2. Oval cut diamonds
Oval diamonds have become increasingly popular with celebrities and the trend is predicted to continue into 2018. Serena Williams, Blake Lively and Kirsten Dunst have all fallen for the oval cut. What many people might not realise is that elongated diamond cuts often appear larger when compared to the same size round or square shapes. This size illusion can also make the finger look slightly longer and more slender.
Did you know? – Oval diamonds were first mentioned in literature in the 1800s. Possibly the world’s most famous oval diamond, the Koh-I-Noor, was presented to Queen Victoria in 1850. It was said that ‘whoever owned the Koh-I-Noor ruled the world’. Weighing 105.60 carats, it was later set into the Queen Mother’s crown and can now be seen in the Tower of London.
As Manchester United look close to sealing the deal with forward, Alexis Sanchez this month, we would like to point out that he won’t be the only talented ‘Sanchez’ in Manchester. He also shares the name with our very own award winning Arabian, Aja Sanchez, owned by Alf Hallworth.
Harrington & Hallworth Director, Alf Hallworth has long had a passion outside of the business for horses. He has enjoyed continued success with his now established purebred breeding programme with new mares recently added to the breeding barn. All their horses possess show-stopping ‘pizzazz’ which is crucial in their experience, to gain success in the show-ring and this is combined with superb temperaments and of course, extraordinary beauty.
The stallion, Sanchez, has had significant success in the show-ring including Supreme Champion of the North West Younsgtock Show as well as Male Champion at the North Western Show. He exhibits his sire’s explosive trot and has a superb conformation and a short, dished head with fabulous ears and large eyes.
We wish Alexis good fortune in his career!
My experiences with TAG Heuer
Early in my career at Harrington & Hallworth I had the opportunity to meet with my local TAG Heuer representative. He signed me up to their online training, which not only helped me to learn about their collection but also featured an in-depth history of the brand. I still visit the site frequently to increase my overall score and position on the world TAG Heuer Ranking (I’m currently in 33rd place).
Why I love the brand
While doing my TAG Heuer training I learned that the brand was founded in 1860 by Edouard Heuer when he was just 20 years old. Edouard showed that with hard work, determination and a little bit of obsession he could create an empire which would be recognised internationally – an attitude which made me a big fan of the brand. It was his obsession with precision which prompted him to open his first workshop, in which he created and patented some of watchmaking’s key components, many of which are still used today.
My favourite watch
My favourite TAG Heuer creation would have to be the TAG Heuer Carrera, which features the Heuer 01 movement as well as a black skeletonised dial. The Heuer 01 movement is an in-house movement, which means every single part is designed, created and assembled by TAG Heuer. The skeletonised dial complements the movement, as it allows the wearer to see and appreciate the fine craftsmanship that has gone into creating this piece of art.
Something for everyone
TAG Heuer’s avant-garde approach to watchmaking has allowed the company to create a very large and diverse collection of timepieces. There is a watch for everyone, from the sports-driven young man and woman to the hardworking and successful businessperson.
My favourite interesting TAG Heuer facts
The automatic chronograph
When TAG Heuer set out to create the first automatic chronograph movement they realised it could be a very lengthy and expensive process, so they decided to join forces with Breitling, Büren and Dubois-Depraz – not just to share the costs but also to make the most of their combined knowledge, experience and expertise. The four companies worked together secretly under the name ‘Project 99’ and in 1969 successfully created the first automatic chronograph. TAG Heuer then set themselves apart from their co-developers by placing the movement in a square case. Thus the famous TAG Heuer Monaco was born.
The Swiss smart watch
During the annual Basel watch convention in 2015, TAG Heuer announced a new partnership with Intel and Android to create the first Swiss smart watch. The TAG Heuer Connected Modular 45 allows the wearer to become a watch creator by designing their very own dial to suit their mood. Its many features include receiving emails and calls and keeping track of your step count. The watch is considered a mini computer on your wrist.
The name for sports
TAG Heuer has always been closely associated with sports and this has resulted in many notable partnerships with sporting organisations and figures. The brand is the official timekeeper for several different football leagues across the globe, including the English Premier League, La Liga, Major League Soccer and The Bundesliga. TAG Heuer also has partnerships with the international rugby sevens and several motor racing sports, and like most famous companies, has signed up well known sports personalities who act as ambassadors for the brand, including NFL and New England Patriots superstar Tom Brady.
Thanks for reading, Harry.
Engagement ring trends
If you think a ring might be on the cards this year, then you might want to point your loved one this way. In our Engagement Ring Trends mini-blogs we will cover fashionable shapes, the ‘in’ colour and celebrity favourites. We’ll also be dropping a little interesting ‘Did you know?’ into each blog.
Platinum and diamond three stone diamond ring.
1. Three-stone rings
After the announcement of HRH Prince Harry’s engagement to American actress Meghan Markle, it’s hardly surprising that three-stone rings are going to be at the top of the list of would-be fiancées. We are completely in love with Meghan’s ring. The centre diamond is a cushion cut that Prince Harry chose specially for her and the jeweller then set two round brilliant diamonds either side of it using stones from Diana’s collection of jewellery. The end result is a truly beautiful bespoke piece.
