A few weeks ago I read this interesting article about millionaire figures that are paid in the Auctions for some jewelry. The most famous example of this, to date, is the sale of the Graff Pink diamond that was sold at a Sotheby’s auction in 2010, in Geneva, for almost € 34 million.
What does a jewel have for someone to pay that millionaire for it? About that is investigated in the article, although of course, almost nobody can pay such a fortune. It is a discussion that leaves many of us out: specifically, all those millions of people around the world who love jewelry, and are willing to pay good money for it, each within their standards. cheap.
What makes them so valuable? Is it the material in which they are made? Or is there more?
This is a question with an unavoidable personal component, so I’m going to give you some clues, and then I’d love to hear your opinion about it.
Let’s start with this because it is basic. Personally, it doesn’t seem like the key to me, but it matters: silver is not the same as gold, nor is a coral the same as a pearl of the south seas, than a diamond. Each metal, and each precious stone (organic or inorganic) has its material value, and that is the basis of the value of that jewel. The same ring, made of gold, will be more expensive than made of silver. But that is a “cost”. Not a real value.
Because a jewel is much more than the materials it is made of.
If it were to obtain the most precious metal on the market, you don’t need anyone to shape it into a jewel, you just need gold bars, or something like that, that you can store.
In other words, the value of a jewel responds more to what is made with those materials, than to the materials themselves.
As jewelry designer, for me this part is one of the most important, one that gives a piece the most value. A rough diamond will never have the same value as a cut one, and precisely the most valuable ones always have the most perfect and delicate cuts on the market.
As for the complete jewel, the design is responsible for making you fall in love with the jewel. You will not fall in love with white gold, you will fall in love with its shine in that delicate curvature of the ring where the gem is set. The stones will not blind you: you will admire their brilliance, precisely because they are compositionally located in the exact place, with the precise arrangement, as a whole adorned with the correct metal to fulfill your wishes and desires.
So I won’t even tell you about the effort and work that goes into designing a piece of jewelry. Just think about whether you would pay the same for the same materials, but loose. And above all, if you would love him the same.
This is pointed out by the Sotheby’s jewelry expert, Andrés White Correal, in the article on million-dollar auctions, and he is quite right: a large part of the value of the jewelry is in can be used, both for its size and its design.
The paradigmatic example of this would be those ostentatious rings, uncomfortable to wear, or those ceremonial necklaces of a royal house, so loaded and heavy, that any woman who wears them would feel like tucked into armor.
And if you love a jewel, in general, you want others to see it, and maybe they can fall in love a little too. That is why the comfort and usability of the jewel is very important. Or what in jewelry design we call ergonomics , which is the ability to adapt a jewel to the area of our body for which it has been designed, without being bothered by its weight, by its design, Without getting hooked, ultimately making our lives easier and not the other way around.
The rarity and the history
In the same article linked at the beginning, they talk about the rarity of the auctioned pieces, and their history. That, in the eyes of the experts, is what ends up throwing the authentic value of the piece up to those exorbitant amounts. A unique diamond in the world, of the best quality, that also belonged to some historical figure or some celebrity, can burn at auctions when collectors fall in love with the unique piece, and its history.
And this happens exactly the same without going to the luxury auctions.
Surely you keep a piece in your jewelry box, so valuable to you that you wouldn’t sell for anything in the world. Maybe because you know it is unique. Maybe because of the history behind it. Who gave it to you? In what circumstances? What did that jewel experience before reaching your hands? Or has he only shared his secrets with you? What, exactly, is it that makes it so valuable to you?
This, in my opinion, is also the aspect that gives the most value to a jewel. How could it not be, if it is the only thing that would prevent you from selling it?
So of all my design work, perhaps the one I enjoy the most is designing custom jewelry. Every time one of you asks me for a personalized jewel, when I have to speak and listen and understand what you are looking for, and translate it into something unique and totally new, with the added value that it has a history forged in those same metals.
And that is invaluable. Don’t you think?
What about you in the jewel? What do you value in a jewel when you look at it: the design, the history, other things? What is its true value to you?