Orange Diamond Sets Two World Records with Only One Bang of the Gavel

It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown! If you tend to fret without your blue blanket and detest the romantic advances of your neighbor Sally, then we’re not on the same page. We’re alluding to something that is not currently rotting at the end of your driveway. Two new world records were set yesterday at Christie’s. The highest price paid per carat ($2.4 million) for any diamond sold at auction and the highest-ever price paid for an orange diamond at auction.

a rare fancy color diamond aptly dubbed "the Orange."

Weighing in at an astounding 14.32 carats, “the Orange” ignited a hot bidding battle before finally selling for $35,540,612.

We freely admit our ignorance; your Blog Hostess had no idea that natural orange diamonds even existed. When We read the news, our first thought was “What yutz would pay that much dough for a color-treated diamond!”

So imagine the awe (& jealousy) that swept though when We found out it was 100% au naturale. Rarer than all the other fancy colors (yellow, red, blue, the occasional green) put together, François Curiel, international jefe for Christie’s jewellery department, puts this fittingly-autumn-hued gemstone in perspective.

“Pure orange diamonds of more than five carats have very rarely been seen at auction. Time and again, a stone will appear on the market that is truly a miracle of nature…[a diamond] the likes of “the Orange” can perhaps only be seen once in a lifetime.”

We prefer the moniker “Great Pumpkin” but that’s the new owner’s call now. Calling the diamond “the Orange” is like naming your son “that Kid.” Entre-nous, the stone doesn’t look that orange to me. Maybe an apple juice or Chadonnay.

A single anonymous collector has owned the Orange for at least 30 years. Its record-breaking price catapults it into an exclusive tier. “The Orange is now on par with the greatest pinks and blues, which are traditionally the most appreciated colored diamonds,” said Curiel.

if tangerine isn’t your bag, rejoice!

the Pink Star DiamondRecords were made to be broken and the Orange’s might not last the day. Today (Wednesday, 13 November) Sotheby’s is hosting its Magnificent Jewels auction in Geneva. (We should organize a Tiaras and Trianon field trip for next year. all drooling is very much allowed.) On the block glistens the Pink Star, a 59.6 carat internally flawless diamond. As an ardent fan of both pink and perfection, just imagining this gem turns your Blog Hostess into a quivering vanilla flàn. Valued at more than $60 million, the Pink Star is expected to usurp the title of “Most Expensive Diamond Ever Bought at Auction. Enjoy the spotlight while it lasts, Orange!

in case “the Orange” isn’t orange enough

Meet the Pumpkin Orange, a 5.54-carat, Fancy Vivid Orange, cushion-shaped diamond. The stone wasn’t psychedelic orange when it was mined. In the rough the stone was 11.00-carats of brownish-orange. Found in South Africa in 1997 in a mine of unknown origin, its original owner was a farmer “and it is therefore assumed to have been found in alluvial deposits.” I have no idea why being owned by a farmer shows such definitive provenance, then again, I’m too lazy to research alluvial deposits and their effect on gem stone color. Plus there’s a good chance I wouldn’t understand it.

the Pumpkin Orange Diamond

The rough was cut and polished by William Goldberg of the William Goldberg Diamond Corporation. Once the polishing was commenced, an incredibly unique intense orange color was revealed. The stone was assessed by the GIA which stated that “The Pumpkin diamond is one of the largest fancy vivid orange, naturally colored diamonds in the world.” Until now. “The Orange” may be larger but it’s shade is weak sauce next to the belligerent sunset of the Pumpkin.

different shades of orange diamonds

a sample spectrum of orange diamonds shows that not all get a “vivid” rating. some are just icky.

Orange is a rare color in fancy color diamonds, while Fancy Vivid is the highest color rating for any fancy color diamond. Although the Pumpkin is not the largest diamond around–duh, see above–the fact that it is an orange diamond and its Fancy Vivid color rating makes the Pumpkin one of the rarest diamonds in existence.

the Pumpkin Orange Diamond set into a ring

the Pumpkin Orange set into a ring

Why does this one get to be the Great Pumpkin?

Most precious gems and jewellery are not named after fruit…or any other type of food for that matter. In 1997, Sotheby’s held an auction on the day before Halloween and sold the orange diamond for $1.3 million. It was purchased by Ronald Winston, of the esteemed House of Harry Winston: the Diamond Guy. Given the cushion-cut shape and burning-flame color of the Halle Berry wears the Pumpkin Diamond ringdiamond and the fact Ronald bought it on Halloween-Eve, it doesn’t take a MENSA candidate to ascertain how the name was coined.

Ronald Winston and Phillip Bloch set the Pumpkin into a ring flanked by two smaller, white diamonds on either side. Halle Berry wore the ring to the 2002 Academy Awards, the same year she won ‘Best Actress’ for her role in “Monster’s Ball.” Take a closer look as she clutches the statuette…see? There it is.

About ♔ la dauphiine ♔

Connecticut-based jewelry monger, history buff, Mets fan. On the hum-drum side, call me a lauded poet, novelist and ghost-writer. (That's right, I haunt prose.)
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3 Responses to Orange Diamond Sets Two World Records with Only One Bang of the Gavel

  1. Angelyn says:

    Jefe and icky–not many posts combine those two colorful terms–or such colorful beauties!


it's not just a love-affair with my own voice

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