On a high: candy bright jewels

Our top picks of jewels that bring a dopamine hit to the darkest days with their eternal beams of colour.

Baby Malak jewels by Nada Ghazal on model

Who doesn't feel a rush of happiness after seeing clusters of rainbow bright gemstone beads or sky blue topaz surrounded by shimmering diamonds? Or the joyous colour crush of pink kunzite, apple green peridot and electric blue Paraiba tourmalines that brings a smile to your face. If you are someone whose soul is enriched by the sight of beautiful colours, here are some jewels that will brighten the darkest of days.

They may have a happy-go-lucky aura, but achieving dazzling colour effects requires expertise. A whole industry is dedicated to making colour gemstones sing. It is a secretive world based on trust, where dealers work closely with their jeweller clients. When a seam of crystals in a particular hue is discovered, like a matchmaker, gemstone dealers will know who to offer them to. Then, the skill of the stonecutter comes in to maximise the depth of colour and effect of the stone. A soft-shouldered cabochon for a luminous larger stone or a shallower but expertly facetted lozenge for a lighter, more electric colour are some of the ways gem cutters make the most of each gem. The next piece in the puzzle is the designer's talent for matching colours, tones and textures to achieve the desired effect. Then, it is down to the art of the gem setter to make the magic happen. All this before the jewel has seen the bright light of day.

Blue Kite ring by Ben Day
Ben Day's neon blue tourmaline kite and magenta sapphire ring.

London-based Ben Day has dedicated his life to taking our breath away with rare gemstone colours in sophisticated cuts and often unexpected clashes of colour like neon blue tourmaline alongside magenta sapphires (above)  or expertly exposing the pure light of a glowing mound of Australian chrysoprase or an Ethiopian Wello opal that dances with the light of fireflies. Each jewel is meticulously hand made by Mr Day himself and he never makes the same thing twice, as no two stones are alike.

Drop earrings by Margot McKinney
These Margot McKinney mismatched earring combine unusually saturated hues of kunzite with a pink tourmaline on one side and a green peridot on the other and are further enhanced with diamonds, yellow and pink sapphires, and Paraiba tourmalines.

Australian luxury jeweller Margot McKinney understands the power of colour to alter our mood. In her creations, vibrantly coloured gemstones shine out alongside with lustrous pearls creating new stories of colour and texture. One seen, Ms McKinney’s jewels (above) will linger in your mind’s eye, like the memory of an exotic palm-fringed beach.

Allegra watch by Bulgari
The Allegra watch lives up to its name with a joyous array of cabochon and facetted gemstones in saturated colours, each one selected by the house’s knowledgeable gem buyers.

Bulgari enjoys privileged access to some of the most luscious colour gems on the market and amps up the wow effect with audacious colour combinations and generous-sized stones for a pure Dolce vita take on glamour. This extends to their watches, including the aptly named Allegra family (above).

Baby Malak Bonbon jewels by Nada Ghazal
Nada Ghazal Baby Malak Bonbon jewels set with colour sapphires, tsavorites,  and diamonds.

Lebanese jewellery Nada Ghazal captures the joy of her spirited little girl Malak in her Malak jewels (above). "Moments with Malak are translated in sparkling pavé stones that bubble over the top of rings, cuffs and pendants. The multi-coloured coloured stones are reminiscent of how Malak splashes paint on canvas and the colours she loves," explains Ms Ghazal. 

Iridiana earrings by Karina Choudhrie
Karina Choudhrie Iridiana earrings with emeralds, tanzanites, pink and yellow sapphires and orange spessartite garnets.

Karina Choudhrie's Iridiana earrings (above) are a carnival of colour with emerald, tanzanite, pink and yellow sapphires with orange spessartite garnet beads tumbling out of a diamond-dusted cloud set with a South Sea Pearl. This happy composition embodies Ms Choudhrie's love of colour gemstones and her playful approach to precious jewels. For Egyptian jeweller Azza Fahmy, it was a large amethyst cabochon spotted on a gem-buying trip to India that encouraged her to combine icing sugar pink tourmaline with the sweet depths of amethyst.

Extreme precision has been required to grade the 2,500 colour gemstones composing the  Shades of the Rainbow Flex cuff bracelet. LA GIOIA di Pomellato high jewellery collection 2022: "A Walk in Nature, from sunrise to darkness".

Jewellers have stretched their ingenuity to the limits to find techniques to bring out the most colour from a jewel. Pomellato's team of gemmologists (above) not only seeks out unexpected variants of gemstones but also make their own effects with layers of stones. A translucent blue topaz sitting atop a slice of lapis lazuli, or amethyst with mauve jade, creates a new tone and depths of saturation not found in Nature.

Forest Green Mosaic watch by Stenzhorn
Stenzhorn’s Forest Green Mosaic watch achieves a powerful colour punch by not only selecting high quality emeralds but by invisibly setting them on the dial to create a seamless swathe of colour.

German jeweller Stenzhorn, turns to precision gem cutting and sophisticated setting techniques to develop dazzling sweeps of colour in their Mosaic watches (above), allowing a seamless flow of gemstones to entirely pave the watch dial. The Italian jeweller Sicis has gone even further and developed new techniques for making micro mosaics that incorporate gemstone powders to allow its jewellers to work with painterly freedom. The ancient enamelling technique is brought up to date by independent jeweller Solange Azagury Partridge, as witnessed in her funky Hot Lips rings (below). 

Solange Azagury-Partridge Neon Rainbow Ring
Solange Azagury-Partridge’s most iconic design is the Hotlips rings that come in a variety of colour combinations including this Neon Rainbow version.

Choose a brightly hued jewel today, and it will fill your life with colour from today to eternity. And that is something to smile about.  


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