese. It is also one of the few gems that can change color, along with sapphires, garnets and alexandrite.
Hardness. The csarite has an average hardness, at 6.5-7 on the Mohs scale. Basically, it is a hard stone like the tanzanite or peridot, perfectly able to be used in jewelry.

Anello in oro rosa e csarite
Anello in oro rosa e csarite

The name. As we said, Zultanite or csarite are registered trademarks of the Turkish company that extracts the stone. But the name of the mineral from which it derives, the diaspore, comes instead from the Greek word diaspora, which means scattering. And this because the gem seems to disperse the light and the glow.
At the tops. Some time ago, the mining company announced a gem of this 121.65-carat pear-shaped mineral, cut from a rough stone of about 430 grams, worth $ 1 million. It’s a record. Previously, the largest faceted csarite, always pear-shaped, weighed 88.49 carats. The only other csarite stones of similar size were cabochon cut gems, which have the cat-eye effect, with color change. The zultanite on the market has a price similar to that of emeralds.

Anello in oro bianco con zultanite e diamanti
Evelyn Huang, anello in oro bianco con zultanite e diamanti
Anello con csarite e diamanti
Anello con csarite e diamanti
Anello con csarite taglio a navette e diamanti
Anello con csarite taglio a navette e diamanti
Pendente con csarite e diamanti
Pendente con csarite e diamanti
Pietra di csarite o zultanite
Pietra di csarite o zultanite
Estrazione del minerale
Estrazione del minerale
Csarite a forma di pera da 121.65 carati
Csarite a forma di pera da 121.65 carati

Expensive ring, more probable divorce

Have you received an engagement ring? Do you also know the price? We hope it is not too high, because … ♦

A diamond is forever, but divorce can also be long. There are many causes, but it seems that the more expensive the engagement ring, the greater the probability of separation of the spouses. But, be careful: it is not a rule. This is demonstrated by the couple Amal Alamuddin, and George Clooney, who after almost ten years together, seems one of the most stable couples in Hollywood. Yet the engagement ring cost the actor 550 thousand euros. In many other cases, however, it seems that the ring purchased with a high price was not a guarantee of happiness.

Amal Alamuddin e George Clooney
Amal Alamuddin e George Clooney

As in the case of Angelina Jolie, who married Brad Pitt after receiving a 200 thousand euro ring: a failed marriage. Even the separation years ago between Lady Gaga and Taylor Kinney (ring with heart-shaped diamond of 55 thousand euros) could prove it. Beyoncé is at risk (even if she’s holding on for now), given that the ring that gave her to Jay-Z cost 5 million. Not to mention Kim Kardashian’s ring, with a 15-carat diamond worth over 7 million euros.

Lady Gaga e Taylor Kinney: crisi nonostante l'anello con diamante a cuore da 55 mila dollari
Lady Gaga e Taylor Kinney: crisi nonostante l’anello con diamante a cuore da 55 mila dollari

To launch the alarm, or rather, to notice a link between the price of the ring and divorces were two American researchers at Emory University in Atlanta, who long ago put more than 3 thousand married couples in the United States under the lens. Andrew Francis and Hugo Mialon have come to the conclusion that if men choose an engagement ring between 1,500 and 3,200 euros the risk of divorce is 1.3 times higher than the average. Quite low, in short. The two researchers considered as a basis a cost for the ring a price from zero to 1,500 euros. Not only that: the greatest risk of separation is reached when the engagement ring exceeds 20 thousand dollars. Women who receive such a precious ring have 3.5 times more the chance of divorcing, compared to those who have received a solitaire of between 5 thousand and 10 thousand dollars.

La coppia scoppiata: Beyoncé e Jay-Z
La coppia Beyoncé e Jay-Z

So you have to be “scottish” to save the marriage? Not at all: even couples who have spent less than € 400 on their engagement ring have high divorce rates. In short, the ring on the finger it’s ok: just do not overdo it, better stay in the middle. And if you have any doubts about choosing the ring, you can always ask our quick guide for advice.

