A Diamond Spectacular

The 30 dazzling pieces that won 1996 Diamonds-International Awards included two by U.S. designers

Robin Garin Rotstein and Jodi Stamp of the United States were among 30 designers honored with Diamonds-International Awards at a gala ceremony during Haute Couture Week in Paris last month. The bi-annual competition draws entries from around the world, with more than 2,000 hopefuls from 43 countries entering this year’s contest. There were nine winners from Italy, three each from Canada and Japan, two each from Brazil, Germany, Taiwan and the U.S., and one each from Austria, France, Korea, Russia, South Africa, Spain and the United Kingdom.

Rotstein, a two-time consecutive winner of the Diamonds-International Awards, gave a whole new meaning to the preppy dress-for-success floppy bow tie with her necklace of matte gold set with 37 carats of diamonds. She was sponsored by Nili Jewelry Corp. Stamp, sponsored by Harold Jaffe Jewelers, set diamond cuff links on a 34-ct. pair of diamond cuffs.

De Beers launched the competition in 1953 to help stimulate a conservative and traditional marketplace. Today, it is one of the most prestigious jewelry design contests in the world, a foremost vehicle for increasing awareness and interest in modern jewelry design. As the competition has grown in stature, a link between fashion and changing lifestyles became apparent. Designers grew bolder and more imaginative in form, function and use of materials, combining diamonds with leather, steel, plastic and silk as well as gold and platinum. These new ideas, avant garde though they seem, influence market design and set precedents for diamond jewelry and accessories as appropriate for all occasions, whether they’re worn with ballgowns or blue jeans.

Consumers will have an opportunity to see the 1996 winners in a nationwide city tour in November and December of 1996.