Oh, Canada! The Country’s Diamonds Appear on the Red Carpet for Birks & Mayors

A 75 cts. t.w. rough diamond necklace hit the Canadian red carpet recently, strung around the neck of Canadian actress Allie MacDonald, star of SCORE: A Hockey Musical. MacDonald wore the piece, designed by Canadian jeweler Reena Ahluwalia and Canadian goldsmith Jeff Miller, which was a commission from Crossworks Manufacturing–a producer of Canadian-mined diamonds–in cooperation with Birks & Mayors, to the opening night of the Toronto International Film Festival.

Allie MacDonald  
Canadian actress Allie MacDonald on the Canadian red carpet.
The event was significant for Birks & Mayors, Crossworks Manufacturing in Vancouver, Canada (which manufactured the piece), and De Beers Canada because the creation of the necklace served as a partnership to bring Ontario diamonds into the media spotlight. [In April 2010, Birks & Mayors unveiled the first 131 diamonds certified by the Government of Ontario, and now sells more in stores.] In fact, the entire necklace—from rough to retail—can claim 100 percent Canadian authenticity: The diamonds were mined from the De Beers Victor Mine on the James Bay coast in Ontario, the design was conceived in Ontario, and the piece itself was manufactured in 18k white gold in British Columbia.

 Canadian diamond necklace

A 75 cts. t.w. rough diamond necklace set in 18k white gold for retailer Birks & Mayors is valued at $1 million.

Birks & Mayors, for those who aren’t familiar with the brand, operates 64 jewelry stores, including 33 Birks stores in Canada, 29 Mayors stores across Florida and Georgia, and two Brinkhaus outlets in Calgary and Vancouver.

Now available for purchase in Birks & Mayors on Bloor in Toronto, the necklace is valued at $1 million.

The spiral cage effects of the design were inspired by the redesigned, diamond-set Mace of Ontario (also Ahluwalia’s handiwork) in the Ontario Legislature, and chosen for their symmetry and message—growth, advancement, energy, and evolution.

Canadian diamond necklace

“The spiraling form secures the rough diamond gently and is intended to portray social responsibility, signifying the diamond mine and the natural riches of Ontario,” Ahluwalia told the press. Meanwhile, rough diamonds were the ideal choice for their organic state and “inherently one-of-a-kind” nature, she adds.


Allie MacDonald and Reena Ahluwalia
Canadian actress Allie MacDonald, star of SCORE: A Hockey Musical and Canadian jeweler Reena Ahluwalia.

Reena Ahluwalia Design, Toronto, Ontario (Canada); 416-703-7975


Per Dylan Dix, HRA Investments: The stones are 2.5–3.3ct sizes, are collection colour (DEF) but hard to precisely define in the rough, VVS.

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