Tag Archives: gold & diamond jewelry NYC

Designer Spotlight: David Webb

Carved rock crystal, solid gold zebras, enamel elephants, bright turquoise beads. These bold techniques are signatures of David Webb, a jewelry designer that rose quickly to fame in New York in the 1950’s and 60’s. New York Loan Company, coined as Pawnshop to the Stars by the media, understands the value and worth of signed jewelry, particularly David Webb. As popular as ever, David Webb carved out a unique place in luxury jewelry that can never be replicated.

Webb, an aspiring jewelry designer as a young boy, moved to New York City at seventeen and started his career as a jeweler in Greenwich Village. He then met Antoinette Quilleret, a well-connected socialite who he went into business with. In 1948 he opened up shop in a small walk-up around the corner from the Diamond District, the location where New York Loan Company now resides.

Success came quickly for David Webb and his small business where in 1950 his jewelry graced the cover of Vogue magazine. This is a huge accomplishment for any designer but especially for David Webb, who at this time only had two years of business under his belt. With his pieces now being sold at Bergdorf Goodman, David Webb quickly became highly desirable to the chic and selective Upper Eastsiders

The name David Webb is synonymous with high fashion, mainly due to numerous celebrities wearing his pieces over the decades. In the 1960’s through late 70’s stars and royalty like Elizabeth Taylor, Jacqueline Kennedy Onasis, the Rockefeller family, and Princess Grace of Monaco were his top clients.

Over the years David Webb found inspiration in nature and animals and from fellow designers like Jean Schlumberger who was a very well-known designer with Tiffany & Co., Seaman Schepps, Verdura, Suzanne Belperron, and Jeanne Toussaint with Cartier. His experimentation and dedication to impeccably made jewelry has ensured that the style of boldness of his creations never go out of style. Gwyneth Paltrow, Jennifer Garner, Rachel Zoe, Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Lawrence, Jessica Alba, Amy Adams and Helen Mirren are just a few examples of the Webb’s well known clients that wear his pieces on the red carpet today.

Like New York Loan Company and Beverly Loan Company, David Webb Inc. stayed a family operation for decades. Owned by Nina Silberstein, who partnered with Webb after Antoinette Quilleret retired. She was his partner until his tragic death from pancreatic cancer in 1975. In 2010 two new connoisseurs, Robert Sadian and Mark Emanuel bought the company, and are dedicated to ensuring the quality and history of David Webb and his designs. New York Loan Company has expertise in buying, selling, trading and making pawn loans against signed luxury jewelry, including those pieces by David Webb. Please call 212-997-5626 to set up an appointment.


Diamonds – The Lore & Legends

The jewelry industry, including New York Loan Company, owes much of its success to diamonds and diamond jewelry. The complicated and fascinating history behind these stones has intrigued millions over the centuries, including the gemologists at New York Loan and its sister store Beverly Loan Company. To understand why diamonds are as popular as they are, and why they have commanded such high prices, you need to go back to the beginning.

Diamonds are thought to have first been traded in India in the fourth century and  gradually made their way to Western Europe through different trade routes and caravans. The diamond at this time was thought to be many different things including: healing agents, splinters of stars that fell to the earth, protective talismans, and tears for the Gods. Sometimes called a “miracle stone”, diamonds were thought to cure stomachaches, depression and many other ailments.

Diamonds started becoming fashionable in Europe in the 1400s; this is also when the first diamond cut was developed, now called the point cut. In 1477 the first diamond engagement ring is presented to Mary of Burgundy – starting the trend of men proposing with a diamond. This is a tradition that still stands strong today, and that New York Loan Company recognizes as they buy, sell, and loan on engagement rings on a daily basis. 

Jean–Baptiste Tavernier, a French gem merchant, is known for his discovery and sale of the 116 carat Tavernier Blue diamond. He sold the rare blue diamond to King XIV of France in 1668. This diamond was later cut by the king to a 68 carat diamond called the French Blue. It was later stolen in the French Revolution and appeared recut in London 30 years later. This diamond is now known as the Hope Diamond.

The Dresden Green Diamond, a 41 carat natural green diamond that was acquired by Augustus III of Poland and was thought to be found in 1722; at least according to a London newspaper. This diamond is still helping researches today discover how different elements and conditions create natural fancy colored diamonds

By the late 1700s diamond supplies in India started to decline. Brazil then started becoming an important source for the world’s diamonds, and controlled the market for over 100 years. The late 1700s brought worldwide political upheaval, like the French Revolution, and prompted a lot of change in the diamond market; mainly due to the decline of the upper class.

The 1800’s brought new wealth to the United States and Western Europe – and the discovery of diamonds in Africa.  The discovery in Kimberly, South Africa by Cecil Rhodes established De Beers and the beginning on the modern diamond market as we know it.

Many of the world’s largest and rarest diamonds have been found in Africa, establishing the continent as a central source for the world’s hardest substance. There are currently diamond mines all over the world, including the United States, Russia, Canada and Australia. The current diamond market would never exist if not for its long and legendary role in history. Diamonds now signify love and respect, and hold sentimental value for millions all over the world.

The current United States diamond market is centralized in New York’s Diamond District, where New York Loan Company resides in the new International Gem Tower.  New York Loan Company and its loan officers specialize in diamonds and diamond jewelry – as gemologists they take great pride in evaluating and authenticating diamonds.

Please contact New York Loan Company at info@newyorkloan.com or 212-997-5626 to purchase, sell or make a pawn loan against diamond jewelry, as well as gold, watches and fine art.