Rio Tinto’s 2016 Diamonds With a Story Designers and Jewelry

It’s time for a Diamonds With a Story refresher, complete with two additional jewelry designers and new merchandise

Offering affordable diamond jewelry is a no-brainer for Rio Tinto, whose inventory of beautiful Argyle diamonds is vast. That’s why the diamond miner is debuting its 2016 installment of Diamonds With a Story jewelry, which can be seen for the first time at JCK Las Vegas 2016, which runs June 3–6 at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Convention Center.

DWAS is an ongoing effort (the company debuted the initiative in 2012) to help retailers better acquaint consumers with accessibly priced diamonds with easy-to-trace origins. DWAS merchandise features natural-color, mine-to-market Argyle diamonds set into finished jewelry that ranges in retail price from $500 to $5,000—a jeweler’s sweet spot.

Last year, DWAS worked with four designers—Suzanne Kalan, Sandy Leong, Matthew Campbell Laurenza of MCL, and Jennifer Dawes of Dawes Design—who return this year to continue making stylish entry-level-price pieces that consumers want to collect and covet. Each designers’ body of work speaks to four chosen themes—Cutting Impact (sustainability), Color My World (range of color), Shape by Origin (Argyle origin), and Mixed Medium (nontraditional materials)—that make them uniquely qualified to participate. And a bonus for this year: Designers Paige Novick and Xiao Wang are joining the vets in debuting colorless and natural-color diamond jewels. Expect to see anywhere from eight to 16 pieces per artist.

“There is a strong synergy between Rio Tinto and all of our designer partners,” explains Brandee Dallow, director of Rio Tinto Diamonds North America. “In this case, while both designers are very inspiring as artisans, their values—specifically with respect to sustainability—are what brought us together.”

Wang was born into the industry thanks to a grandfather in the mining business and a father working in recycled metals. “She has always worked with recycled gold and natural, untreated gemstones, so working with ethically sourced diamonds is part of her brand’s evolution,” notes Dallow. Novick, meanwhile, is known for her minimalist aesthetic and commitment to sustainability.

See the pieces in person in Las Vegas at the Rio Tinto booth No. B22135.

Pieces below are new for DWAS 2016 and have not yet been priced. 


Earrings in 18k gold with Argyle diamonds, by Jennifer Dawes for DWAS


Necklace in 18k gold with Argyle diamonds, by MCL for DWAS


Ring in 18k gold with Argyle diamonds, by Sandy Leong for DWAS


Earrings in 18k gold with Argyle diamonds, by Suzanne Kalan for DWAS


Necklace in 18k gold with Argyle diamonds, by Paige Novick for DWAS


Ring in 18k gold with Argyle diamonds, by Xiao Wang for DWAS

The Style 360 blog is your editorial source for the newest jewelry trends, market analysis, trade show insights, designers profiles, and more.

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