Sotheby’s Diamonds offers cutting-edge designs in high-end diamond jewellery for sophisticated collectors at its standalone boutique in London.
Sotheby’s Diamonds’ boutique, located by the main entrance of Sotheby’s New Bond Street headquarters in London, showcases an array of daring designs in platinum or 18-karat gold jewellery set with extremely high quality natural diamonds and sometimes combined with unusual materials.The pieces on display during a recent visit included a fabulous 5.01-carat G VS1 diamond ring with ebony set in platinum, designed exclusively for Sotheby’s Diamonds by Hong Kong-based Nicholas Lieou; and a remarkable 2.06-carat fancy vivid purplish pink diamond ring, set in 18-karat white gold.“The designs of Sotheby’s Diamonds jewellery tend to be more extravagant and distinctive, more niche,” Alessandro Borruso, Deputy Director of Sotheby’s Diamonds Europe, told Solitaire International at the boutique.“These are one-off pieces with stones of really high quality. The designers work around the stones, which are the main focus, to create modern masterpieces.”Sotheby’s Diamonds was founded by Patti Wong, Chairman, Sotheby’s Asia, in 2005, as a private sales arm for the auction house.
“Sotheby’s Diamonds was conceived as a way of meeting the requirements of under-bidders in the auctions, who are left with the desire for something special – those who missed out on winning a lot,” Alessandro said.
“Our clients also include new, high-net-worth collectors.”
The diamonds are supplied to Sotheby’s Diamonds by manufacturer and partner in this joint venture with Sotheby’s, Diacore, a De Beers sightholder, which has a reputation as a master cutter of highly valuable stones.
All of the jewels are hand engraved “Sotheby’s Diamonds”, with a serial number, and have a GIA certificate to instil full confidence in the buyer and providing the detailed specifications of the stone.
Sotheby’s Diamonds has regular collaborations with highly skilled jewellery designers, who are asked to work with a stone that resonates with them and to create a design around it.
In December, the London boutique hosted some intricate lightweight diamond jewellery masterpieces from Paris-based designer Tatiana Verstraeten, who appeals to a younger clientele.
Alessandro said he had identified a clear trend by collectors to seek out the highest quality diamonds, rather than mid-quality stones, as well as a greater appreciation of craftsmanship.
Popular colours of diamonds sought by collectors include pinks and blues, as well as colourless stones, with round, brilliant-cut shapes strongly in demand.
Pinks are increasingly sought-after for their beauty and rarity, following the recent closure of the Argyle mine in Australia, which was a major origin of this colour of diamond.
Collectors can visit the Sotheby’s Diamonds boutiques in London and Hong Kong by appointment or use Sotheby’s “Buy Now” platform.
“In-person” enquiries have picked up since the darkest days of the lockdowns, with luxury shoppers now travelling to London again.
Many of Sotheby’s Diamonds’ customers are high-net-worth collectors from the UK.
Customers typically are aged at least 40, as they have already amassed a fortune that will allow them to spend perhaps upwards of $1 million on an extraordinary piece of diamond jewellery.
During the lockdowns, a number of customers were resident in London from the Middle East but unable to leave the UK at the time because of travel restrictions.
Alessandro said the customer base would increasingly comprise women going forward, many of whom had achieved success in business.
“Many women are in charge of luxury spending in their families, including for diamond jewellery,” Alessandro said.