GALA Celebrity Jewelry

Why Only Diamonds?

MET GALA worthy colored jewels that were missing from the red carpet this year.

Every year, the world holds its breath for first Monday of May. The Met Gala, one of fashion’s biggest annual events, which has literally become the trend setter for fashions of the year is what all eyes are turned to. This year, the theme of the Met Gala was “Karl Lagerfeld: A line of Beauty”, essentially, paying homage to the late legend who shaped the aesthetics of the fashion world as we know today. So it is no surprise that we saw a version of his iconic designs, quite literal versions of his beloved cat Choupette and diamonds! Karl was known for his love of the black and white color palette as well as that of natural diamonds and, celebrities at teh Met Gala did not disappoint. From Dua Lipa to Priyanka Chopra, stunning diamond jewelry was a staple in almost every ensemble.

GALA Celebrity Jewelry

What got us thinking was the absolute lack of anything BUT natural white diamonds. Granted, it was in honor of Karl Lagerfeld, whose love for diamonds was infinite, but just as the stylists and celebrities had re- interpreted his clothing to suit today’s taste, the jewelry could have taken a similar route. At a time when the customer is becoming more and more conscious about the blood value of natural diamonds and is consiously trying to make a better decision, it is important for the visible classes to  emulate such principles. Could natural white diamonds have been substituted for anything else while keeping the theme? Let us explore the possibilities:

1. Salt and Pepper Diamonds:

If one is looking to stick to natural diamonds but can’t afford the price tag that comes with a larger stone, salt and pepper diamonds are the perfect diamond alternatives. These are essentially natural diamonds with black and white inclusions.White inclusions (salt) result from flaws in the diamond’s internal crystal structure. Other impurities can cause them as well, such as nitrogen. Carbon deposits, particularly in the form of graphite, are responsible for the black inclusions (pepper). During diamond formation, these defects occur when the carbon atoms are not exposed to enough pressure or heat to crystallize fully.  

Salt and pepper diamonds have become increasingly popular in recent years. These diamonds are unique because of their unusual imperfections, which give them an organic and natural look. The white inclusions (salt) and the black inclusions (pepper) are what make them so unique. Interestingly, these were the first ones to be rejected traditionally, as white diamonds were the only ones considered high value.

Salt and Pepper Diamonds, Wholesale Salt and Pepper Diamonds, Salt and Pepper Diamonds Rings

The changing narratives are due to multiple reasons:

  • The Real value of Diamonds: 

With more and more evidence surfacing, it is evident that the prices of natural diamonds are artificially controlled. In reality, diamonds are abundantly available all over the world and aren’t as “rare” as marketed. Diamonds also have low resale value as many people get to know later. While calculating the value of diamonds, one also has to take into account how resource intensive the entire mining procedure. No matter how large a mine is, you will have to move a great deal of rock in order to obtain a very small number of diamonds. According to the Jwaneng mine in Botswana, which produces the world’s “richest” diamonds, it takes one ton of rock to produce just 1.4 carats of rough diamond. This is not considering the price of labour, water and the long term degradation of the local environment and economy. Added to this is the fact that lab grown diamonds which are becoming increasing popular today are available at a fraction of the cost of natural diamonds and the difference between them can be told only by an expert.

Considering all this and the fact that a customer can purchase a larger gemstone like a salt and pepper diamond or a teal sapphire or a parti sapphire at the same price tag, it isn’t surprising to see that not every couple wants to mark their big day with a white diamond.

  • Ethical Sourcing and Resource Effectiveness:

Natural Diamonds earned the moniker “Blood Diamonds” around the late 1990’s when it was revealed that a staggering majority of diamonds were mined in war torn regions or in conditions of extreme human rights abuse, while the profts from this trade were used to finance armed conflicts against governments. Since then, multiple efforts have been made to regulate the trade of conflict diamonds and today, ethical sourcing of diamonds has become almost non negotiable. 

When it comes to salt and pepper diamonds, remember that most of the naturally mined diamon comes with some amount of impurity or crystal defect. Therefore, they are more readily available when compared to natural white diamonds and minimal resources can be used for their extraction, making them much more resource friendly.

  • Versatile and Unique Aesthetic:

It goes without saying that the appeal of salt and pepper diamonds lies in their unique aesthetic, in which no teo stones are ever alike. The speckled appearance of salt and pepper diamonds depends on the quantity and distribution of the “salt” and “pepper” which cannot be replicated naturally. Their unique personality, which when matched with that o the wearer is what creates magic!

Salt & Pepper Diamonds, Wholesale Salt and Pepper Diamonds

In all honesty, salt and pepper diamonds perfectly fit the bill of Karl Lagerfeld’s favourite black and white look. It would have been great if these speckled wonders had some representation in such a global event.