La signora Clooney con anello
La signora Clooney con anello
Angelina Jolie con l'anello di fidanzamento
Angelina Jolie con l’anello di fidanzamento

How to distinguish between real and synthetic diamond?


Attention: the number of synthetic diamonds is increasing, which are now even produced by De Beers. Do you know how to recognize laboratory-created diamonds? The first thing to know is…  ♦

How do you know if the diamond in your ring is synthetic? Is it possible to find out if a diamond is real or fake? The answer is: it depends. The difference is not visible to the naked eye, but only with sophisticated instruments. Naturally, a diamond is considered fake only if its origin is not declared. Synthetic diamonds, if they are officially declared as such, cannot be considered fake. Lastly, diamond giant De Beers has also entered the scene, producing synthetic diamonds with a laboratory in Great Britain for jewelery under the Lightbox brand.

Orecchini lab-grown di Lightbox
Lab-grown earrings by Lightbox

The misunderstanding between real and synthetic, however, is a problem for traders: in fact, in case of doubt, for large stones traders turn to gemological institutes. But if the certifications are dubious, large jewelers do not use smaller stones, under 1 carat, to avoid the risk of compromising their reputation. Alberto Osimo, diamond wholesaler and president of the Geci (Gemological Education Certification Institute) of one of the main gem laboratories in Italy, stated this some time ago: «Currently there is only one machine, the Diamond view, produced by Dtc, the Diamond trading company, able to carry out this analysis, which however takes ten minutes and is uneconomical in the case of diamonds of one hundredth of a carat. In fact, it is not convenient to certify and check a stone worth just a few euros when the procedure could cost up to 80 euros per piece.” However, other systems subsequently proposed to analyze diamonds also require long and expensive procedures.
By Ethereal Green Diamond, 34,59 ct. Photo: Johnny (Chak Wan) Leung
By Ethereal Green Diamond, 34,59 ct. Lab-grown diamond. Photo: Johnny (Chak Wan) Leung

A partial solution to the problem comes from another machine created by the Swiss institute Ssef and capable of analyzing even 4 thousand stones in a single hour. So everything is fine? In part: the device only identifies the molecular structure of the object, i.e. it divides them according to type. And, fortunately, only one of these categories is artificially replicable. In short: a synthetic diamond can only be identified with expensive machines and complicated procedures.
Expertise in un laboratorio Tiffany
Expertise in a Tiffany laboratory

But it’s not just synthetic diamonds. Alongside the natural diamond, there are laboratory-created stones on the market, such as cubic zirconia and synthetic moissanite. Which are certified and sold as extremely cheaper alternatives to diamonds which are the result of the thousand-year-old work of the earth.

So, how do you know if your diamond is real or fake?

1 A real diamond is certified. Therefore, a diamond jewel must also have the certificate attesting its purity, color and carats.

2 You can purchase a device to test yourself. A device such as the Professional Diamond Selector I. It is a probe or thermal conductivity meter and can be found on sale on Amazon for a few dollars, serves to distinguish real diamonds from other simulated stones. For example, it finds out whether the stone is, in fact, a crystal or a cubic zirconia. However, he will not be able to find out if the diamond was created in a laboratory.

3 Other tests that you can do at home: drop the diamond into a glass full of water (but this presupposes that it is separated from the jewel). If the gemstone sinks it is a real diamond. If it floats on the surface of the water or just below it, it is false.

4 Breath test: fog the diamond with your breath, as if cleaning the lenses of your glasses. If the water vapor dissolves immediately from the surface, the diamond is more likely to be authentic. Needless to say, it’s a very crude method…

5 Take a magnifying glass. If you see the tiny abbreviation CZ on the stone it means that it is cubic zirconia.

6 A test for strong hearts: heat your diamond on a flame for 40 seconds. Then throw it in a glass of cold water: if it’s real it won’t break. But if it’s a crystal…  We don’t recommend it, if you want to try it’s your risk.

