Need a little bling for your yarmulke? How about a $36,000 diamond-encrusted kippah?
That’s what’s on sale at Modern Tribe, a website that sells contemporary Judaica, including such traditional items as seder plates and menorahs.
The yarmulke, made of navy Italian leather with a Star of David crafted from 873 diamonds — 2.75 carats worth — and set in 14 karat white gold, was an idea that Amy Kritzer and her brother, Andrew, co-founders of Modern Tribe, had been considering for several years.
“There are diamond Star of David necklaces,” said Kritzer, “and this is a little more bling.”
The brother-and-sister pair found a kippah maker in Sydney, Australia, who fashioned the leather base of the head covering, choosing navy as a “nod to the Israeli flag,” said Kritzer.
The white gold setting was sourced in Mumbai, India, and then shipped to Chicago, where a local jeweler hand-placed all the conflict-free diamonds.
It took more than 40 labor hours to hand-place the 873 diamonds into the circle border, which is cast in four pieces and then welded into the diamond-inlaid ring.
The yarmulke is custom-made, and buyers — there haven’t been any yet — can add more diamonds, choose rose gold rather than white gold, or select a different color leather for the snazzy skullcap.
“People spend their money on extravagant things and why not a kippah?” said Kritzer.
Kritzer acknowledged that more observant Jews probably wouldn’t wear a diamond-encrusted yarmulke, but said it was for showing one’s Judaism in a more unique way.
“It’s a big decision,” said Kritzer of the five-figure, “double chai thousand” head covering that comes with its own display case.
The bling-encrusted kippah could be a male engagement gift too, said Kritzer, the counterpart of an engagement ring.
She also suggested that it could be worn by a bar or bat mitzvah celebrant or wedding groom on their special day, calling it “the perfect expression of Jewish pride.”