Meet the Leo behind The Leo Diamond®
Mr. Leo Shachter on diamonds and love!
Can you tell us when association between diamonds and love begin?
It was a little before my time, actually, in the 15 th century. The Archduke Maximilian of Austria presented the first diamond engagement ring to Mary of Burgundy and that marked the historic connection between love and diamonds. After that, in the late 17 th century, the Russian Czar, Peter the Great, gave Catherine I a crown of 2,500 hundred diamonds. Even Donald Trump didn't go that far! Then, in the 18 th century, Louis XIV of France showered diamonds on his very young wife, Marie Antoinette.
But the tradition of offering a diamond engagement ring with a proposal isn't common around the world, is it?
The giving of a diamond as a symbol of love and commitment was a tradition that really became firmly established in Great Britain and the United States by the end of World War II. But it's quickly becoming more prevalent in countries around the world, like in Japan , Italy , China and Hong Kong ..
Is it just love and commitment that a diamond represents?
A diamond is a very romantic stone, very pure in its beauty, very reflective of the light around it, and it sparkles with a life you don't necessarily see in other precious gems. I think the connotations transcend love to the deepest, brightest and most eternal of connections between two people.
Why do they say that a diamond is forever?
Well, it makes sense if you consider the strength of a diamond. On the scale of 1 to 10 used to measure the hardness of minerals, the diamond is a perfect 10. The most durable precious gem you can find. This may all sound very technical, but it proves that there a reason to equate a love meant to endure forever with a magnificent precious stone that also has enduring qualities superior to all other gems.
If diamond is the purest expression of love, won't any diamond do?
Would “roses are red, violets are blue” express your love for a woman with the same emotion as Shakespeare's “How do I love thee, let me count the ways?” To represent the purest expression of your love, you'd want a diamond that sparkles with incomparable fire and brilliance. Not all diamonds are beautiful.
What makes a diamond beautiful?
It begins with a master artisan who can select a rough stone with great potential – it must have good color and clarity, it must be absent of inclusions that would in any way inhibit the refraction of light necessary for superior brilliance. A small percentage of the rough we examine meets the quality standards for a Leo Diamond . Most important to the beauty of a diamond is the artistry with which it is cut. A poorly cut diamond will lack the brightness and brilliance it might have achieved at the hands of a master artisan. Every must be carefully evaluated to see how best to cut it to for maximum beauty. Then, the facets must be placed with expert precision and symmetry so that the light that enters the stone literally dances from facet to facet and explodes with a burst of brilliance.
Not everyone can afford a magnificent diamond . Does that mean that the diamond they can afford is a lesser expression of their love?
An expertly cut diamond with good color and clarity is magnificent. It doesn't have to be large in terms of carat weight. There are very beautiful diamonds that are a perfect expression of love that are under a carat and very accessible. Because of the craftsmanship applied in the cutting of every Leo Diamond the results are exquisite in all sizes. Any Leo Diamond is worthy of the greatest love a man can feel for a woman.
Does a woman really need a diamond to feel that the man in her life adores her?
I think I know a fair amount about women, since I have five daughters. I would say “need” is the wrong word. A diamond makes a woman feel special and adored. When you forget to say “I love you” as many times as she thinks you should, which is probably 15 to 20 times a day, that diamond reminds her of how you feel about her.