Shopping for diamonds and luxury jewellery may not be something we do that often (ahh, a girl can dream!), but when the time does come to treat ourselves to something special or to pick a jewellery gift for a loved one for an anniversary or big birthday, do we know what to look out for? It can be tricky to know what cut or colour to choose when it comes to gemstones, or what styles would suit us.
So, we’ve caught up with our lovely guest and diamond expert Laurie Wickwire to pick her brains on all things sparkly…
QGossip: Tell us a bit about your background and what you do?
Laurie Wickwire: I am an international diamond broker and GIA certified diamond grader. Alongside working with my private clients and bespoke commissions, I also lecture on the luxury cruise liners sailing around the world. Everyone wants to know about the history of the stones in the British Crown Jewels.
QG: What things should we consider when choosing and buying luxury jewellery?
LW: Quality, price and if it is ‘your style’. For the quality, look at if the piece is well made with visually appealing stones. Is it good value for money? As sadly, there have been numerous times I hear of people paying well over the top for a specific item which is sad and frustrating to hear. The item should be ‘your style’ and not one just conforming to ‘the latest look’.
QG: Any specific tips on picking the perfect diamond?
LW: I always guide my clients to look for colour quality and good cut parameters. As we see colour with the naked eye – are you pleased with the whiteness of colour of the diamond? Don’t get bogged down in the colour grade, first let your eye decide what stone you prefer. Cut parameters will dictate the fire and sparkle. Again, with this you can see and notice it with the naked eye. Does it dance with life and sparkle in a shadow? This helps determine good cut parameters.
QG: What are your favourite gemstones?
LW: Diamonds of course, it has always been diamonds for me. I also like the powerful impact of rubies, their colour is so striking alongside diamonds. I can see why they are considered regal stones, and I adore the Tahitian pearl. It took me living in the UK to appreciate the understated beauty of a pearl.
QG: Can you give us three of your top QVC luxury jewellery picks and tell us why you love them?
LW: The five-stone diamond band, totalling 1 carat (above). I love it so! Again with great cut parameters, the stones explode with life. I also love the blue diamond set band ring (below left) and I really like the ceramic diamond ring (below right) which is so unique and powerful.
QG: Do you have a favourite jewellery piece in your own collection that perhaps has a special story behind it?
LW: My cross-over heart ring. I have the names of my two children Connor and Carly engraved by each heart. Priceless. What other item could hold such love and memory than jewellery?
To hear more from Laurie, make sure you tune in to our Diamonds show on Saturday 9th September at 1pm!
Take a look at our luxury jewellery collection for some inspiration.