The Persian Gulf has been a major source of natural pearls throughout history. Pearling was a significant industry in regions like Bahrain, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates. This dangerous profession was known for its risks but also for the potential rewards of finding valuable pearls. In the 19th century, the development of cultured pearls revolutionized the pearl industry. Kokichi Mikimoto of Japan is credited with perfecting the technique of culturing pearls, leading to increased accessibility and affordability. Pearls gained popularity in the early 20th century, particularly during the Art Nouveau and Art Deco movements.
Today cultured pearls are the most common type available in the market. These pearls are created by inserting a nucleus into an oyster or mussel, stimulating the formation of a pearl. Major sources of cultured pearls include Japan, China, Australia, and various countries in the South Pacific. Additionally, natural pearls, formed without human intervention, are still found but are extremely rare and valuable.
In the world of gemstones, the month of June is associated with the birthstone pearl, which is considered to be a symbol of purity and innocence. Pearl is a popular choice for brides because it symbolizes grace, beauty and elegance.
Pearls are formed when an irritant such as sand gets inside an oyster or mussel shell and causes damage to its lining (cavity). To protect itself, the mollusk secretes nacre (a substance made up of calcium carbonate) around the irritant over time until a beautiful pearl forms. Pearls vary greatly in color, size and shape depending on their origin; however, they all have one thing in common: they're gorgeous!
Alexandrite and Moonstone are also birthstones of June.
Rose cut diamonds began making an appearance in the 1500’s, white rising and falling in popularity this diamond cut pairs with other antique cuts with ease. Rose cut diamonds are covered with petit triangular facets that cover the entirety of the gem. These triangle facets are only covering the tops, the bottom of this diamond cut is flat. These diamonds are excellent at looking large, with the domed top and the flat bottom they can look upwards to twice their actual carat weight. While still being cut by hand and candlelight these Rose cuts can be easier on your pocketbook. With multiple triangular facets covering the diamond, these cuts typically shimmer rather than sparkle. Each facet catches the light and immediately reflects it back to you.
Just like other antique cut diamonds, these Rose cut diamonds come in all shapes and sizes. Making beautiful accent gems for jewelry from all eras. Rose cuts lost popularity when cuts like the Old Mine and Old European cut came to be. These cuts had more shine rather than shimmer. Imperfections are easier to be detected in cuts like the Rose cut, there for diamonds used for Rose cuts are chosen carefully to ensure its beauty. Rose cut diamonds come in may shapes are highlight the rough diamond in its simplest form. Beautifully hand cut, each antique diamond cut showcases its natural beauty.
The Old European or Old Euro cut is a round diamond cut most used in the Art Deco era, or between 1890 – 1930. The Old European cut is what inspired the Round Brilliant cut that is the most popular cut today. This shape diamond was cut by hand with candlelight in mind but was cut for carat weight. Unlike other cuts that focus on brilliance. Each antique cut diamond has a unique charm, each diamond cutter must rely on their hands rather than technology, making each diamond one of a kind. The diamond cuts in this era also had beautiful warm hues, relevant to the location that they were mined. Around the 1900’s diamonds began to be mined in South Africa; this is where about ninety percent of the diamonds are collected. With some still coming from Brazil and India. Antique diamond very in warmth for color due to where they are mined, hue is determined by minerals and resources available in the growth of the crystal. Old Euros were cut with carat weight in mind rather than brilliance.
Old European cuts have a large crown and a small table allowing most of the diamond weight to be at the head. And unlike the Old Mine cut diamonds the old Euros have a flat culet instead of a tip, this allows the culet to be seen through the table. The steep crown allows for more fire to be shown off in the Old European cut diamonds. This is complimented by the deep cuts of the facets encouraging lite to travel farther, encouraging light to be reflected to your eye. Although with pros come cons, with greater depth there comes more light leakage. Making these antique cuts not look as bright as todays modern cut diamonds. These old European cuts are more symmetrical than other antique cuts and are exceptional in antique engagement rings. Antique diamonds cut by hand, by candlelight are unique and beautiful, allowing their natural beauty shine.