What's It Worth by Jeff Hess

Posted: 2021-04-18

Tiffany & Company reportedly unleashed the “new” gemstone in the late 1960s, with Tiffany’s executives being quoted in 1969 as saying, “Tanzanite is the first transparent deep blue gemstone to be discovered in more than 2,000 years.”

Posted: 2021-04-11

When it comes to black opals, there is a big disparity between retail and fair market value.

This past month we have been fortunate to see and own several nice black opals. These opals, mined at Lightning Ridge Mine in northern New South Wales, Australia, display incredible play of color — from yellow and green to blue and red. The more red and blue you see in Lightning Ridge Mine opals, the better.

Posted: 2021-03-14

Last week, a San Diego jeweler offered us a chance to buy an unusual diamond that is rarely seen.
These are called chameleon diamonds because they temporarily change color in reaction to heat or light.
When put into a dark drawer or safe deposit box, the diamond will change color — looking different when it comes out than when it went in. (Some people can’t even recognize their own diamonds if they haven’t seen them in a while.)

Posted: 2021-03-07

A Chicago jeweler called last year with an unusual belt. It was made of 14 karat gold by an obscure jeweler, the Naples Jewelry Company. It had over 10 ounces of gold and had unusual imagery of crosses and stars and a hanging loop. It had the letters GIDGVMR on it. We researched Naples Jewelry Company and found it was an arts & crafts jeweler in an Italian area of Chicago in the 1920s.

Posted: 2021-02-21

Ok, so yeah, Tom Brady has brought joy and happiness to Tampa Bay.
He is the GOAT. We watched him as he led the team with self-assurance, cockiness, quickness of mind and physical agility. He promised stuff. And he delivered. The GOAT!

But who was really the MVP of the big game?

There were a few others who kicked butt and took names. Our pick is Devin White. Also self-assured. Also cocky. Also quick and agile. And oh yeah, he delivered.

Posted: 2021-01-24

The story behind portable wealth.
Scores of cultures and ethnic groups have been persecuted over the years, and their struggle to prevail is the reason behind portable wealth.

The diamond industry is said to be largely controlled by eastern Europeans, mostly of the Jewish faith. Because of the persecution the Jews have suffered through history, they needed to be ready to move at any time, and diamonds were a source of wealth they could easily carry and transport.

Posted: 2021-01-21

For many hundreds of years, long before today’s proper sanitation conditions were the norm, ladies of refinement often wore around their neck or wrist, or occasionally as earrings, small vessels filled with cloth soaked in perfume. These aromatic vessels would help mask the unsavory odors that emanated from open sewers, horse-drawn buggies ... and even other people. Milady would keep such an item on her person so she could quickly flood her olfactory sense with a pleasant fragrance; the delicate, variously perforated containers that released the fragrance were called vinaigrettes.

Posted: 2020-12-27

It’s not all about the Daytona and the Submariner. While we brag that we have owned more Rolex Daytonas than anyone on the planet, and are leaders in the US on vintage Rolex, it is not all about the Daytona and the Submariner, which admittedly pay a huge premium. There are sleepers like the GMT Master and Explorer. Here, three Rolexes that are not $20,000 to $100,000 chronographs, but seemingly simple watches that can bring good money.

Posted: 2020-12-20

While we have this for sale in our store for a paltry $9,900, trying to appraise the true value of this piece could be impossible.

Posted: 2020-12-13

Gems can be rocks. Gems can be glass. Gems can be almost anything. Gems that were living, breathing creatures are extraordinary – for example, pearls, or coral.

Coral, which is a marine invertebrate, has been endangered for many years, and is only now starting to come back with careful conservation and scientific research. Recently in this very paper there was a terrific article about growing coral in labs to rebuild the imperiled reef along Florida’s Atlantic coast.