Ever since Queen Victoria issued the company with its first Royal Warrant in 1843, Garrard was the jeweller who dealt with the most precious pieces in the royal collection. The oldest jewellery house in the world was founded in London in 1735, and after it received the royal seal of approval, it was responsible for the upkeep of the Crown Jewels, as well as producing many new key pieces for the Royal Family.
Garrard's most important job involved the biggest diamond in the world. The fist-size, 3,106-carat Cullinan Diamond was discovered in 1905, and it was Garrard's task to break it down for use in a variety of royal items. The largest stone was mounted on the Sovereign's Sceptre (which monarchs carry at their coronation), and the second-largest was set in the band of the Imperial State Crown. Many of the other stones were used for brooches, including the heart-shaped Cullinan V (pictured).
Other key pieces by Garrard include Queen Victoria's Coronation Necklace and Diamond Jubilee Brooch, Queen Mary's Fringe Tiara (which the queen wore on her wedding day), the Cambridge Lovers Knot Tiara (which is the Duchess of Cambridge's new favourite), and the Girls of Great Britain and Ireland Tiara (which is seen on all pictures of the queen that appear on stamps, coins, and banknotes).
In 2007, however, it was announced by Buckingham Palace that Garrard would no longer be the Crown Jeweller as it was "time for change," although there had been rumours that the Royal Warrant Holders Association had concerns about the image change the company had undertaken when Jade Jagger was creative director between 2001 and 2006. Garrard still holds a Royal Warrant from Prince Charles.