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NYC’s Godmother of Diamonds can help you nail the ‘mob wife’ aesthetic

She’ll make you an offer you can’t refuse.

Kerri Lavine, a fast-talking, cigar-smoking 62-year-old Midtown jewelry dealer has become an unlikely TikTok star, calling herself the “Godmother of Diamonds.” Dripping in $100,000 worth of jewelry, her nails done in a perfect French manicure and her brunette bob heavily teased, she doles out advice on jewelry store negotiations, how to spot fakes and the difference between natural and lab-grown sparklers to her 170,000 followers.

“I’ve been doing this 43 years – I’m the boss,” said Lavine, who co-owns Diamanti NYC in the Diamond District.

“It’s not a wig – this is my real hair,” added Lavine who perfectly embodies the mob-wife aesthetic of the moment and conjures Denise Borino-Quinn’s  “Ginny Sacrimoni” on “The Sopranos.”

“I haven’t changed my hairstyle in 50 years,” she added. “There’s hairspray. I support hairspray companies. This is just who I am.”

The Whitestone, Queens, mother-of-two landed on the nickname “Godmother of Diamonds” 20 years ago when a friend snapped a photo of her puffing on a cigar and holding a glass of cognac at a wedding.

Lavine got the nickname, “Godmother of Diamonds” 20 years ago when a friend snapped a photo of her puffing on a cigar. She has the photo at her booth in Midtown’s Diamond District. Brian Zak/NY Post
Lavine got the nickname, “Godmother of Diamonds” 20 years ago when a friend snapped a photo of her puffing on a cigar. She has the photo at her booth in Midtown’s Diamond District. Brian Zak/NY Post
Lavine fell into the jewelry biz by accident while she was attending college at FIT. She popped into a jewelry store in Midtown looking for a charm for her grandmother when she was 18, and was hired on the spot, she said. “The guy said, ‘I love you. I want you to work for me.” Today, she sells bespoke jewelry like these diamond bracelets. Brian Zak/NY Post

“I said to myself, ‘you look like the Godfather in that picture, but you’re a woman.’ I said, ‘Oh, Godmother of Diamonds.’ That’s how I branded myself,” she said.

She first went viral in January 2023 for her no-nonsense negotiation skills as she sold 2-carat diamond earrings to influencer @MosesTheJeweler, who has more than 600,000 TikTok followers.

“I got something great for you … beautiful pair of studs. I want $4,300 for the pair – 1-carat each,” she commanded to the fellow jewelry lover who countered with $3,500. They eventually settled at $3,800.

She was instantly flooded with messages from fans asking her business advice and decided to start having her co-workers film her in action and post videos on TikTok.

Lavine doles out advice on jewelry store negotiations, how to spot fakes and the difference between natural and lab-grown sparklers to her 170,000 followers on TikTok. Brian Zak/NY Post
Lavine doles out advice on jewelry store negotiations, how to spot fakes and the difference between natural and lab-grown sparklers to her 170,000 followers on TikTok. Brian Zak/NY Post

Now, fans from Texas, England, Ireland and Australia flock to her store to watch her in action – slinging 10 carat diamond engagement rings, gushing over a 29-carat heart shaped yellow diamond, negotiating sales with neighboring dealers on rare Rolexes and making sure all that sparkles is real.

“I can tell a diamond is fake usually by looking at the facet junctions,” she noted.

But, Lavine isn’t all about getting the best deal for herself.

Lavine and her former colleagues, Ron Gill and Enera Ljaljicic, opened Diamanti NYC in 2021. They specialize in engagement rings, among other custom designs. godmotherofdiamonds/ TikTok
Lavine and her former colleagues, Ron Gill and Enera Ljaljicic, opened Diamanti NYC in 2021. They specialize in engagement rings, among other custom designs. godmotherofdiamonds/ TikTok

In December, she gave away 2-carat diamond studs to a tourist in Rockefeller Center after holding a free raffle.

“I’m a giver. It was my birthday in December, I wanted to give someone a gift,” she said. “A wonderful woman won a pair of diamond studs. Those probably would have retailed for $7,000.”

Lavine fell into the diamond biz by accident at 18 while she was a college student at the Fashion Institute of Technology. She was looking for a gold charm for her grandmother on 47th Street and ended up charming a jewelry store owner with her no-nonsense demeanor.

“The guy said, ‘I love you. I want you to work for me.”

Lavine first went viral last January in a negotiation on a pair of earrings with influencer <a href="https://www.tiktok.com/@mosesthejeweler?lang=en" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:@MosesTheJeweler;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link ">@MosesTheJeweler</a>. godmotherofdiamonds/ TikTok
Lavine first went viral last January in a negotiation on a pair of earrings with influencer @MosesTheJeweler. godmotherofdiamonds/ TikTok

She made her first big sale by age 21 – selling a $25,000 diamond wedding band to a friend.

“I could not believe I made a $25,000 sale. It was 1981,” she told The Post of the stone that today would sell closer to $100,000.

Lavine went on to work for a jeweler in the Diamond District for 30 years and amassed thousands of clients. But, the business shut down during COVID and the partnership went south. So, she and two colleagues, Ron Gill and Enera Ljaljicic, opened Diamanti NYC in 2021.

“They threw us aside,” she said. “It put a fire under my ass.”

Lavine was asking $4,300 for the diamond studs, and the duo landed on $3,800. godmotherofdiamonds/ TikTok
Lavine was asking $4,300 for the diamond studs, and the duo landed on $3,800. godmotherofdiamonds/ TikTok
Social media has been a big driver of business. Lavine’s last big sale was an emerald cut diamond ring just shy of $100,000 to a couple who found her on TikTok. godmotherofdiamonds/ TikTok
Social media has been a big driver of business. Lavine’s last big sale was an emerald cut diamond ring just shy of $100,000 to a couple who found her on TikTok. godmotherofdiamonds/ TikTok

Social media has been a big driver of business. Lavine’s last big sale was an emerald cut diamond ring just shy of $100,000 to a couple who found her on TikTok.

“Three years ago I was miserable. Today I’m grateful it happened. “