You see lots of stones every day. How do you make your choice?
“I have a heightened sense of a gemstone’s character. When I see a stone that could work, a visceral reaction prompts me to find out more. I take in the stone’s shape, cut and colour with an unaided eye before using my loupe. I examine both the stone’s exterior and interior very closely before looking at it again without the loupe. I need to feel the same way as I did in the beginning before saying yes.”
What exactly are you looking for?
“An overall ‘presence’. It has to have all the exacting qualities that we insist for every stone. I’m proud to say that our parameters for selecting diamonds far exceed those established by the industry. An astonishing 99.96% of the world’s gem-grade diamonds fall short of our standards. The remaining 0.04% are the elite of diamonds in terms of colour (D-E) and clarity (IF to VS2). Those are stones of superb quality and transparency.”
How do you know where to find those stones? Do you get tip-offs?
“I am constantly talking to my contacts around the world and being on top of what’s out there. The search for the rarest and most unusual gemstones never ends. It is also imperative that we act quickly and decisively once we’ve learnt about a particularly interesting stone that has surfaced. The business moves really fast and that’s both challenging and exciting at the same time.”