For centuries diamonds have been a symbol of wealth, royalty and luxury. However, it is fancy colored diamonds that have elevated diamonds to a new level of luxury and value. The rarer the color the higher the demand, which can skyrocket the value of these beautiful diamonds.
The beautiful and desired champagne diamonds and cognac diamonds of today’s market weren’t always so popular. In reality, champagne diamonds are a varietal of a brown diamond, with a yellowish hue. Cognac diamonds are simply brown diamonds that vary in shade. For years, diamond companies have used marketing campaigns to change the public’s perspective. After years of work, these precious stones are now more sought after than ever.
Naturally fancy colored diamonds are formed through a process deep within the Earth’s core and obtain their color as various molecules are trapped when forming. Champagne and cognac colored diamonds get their hue specifically from nitrogen presence during this process of diamond formation. Subsequently, the more nitrogen trapped in the diamond, the deeper its color. On the other side of the spectrum are cognac diamonds, which are darker and richer in color and demand a higher price. The brown and golden tones of champagne diamonds and cognac diamonds are produced naturally and remain untreated.
A vast majority of these stones are found at The Argyle Mine in Australia, where nearly 80% of the diamonds mined are brown. Knowing this, Rio Tinto’s Argyle Mine pioneered the terms champagne diamonds as well as cognac diamonds. The term “champagne diamonds’ was designated to the lighter brown shade, which exuded luxury, elegance and wealth just like the bubbly beverage it was named after. The term “cognac diamonds” was given to the darker shades for its rich appearance. This new wave in colored diamonds has gained rising attention from collectors and investors worldwide that search for uncommon colors with high potential for investment.
Throughout the years, the increasingly popular champagne diamonds and cognac diamonds have made huge sales impacts at global auctions.
One of the most famous champagne diamond is “The Golden Jubilee" which originated from the Cullinan Diamond Mine of South Africa weighing 545.67 carats. Known as the world’s largest faceted diamond, its estimated value is between $5-$12 million. This diamond was given to the king of Thailand in 1997. To date, the diamond remains in the Royal Thai Palace as part of the crown jewels.
Another famous diamond of champagne color is a 69.93 carat stone known as “The Golden Pelican." This large gem was discovered in South Africa in its rough state and was then set on a 14 karat gold band. The Golden Pelican was sold at Christie’s Auction over 40 years ago and its estimated value is currently $3 million.
Naturally fancy colored champagne and cognac diamonds have been around for many years, but it is recently that these stones are rapidly attracting popularity among collectors and investors.
For more reading on other colored diamond trends, click the link below: