A 14k white gold dainty pendant necklace set with a 1.82ct unheated blue sapphire and accented with diamonds.
This necklace is modern, the pendant section holding the sapphire and diamonds is hand made and hand set. The small diamonds are not lost in the setting. In many similar modern necklaces the gold work tend to overwhelm smaller stones, so that the eye notices the thick outlines before the stones. This is not the case in this piece.
The diamonds are bead set in leaf-shaped bezels, feathering the centre dark blue sapphire until it thins out into a flat snake chain. Its Victorian corset-like centrepiece is reminiscent of dainty Edwardian and later Art Deco lavalier necklaces, except the chain would be in links and not have been so ‘smooth’.
The blue sapphire is unheated, a rare find in the sapphire market today. An unheated sapphire means the gem is its inherent color when mined from the earth, with no other treatment to bring out this or that. The never-ending demand in sapphires has caused many mines to be mined out – 99% of sapphires mined today are heated (this is an accepted practice, with heated vivid color sapphires still marketed for top prices).
Of course this sapphire will be brighter if heated like all traditional sapphires. However, it is also its unheated quality that makes it coveted, valuable.
* There is plenty of useful literature on unheated sapphires on the Web which makes for interesting read. *
The necklace is not short like a typical choker necklace though it wears like a longish choker, an entire whole running from centrepiece to chain. The streamlined chain is a modern touch, but it is oddly perfect for the historically-fashioned centrepiece (spanning nearly 6.5cm).
While I don’t usually list modern pieces I break the rule with this piece for two reasons. First, the use of a rare sapphire; second, the crafting of a Victorian inspired necklace in minimal but refined modernity. The second reason I value for modern pieces do not usually measure up or surpass their historical counterparts.
The well crafted necklace is marked ‘585’, an Asian gold mark for 14k.
With certification papers. The blue sapphire is certified transparent with no thermal treatment.