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100-Year Anniversary of ‘Most Iconic’ Diamond Cut Celebrated

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It maximizes fire, brilliance and sparkle.

Exactly 100 years ago, a 19-year-old Antwerp engineer named Marcel Tolkowsky perfected a mathematical formula for the 57-facet “brilliant-cut” diamond. Tolkowsky’s accomplishment prevails as the most iconic and successful cut in history due to its ability to maximize a diamond’s fire, brilliance and sparkle.

The Antwerp World Diamond Centre recently held a street fair and ceremonial diamond cutting to honor Tolkowsky and the 100th anniversary.

“In 1919, my uncle Marcel unlocked the secret of light within a diamond,” said Gabi Tolkowsky, one of the world’s most renowned diamond cutters. “He figured out how to get the greatest amount of light to shine out of a diamond, calculating the number and arrangement of facets to maximize the light return. This was Marcel’s gift to the world, perfecting the journey of light, giving all those who came after him the knowledge of how to turn a diamond into a unique beauty.”

Marcel Tolkowsky proved that if a diamond was cut too deep or too shallow, the light coming down from the top would escape out the sides or bottom, resulting in a loss of brilliance. His solution: 57 precisely placed facets cut to exacting proportions so the light coming into a diamond is refracted up through the table and crown to the viewer’s eye.

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During the celebration, the AWDC launched its unique “100 Years Brilliant” project, during which 57 well-know (and lesser known) Antwerp residents were invited to polish a single diamond — one person for each facet of a brilliant.

“In this way, ‘t Steentje – which is how the diamond industry is referred to in the local vernacular – will represent the multicultural character and diversity of the Antwerp diamond industry,” explained AWDC CEO Ari Epstein.

Once the stone is finished, it will be exhibited in Antwerp’s DIVA diamond museum.

The first facet was polished by guest of honor Gabi Tolkowsky, who famously spent three years cutting the 273.85-carat Centenary Diamond.

The second facet of the stone was polished by Constantinus ‘Stan’ Hunselmans, who shares his birth year with the brilliant.

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“I celebrated my 100th birthday on January 14, and it is an honor that I was chosen,” Hunselmans said. “It went really well. If I were a little bit younger, I might have considered a career switch.”

Since 1447, Antwerp has laid claim to the title of the “World’s Diamond Capital.” It should come as no surprise that Tolkowsky’s brilliant cut was developed in this city.

Credit: Image courtesy of Petragems [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons. Diamond proportions graphics by Jasper Paulsen CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons.

Howard Cohen is the Shoreham, NY-based editor of The Jeweler Blog, a daily blog ghost-written for retail jewelers. Cohen, a long-time industry veteran, is dedicated to making social media tasks simple and affordable for every jeweler. For more information, visit thejewelerblog.com or contact Cohen at 631-821- 8867, hscohen60@gmail.com. Websites: thejewelerblog.com, thejewelerblog.wordpress.com.

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Jeweler Sentenced for Theft, Ordered to Pay $85,000 in Restitution

He’ll have to serve 4 years of probation.

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A Colorado jeweler who was accused with stealing gold, jewelry and money from customers has been ordered to pay restitution and serve a probationary sentence.

David Kushnir, who operated D & D Jewelers in Thornton, pleaded guilty to theft, KMGH-TV reports. He was accused of stealing from nine customers, according to the news outlet.

The court ordered Kushnir to pay about $85,000 in restitution and serve four years of economic crime supervised probation.

In January, authorities accused Kushnir of defrauding customers after they brought their diamonds, watches and other jewelry to him for repair or consignment sale at his business. It was also alleged that he sold fake diamonds to three victims.

The Sentinel newspaper reported in January that in one case, he was accused of removing a movement piece worth $40,000 from a Rolex watch he was asked to repair and then substituting “a Chinese piece.”

Read more at KMGH-TV

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Pandora to Buy Back $75M in Jewelry from Retailers

The effort is part of a broader restructuring program.

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Pandora plans to buy back about $75 million in jewelry from retailers.

The idea is to help retailers avoid holding onto stock for too long, Rapaport News reports.

The repurchased inventory will be smelted, with new jewelry to be made from the material.

Rapaport reports that the program will be rolled out in “select global markets.”

The effort is part of a broader Pandora restructuring program expected to cost the company over $224 million.

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The plan comes as Pandora prepares for a brand relaunch that will kick off Aug. 28 in Los Angeles.

At the event, the company “will reveal its new company purpose, brand expression and visual identity, and show the Autumn 2019 collection.”

Read more at Rapaport News

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Online Costume Jewelry Retailer Ventures Into Gold and Diamonds

Prices range from $55 to nearly $1,000.

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BaubleBar, known for selling trendy costume jewelry online, is entering the world of gold and diamonds.

Its collection, launching Aug. 14, consists of rings and earrings, WWD reports. The jewelry will be sold online and will include “streamlined hoop and stud shapes for earrings and simple, embellished bands for rings.”

The news site added: “Some more directional earrings take the shape of letters or safety pins.”

Prices range from $55 to nearly $1,000.

Daniella Yacobovsky-Fiala, co-founder of BaubleBar, said the company is responding to demand.

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“Since the beginning, the voice of our customer has led our product evolution,” she said.

BaubleBar began dabbling in fine jewelry in October 2017, when it rolled out its Everyday Fine collection. The line consisted of 18K gold-plated sterling silver pieces selling for under $100.

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