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Posted at 7:00 PM ET, 11/18/2010

The Hope Returns with Ribbons of Diamonds

By Jacqueline Trescott
hope
The Hope Diamond in its new setting "Embracing Hope" at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History. (James DiLoreto/Smithsonian)

Arts Post never tires of the Hope Diamond, and all its glamor.

The famed gem is back at the National Museum of Natural History, after making a quick, unannounced trip to New York earlier this week for a special preview of its new temporary setting at the Harry Winston salon. The rare blue diamond, again on public view, is showing off its glamorous new design.

"Embracing Hope," a creation of the Winston craftsman, is a ribbon of 340 baguette diamonds with the huge Hope sitting at the intersection of the bands. Frederic de Narp, the president and CEO of Winston, chose to describe the pattern as a pair of hands "giving back, giving hope."

"Perhaps nothing is as magical as the Hope Diamond," said de Narp.

All the redesign was part of the anniversary of the gift of the Hope to the Smithsonian Institution from Harry Winston in 1958 and the 100th anniversary of the museum. The Winston firm also announced the launch of the Harry Winston Hope Foundation, giving a minumum of $1 million to the Smithsonian for research and education.

The Hope has been seen by 200 million people in the last 52 years, said Cristian Samper, the museum's director. The Hope will rest in its new setting for one year, then be refitted in the original one. A look into how the modern setting was created is part of a new documentary "Mystery of the Hope Diamond," which is airing Sunday night on the Smithsonian Channel.

By Jacqueline Trescott  | November 18, 2010; 7:00 PM ET
Categories:  Jacqueline Trescott, Museums, Smithsonian, holiday  | Tags:  Harry Winston, Hope Diamond, National Museum of Natural History  
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