Controllo del reattore al plasma CVD che produce diamanti ​​in laboratorio
Control of CVD plasma reactor producing diamonds in De Beers laboratory

The jewels of Letizia of Spain

The jewels, and especially the tiaras, of the Queen of Spain Letizia ♦ ︎

Like all the queens, letizia Ortiz Rocasolano, wife of Philip VI of Spain, loves jewelry. As a former network journalist such as Bloomberg, CNN and the Spanish public broadcaster Tve, he is well aware of the value of image and visual communication. Clothing and jewelry selection are, therefore, particularly taken care of by Letizia, who married the then Prince of Asturias, Felipe di Borbone, on May 22, 2004. The ceremony was an event followed by TV stations all over the world: on the screens, one of the innumerable tiaras that are part of the royal kit has appeared. It’s a kind of jewel that seems to be among the queen’s favorites.

La tiara regalata dall'ex dittatore Francisco Franco alla allora regina di Spagna, Sofia, e ora indossata da Letizia
La tiara regalata dall’ex dittatore Francisco Franco alla allora regina di Spagna, Sofia, e ora indossata da Letizia

It is no coincidence that to celebrate the wedding anniversary, King Philip VI gave a tiara worth € 50,000 to Letizia: it is made up of 450 brilliant cut diamonds and five pairs of Australian pearls. Alongside the tiaras, of course, the Queen of Spain has many other jewels, including a pair of earrings with three sapphires each and a large Cartier bracelet in white gold and diamonds. About bracelet: Letizia has also decided to turn a diamond crown of Queen Victoria Eugenia. The set diamonds have been removed to be reused in two identical bracelets.
The Prussian tiara. From the neoclassical line with Greek inspiration, the tiara was made in Berlin in 1913 by the jeweler Koch. In platinum and diamonds, it is composed of two bands: the upper part with laurel leaves and the bottom with greek, in the middle a row of vertical bands of diamonds with a central motif from which hangs a pear-cut diamond. She was presented to Sofia by her mother for her eighteenth birthday.

tiara e1531652614656
La tiara prussiana
Letizia Ortiz indossa la tiara prussiana il giorno delle nozze con Felipe di Borbone
Letizia Ortiz indossa la tiara prussiana il giorno delle nozze con Felipe di Borbone

The chatones necklace. King Alfonso Alfonso XIII’s wedding gift to his wife was a type of necklace very popular in the mid-nineteenth century: diamonds set on a platinum plate (chaton) with a very discreet four-stemmed frame. The king used to have two diamonds on every anniversary, birthday or birth. Result? A 90-carat necklace that came up to life. Divided into two parts, one touched Juan Carlos and is often seen at the neck of Sofia of Spain.

La regina Sofia indossa la tiara di Cartier e la collana chatones
La regina Sofia indossa la tiara di Cartier e la collana chatones
Letizia con la tiara chatones
Letizia con la tiara chatones

The Cartier tiara. Created in the Twenties for Queen Victoria Eugenia, the diadem is composed of a central aigrette, or a frame or jewel in the shape of a feather, in platinum and diamonds and three sloping curls with a pearl set in the center. In a second time the pearls were replaced by emeralds inherited from the empress Eugenie of France, her godmother. Which were then sold during the Roman exile and the tiara returned to its original appearance.

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La tiara Cartier in un immagine precedente all’eliminazione della perla sulla sommità

The Mellerio or de la Chata tiara. Isabella II’s gift for her daughter’s wedding, nicknamed Chata, is one of the few jewels that has been saved from the sale during the Paris exile. The platinum structure ideally depicts the foam of a wave in the center and on the sides of the shells from which pear-shaped pearls hang and 12 diamonds that sway following the movements of the head. But a reader of (see comments at the bottom of this page) points out that the story is another: the Mellerio diadem of pearls and diamonds, he specifies, was not sold to Drouot (30 June 1878) by Isabelle II simply because the queen received an annuity from Spain after the return to the throne of her son, Alfonso, and it is with this money that she bought new jewels from the French jeweler, like a necklace and a star-shaped tiara.

