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ICA sees robust demand for gems in Pantone colours









Coloured gemstones falling within the Ultimate Gray and Illuminating colour categories are seen to attract the jewellery market’s attention in 2021, according to the International Colored Gemstone Association (ICA). 

ICA President Clement Sabbagh said gems that are likely to figure prominently in new jewellery collections throughout the year include a diverse palette of greys and yellows that embody hope, strength and optimism amid these trying times. 

The Pantone Color Institute picked Ultimate Gray and Illuminating as colours of the year for 2021, creating an aspirational pairing of solemnity and contemplation with a more upbeat perspective. Illuminating is described as a cheerful yellow and sparkling with vivacity while Ultimate Gray epitomises solid and dependable elements. 

Sabbagh said Illuminating is best represented by gemstones in bright yellow hues such as yellow sapphire and opal, Imperial topaz and citrine. Yellow diamond, golden beryl (heliodore), chrysoberyl, garnet, tourmaline, jade, peridot (in yellow or lemon hues), amber, South Sea pearl and zircon likewise exemplify this colour.

Grey variants of various gems such as spinel, sapphire, smokey quartz, onyx, jade, labradorite, moonstone and even black and grey diamonds meanwhile breathe life into Ultimate Gray. 

“We expect designers to incorporate these gems in their latest creations, driven by consumers who favour colours that they see in the fashion world,” noted Sabbagh. “In 2019 for instance, we experienced strong interest in orange gems such as Imperial topaz, garnet and fire opal, among others, following Pantone’s designation of ‘Living Coral’ as the colour for 2019.”

The announcement of “Classic Blue” as the 2020 colour of the year meanwhile reignited appreciation for gems like sapphires, spinels, blue topaz and aquamarines.  

“We expect no different in 2021 with diamonds, sapphires, golden pearls, canary tourmalines, jade, garnets and spinel being the most sought-after gems,” continued the ICA official.

Sabbagh further described Ultimate Gray and Illuminating as quite versatile, adding that both colours will most likely be seen in combination with other gems, further fueling the creativity of jewellery designers worldwide.








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