One fancy color diamond specialist I know likes nothing better than showing a mouth-watering array of lovely brown diamonds to out-of-town jewelers who visit him in New York. But the vacant stares that usually greet these stones quickly remind him that brown diamonds are still a seldom acquired taste. Nevertheless, he’s convinced that some day soon the very same diamonds will become a required taste.
For reasons that have nothing to do with aesthetics.
“It’s a matter of economics,” he explains. “Fancy brown diamonds are just about the only bargains left in the diamond kingdom.”
So it would seem. Today the standard pure-brown stone, possessing what the trade calls either coffee or chocolate color, costs no more than a commercial-grade colorless diamond in a 1 carat size, often far less. Indeed, side by side comparisons of the typical colorless 1-carat retail store diamond with its same-price fancy brown counterpart will often show the brown diamond to be a far better bargain.
But it’s a comparison few consumers ever get to make. When jewelers turn to brown, they nearly always use light cocoa or beige shades which, if mounted in yellow gold, pass for white at, of course, much less cost. Sad to say, brown is beautiful only when it can bluff as white.
At least with women.
But what about men?
“Men are a different story,” my dealer-acquaintance insists. “Brown makes many men feel comfortable about wearing diamonds.”
Male And Majestic
Fancy brown or fancy color diamonds strongly modified by brown have long been favorites among diamond dealers who wish to wear diamond jewelry, rings especially. “The colors are so virile that a man can wear them and maintain his masculine image,” the dealer explains. “Browns are ideal for the male ego.”
If only more than a handful of males knew that.
The same earthen colors that turn many (not all) women off seem to turn men on when jewelers with savvy show them. Another fancy color diamond dealer wears a diamond wedding ring with a 1-carat brownish-orange emerald-cut stone, reminiscent of peak-color autumn foliage, that is among the most beautiful diamonds this writer has ever seen. Yet the cost to a consumer of a similar best-of-the-breed brown would be far less than that of the finest white 1-carat diamond, even though the brown stone is far rarer.