The tale of the Tiffany Diamond

The tale of the Tiffany Diamond
The 128.54 carat Tiffany Diamond necklace
(Image credit: Tiffany & Co.)

We like nothing better than to be invited to something destined to brighten up winter days. So, when Tiffany & Co (opens in new tab) told us that the famed Tiffany Diamond was currently on show at their flagship Fifth Avenue New York store, we skipped off to see it, posthaste.

It's a little-known fact that the brand that brought us such sculptural pieces as Elsa Peretti's bone cuff and Paloma Picasso's Graffiti bracelets also has an esteemed history of sourcing some of the finest coloured stones ever found.

The Tiffany Diamond, a stonking raw yellow gem of over 287 carats was discovered in Africa in 1877 and promptly acquired by Charles Lewis Tiffany, who maximised its brilliance by having it cut to a single diamond of 128.54 carats. Since then it has been constantly on the move, whether at world fairs or in museums but home - the Fifth Avenue Tiffany & Co store - is where it always comes back to.

As an added treat, the Tiffany Salon has a few of the brand's other fancy diamond pieces on show, on an appointment basis, including a pave ring with a 6.07 carat fancy pink diamond and another with a whopping 15-carat fancy vivid yellow.

The Salon, a fairly recent addition to the Fifth Avenue flagship, is worth the detour alone. Robert A.M. Stern Architects (opens in new tab), designers of the 1920s-inspired 15 Central Park West building, created the space. As such it reflects all the glamour and grandeur of apartments of the New York Art Deco era that Tiffany & Co is an intrinsic part of. From the smoked-oak and shagreen desk to the satinwood chairs and soft blue, grey and silvery palette, it also doubles up as a suitably sumptuous viewing space.

So if you happen to be in New York over the next couple of weeks, it's well worth dropping in. Add to this the fact that some of these diamonds on show are of a particularly sizeable nature and you get the point as to why Tiffany & Co is so keen to show them off.

The tale of the Tiffany Diamond

Sketches from the Tiffany & Co atelier

(Image credit: Tiffany & Co.)

The tale of the Tiffany Diamond

The Tiffany Diamond resides in the brand's New York flagship store, designed by fabled New York architects Cross & Cross in 1940. Today it can be seen in one of the viewing rooms (pictured, right) in the store's salon, open by appointment only

(Image credit: Cross & Cross)

The tale of the Tiffany Diamond

The library at the Tiffany Salon

(Image credit: Tiffany & Co.)

The tale of the Tiffany Diamond

The double doors leading to the Tiffany Salon are made of cerused ash, inlaid with bronze. The design is inspired by famed Tiffany window designer Gene Moore's display of eggs perched on crystal goblets

(Image credit: Gene Moore)

The tale of the Tiffany Diamond

The ground floor of Tiffany & Co's flagship Fifth Avenue store is constructed without columns. The 24-ft ceiling is secured with three 106-ton trusses, an engineering technique developed for bridge construction but here used to create a clear visual effect

(Image credit: Tiffany & Co)

The tale of the Tiffany Diamond

Elsa Peretti's bone cuff for Tiffany & Co. The Italian designer started working  with Tiffany & Co in 1974

(Image credit: Tiffany & Co.)

The tale of the Tiffany Diamond

Rare, fancy-coloured diamond rings

(Image credit: Tiffany & Co.)

The tale of the Tiffany Diamond

The centerpiece of this ring is a rare green-diamond

(Image credit: Tiffany & Co.)

The tale of the Tiffany Diamond

Tiffany & Co pendant with a 3-carat fancy yellow marquise diamond

(Image credit: Tiffany & Co.)

The tale of the Tiffany Diamond

Tiffany & Co yellow-diamond earrings

(Image credit: Tiffany & Co.)

The tale of the Tiffany Diamond

The rare 15.04 carat oval fancy vivid-yellow diamond ring

(Image credit: Tiffany & Co.)