Articulate – March 2016
‘Diamonds are a girls best friend!’ – Marilyn Monroe
Diamonds, sparkling white diamonds, will always be iconic, but the latest trend in the gem stone market appears to be for colour. Driven by rarity (or the rumour of it!) colour is currently centre stage, especially Rose Quartz, which is one of Pantone’s two colours of the year for 2016 (Serenity being the other). Rose Quartz is not rare in itself, but pink diamonds are and there are new sources of pinkish gemstones such as spinels and tourmalines from Madagascar.
For this Spring edition of Articulate, we talk to diamond expert Antony Vanderpump . We ask him to give us the inside track on the diamond market and what collectors and investors are currently buying:
“A tin of beans and a penknife! That’s probably all you would wish for if you were washed up on a deserted island, but for those of us who live in the civilised world there are other priorities. In these days of low interest rates and zero returns, the smart money is looking at alternative investment opportunities. One opportunity stands head and shoulders above all the others, the rare diamond market. Sure, you need to have good advice and a trustworthy source, but the return on investment can be eye watering. Take for example the recent sale of the world most expensive blue diamond, “The Blue moon of Josephine” a whopping 12.03ct fancy vivid flawless diamond that achieved £33million when sold to a Hong Kong property magnet – a gift for his daughter – or a wise investment?!
The Blue Moon of Josephine: 12.03ct Vivid Blue Flawless
Clearly, not everybody can run to this sort of cash, but knowledge of the diamond trade, which can be secretive at best, can offer amazing returns. There are a few (unregulated) diamond investment businesses that have sprung up recently, some of which have made the headlines for the wrong reasons. The main issue with investing in rare coloured diamonds is the “exit strategy”; you need to be totally confident that the stone you choose to sink you hard earned cash into is saleable and profitable. There is no crystal ball that we as diamond traders can consult, but years of watching trends has given us an insight into what is good and what is not. The first rule to procuring an investment stone is the certificate, and there is only one certificate the trade recommend, GIA (Gemmological Institute of America). All other certificates are second class and, in most cases, no use when selling the diamond. The second rule is trust the diamond expert; he will be responsible for selling your stone and his knowledge will be based on this key issue. I would never recommend buying a diamond on the internet as diamonds must be visually inspected.
Coloured diamonds can start from just a few hundred pounds, but the biggest returns will always be on the larger more expensive stones. It is important to set a budget and ask your expert to find a stone within it. Rarity of colour (red, blue, green etc.) will affect the value of the stone, the secondary details of size and clarity will then adjust the price, but, always have in mind that if the stone is too obscure in shape and colour, you will limit the pool of customers when you come to sell your investment.
There are very few investments that you can take great pleasure out of owning, but with diamonds you can enjoy your investment while you wait for the price to rise. The diamond can be set into a piece of jewellery and worn, but remember to insure it, alternatively you can ask your expert to store your diamond for sale at a later date. There will be insurance and storage costs, but these will be nominal. From time to time your expert will have an enquiry and it just might be that your selected stone fits the enquiry. In these circumstances he will be able to achieve a good return and a quick sale. Always establish in the first instance the commission rates for purchase and sale with your expert, these will vary from one expert to another.
When all said and done it can be a fun and rewarding investment, sure there are dangers and pitfalls, but these can be negated with good sound advice from a trusted diamond trader”.
Antony Vanderpump has been involved in the precious metals field all his working life, apprenticing at the family firm C J Vander Ltd, from the tender age of 16. Today, still based in the heart of Hatton Garden, he specializes in diamonds, sourcing incredible stones of all colours and sizes, for both private and corporate clients.
Closer to home his sister, Kate Van Der Pump, continues the family tradition. Working out of her studio in Rye, she has a retail outlet within the Art Shop, Wadhurst. Kate endeavours to create beautiful, one off pieces from gold and silver and is lucky enough to have Antony to source her precious stones.
‘Spangle’ rings set with coloured stones by Kate Van Der Pump
Gold and silver bangles by Kate Van Der Pump
Rose gold hammered heart with square cut diamond by Kate Van Der Pump
For further information please email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Tel: 07778646189
or visit kate’s website: www.kvdpdesign.com