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Pre-Auction Analysis: December 8th, 2021, Christie’s New York, Magnificent Jewels

By FCRF Team | 06.12.21
Pre-Auction Analysis: December 8th, 2021, Christie’s New York, Magnificent Jewels

Christie’s New York, Magnificent Jewels, December 8th, 2021

As most of the industry has been prevented from traveling to New York during this challenging period, this Auction Analysis could help those who would like to bid without physically inspecting the goods. Our Christie’s New York Pre-Auction Analysis focuses on elements that aren’t visible to the untrained eye. We will describe the important visual elements for those who cannot attend the preview and discuss characteristics such as: Undertone, Color Dispersion, and Inner-Grade. These factors, collectively termed UDI, are explained in detail at the bottom of this article. We analyze and grade Fancy Color Diamonds relative to their GIA grade.

We use grades 1, 2, 3, and 4, with 1 being the lowest grade. Grade “4+” is granted in rare cases and denotes stones with exceptional characteristics. Stones that receive a minimum total UDI score of 8, without a red remark, pass the industry threshold and can be traded easily. Fancy Color Diamonds that are graded 10 or above, (without a quality remark) are usually sought after by high-end jewelry brands, collectors, and the investment community.

For your convenience, we have added direct links to the GIA reports.

  • I took all images in this article review with an iPhone 12 Pro; no filters were applied.
  • All auction valuations are per-carat and listed in US Dollars.

Lot: 80

Description: 8.14 ct, Fancy Intense Yellow, Oval, SI1

High Auction Estimation: $8,599 pc

Price realized: $11,517 pc

Rarity: An extremely small number of similar diamonds enter the market yearly… Check Rarity Here 

GIA Report: View

Analysis:

An 8.14 carat Fancy Intense Yellow with perfect Color Dispersion. No green or brown Undertone is present in the stone’s yellow hue. The SI1 clarity is a result of a prominent black crystal under the table. The face-up view of this oval looks larger in relation to the carat weight. 

Visual Assets:

Inner Grade Hue
Color Dispersion
Undertone
Quality Remark
8.14 ct, F.I.Y, OV, SI1
3
4
3
Black crystal under the table

Total Average Score: 10 out of 12


Lot: 154

Description: 5.35 ct, Fancy Intense Yellow, Radiant, VVS2

High Auction Estimation: $13,084 pc

Price realized: $11,682 pc

Rarity: A small number of similar diamonds enter the market yearly… Check Rarity Here

GIA Report: View

Analysis:

A 5.35 Fancy Intense Yellow Radiant cut with 71% table and 59% depth. These two parameters make this diamond appear larger in relation to its carat weight. Alongside the facet alignment, these two parameters on the pavilion also indicate that the stone was recut and modified from what used to be a Round Brilliant cut in order to reinforce its color.   

Visual Assets:

Inner Grade Hue
Color Dispersion
Undertone
Quality Remark
5.35 ct, F.I.Y, Rad, VVS2
3
3
3

Total Visual Score: 9 out of 12


Lot: 83

Description: 2.32 ct, Fancy Deep Yellow-Orange, Emerald, VS2

High Auction Estimation: $34,482 pc

Price realized: $32,327 pc

GIA Report: View

Analysis:

A 2.32 carat Emerald cut with ~40% yellow and ~60% orange. In contrast to our images, the diamond has no brown Undertone, displaying a solid Orange body color. The stone’s 64% depth makes this Emerald cut diamond appear a bit larger than its carat weight.  

Visual Assets:

Inner Grade Hue
Color Dispersion
Undertone
Quality Remark
2.32 ct, F.D.Y/O, EM, VS2
3
3
3

Total Visual Score: 9 out of 12


Lot: 95

Description: 6.64 ct, Fancy Yellow, Radiant, VS1 and 6.00 ct, Fancy Yellow, Radiant, VVS2 

High Auction Estimation: $7,911 pc

Price realized: $8,405 pc

Rarity: A small number of similar diamonds enter the market yearly… Check Rarity Here

GIA Report for 6.64 ct: View

GIA Report for 6.00 ct: View

Analysis:

Two Fancy Yellow Radiant cut diamonds with similar, but not identical, millimeter dimensions. Both diamonds have a prominent colorless crown and a low Inner Grade. The yellow Undertone is similar in both stones.  Each stone was photographed under different lighting.    

