Since we'll all be tuning into the Miss USA pageant on the big screen on Sunday, I thought I'd answer the question everyone seems to be asking: is the Miss USA crown real diamonds? Trust me when I tell you, it's no plastic Cady Heron prom crown.
So, yes — the diamonds are real, but there's a lot more where that came from. According to Jackie Shahinian, a Miss USA representative, this year's crown was designed to pay tribute the United States flag and freedom for all, and the different jewels in the crown signify different colors from the flag. The 2016 crown is made of 33 diamonds, 30 Czech crystals, 222 white sapphires, 340 blue sapphires, 112 rubies, and a white gold base, giving it a total weight of 372.56g! The estimated value is around $200,000.
According to the pageant's website, last year's crown was made up of 33 colorless Bohemian crystals, 5 large blue topaz stones, 311 small, polished diamonds, and an 18-karat white gold strip, giving the crown a total weight of 411 grams. It was designed to blend the Czech roots of D.I.C., the company that created the crown, with the New York City skyline, the home of the pageant. Craftsmen spent a grand total of 3,000 hours working on the intricate design.
The press release also mentioned that the 2015 crown marked the beginning of a decade-long relationship with D.I.C., and the brand will continue working with the Miss USA and Teen Miss USA pageants to design the crowns for the next nine years to come.
In case you missed it, here's a photo of last year's work of art...
What a beauty! I can't wait to find out who will walk away with this year's stunning crown.