A Sapphire from where, you say?
Ryder's talented in-house designer Sakura Tomita has become somewhat of a sapphire master and her latest design is a pièce de résistance. This ring is set with a very special Montana sapphire, which is prized for its rare and unique blue hues. Read Saki's story below about how this gorgeous sapphire from a surprising country of origin came to life. (See more of Saki's sapphire designs here).
I fell in love with fine jewellery as a child, when I used to hunt through my mother’s jewellery box and discover all the different treasures she had. While diamonds are my first love when it comes to gemstones, sapphires and rubies (Corundum) are absolutely mesmerising with the diverse range of colours that can be found in this variety of gemstone - literally any shade of the rainbow! Their hardness, classified as a “9" on the Moh’s scale of hardness, also makes them easily wearable for daily use, and appropriate for jewellery that lasts a lifetime. While diamonds are commonly associated with engagement rings, this is actually a more recent development, and was only made popular in the late 1940’s, when DeBeer’s launched their famed “a diamond is forever” campaign. I love seeing my non-traditional brides step outside of the box and create engagement rings with the versatile colours of sapphires and rubies. Certain types of sapphires and rubies are actually so rare, that they can sometimes be priced even higher than a diamond.
My client had already done some research prior to meeting with me, and was certain that she didn’t want her main stone to be a diamond. Instead she was exploring sapphire options, where the stone would ideally be multi-coloured, and reflecting the beautiful blues and greens of the ocean; something that had special meaning to her and her partner. Although we first tried to search for sapphires in this colour in Asia, we quickly realised how difficult it would be, because the market in Asia appreciates the more intense royal and violet deep blues that are commonly associated with the word “sapphire.” Instead we decided to search in North America where my client is originally from, and where we knew we’d be able to find the type of colour she was interested in. Montana sapphires are spectacular as they also come in nearly every colour of the rainbow, and the stones we sourced for her had a magnificent colour-change characteristic, where in different lights, the stones reflected a multitude of different colours.
After sourcing several options and falling in love with all of their different and unique qualities, she finally settled on a beautiful 2.52ct Pear shaped Blue-Green Montana Sapphire. With such a stunning center stone, the challenge was to create a beautiful design that would highlight her sapphire, without distracting or taking any attention away from it. Although she had also considered design options that incorporated diamond side-stones, we decided to go with a simple wall-set halo that would draw attention to, and enhance her center stone, complimented by a delicate band of diamonds to encircle her finger. As a final bespoke touch, I custom designed the basket detailing on her ring; a special feature that is to be enjoyed specifically by the wearer.
The mounting stage is incredibly important during the bespoke process, because it allows for a checkpoint when I can do a bit of quality control, make sure the design is taking shape as expected, and also double check the size and proportions of the ring. It can always be a bit scary for the client because the ring looks very raw and unfinished at this stage, with none of the stones set yet, and the claws also look quite long and protruding. Luckily my client had really bought into the bespoke journey, and was equally as excited to see the mounting as the final product. We discussed her questions, and I explained the transformation that the piece would go through to become a final product.
The Flawless Finish
The finished ring was a beautiful masterpiece that was completely her own, and which far exceeded her expectations. It was almost as if the beautiful halo of diamonds allowed for the center stone to reflect intensely vivid blues and greens, bringing to mind the calming colours of the ocean. In a world where fine jewellery is now commonly mass-produced and created by machines, a handmade ring that is individually worked on with exceptional skill and attention, truly stands out in a crowd. The result is a stunning piece that is not only unique to the wearer, but created with the highest standards and quality of craftsmanship.
He Wins Too!!
To cap off their special bespoke experience at Ryder's, the couple decided to create a men’s wedding band to compliment her beautiful Montana Sapphire engagement ring. His style is more suited to a sleek masculine design, so he opted for a thick flat Platinum band, with a small baguette bezel set North-South into the band. Initially I was searching for a Montana Sapphire of the same colour and shade as his partner’s engagement ring, but soon found that it would be tricky to find in the exact shape, colour, and size that was needed for the design.We looked at countless other gemstone options like Santa Maria Aquamarines, Pale blue sapphires, and even a rare gemstone called Grandidierite, however none of the tones quite matched her beautiful Montana Sapphire.
Finally, we came across a stunning colour of London Blue Topaz, and decided to custom cut these into the appropriate shape for the wedding band. Set into a sleek and shiny platinum setting, it was a perfect compliment to her engagement ring….truly a match made in heaven.
To contact Saki and start your own sapphire journey with her, please contact her at Sakura@ryderdiamonds.com | +852 2805 2589