The late Elizabeth Taylor who died at the age of 79, March 2011 will give one last performance, as her collection of extraordinary diamonds and rare jewels will be centre stage on December 13, 2011 at Christies New York auction. Elizabeth Taylor was well-known for her love of diamond jewellery; one of her most beloved pieces is a 32.14 carat Cognac fancy deep brownish orangey yellow VSI diamond ring (lot 20) that auctioneers are expecting to make a world record.
“I adore wearing gems, but not because they are mine. You can’t possess radiance, you can only admire it.” -Elizabeth Taylor
The Elizabeth Taylor exhibition is to take place on December 13, 2011 at Christie’s auction house in Manhattan over ten days from December 13-16. Thousands of people have already bought tickets to the iconic event. Visitors and bidders look forward to viewing and potentially owning Mrs. Taylor’s iconic jewellery pieces such as the 33.19 carat “Elizabeth Taylor Diamond” that ex-husband and Hollywood actor Richard Burton gave her as a present. It is estimated to sell between 2.5 million and 3.5 million. Other Champagne and Cognac (Brown variations) diamond jewellery making an appearance at the auction, aside the 32.14 Cognac diamond ring, includes a pair of Champagne diamond earrings estimated to achieve USD$100,000-150,000.
There will also be an online auction that will be running at the same time as the live auction to give online shoppers the opportunity to bid on over 1,000 items, including jewellery and accessories such as Taylor’s designer handbags. Auctioneers estimate that the sale will achieve a total of USD $50 million. Elizabeth Taylor was a humanitarian and in honouring her dedication to the fight against Aids, Christies will be donating a portion of all proceeds from ticket sales and publications related to the event to The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF).
Champagne, Cognac Diamonds (Brown Variations) Gain Ground
Brown Diamonds have gained a lot of attention in recent years, as they have gone from a zero to 5 billion dollar industry in 5 short years. Rio Tinto is a mining company that owns the world’s largest Brown diamond producing mine. The Argyle Mine produces around $150 million of rough Brown Diamond variations, typically Champagne diamonds (light Brown). Currently, the greatest demand for Champagne, Cognac and Chocolate diamonds comes from the U.S. however, many industry experts agree that as these beautiful honey golden gems gain prominence, especially in India, the industry is likely to expand.
The Natural Fancy Colored Diamond Association Executive Director Robert L. May says that “every retailer should take advantage of the growing popularity and demand for natural fancy colored diamonds.” “Now is the time to get in on the ground swell of this fast growing category.”
The same may prove true for rare diamond investors, as Brown diamond variations are currently one of the last colored diamonds categories still priced below colorless (white) diamonds. But as demand increases and supply decreases, they may not be for long.
It’s not a secret that more money can be made by ‘buying low and selling high’, opposed to ‘buying high and selling higher.’In other words, the key is to buy a hot, hard asset that’s in demand just before everyone else is doing it. Warren Buffet said, “Be greedy when people are fearful and be fearful when people are greedy.”If everyone understood the opportunity in Champagne diamonds, they likely wouldn’t be such an exciting investment. The reason that Champagne diamonds are a good investment right now is because they are currently affordable but they won’t be for long.