David Gotlib is an Antwerp-based “diamantaire,” a term used in the global diamond and jewelry industry to refer to businesspeople involved in trading approximately 40 billion US dollars’ worth of loose rough and polished diamonds annually in Antwerp, the world’s largest diamond trade hub.
This makes him part of a young generation of diamond professionals who are leading the way in this billion-dollar microcosm. He currently serves as the President of Antwerp’s most renowned diamond bourse, the Antwerp Diamond Bourse, and as the President of the Board of the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC), representing the local diamond community.
But Gotlib has more up his sleeve, quite literally, as the founder and creative force behind a collection of unique diamond and gold cufflinks that bear his name.
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Table of Contents
How did you end up in the diamond industry?
David Gotlib: I was born and raised in the diamond industry; both my grandfather and father were diamond traders.
Diamonds were the predominant topic of conversation in our family, and I became fascinated by their incredible natural beauty, both in their rough and polished forms.
The passion for diamonds and the knowledge of doing business are usually passed down from one generation to the next. Therefore, it was only natural for me to join the family business after graduating, following in my father’s footsteps.
However, I am also my mother’s son, and she taught us that there’s more to life than just business. She would drag us to every art gallery and museum we encountered, exposing us to the beauty and creativity found in the world of art and culture.
It ignited something within me—a desire to create, if you will. Nevertheless, this urge remained largely unfulfilled for many years.
How does a wholesale diamond trader end up becoming a creator of bespoke cufflinks?
David Gotlib: It wasn’t until one particular day, nearly a decade ago, when my family and I were preparing to celebrate my eldest son’s bar mitzva, that something happened, making me realize how much I missed channeling my desire to create.
A few weeks before the event, my grandmother asked me to visit her, as she wanted me to wear something that had belonged to my grandfather. It was an emotional moment for me, as my grandfather had passed away not long ago.
He was one of the most inspiring individuals in my life and someone I deeply admired. Not only did he have to rebuild his life as a Holocaust survivor, but he also possessed impeccable character and style, exemplifying a true gentleman.
My grandmother handed me a small box, inside of which I found a gorgeous pair of gold cufflinks. These two small objects embodied everything I loved about my grandfather; it was as if his legacy had been encapsulated within these timeless pieces. I never could have anticipated that such a simple gesture would have such a profound impact on me, both emotionally and creatively.
It was then that I realized my purpose—to combine my passion for diamonds with my ambition to design and create something of timeless beauty. Thus, the idea to create uniquely designed, high-end diamond and gold cufflinks was born.
You speak about legacy, is that why you created an eponymous brand for your cufflinks?
David Gotlib: Choosing your own name as a brand may seem strange to some people, but for me, it made perfect sense. David Gotlib cufflinks are, quite literally, about sharing a piece of myself, my vision, and my creativity with others.
The concept of legacy is indeed a recurring theme in this story. Having been born into this industry, I have become part of a diamond legacy that now spans three generations, something that fills me with great pride.
Simultaneously, for me, the true value of finely crafted jewelry pieces is also rooted in the notion of legacy. Whether you acquire them for yourself or for a significant other, these are pieces that stay with you for life, or better yet, for multiple lives.
Their emotional value will endure for generations to come, just as my grandfather’s cufflinks did for me. Legacy is also about inspiring others and providing them with opportunities to grow, which embodies the philosophy of the Atelier David Gotlib.
Talented young designers have the chance to work in a fully-fledged jewelry design workshop under the guidance of established goldsmiths in the vibrant heart of Antwerp, the city of diamonds.
Can you walk us through the design process of David Gotlib cufflinks?
David Gotlib: I find inspiration and ideas in many things, but nature and architecture are domains that truly appeal to me. One of the advantages of working in an industry with such a distinct, multicultural, and international character is the opportunity to travel the world and witness numerous breathtaking places.
Inspiration can strike during a leisurely walk along the beach on a family vacation, while visiting an art exhibition or museum, or even while doodling on a piece of paper. There are no limits to where creativity can take you.
Once I have sketched out a design idea, my team and I will start working on the process of selecting precious metals, diamonds, and colored gemstones until we arrive at a final design. Throughout this journey of design and creation, every detail holds significance.
We take immense care in providing our clients with a unique product and an exceptional experience, from the design phase to the meticulous handcrafting of each piece and its final delivery.
Our goal is to deliver the highest quality possible, showcasing superb craftsmanship, maintaining supply chain integrity, and ensuring that the buying experience is as memorable as the cufflinks themselves.
The David Gotlib collection of cufflinks is available online at www.davidgotlib.com, and we also offer custom designs upon request.
Jerome Knyszewski, VIP Contributor to ValiantCEO and the host of this interview would like to thank David Gotlib for taking the time to do this interview and share his knowledge and experience with our readers.
If you would like to get in touch with David Gotlib or his company, you can do it through his – Linkedin Page
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