If you thought Elizabeth Taylor’s 33 carat diamond ring – a gift from her twice-husband Richard Burton – was big, then you’ve seen nothing yet. Introducing the world’s second ever biggest rough diamond, which comes in at an impressive 1,758 carats.
To put things into perspective, it is roughly the size of a tennis ball. The diamond was revealed as part of a partnership between Louis Vuitton and Lucara Diamond Corporation and the HB Company of Antwerp, to transform the diamond specimen.
It was discovered in April 2019 (it has since been named Sewelô, meaning Rare Find in the Setswana language) at the Karowe mine, Botswana. Weighing 352 grams, the Sewelô is the second largest rough gem diamond in recorded history, eclipsed only by the Cullinan, at 3,106 carats, discovered in South Africa in 1905, and fashioned into historic diamonds that are now in the British Crown Jewels and royal collection.
Now the next step is to assess the quality of the diamond, and then comes the fun bit: making jewellery. At the moment, the rough crystal is covered in a very thin layer of black carbon, and Louis Vuitton is working with master diamond cutters, HB Company, from Antwerp, to study it by opening a window onto the stone to gain visibility, and plot various permutations of size, colour and shape.
They will use the latest scanning and imaging technology to assess the final potential of the stone, and plan the optimum yield of individual finished, cut and polished diamonds. The size of the diamond will enable production of Made-to-Order Louis Vuitton Cut diamonds, each complex, each fashioned in the form of one of Louis Vuitton’s emblematic Monogram, the rounded flower and star-shaped motif.
We can’t wait to see the final result.