5 Things Rocking the Industry: July–August 2017


Another JCK Las Vegas show has gone into the books. And though there was a one-time change in the date pattern—and it’s been a challenging time for retail—feedback generally came in “better than expected,” “good,” and, in some cases, even “great.” For instance, Adam Graham, director of sales and marketing for Omi Privé, called this year’s LUXURY show the “best in the company’s history.” Next year’s event—the last at Mandalay Bay before the annual fair moves back to its traditional home at the Sands Expo and Convention Center—will take place June 1–4.

One-of-a-kind platinum ring with a 20.03 ct. Ceylon sapphire, 0.63 ct. t.w. blue sapphires, and 1.83 cts. t.w. diamonds; $370,000; Omi Privé; 877-664-4367; omiprive.com


The biggest winner at the 2017 Tony Awards? Other than the musical Dear Evan Hansen, it was Fred Leighton. The estate jeweler dressed eight nominees and presenters, including Scarlett Johansson (pictured), in antique ­diamond drop snake earrings, and Uma Thurman, in a 19th-century amethyst rivière. Hello, Dolly! star (and Best Actress winner) Bette Midler went against the grain with 30 ct. Lorraine Schwartz pear-shape diamond drop earrings—continuing Schwartz’s lucky streak. Last year the designer put Long Day’s Journey Into Night’s Jessica Lange in pear-shape diamond drops, and she emerged victorious. Pear shapes FTW!


When this diamond was first spotted at an English “car boot sale”—what we call a flea market or garage sale—its buyer paid £10 for it, assuming it was too big to be genuine. But it was. After some 30 years of daily wear, the anonymous woman took it to Sotheby’s, which told her the “tenner” was actually a very real 26.27 ct. cushion-cut diamond. On June 7, Sotheby’s London sold the I VVS2–graded stone for $847,000—quite a return on a $12 investment.


Phillips has done it again. In 2002, the Geneva-based auction house set a record with its sale of the legendary Rolex reference 6062 Bao Dai, a triple calendar with moonphase wristwatch in yellow gold that belonged to Bao Dai, the last emperor of Vietnam. One of three black-dial models known to exist with diamond markers—and the only one bearing diamond markers at the even hours—the timepiece resurfaced at Phillips’ Geneva sale in May, where it fetched $5,060,427, making it the most expensive Rolex wristwatch ever sold at auction.


Whenever someone at JCK celebrated a birthday, Bill Furman would say, “We need to get together to toast the wonderfulness of you.” Now, “Billy” is taking a break after 45 years of selling for JCK and Reed Jewelry Group—where he helped launch the original show and served as our unofficial gourmet editor. The news comes as a shock to all of us who have admired Furman’s boundless energy and perpetual good humor. For the future, he plans to spend time at his son’s Los Angeles restaurant, Free Range LA. Stop by and toast the wonderfulness of Billy.

(Johansson: © Bruce Glikas/STQ; diamond: courtesy of Sotheby’s; Rolex: courtesy of Phillips)

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