Visual Assets:

Inner Grade Hue
Color Dispersion
Undertone
Quality Remark
6.64 ct, F.Y, Rad, VS1 
2
3
3
6.00 ct, F.Y, Rad, VVS2 
2
3
3

Total Average Score: 8 out of 12


Lot: 167

Description: 21.24 ct, Fancy Yellow, Old Mine 

High Auction Estimation: $300,000 Total

Price realized: $400,000 Total

GIA Report for 21.24 ct: View

GIA Report for 4.17 ct: View

Analysis: 

A large Fancy Yellow Old Mine Cushion cut with typical Color Dispersion for an unmodified fancy color diamond. Examining the diamond’s color from its side, we see that the Inner Grade of this antique diamond is solid, but could not reach its full color potential on the face-up view due to its classic colorless facet alignment. No significant Undertone was spotted in the stone’s hue.

Visual Assets:

Inner Grade Hue
Color Dispersion
Undertone
Quality Remark
21.24 ct, F.Y, Old Mine, VS2 
3
2
3

Total Visual Score: 8 out of 12


Lot: 151

Description: 8.41 ct, Fancy Intense Yellow, Emerald, VVS1, potentially Internally Flawless

High Auction Estimation: $17,835 pc

Price realized: $22,294 pc

Rarity: An extremely small number of similar diamonds enter the market yearly… Check Rarity Here 

GIA Report: View

Analysis:

This is an 8.41 carat Fancy Intense Yellow Square Emerald cut. The Inner Grade meets our expectations from an Intense Yellow, and its Color Dispersion is quite high relative to a step cut diamond. According to the GIA report, it seems that the diamond’s clarity can be improved with a minor recut.

Visual Assets:

Inner Grade Hue
Color Dispersion
Undertone
Quality Remark
8.41 ct, F.I.Y, EM, VVS1
3
3
3

Total Visual Score: 9 out of 12


Lot: 84

Description: 3.53 ct, Fancy Vivid Yellow, Round, VVS2 and 3.46 ct, Fancy Vivid Yellow, Round, VS1

High Auction Estimation: $42,918 pc

Didn’t reach the minimum

Rarity: An extremely small number of similar diamonds enter the market yearly… Check Rarity Here 

GIA Report for 3.53 ct: View

GIA Report for 3.46 ct: View

Analysis:

Two Vivid Yellow Round Brilliant cut diamonds with a large table and a small open culet. These are typical features of Round diamonds that were polished between 1950-1960. The Inner Grade does not match and most of the diamond’s color is seen under the table. Both stones have a subtle Green Undertone in their hue. 

Visual Assets:

Inner Grade Hue
Color Dispersion
Undertone
Quality Remark
3.53 ct, F.V.Y, RS, VVS2
3
2
2
7
3.46 ct, F.V.Y, RS, VS1
2
2
2
6

Total Average Score 6.5 out of 12


Lot: 93

Description: 8.31 ct, Fancy Vivid Yellow, Emerald, VS1

High Auction Estimation: $42,117 pc

Didn’t reach the minimum

Rarity: An extremely small number of similar diamonds enter the market yearly… Check Rarity Here

GIA Report: View

Analysis:

A Vivid Yellow Square Emerald cut diamond with a very strong Inner Grade, high Color Dispersion, and no Undertone, displaying an absolute Yellow hue. The Diamond fluorescent is Strong Blue.

Visual Assets:

Inner Grade Hue
Color Dispersion
Undertone
Quality Remark
8.31 ct, F.V.Y, EM, VS1
4+
4
4
Strong Blue Fluorescence

Total Visual Score: 12+ out of 12


Lot: 168

Description: 44.12 ct, Fancy Intense Yellow, Cushion, VS1

High Auction Estimation: $13,599 pc

Price realized: $25,158 pc

Rarity: An extremely small number of similar diamonds enter the market yearly… Check Rarity Here 

GIA Report: View 

Analysis:

A very large Fancy Intense Yellow Old Mine Cushion that was probably polished in the middle of the last century. When looking at the diamond from the girdle side, we see that it exhibits a solid Inner Grade. As this Cushion was polished with a classic colorless facet alignment, it exhibits poor Color Dispersion in a face-up view. The diamond’s clarity could be improved, as blemishes appear to be located on the crown’s surface. No significant Undertone is visible. 

