Barneys New York is about to embark on a slippery, fine-jewelry slope. This week, the store will begin stocking man-made "cultivated" diamonds — carbon stones that have sparked upheaval and anxiety through the traditional mining industry.
The jewelry is produced in collaboration between Diamond Foundry — a diamond cultivation firm — and several designer brands. CVC Stones, Eva Fehren and Nak Armstrong worked with the accelerated-development stones.
While not dug up from the earth's depths, designs bearing Diamond Foundry stones do not come cheap. The designs stocked at Barneys are to retail from $675 to $18,800. They become available for sale today.
Sarah Blair, Barneys' senior vice president and general merchandise manager for women's accessories and shoes, said: "A Silicon Valley start-up, Diamond Foundry has the advanced technology to make impeccable cultivated diamonds by reacting carbon with natural mined diamonds. We thought this project was an exciting and entrepreneurial endeavor, that's both sustainable and environmentally friendly, appealing to an expanded clientele."
Eva Fehren's Eva Zuckerman said of her experience using Diamond Foundry technology: "I have been collecting Portrait Cut diamonds since the launch of my brand in 2011. They are incredibly rare, and it is almost impossible to source repeatable, geometric shapes. Working with Diamond Foundry gave me an opportunity to create a collection of pieces using the same diamond shapes, and also use pale champagne as well as white stones, which I think are incredibly understated and elegant."