Did you know? – three-stone, or trilogy rings are said to represent your past, present and future as a couple, making choosing a three-stone engagement ring even more romantic.
Our Wilmslow showroom manager gives her tips on how to buy for your loved ones
Diamond set pendant featuring pear and round brilliant cut diamonds totalling 4.60ct
Buying a Christmas present for a loved one can send many people into a spin. With all our unique personalities, it’s no wonder that trying to find something thoughtful and personal to suit each person can be hard work. Where do you start? Our Wilmslow showroom manager Kate, shares her top tips to help you.
Research, research, research
The more information you begin with, the easier you’ll find choosing the perfect gift. Start off by looking at the person’s style. Check out their current jewellery or watch collection and pay attention to what they wear every day. If you’re thinking of buying a ring, you could try to sneak one out of their collection to show us so we can not only see their style but we will know their finger size to make your purchase even more personal. If you can trust one of their close friends or family not to spill the beans then they could be a great source of inspiration to get you started.
Think of your budget
Now you have a sense of their style, do you want them to have something to wear every day, or are they missing a statement piece? For every day, a silver jewellery brand like Links of London offers a wide collection of wearable pieces without breaking the bank. Alternatively, they might be missing a classic item such as simple diamond studs that could easily be worn every day. Or maybe they need an elaborate piece to wear to a particular function you have coming up.
Choosing a watch
Watches are made with function and lifestyle in mind. So if you’re thinking of buying a watch, then think about when they might wear it and what for. Say your partner is a keen cyclist. It wouldn’t be practical for them to wear an 18ct gold strap watch when he or she is cycling. You may want to consider a smart watch that would help track their fitness. If they work in an office wearing a suit, then a chunky divers watch is not going to sit with the cuff of their suit very well. Consider a Swiss made leather strap watch that will not only look well with a suit but also look good in meetings.
Make it personal
Most people have a favourite colour, so you may want to find out what this is before you go shopping. If you are unsure you could always check out what their birthstone is and find a piece of jewellery or a watch with that stone incorporated. When choosing coloured stones, you may want to consider their personality. Bright colours such as pink sapphires and green emeralds might suit someone bubbly and outgoing, whereas aquamarine offers a far subtler colour. You could also consider personalising a watch with engraving, or a piece of jewellery, such as cufflinks or a ring, with dates and initials.
If in doubt…
If you have any doubt at all, then just remember two or three key points about their personality and lifestyle. Our teams will be happy to spend all the time you need with them. You might surprise yourself – once we start asking, you could find you know more about the person you’re buying for than you think.
Written by Kate Tranter
Rukaya’s Story Part II – Learning every day
I have been with Harrington and Hallworth for over a month now and I’m discovering new things every day. It has been really exciting to learn all about diamonds, the most precious stones on the planet. I didn’t know that they were formed billions of years ago, or that they are composed of carbon.
High temperature, high pressure
I found out that the carbon is buried over 100 miles below the earth’s surface and gets heated to a very high temperature, squeezed by very high pressure and then cooled. I think it’s fascinating just to think that diamonds were originally black. After all they go through, no wonder they’re a girl’s best friend.
The 4 Cs
I often wondered how you can tell which diamonds are the best. Well my showroom manager told me there are four factors that decide a diamond’s value and they’re called the 4 Cs: colour, carat, clarity and cut. A colourless stone is the best grade which is graded D and the scale goes up to Z. Carat refers to the weight and size of the stone, while clarity is determined by how clear the diamond is and how many imperfections – called inclusions – there are. The cut is not just the shape of the stone as you might think. It’s also to do with how well it is cut. There are many different styles and the main ones are Princess, Marquise, Pear, Round and Emerald.
The fifth C
Jewellers will actually often refer to a fifth C and this is the certificate, which is issued by many different independent companies. We prefer the GIA (Gemmology Institute of America) and guarantees the value and authenticity of the stone. When you’re buying diamonds I recommend you choose one with a certificate because it gives you an extra assurance of quality.
The Mille Miglia, or 1000 miles in Italian, is a regular road race restricted to cars that were registered to compete or actually took part in the original Mille Miglia races between 1927 and 1957. Thirteen races were held before the war and eleven after before two tragic accidents that killed three participants and nine spectators brought an end to the event. In those days racing was much more dangerous than it is today.
The Chopard jewellery and watch manufacturing company became involved in the race when Co-President Karl-Friedrich Scheufele signed the first partnership deal in 1988. He is a real car fanatic, who collects classic cars and takes part in the race every year – perhaps something that is easier to do if you own a jewellery company.
The Mille Miglia range
Named after the event, the Mille Miglia range now starts with a 39mm steel automatic chronograph that also comes in 42 and 46mm sizes in the Classic Racing selection. The 39mm model is priced at £3,870, while the GTS automatic, a simple 3-hand watch that uses Chopard‘s in house 01.01-C movement, retails at £4,450. We are also fortunate to have a Classic Racing ‘Race Edition 2017’ in steel and rose gold, priced at £8,160, which is numbered 71 of 100. The stainless steel version of this model is featured on the cover of Chrono magazine being worn by Jacky Ickx, the watch supplement given away with Octane magazine. There are further articles on Chopard in this issue as well.
