Our QVC 20th anniversary celebrations are already well underway with lots of things planned in the run-up to the actual birthday on 1st October. This week we are marking the occasion with a specially commissioned Today's Special Value ring to kick off Diamonique Day on Friday.
The ring is designed by yours truly in collaboration with our senior Diamonique buyer, Emily, and I must confess I was thrilled to be asked for my ideas, even though I have no ability to draw!
The design is centred around a 93-facet, one-carat solitaire to mark the fact that QVC first went 'on air' in 1993. Unlike a brilliant cut, which can be cut by machine, this 93-facet stone has to be cut by hand and requires a high level of expertise from the lapidary.
There are further smaller stones on the shoulders flanking the centrepiece. The gallery alludes to 20 years of QVC with a soft 2 leading into a 0, which we then mirrored to create almost a heart shape but it is not too obvious.
The piece is part of our Epiphany platinum-clad range, as platinum is the metal to celebrate a 20th anniversary, and we also decided to offer it in a simulated emerald option, as well as the clear, because emerald celebrates 20 years too. Coincidentally emerald is also the birthstone for May so it could be a personal birthday treat if you have a birthday this month.
Both Emily and I wanted the ring to have a look of high-end real diamond and I hope you will agree that we achieved it when Dale and I launch the TSV at midnight on Thursday.
So what else am I celebrating on this week's blog? Well, after an absence of eight years, my football team Crystal Palace are back in the Premier League by winning a very tense play-off final at Wembley on Bank Holiday Monday after the game went to extra time.
We had seats behind the goal but they were used very little during the course of the afternoon as we were all on our feet singing and urging our 'red and blue army' on to victory. It was the final game in a Palace shirt for Wilfred Zaha who has signed for Man Utd but what a way to bow out. He has spent ten years with CPFC and is a product of our prolific academy where, I am proud to say, my son is now a coach.
We drove to Wembley and, en route, stopped at a set of traffic lights to see Jo Brand in the car alongside us, another Palace supporter on her way to Wembley. As luck would have it she pulled into the car park just after us and I was able to grab this picture (left).
It is hard to imagine that just three years ago our club almost ceased to exist so a big thank you to Steve Parish, Steve Browett, Martin Long and Jeremy Hosking for 'saving' Crystal Palace and giving us the opportunity for this wonderful day out.
I wasn't out until the early hours partying as the following morning I had a hospital appointment for the results of a recent blood test. I can report that my Professor at UCH is very pleased with my progress and that the medication is continuing to work well – thanks so much for all your well wishes over the last couple of months, it really does help to know that you are there.
All in all a fabulous week so far…who knows? Maybe the Presenter team will win the QVC pub quiz on Thursday.