De Beers’s Alchemist Of Light Collection Proves Once And For All That Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend

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It is the passage of light through a diamond that makes it sparkle. And it is concepts of light that a new high jewellery collection by De Beers – a name synonymous with diamonds – creatively draws on. “The Alchemist of Light collection is inspired by light as an invisible power and transformative force that allows us to see the world in all its beauty,” says Céline Assimon, the company’s CEO. “The designers and I believe that there is something magical about light touching diamonds, bringing their incredible brilliance to life.”

Designed in London and made at the company’s workshops in Paris, the new collection is divided into seven “chapters”, comprising a total of 45 unique creations. The first two chapters, Atomique and Light Rays, are being unveiled at Paris Couture Week this week.

“Atomique is a creative interpretation of a diamond at a molecular level,” says Assimon, explaining the designs’ geometric motifs of interconnecting circles, dots and grids that riff off of a diamond’s internal structure. Entirely monochromatic, Atomique is a bold proposition, as all seven pieces are worked in white gold and set exclusively with white diamonds. Once worn, designs spring to life as light dances from stone to stone, reflected against polished silvery-white gold in-between.

The Atomique chapter of De Beers’ Alchemist of Light collection


Landmark stones include an 18.57 carat internally flawless diamond which sits – placed much like a tantalising bubble about to pop – at the centre of a collar necklace. The stone is framed by a lattice-like structure set with nearly 2,000 diamonds.

De Beers’ Atomique diamond ring

An Atomique ring features an 11.03 carat white diamond that is one of De Beers’s Natural Works of Art selection of rare gems. Ethically sourced, every stone’s journey can be traced from mine to finished piece using an in-house platform. Here, the focus is on ethical production and positive impact, as seen in the company’s Building Forever framework of mining and working with diamonds.

The Light Rays chapter “evokes sunlight radiating across the sky”, says Assimon. It does so with bright white diamonds contrasted against black rhodium-plated gold, fancy coloured diamonds – both rough and polished, a De Beers signature – and shards of coloured titanium. “Very few workshops are specialised in working with titanium as it’s very challenging,” Assimon adds.

For Light Rays, De Beers tasked its makers with anodization: an electrochemical process in which titanium takes on an array of warm colours through submersion in an acid electrolyte bath while an electric current is fed through it.

A transformable ring from the Light Rays chapter


The titanium forms supple, undulating fringes that are lightweight and move with the wearer. Anodization leads to surprising colour effects: De Beers’s designers match a warm bronze tone with a sunlit gold. With their smooth, gently glowing surface, titanium shapes contrast the iridescent diamonds they are set against; their coated surface is smooth and velveteen to the touch.

One brownish yellow radiant-cut diamond is placed at the heart of the Light Rays collar necklace. Majestic, the set’s star piece, emanates a generously proportioned band of titanium rays that extends across the neck.

Transformability is a key component of this chapter. A jacket ring, lavished with an orange emerald-cut diamond and extending into a micro-articulated rays-of-light motif, can be worn three ways. Designs for earrings include a cuff with one radiant-cut yellow diamond. The single cuff frames the ear and ends in a swag of titanium bands that drapes and falls harmoniously. The effect is arresting. Says Assimon: “When we create a high jewellery collection, we always aim to create something exceptional.”