Diamond tiaras have long been a symbol of European royalty, but more are popping up—and becoming available—in American markets. Here are a few of the latest designers taking the headpiece to a higher level.
• Damiani: Cristina Bagnari, designer of the Italian brand’s Masterpiece Collections, unveiled three one-of-a-kind tiaras this year: the Belle Époque, with 16.09 cts. t.w. diamonds in 94.30 grams of 18k white gold (retail price: $119,040); the Vulcania, with 11.95 cts. t.w. diamonds in 77.20 grams of 18k white gold ($82,540); and the Eden, with 1.88 cts. t.w. diamonds in 28.80 grams of 18k white gold (at $29,790, a veritable bargain!). All are on display in Damiani’s boutique on Via Monte Napoleone in Milan’s fashion district.
The Cento tiara, shown as a headpiece (top) and a bracelet (bottom); $77,000; Roberto Coin, New York City; 800-853-5958; robertocoin.com
• Roberto Coin: In Las Vegas this year, the Italian master unveiled the Cento 18k gold and diamond tiara. The headpiece containing 13.07 cts. t.w. Cento diamonds—Coin’s proprietary 100-facet diamond cut—retails for $77,000 and can be returned to the designer after the wedding to be reconfigured into a bracelet (the process takes six weeks). A Coin rep characterizes the style as classic, and “not too high,” with scalloping and shared prongs plus graduated diamonds on top. Coin unveiled the creation in an effort to accommodate the increasing demand for bridal jewels of all types; to date, two brides from Texas were pondering purchases. But Coin is prepared for the pleasant problem of dueling buyers: There is a second tiara available with 13.42 cts. t.w. diamonds.
• Euphoria New York: This Englewood, N.J.-based jeweler created a bracelet-tiara combination—appropriately dubbed the Diamond Briara—with 8.25 cts. t.w. diamonds for $42,990. The piece is available exclusively at Euphoria’s headquarters/flagship store, and travels to authorized retailers by request. Says president Edward Ezgilioglu: “It converts from a tiara to a bracelet and back within a few seconds—faster than your average Mercedes convertible hardtop.” —Jennifer Heebner
What a Difference ‘Today’ Makes
In late August, the Today show’s wildly popular annual wedding contest earned a lucky couple a pair of Neil Lane platinum bands (not to mention a free ceremony, reception, and honeymoon). Voting via todayshow.com, Facebook, and text, more than 150,000 viewers weighed in on wedding bands from Lane, Asprey, Brilliant Earth, and Diamonds for a Cure. DFAC owner Neda Behnam says she became a contender when a Harper’s Bazaar accessories editor working with Today chose her brand to represent “jewelry for a cause,” as a portion of sale proceeds from Behnam’s line benefits breast cancer research. (Lane was selected as a celebrity jeweler, Asprey as a jeweler for royalty, and Brilliant Earth as a green jewelry manufacturer.) Even though Behnam, a breast cancer survivor, didn’t receive the most votes, her bridal business got a substantial consolation prize.
“We got over 11,000 fans added to our Facebook fan page during that week,” she says. “Now my page has become a forum for talking, sharing, and comforting those affected by cancer.”
“Bridal is tricky in our market. Being so close to a diamond district [in Los Angeles], we need to be different from the competition. We preach color more than anything to our clients. GIA only D to F in color is what we love to sell, along with SI1 and SI2. We find big value in those stones. As far as bridal lines, we try to manufacture everything in-house so we are able to give the customers the best price possible.”
—Brent Polacheck, president, Polacheck’s Jewelers, Calabasas, Calif.