CollectionsRock Stars: Trends in Contemporary Fine Jewellery

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Extremely rare coloured diamonds, ethically sourced materials and eternally chic combinations are a few of the key trends in contemporary fine jewellery.

When it comes to gemstones the white diamond once reigned supreme, but in recent years the popularity of coloured gems has increased exponentially. According to Bonhams, coloured stones have been surpassing white diamonds in value, with prices for some coloured gems rising by 2,200 percent in the past 10 years. In particular, exceptional examples of classic coloured stones like emeralds, sapphires and rubies are in high demand.

Fancy coloured diamonds are fetching record prices at auction, especially (very rare) pink diamonds. If funds don’t permit this, chime in with Pantone’s 2016 colour of the year and opt for rose quartz. Pay attention to semi-precious jewels—the likes of opals, malachite and turquoise are increasingly featured in the work of jewellery designers. Finally, opt for unusual cuts, textures and shapes in your gemstones for a distinctive look.

Whether you prefer a pared-back aesthetic for your jewellery or favour bold pieces that make a statement, current trends let you do both: Gold and other warm metals are increasingly the choice for delicate pieces that can be layered—think charm bracelets and pendant necklaces—for a rich yet understated look. Conversely, oversized pieces will also be popular in 2016. This year’s spring/summer catwalks were awash with bold jewellery, from Prada’s disco ball earrings to Loewe’s giant fish necklaces.

Black and white, the perennially chic colour combination, is enjoying resurgence in the jewellery world, with designers embracing an aesthetic that ranges from rock’n’roll to Art Deco. For materials, think blackened metals (jet black rhodium is a favourite), enamel and pearls.

As customers pay more and more attention to the provenance of a jeweller’s materials, designers are increasingly embracing a more ethical approach when it comes to their jewellery: fairmined gold, ethically sourced gemstones and recycled metals are all becoming priorities for the ethically conscious designer.

Pearls have typically been seen as a classic choice for jewellery: elegant and timeless. However, this year sees the fashion world embrace pearls as contemporary and modern—resulting in unusual, imaginative designs. In particular, natural specimens of pearls with excellent lustre, shape and size are an increasingly rare breed in the jewellery market—as a result, they’ve become a desirable purchase for international buyers and collectors.

See also: Italian Jewelry Brand Faraone Launches Auction Department

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