It is rare that a profound social movement is not accompanied by artistic innovations or new creations, which materialises in some way into an evolution. The decline of arranged marriages in favour of love marriages has largely allowed the famous solitaire to establish itself as the ultimate engagement ring in the second half of the 20th century. That might not have been the case. The pearl could have done the trick after all. However, two events have jointly favoured the triumph of the diamond on the tenderness card.
The first is quite interesting. In 1947, Frances Gerety, an advertisement editor specialising in a series of delicate orders, went to bed only to realise that she still has an order to honour: a slogan for the big mining group, De Beers. Exhausted, she said to herself, “God, give me an idea.” With this wish, she sleeps. In the middle of the night, she dreams and scribbles a sentence quickly, which has just crossed her mind. Hours later, she presents her idea at a meeting.
According to her, nobody has jumped with joy. However, the idea not only made its way, but has also assured the glory and the supremacy of diamonds in the jewellery world for decades to come. The slogan was: A diamond is eternal. We have not invented anything more powerful since.
The second event is a technical innovation: crimping. In 1886, while fashion was still about heavy decorations and imposing engravings that gagged the brilliance of the stones, Charles Lewis Tiffany imagined a ring on which the diamond is simply raised with six platinum claws. Little metal, bare stone, as if floating, to spread its fire better. The most profound ideas are often the most simple, we say. The American jeweller invented the absolute icon of the century to come and so universal that we almost forgot where it came from.
This year, Tiffany &Co. reaffirms it supremacy in this domain by unveiling Tiffany True. This new engagement ring, pleasantly matches an unprecedented size, distinguished by the finesse of its minimal design and the strength of its signature. A sobre “T” discretely comes off from the side of the jewellery. The polish galvanises the glare of the central stone while the four stone claws seem to blend in the diamond. At a time, where everything is going so fast, it is good to be intoxicated by the flavour of eternity.
*This article has been contributed by HERVÉ DEWINTRE