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TJB_Fall_18_look book

Prestige Promenade pearls and sweets

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29 www.thejewelrybook.com B R I D A L A LT E R N A T I V E S T Y L E Lab-growns offer an additional benefi t for Kukovich: They help him explain to consumers that there is no endless source of mined diamonds, and that diamonds made in a lab are 100 percent confl ict free. The biggest obstacle? Finding melee. Meanwhile, shoppers benefi t from a price break—upwards of 30 percent—on larger stones compared to mined rocks. Tara Silberberg has been selling manmade diamonds steadily in her four-year-old Nolita store. In fact, the last three diamonds that sold in that location— including one that was more than two carats in weight and shipped to a couple in England—were all made in a lab. "Our customers are really into them," says the own- er of The Clay Pot in Brooklyn and Manhattan. "We've had lab-grown diamonds for engagement rings in this location since we opened and never had anyone pooh-pooh them." Fancy-shape and rustic diamonds. Twin sisters and business partners Eva Bai and Ava Bai of Vale Jewelry have built a business selling largely rustic- looking diamond rings. The primary purchaser? Clients who spurn conventionality. "They like the idea of a diamond that is not com- pletely perfect," say the pair. These stones appeal to lovers of understated looks and those who want a bigger rock but can't afford one that is colorless. Buyers who appreciate rustic diamonds are also more likely to appreciate rose cuts because these, too, are less fl ashy. "There's a bit of crossover in these categories," says Debbie Klein, owner of Art and Soul in Boulder, Colo., who sells rustics and rose cuts to buyers of all ages. Silberberg agrees, noting that salt-and-pepper-color diamonds have replaced raw or industrial ones in popularity. One challenge? Keeping opaque white diamond rings from designer Tura Sugden in stock. On the fl ip side is a dilemma in durability. "Rock climbers will want to take off their rose-cut diamond or diamond slice rings before activity," says Klein. Meanwhile, the most conventional of nontraditional diamond looks is a colorless fancy-shape cut like pear or oval, and these are fi lling up more-tradi- tional jewelry stores at a record pace. These stones appeal to lovers of understated looks and those who want a bigger rock but can't afford one that is colorless. Nicole ring in 14k rose gold with a 1.9 ct. rough diamond, 0.29 ct. t.w. diamonds, and 0.002 ct. t.w. black diamond melee starts around $10,500. Abby Sparks, Denver; 303-957-6502; www.abbysparks.com Ring in 18k and 22k yellow gold with a 0.45 ct. rose- cut diamond, $2,450; Tura Sugden, San Francisco; 415-265-9869; www.turasugden.com

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