The French jeweller Cartier has been producing exceptional jewellery creations since 1847. In its Parisian workshops, successive generations of jewellers have devoted their talent to maintaining the signature excellence of Cartier. King Edward VII of England himself acknowledged this virtuosity by proclaiming Cartier the “Jeweller of Kings and King of Jewellers”. This is a truly exceptional world, marked by legendary jewellery imbued with beauty and eternal passion.
Inspired by the extraordinary, Cartier sources gemstones of incomparable brilliance from all over the world to seal the unions of legendary personalities.
In 1956, a 10.48-carat emerald-cut diamond sealed the union of Grace Kelly and Prince Rainier III of Monaco. The exceptionally elegant, angular gem appears suspended, its discreet setting accentuated by the gleam of platinum.
Throughout the course of their lives, Cartier created a virtuoso collection of jewellery and symbols of everlasting love. Each piece marked a specific occasion or recognised a shared romantic event: travel keepsakes, peace offerings, birthday and anniversary gifts combined to form a historic collection.
Other gemstones met with fabulous destinies: the Star of the South, Hope, and Pacha are among the exceptional gems that, one at a time, scripted the legend of the Maison. Fascinating stories accompany the journey of the gem, from its discovery in a distant mine to the meticulous cutting and setting work. These fantastical tales build in intensity and prestige from one owner and one collection to the next.
A Cartier diamond is unique : the Maison only accepts the most beautiful diamonds in accordance with the “4C” criteria (Carat, Colour, Clarity and Cut), an objective method to compare and grade diamonds. Cartier is one of the few Maisons to individually inspect every diamond prior to selection. The central diamond in every Cartier solitaire is appraised in a report by an independent body, the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), which is considered as the world’s foremost authority on diamonds.
The weight of a diamond is measured in carats. The name comes from the carob bean, which was used to weigh diamonds in the past. One carat is the equivalent of 0.20 grams. Cartier offers solitaires in a wide range of carats depending on the setting selected.
The cut of the diamond and its symmetry and balance is a crucial factor in the “4Cs”. This human criterion is entirely dependent upon the talent and expertise of the diamond-cutter. The GIA rates the cut on a scale of five grades ranging from “excellent” to “mediocre”. Cartier centrepiece diamonds are selected exclusively from cuts rated from “Good” to “Excellent”. Diamonds used for paving are also selected according to rigorous cut criteria to ensure they complement the central gems in perfect harmony.
The closer a diamond is to colourless, the more exceptional the stone. The colour grade of a diamond is rated on the GIA scale of 23 grades from D (colourless) to Z (light yellow or brown). Cartier centrepiece diamonds are selected exclusively from those rated D to H. The fluorescence of these diamonds is described as inert or faint.
Inclusions are natural imperfections in a diamond that can affect its quality. The clarity of a diamond is determined by the number of inclusions and imperfections and by the size and position of them within the diamond. The clarity grade of a diamond is rated by the GIA on a scale from FL (Flawless = no defect is detectable under 10x magnification) to I3 (or P3 = Included, numerous inclusions visible to the naked eye). Cartier centrepiece diamonds are selected exclusively from those rated IF to VS2, which ensures a diamond of exceptional clarity with not even the slightest inclusion visible to the naked eye.
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