The famous Milan based design house Zagato has a long history of designing racing cars and grand tourers. It has an especially close relationship with Alfa Romeo, also Milan based, who have had numerous wins. The first win was in 1928 and the most recent in 2012 and for both events the same car won, the model being a 6C 1500TF Zagato.
As can be seen Chopard and the Mille Miglia have a long history together and it will continue to be successful for both parties.
Written by Paul Millett
So you’ve planned the proposal and now you need to choose the actual ring. But where do you begin? Once you start your research you’ll quickly come across ‘The 4 Cs’. But what are they and what do they mean?
The 4 Cs are a way to determine the quality of a diamond. You may have seen a diamond in our window and then noticed another that appears quite similar but the price difference could be tens of thousands of pounds. This all comes down to the clarity, colour, cut and carat of the stone. Let’s start with clarity.
Billions of years in the making
Here at Harrington & Hallworth our teams have over 300 years of combined jewellery experience spread across our showrooms. However, the diamonds we sell are actually anything from 1 billion to 3.3 billion years old – which is actually 25%-75% of Earth’s age.
Formed in the earth’s mantle around 100 miles deep, diamonds are found in volcanic rocks that are bought closer to the surface and mined. Diamonds naturally take on the elements surrounding them whilst they were being formed. When looking into diamonds, any imperfections are known as inclusions. This is what makes every diamond completely unique. You could say they are nature’s birthmarks.
All shapes and sizes
Inclusions come in many different shapes and sizes. They could look like black specks, bubbles, feathers or clouds. The clarity of a diamond is determined by how many of these inclusions there are and how prominent they are within the diamond. These inclusions, or birthmarks, will affect the way light bounces out of the stone and ultimately how sparkly the diamond will be. The more inclusions there are, the more the light is deflected.
So when you are choosing your diamond it’s a good idea to ask about the clarity and compare stones so you can see the difference yourself.
Next time we will talk about the second ‘C’ – colour – and getting the right balance for your budget.
Written by Kate Tranter
Rukaya starts her career at Harrington & Hallworth
Even though I have only been with Harrington and Hallworth for a couple of weeks, it feels like I have been here much longer because everybody in the team has been so welcoming and made me feel completely at home.
Working with people
I applied for this role because I was very passionate about working with people face to face. I wanted to work for a luxury jewellery retailer because it makes me feel proud and also because I’m keen to work with fine jewellery and to learn about the different precious gemstones. I would also like to make my own jewellery at some point in the future.
Since I didn’t have any experience in the jewellery industry I actually didn’t expect to hear back from Harrington & Hallworth. But to my surprise I got a call from the showroom manager Kate, who said she could see my passion for the business and offered me the job. I was very happy and excited to start my new career at a very elegant and high-class company.
I have always had an interest in jewellery – especially pearls and diamonds – and I was keen to find out about the different stones and where they come from. In the few weeks I have been here I have also learnt about the different types of precious metals and their characteristics, along with the various hallmark signs and how they can be identified by looking through a jeweller’s loupe. The loupe was fascinating. It’s amazing how you can see a stone’s inclusions and impurities which you wouldn’t normally be able to see with the naked eye.
In the coming months I’m looking forward to learning about precious stones in more depth – especially diamonds. I’m hoping this will help me to broaden my jewellery knowledge and help me assist customers in making the right decision when buying prestige jewellery, whether it’s for a special occasion or everyday wear. I believe every day is a school day, always learning.
The art of Breguet dials
One of the defining features of a Breguet watch – whatever the model – is the dial. Now only made in 18ct yellow gold or mother of pearl a Breguet dial gives the watch a truly beautiful and distinctive ‘face’.
In around 1786 Breguet started to fit his watches with engine turned dials made of either silver or gold. Nowadays the silvered dial is plated to give the appearance of solid silver using a special process. It starts with a flat plate of gold, which is then worked with a hand graver to hollow out and mark the areas that will house spaces for power reserve indicators, subsidiary second hands and other features.
Now the engine turning can begin, creating a number of different designs. The clou de Paris is a sort of hobnail pattern, while the Pavé de Paris cobbling, as the name suggests, is reminiscent of block paving. Others include sunburst, barleycorn, waves and many more. All these designs are done by hand with exceptional skill and delicacy to create stunningly beautiful patterns. Then, once the design is completed, the dial is coated in powdered silver before being finished.
The rose engines in the Swiss watch industry have been in use for many decades and are almost exclusively used by Breguet, with only a few used by other manufacturers.
Guilloche cutting is now also being used on the beautiful mother of pearl dials. Both dials feature the secret Breguet signature that can only be seen when looking very carefully at the watch dial. The exception to the rule is of course the Type XX series aviation watches, which are hand finished with markers applied by hand and are in 18ct gold. Truly a work of art.