05 Apr The Right Stone
Exceptional quality and sophisticated designs are the signature of David Gotlib cufflinks. Part of what makes the cufflinks so special is the care that goes into selecting the gemstones for each design. In the following interview David discusses the process that goes into finding the right gems for his creations.
What are your criteria for selecting diamonds for your cufflinks?
I look for the best quality I can find. The stones that I use in my cufflinks should be only the best of what the earth provides. For white diamonds I only use round stones. The cut is very important. I look for a stone that is cut to reflect the most light. The better the cut, the more it sparkles and the nicer the diamond. I use the best quality stones with top colors, E/F and with top clarity, VVS. Once I have selected the stones, I submit them to the International Gemological Institute (IGI) to be evaluated. Every parcel of diamonds goes to IGI to make sure that they are not treated or lab grown. After the diamonds are set, the cufflinks go back to IGI for another review to make sure that every piece has the same stones that were previously assessed.
How is the selection process different for colored diamonds?
When it comes to fancy color diamonds, we use only natural color yellow or brown stones. Those diamonds are evaluated the same way as white diamonds. With colored diamonds, whether they are pink, blue or green, people realize that they are a miracle of nature. You can’t always get the same colors. There are slightly different hues in each color. It is a natural aspect of the stones and the differences add value to the piece. I don’t mind a difference in color, but they must be in the same range. From far away they will all look the same, but when you look closely at each stone you will see that some may be slightly orangey or slightly brown.
How do you select colored gemstones?
I think about how the stone will look and how it will shine in a piece of jewelry. There are many different colored gemstones. Everyone has a different color preference — some prefer lighter, some prefer darker. I just go with a feeling. I choose the color that has the most sparkle, or that works for one of my ideas.
What is the quality control process for colored gemstones?
The color must be untreated and the stones must be natural. Each colored gemstone is evaluated by IGI.
How much difference does cut make to a diamond or colored gemstone?
When we cut diamonds we want to keep weight. When buying diamonds to use for jewelry I want the best stones. I look for a stone that is cut to give the most reflection of light. That is what makes a diamond sparkle and gives the most life to a piece of jewelry. With colored gemstones, the color is what you see, so the stone must be cut to bring out the best color. It also has to reflect light in such a way that the stone shines.
Do all of your diamonds and colored gemstones have a grading report and why is a grading report important?Every piece has a report. It is important for clients to have a grading report otherwise they don’t know what they’re getting. With a grading report, customers have an assurance that the materials are genuine, it gives them peace of mind. For smaller pieces we have preprinted credit card size reports with a photo and details about the cufflinks. For the more important pieces we developed a credit card size report that includes information about the piece and also has a QR code. When the QR code is scanned, it will direct you to the full report online that includes all the specifics of the stones. We are talking about the most luxurious product that comes from the earth, we want to have maximum transparency.
How does the color of the gold used in the setting influence the gems you choose?
The color of gold strongly influences the choice of stones. Classic white diamonds look good with yellow, white or pink gold. When I use colored diamonds or colored gemstones, I look at how the color of the stones harmonizes with the color of the gold. Some gemstones look better with certain colors of gold. I have that in mind when I choose colored stones. There are several factors to consider when selecting the color of gold to use in a setting. Fashion is an influence. For many years everyone wanted white gold, now there is a move back to yellow gold. Personal preference is another factor in selecting a gold color. Someone may want a specific color to match another piece of jewelry such as a ring, or a watch. Other people may like a particular gold because it looks good with their skin tone.
What is the most unusual stone that you have ever used in cufflinks?
In my bestselling Moon Cufflinks from the Prado Presentation collection, I used gray moonstones because they match everything, they are a little flashy, but also subtle. I was in New York and a friend came to see me and asked if could make them in black. I made a pair in onyx. Then I wanted another color, so I went with blue chalcedony. It’s a neutral color that’s easy to find. Then I decided that I needed red. It was harder to find the right red. I didn’t want a gumdrop red. The stone has to look like a gem. A dealer sent me silex, it’s from the flint family. I had never heard of it before. People like it because it has a story and it adds color to a white shirt.
When you acquire a pair of DAVID GOTLIB cufflinks you can be assured that every gemstone has been carefully inspected by David and has been evaluated by an independent gemological laboratory to ensure full transparency and excellent quality.