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La principessa delle Asturie con la tiara de la Chata

The floral tiara. It turns into a necklace or brooch the diadem composed of large diamond flowers, given by Francisco Franco to Sofia of Greece, betrothed to Juan Carlos of Bourbon.

tiara floerale franco
La tiara floreale regalo di Francisco Franco a Sofia di Grecia per le nozze con Juan Carlos

The Niarchos rubies. By Van Cleef et Arpels, they are a wedding present in Sofia of Greece by the Greek shipowner. The necklace consists of a chain mounted in gold with cabochon rubies of different sizes, each surrounded by diamonds. The tiara is a double row of the same motif of the necklace and can be used as a two-round necklace or as a long sautoir. To complete the set of drop earrings.

La parure di rubini, regalo di Stavros Niarchos a Sofia di Grecia per le nozze con Juan Carlos

The Russian tiara. Made of platinum, pearls and diamonds for Christine of Austria, regent of Spain, is inspired by the traditional Russian female headdress Kokoshnikc, from which the name comes.

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Sofia di Spagna con la tiara russa, appartenuta a Cristina d’Austria reggente di Spagna

The tiara of lily flowers. The most spectacular among the wedding gifts of Alfonso XIII, was created in 1906 by the jeweler Ansorena of Madrid and is composed of brilliant cut diamonds and cushion, on a platinum frame that draws the heraldic symbol of the Bourbons: the lilies. Queen Sofia has worn it only on special occasions.

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La tiara con i fiori di giglio simbolo araldico dei Borboni
La tiara regalata da Filippo per l'anniversario di nozze
La tiara regalata da Filippo per l’anniversario di nozze
La ex regina di Spagna Sofia con la tiara prussiana
La regina di Spagna Sofia con la tiara prussiana
La regina Sofia con la tiara
La regina Sofia con la tiara

The nuances of Mangiarotti

Mangiarotti, a jewelry manufacturer in Valenza Italy, which is doing great on the international market ♦

Little is known about the role of Roberto Mangiarotti. The company that bears his name, on the other hand, is well known in the world of jewelry. Mangiarotti is an established signature among the 350 companies of Valenza (Piedmont) that produce jewels. A part of its production, however, is on behalf of third parties, while a percentage of the jewels made is reserved for export, also for the Asian market, as evidenced by the presence of the Piedmontese brand at numerous trade fairs.

Collana in oro e ametista
Gold and amethyst necklace. Copyright:

The company has now passed the milestone of 35 years since its foundation, which took place in 1987, and the “Mangiarotti jewel” has established itself as an object that makes stones, especially colored ones, a flag. As in the case of the Riviere collection, in which large amethysts keep company with gold and diamonds. The Amante set, on the other hand, focuses on jewels in white gold, Tahitian pearls, briolette-cut stones and white diamonds, while the opera line uses yellow gold, smoky quartz, green tourmaline, green amethyst, brown diamonds. In short, there is no lack of interesting combinations. In addition, for each set of jewelry, there are some variations, such as gold of a different color or the replacement of some stones.

Anello in oro e ametista. Copyright:
Gold and amethyst ring. Copyright:
Orecchini con topazio blu e turchese
Earrings with blue topaz and turquoise
Bracciale con corallo, topazio e diamanti
Bracelet with coral, topaz and diamonds
Anello con opale e smeraldi
Ring with opal and emeralds
Set Cenerentola
Cinderella set
Mangiarotti, collezione Opera
Mangiarotti, Opera collection
Anello in oro, diamanti e tanzanite
Ring in gold, diamonds and tanzanite

The rainbow of Marie-Hélène de Taillac

Taste of India in the jewels of the French Marie-Hélène de Taillac ♦

Fascinated by India and precious stones, Marie-Helene de Taillac is inspired by the subcontinent to create jewels that reflect her culture and colorful world. The Wall Street Journal and Vogue have devoted her long and passionate portraits. The idea of a world that encompasses the rainbow came when she was three years old and playing with colored pencils, she says. Since then the colors of the gems are her passion. She uses the 22-carat gold and semi-precious stones such as amethyst, iolite, garnets in various shades and rose quartz, cut by the best artisans of Jaipur, capital of Rajasthan where she lives half the year in 1996, when she launched his first collection.

