This Australian Diamond Mine Is Making Jewels From Rough Stones

Maison Mazarea has big plans to make jewellery directly from the source, offering full traceability all in-house.

By Paige Reddinger 29/07/2022

If you’re in search of a rock with serious value and a story to match, Maison Mazerea may be your new go-to.

The Australian brand, which specializes in ultra-high-end fancy diamonds in unusual cuts and unique settings, is also promising fully traceable stones. That may not sound all that novel given the slew of companies now aiming to offer ethical jewels, but Mazerea is uniquely positioned to guarantee provenance. It’s brought the entire process in-house by sourcing and buying the rough stone directly from above-board mines and then cutting and polishing them in its own atelier of expert artisans.

The new brand was conceived by Burgundy Diamond Mines in Perth, Australia, an emerging company founded in 2020 that produces polished Fancy Color diamonds. “We mine diamonds, cut and polish diamonds, and we provide diamonds into jewellery sold by designer jewellers so, end-to-end we have the diamond from the source, we cut and polish ourselves in our own office with our own cutters,” Maizon Mazerea and Burgundy Diamond Mines CEO, Peter Ravenscroft, told Robb Report. “To that extent, it’s pretty unique in the diamond industry. Normally, the value chain is pretty segmented. But here the idea plays very strongly to the provenance aspect. We know where the diamond came from, because we mined it, and it never leaves our control until it ends up in the customer’s jewellery piece.” Stones will be mined by Burgundy Diamond Mines, but will also come from other mines the company has direct relationships with that are in conflict-free zones and uphold human rights standards.

Maison Mazerea Diamonds

Maison Mazerea Yellow Diamonds Maison Mazerea

Ensuring that the quality is top-of-the-line throughout the entire process, the stones at Mazerea are cut and polished by some of the world’s most experienced craftsmen—coloured diamonds are a notoriously difficult stone to get into shape—with over three decades of experience, including working with the world-famous Argyle pink diamonds. Rare pink and yellow diamonds will be part of the initial offering, including a 7.5-carat yellow diamond that has recently been cut and polished with the intention of being set and sold in a final jewellery piece. (Even larger stones are said to loom in the future.)

Maison Mazerea The Grace Diamond

Maison Mazerea The Grace Diamond Maison Mazerea

But it’s not just the fully transparent process and quality of stones that are at play, the cuts will also be unusual and inspired by old-world cuts, with fewer facets to offer a more subtle light to show off the stone’s natural color, akin to those at French royal courts in the 17th century. (The company’s name is inspired by Cardinal Mazarin, an Italian cardinal, diplomat and politician who served as the chief minister to the French kings Louis XIII and Louis XIV. Mazarin happened to also be, perhaps not surprisingly, a very important diamond collector.) “If somebody wants to Marquise cut, they’re not going to get one from us,” says Ravenscroft. The yellow diamond, mentioned above, for instance, is cut in a heart shape without the cleft, so that it’s more like a shield and comes with large facets.

Ravenscroft says the goal is to extract the most beauty with the stone itself driving the shape of the cut to achieve maximum brilliance. “What we’re trying to bring to our ultimate customers is something that’s absolutely unique, something that, you know, the next person in the yacht next door doesn’t have,” says Ravenscroft.

Maison Mazerea Yellow Diamonds

Maison Mazerea Yellow Diamonds Maison Mazerea

That stone, which is roughly a $2.8 million to $4.2 million rock and came from a 14-carat piece of rough, along with other larger stones (next in line to be cut is a 24-carat rough), will ultimately be set in pieces designed by various high-end jewellery designers each season, starting with Lorenz Bäumer, one of the few independent jewellers on the Place Vendôme in Paris. His collection is slated to debut sometime later this Fall. Some of the proceeds from each purchase will be put into a fund that will benefit the communities where Mazerea mines or sources its mined diamonds.

But for those looking to get their hands dirty, so to speak, with their own personal rough, Ravenscroft says Maison Mazerea will offer clients the opportunity to purchase a rough and design it from scratch with the company’s artisans—as long as it fits with the house’s established style—and even visit the mine where it was unearthed. Plus, should the sale be significant enough, the client can choose how the charitable portion of Mazerea’s proceeds will be put back into the local community surrounding the mine of origin. Neither the ground nor the sky is the limit.
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