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How Tiffany & Co. Became a Household Name

Updated: Mar 4, 2022

When Charles Tiffany and his partner John Young founded their “stationery and fancy goods emporium” more than one-hundred and seventy-five years ago, they probably had big dreams of success. Even their dreams, though, couldn’t have possibly imagined the level of success this incredible company would achieve. Today, Tiffany & Co. is simply a household name. Sure, some people refer to them as “Tiffany’s” and some simply call them “Tiffany” but there just aren’t many people around who don’t have at least some idea about how the name means luxury and quality, even if they’ve never shopped at a Tiffany & Co. store or owned a Tiffany & Co. item.

You might think it’s the wonderful film with Audrey Hepburn that made the store so famous. The 1961 film was nominated for several Academy Awards and took home two Oscars. There was even a love song referencing the song and released thirty-two years later! Sure, the movie is popular but Tiffany & Co. was a household name long before that. In fact, Tiffany gained fame early on. Their reputation made them the Union Army’s choice for manufacturing Calvary sabers and five years later, they received a coveted award for silver design at the Paris Exposition. Such an award to an American company was almost unheard of.

In their long history, Tiffany & Co. has purchased crown jewels, designed chinaware for the white house, campaigned to get the U.S. to adopt standards for silver and for diamond weight, worked with artists as famed as Andy Warhol, and changed how the world views home décor with Charles Tiffany’s son, who created the Tiffany Lamp and became Tiffany & Co.’s first Design Director in 1902. Perhaps the most profound impact they’ve had, though, was the invention of the Tiffany setting, which made the diamond solitaire the star of an engagement ring and is used for the vast majority of engagement rings today.

Is it any surprise that a movie was made about this wonderful company? Not to us. In fact, this information just scratches the surface!

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