Visual Assets:

Inner Grade Hue
Color Dispersion
Undertone
Quality Remark
44.12 ct, F.I.Y, CU, VS1
3
2
3

Total Visual Score: 8 out of 12


Lot: 49

Description: 8.74 ct, Fancy Dark Gray-Blue, Emerald, IF

High Auction Estimation: $171,624 pc

Price realized: $298,627  pc

GIA Report: View

Analysis:

A Dark Gray Blue Emerald cut diamond. According to the GIA color description, this diamond’s color is composed of ~40% Gray and ~60% Blue. The color description meets our expectations from the GIA color grade.  The small table (54%) leaves a large colorless crown, and most of the color is seen under the table.  

Visual Assets:

Inner Grade Hue
Color Dispersion
Undertone
Quality Remark
8.74 ct, F.D.G/B, EM, IF
3
2
N/A
Low dispersion

Total Visual Score: N/A


Lot: 170 

Description: 7.00 ct, Fancy Blue, Pear, VS2

High Auction Estimation: $257,142 pc

Price realized: $312,857 pc

Rarity: A similar diamond enters the market once every… Check Rarity Here 

GIA Report: View

Analysis:

A 7.00 carat Fancy Blue Pear-Shaped diamond with a very low Blue Inner Grade. The color appears mainly on the pointed side of the shape. No significant Gray Undertone is present in the diamond’s hue. This stone was offered at a higher price at Sotheby’s in December 2019.

*Please refer to lot 423 at the Sotheby’s auction

Visual Assets:

Inner Grade Hue
Color Dispersion
Undertone
Quality Remark
7.00 ct, F.B, PS, VS2
2
2
3

Total Visual Score: 7 out of 12


Lot: 85

Description: 70.19 ct, Fancy Vivid Yellow, Radiant, VS2

High Auction Estimation: $42,741 pc

Price realized: $40,604 pc

Rarity: A similar diamond enters the market once every… Check Rarity Here 

GIA Report: View

Analysis:

A large Vivid Yellow with no Undertone exhibiting an absolute yellow hue. Due to a very high crown, large colorless patches are visible when the stone is tilted. However, on a straight face up view, dispersion is improved. Inner Grade is noteworthy and the face-up view reflects the carat weight of this large diamond.

Visual Assets:

Inner Grade Hue
Color Dispersion
Undertone 
Quality Remark
70.19 ct, F.V.Y, Rad, VS2
3
4

Total Visual Score: 10 out of 12


Lot: 96 A

Description: 5.38 ct, Fancy Vivid Orangy-Pink, Radiant, VS2

High Auction Estimation: $594,795 pc

Price realized: $496,282 pc

GIA Report: View

Analysis:

Orangy-Pink fancy color diamonds don’t often live up to the expectations of their GIA color description. They are likely to have an unattractive warm hue with a brown Undertone. This Vivid Orangy-Pink exhibits a pleasing rare “peach” hue, which is uncommon for this color combination. The Inner Grade is low and borderlines to an Intense Grade. Some colorless patches are visible in the diamond’s crown.

Visual Assets:

Inner Grade Hue
Color Dispersion
Undertone 
Quality Remark
5.38 ct, F.V.O/P, Rad, VS2
2
3
4

Total Visual Score: 9 out of 12


General

We use 1, 2, 3, 4, and 4+ to grade the three visual elements that GIA is silent about, although they impact the value dramatically.

Inner-Grade refers to the strength of color within each GIA saturation category:

Grade 1 weakest, bordering the saturation below.

Grade 2 weak (most common).

Grade 3 full-bodied color (above average).

Grade 4 very strong saturation.

Grade 4+ applies to the vivid category only, exhibiting the strongest possible saturation (rarely seen).

Undertone refers to a subtle hue influence in the body color of the stone.

For example:

A Fancy Blue Diamond with a significant gray presence in its general appearance will be graded with a low undertone grade of 1. A Fancy Blue that has no gray influence that is close to a primary blue will receive the grade, 4.

In a Pink Fancy Color Diamond, a stone with a warm undertone (such as orange or brown) will receive a low undertone grade. A pink stone with a cold undertone (such as purple) will receive a high grade.

In Yellow Fancy Color Diamonds, low foreign influence or a light orange influence will grant the stone a high undertone grade. When the yellow undertone looks like a true primary yellow, it will receive the rare grade 4+. Green and brown undertones will grant a low grade in the yellow category.

Color Dispersion relates to how well the Color is Dispersed in the face-up view of a Fancy Color Diamond, regardless as to whether the GIA grades the stone as even. A stone with many colorless areas will receive the grade 1, while a stone that exhibits its face-up view with no colorless patches will receive the grade 4+. Unlike the first two elements, the Color Dispersion is not a gemological quality and is the result of cutter proficiency. 

 

 

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price evolution, auction insights
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