Lab-grown diamonds have taken a place alongside natural diamonds in both wedding and fashion jewelry, as a worthy alternative for consumers either concerned with price or simply looking to upgrade to a bigger stone.
It’s not difficult to find a lab-grown alternative for most styles, from the classic pair of hoops to a 5 ct. engagement ring. But one-of-a-kind pieces are less common in this realm; you don’t see lab-grown diamonds on red carpets alongside notable gemstone creations and vintage jewels—at least not often.
Lab-grown diamond brand Lark & Berry did have a red carpet moment: In February 2020, red carpet icon Billy Porter was adorned with a lab-grown diamond necklace, the result of Lark & Berry’s collaboration with Diamond Foundry, for the opening performance of the 92nd annual Academy Awards. With nearly 65 cts. of lab-grown diamonds, the one-off piece was broken down into smaller, more consumer-friendly pieces for sale (Lark & Berry does offer another one-of-a-kind piece currently for sale: the Bow ring, pictured above).
While we often think of one-of-a-kind as those mega-jewels seen on TV, the label doesn’t have to mean just that. Customers who are interested in lab-grown stones for anything from an engagement ring to an important memento might seek a bespoke creation, and certainly aren’t limited by their choice of mined gemstones.
“I find that one interesting reason customers love our bespoke option is that designing with us allows them more budget to get creative,” says Lark & Berry founder Laura Chavez. “That’s because when buying a lab-grown engagement ring, our market isn’t subject to the unfair mark-ups one is accustomed to seeing in the mined diamonds sector. So with a bigger creative budgetary pool to draw from, couples are able to do pretty much anything they dream of in creating their ring.”
Still, Chavez says that their custom requests are mostly for engagement rings, where lab-grown diamonds are a popular choice for budget and other reasons. Can we expect to see more one-of-a-kind styles in other categories?
“Smiling Rocks is creating more and more one-of-a-kind jewelry designs in our haute couture collection,” says Smiling Rocks cofounder Zulu Ghevriya. “We are expanding our collection toward the luxury segment. This is the beginning of the lab-grown diamond industry; we are seeing designers and brands testing basic and essential product lines, introducing fashion lines, and finding opportunities to craft one-of-a-kind jewelry lines.”
We look forward to what’s to come.
Top: One-of-a-kind Constellation high jewelry necklace, price on request; CourbetFollow JCK on Instagram: @jckmagazine
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