Blog: buying jewellery online – insider guide
November 26, 2015
When you are proposing on Valentine's Day, it's not a regular proposal. The location is usually somewhere you're very familiar with already, often somewhere fancy – or somewhere special to you both. There are other differences too – the biggest is often the element of surprise!
At Bloomsbury Manor, we think that there is a golden triangle of gifts that should make your Valentine's Day proposal go very smoothly indeed. Whether you've bought a Tiffany & Co. or Cartier Engagement ring from us – or anywhere else for that matter – we think there are two essential little extras...
As you might expect, we're not in to generic; we know exactly which one is best, of course! Rosé is just what is needed, and you cannot go wrong with Charles Heidsieck's 1999 Rosé Millésimé. Toasty, mellow, rich – just like you perhaps? Either way, it's a wonderful celebratory drink for you both to share.
Truffles no less, but not from your local supermarket! These truffles, made by distinguished chocolatier Michel Cluizel, are undoubtedly the finest we have found. Rich smooth ganache, with a dusting of cocoa powder.
3. The ring!
November 28, 2014
It has been 15yrs since Tiffany & Co. launched the Lucida diamond ring. After decades in development, a diamond cut to twinkle and shed light like the brightest star in a constellation was born. Now that the Lucida is no longer a newcomer but a seasoned member of the Tiffany & Co. engagement ring collection we have decided to cast a spotlight on this most distinct of Tiffany cuts and ponder on the characteristics of the Lucida woman.
The Lucida diamond was and is a trailblazer. A unique cut and revolutionary cut that paradoxically doesn't scream its virtues. It looks magnificent but in a quiet and refined way, shedding light like a flickering candle and quietly drawing in an audience. The Lucida is strong but feminine, dazzling but not showy.
We think that the two women who are most likely to be Lucida women are:
Amal Clooney (nee Alamuddin)
Besides being a Bloomsbury based barrister, Amal epitomises a discreet magnetism and an irresistible glow. She is a Lucida woman par excellence!
Lovely Jessica is also a Lucida woman. Strong but not overpowering, Jessica brings attention to herself, not because she's a show off but because of her shining qualities. She's another Lucida woman.
November 16, 2014
Ever since Cecil Rhodes founded De Beers in 1888, London has been associated with diamond trading. But when we think of diamond cutting it's New York, Antwerp and Surat that come to mind. The recent resurgence of interest in older cut diamonds, with their unique charm and fire, has cast the spotlight back on a period of time before the ubiquitous modern Brilliant cut.
These days, 92% of the world's diamond are cut in Surat, India. And in an age of global knowledge, diamond cutters in India employ identical techniques to those used in Antwerp. One hundred years ago however, standardised cutting techniques had not yet evolved. A more artisan approach was in force, relying heavily on local knowledge.
London in the late 18th and early 19th centuries was at the vanguard of new technology and skills. Financed and powered by the nascent Industrial Revolution, diamond cutters in London became renowned for the fineness of their cut stones. In spite of this, for many years after the development of the modern brilliant cut stone, no-one paid much interest in the older cut stones, preferring instead to have them re-cut.
But now, discerning buyers seeking out something truly special are re-visiting older cut diamonds and falling in love with their unique beauty. In addition to the extra fire associated with older cut stones, there is an additional parameter of provenance which owes itself to the highly localised skills of cutters.
Today, the term Old English Brilliant is now reserved for a particularly fine Old European Cut, presumed to be cut in London. It is the perfect homage to the skill set of London's cutters.
We can think of the Old English Brilliant as a superior Old European Cut diamond. Just like we have "ideal" or "hearts and arrows" to describe the finest cut modern brilliant diamonds, buyers now have a term which gains them access to the top tier of antique stones.
April 18, 2014
At Bloomsbury Manor we're passionate about sustainability. We believe that by recycling diamonds we can create something more beautiful and more unique than can be found in any store.
Though not necessarily the first thing that springs to mind when thinking about recycling, diamonds are actually the perfect recyclable material.
Created around 3.3 billion years ago, our planet's hardest natural substance knows a thing or two about longevity!
Diamonds mined a hundred or so years ago, and cut by skilled artisans, exist in their thousands and millions, often unloved or unworn because their settings have become unfashionable.
We feel compelled to re-discover the beauty of these exquisite old cuts (Old Mine, Rose, Old European, Old Cushion) by bringing them out of hiding. Our experts examine each stone individually and decide how to set them to maximise their sparkle and fire. We'll take, fore example, a beautiful Old Cushion Cut with all its charm and individuality and place it centre stage in a new engagement ring setting.
The result is breathtaking! Imagine – a 3.3 billion year old diamond stops off in the Victorian era for a face-lift, and ultimately ends up in a stunning, 21st century creation. Proof of beauty in recycling...
Here are two of our Sustainable Diamonds collection. Ask about other sizes or cuts – we can make rings to order.
Do you have an old diamond you'd like to re-set? Ask about our re-setting service.