2. White Sapphires:

One of the most important factors while purchasing a sapphire is its color. White sapphires aren’t as popular as blue sapphires and other colored sapphires for this obvious reason, but they make a great choice as natural diamond alternatives. Here is why:

  • Rarity:  Sapphires are known to have silk inclusions in them commonly. Therefore, finding a naturally eye-clean white sapphire is rarer than finding a white diamond. In fact, it is because of this reason, naturally occurring white sapphires are called the purest form of sapphire. Interestingly, according to the GIA, there have been 4.50 billion carats of white diamonds mined since 1870. Multiple metrics like this prove that diamonds aren’t as rare as they are marketed to be.

2.55 ct natural white sapphire, Wholesale Sapphire

  • Price:The value of not just white sapphires, but sapphires in general have increased exponentially in the last 10 years, while diamonds have seen only a marginal growth. This has also significantly increased the investment value of white sapphires.
  • Hardness:White sapphires, like all sapphires, are extremely durable. They rank 9 on the Mohs scale of hardness, just below diamonds, which means that they are highly resistant to scratches and abrasions. Their durability makes them suitable for everyday wear in jewelry, and they can withstand the test of time.

It is interesting to note that the Met 2023, wasn’t just a celebration of Karl Lagerfeld’s achievement. Many celebrities resorted to wearing pink, a color Karl loathed form the bottom of his soul, to shade his rather unpopular and genuinely problematic attitude.

What colored stones would have gone with this mini-rebellion theme? Of course, we have to cater to this crowd too! 😛

  • Parti sapphires & Bicolored Sapphires:

Be it the spectacular parti sapphire with its characteristic color zoning or the bicolored sapphires with the mottled tortoise shell motif, these are stunning alternatives to not just diamonds but mainstream blue sapphires too. 

Australian Parti Sapphires, Parti Sapphires, Wholesale Sapphires,
Bicolor Sapphires

Australian parti sapphires are a prime example of not just beauty, but important factors that should be taken into consideration while buying a gemstone today; traceability, ethical and sustainable sourcing, vibrant natural colors and a long term consistent supply. To learn more about these stunning stones, click here.

  • Tanzanites:

One of the most exclusive stones, since they are found only in one place on earth, Tanzanites with their vibrant bluish-purplish coloration has been a favourite with celebrities for a while. Did you know that the “Heart of the Ocean” in the Titanic was actually a tanzanite, as such a saturated blue color cannot be obtained in diamonds.Click here to know more about this fascinating gem.


  •  Emeralds:

The green gem of the Big Three, emeralds have been around a long time and have enjoyed the patronage of royals in the yesteryears and celebrities today alike. Today Zambian Emeralds are sought after for their stunning color and quality and for their economical price point when compared to Colombian Emeralds. 

In 2016’s Golden Globe Awards, Taraji P. Henson dazzled in a 107-carat Zambian emerald gemstone earrings, and in 2019, Mahershala Ali wore a Zambian emerald signet ring.

  •  Rubies:

Rubies were one of the first gemstones to be mined and they are relevant even today. Celebrities resort to the saturated, deep “pigeon blood” red rubies when they want to add a pop of color and class to their outfits.Rubies are found all over the world, but classically Burmese rubies are the most sought after. To know more about rubies from around the world, click here.

In fact the largest ruby in the world, weighing a whopping 55.22 carat, sold for $34.8 million just today, on 9th June , 2023 in an auction held by Sotheby. The auctioneers named the stunner, Estrela de Fura, or the Star of Fura, in Portuguese, paying homage to Mozambique, where it was mined. Even more interesting is the fact that this massive ruby was cut from a 101 carat rough! Mozambique rubies are valued almost as much as Burmese rubies today because of their characteristic red color and outstanding quality.

Estrela de Fura, the largest ruby in the world.Ruby Sapphire, Ruby Rings
                             Estrela de Fura, the largest ruby in the world.
  • Tourmalines:

Just like sapphires, tourmalines are an extremely versatile line of gems, available in every color between colorless and black. Since there is so much variety in tourmalines, finding  the right color and cut to match with the outfit design can be an extremely exciting process.

Tourmalines, Wholesale Tourmalines

In a time where the consumer is moving away from the conventional diamonds, diamond alternatives and colored stones need more visibility from the entertainment community, which is essentially what sets the trend for the general public. In a market where lab grown diamonds, are forcing diamond giants to lower the price of diamonds to make it more reasonable, we aren’t fare from the day when they might just won’t be as exclusive anymore! So word to the wise: it is always smart to be aware of your options!

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