Orecchini in oro giallo 22 carati e tanzanite
22k yellow gold and tanzanite earrings

The story of Marie-Hélène de Taillac, in fact, has no boundaries. She was born in Tripoli, Libya, where her father was Elf (oil) representative for the Persian Gulf, but she also lived in Lebanon before moving to France in 1975. The designer then studied gemology and worked in the fashion industry. with Philip Treacy. But success reached him with jewelry: he opened stores in Paris, Tokyo or New York.

Anello con pietra luna rainbow circondata da tanzanite, zaffiro rosa, lilla e giallo, apatite blu
Ring with rainbow moonstone surrounded by tanzanite, pink, lilac and yellow sapphire, blue apatite
Orecchini con tormalina rosa per oltre 28 carati
Earrings with pink tourmaline over 28 carats
Collana Calliope in oro giallo22 carati e lapislazzuli
Calliope necklace in 22 carat yellow gold and lapis lazuli
Collana Sfera in oro giallo e acquamarina
Sfera necklace in yellow gold and aquamarine
Collana con gemme taglio briolette
Necklace with briolette cut gems
Orecchini in oro con iolite e tanzanite
Gold earrings with iolite and tanzanite

The jewels suitable for New Year’s Eve

What to wear for the evening of the last day of the year? Here are jewelry ideas that you will find in some cases at the last minute.

You’ve found the shoes and the dress, to decide what to wear on New Year’s Eve, all that’s missing is the jewelry. But be careful, if you like celebrating the last day of the year so much, you should know that the date is not the same everywhere in the world. If in most Western countries and Japan the last day of the year is December 31, in other parts of the world this date falls on completely different days. Some examples: for certain Orthodox Churches and Eastern Catholic Churches, the beginning of the year (for religious ceremonies) is celebrated on the day corresponding to Gregorian January 14.

Collana di perle by Coscia
Pearl necklace by Coscia

Chinese New Year is celebrated in correspondence with the new moon which falls between January 21 and February 20 (in 2023, for example, it is Sunday January 22). The Islamic New Year, on the contrary, corresponds, compared to the Gregorian calendar, to approximately one month late every three years. So if you want, you can celebrate them all…

Pandora, gioielli della collezione Moments indossati
Pandora, jewels from the Moments collection worn

In short, the most important night of the year, how to choose jewelry? A flashy and colorful necklace will help reinvent a little black dress or a dress already worn before. Or lace, stars, moons on gold and silver, embellished with diamonds or zircons make any look sparkling. If, on the other hand, it is the dress that is flashy, button earrings, a sterling silver bracelet or long thin gold necklaces will give the perfect finishing touch. In short, the important thing is that they shine to celebrate until the early hours of the New Year, but also that they are in balance with the dress.

Madalina Ghenea con una collier della colelzione Vulcania, alta gioielleria Damiani
Madalina Ghenea with a necklace from the Vulcania collection, Damiani high jewelry

There are certainly three guide colors for the night of December 31: black, white and red. For a party that starts strictly after 9 p.m., a black dress is perfect. And with a dark color the ideal is to prefer the classic: the red of rubies, or of a stone of the same shade (there are also cheap ones) and the sparkling white of diamonds or, if in the drawer you Don’t have any such as precious jewelry, white silver or synthetic stones, like cubic zirconia. They just need to shine to the toast.

Collezione Amuleti by Nanis
Amulets Collection by Nanis
Anello in oro bianco e diamanti di Leo Pizzo
Ring in white gold and diamonds by Leo Pizzo
Anello e bracciale di Giselle Effting
Ring and bracelet by Giselle Effting