Did You Know Titanic’s Iconic Necklace Almost Sank an Entire Company?

I’ll wager that a lot of you didn’t know that the famed Heart of the Ocean pendant from Titanic nearly sank the company it was made by. Ambition has an ugly side to it when you consider just how it makes people go a little nutty sometimes.  There are thousands of replicas of this gem that can be purchased nearly anywhere online, but only one line of the was ever officially sanctioned by 20th Century Fox, and that was created by the J. Petersen Company. Founded in 1987 this company was commonly seen to have some of the most unusual stuff such as costume jewelry and outfits worn in films that would go for three to four figures easily.

The Heart of the Ocean, being a fictional jewel, went for a very cheap price when the company decided to go on a shopping expedition. In fact the company had a costume jeweler reproduce the faux gem so that it could be sold for $198 retail price. It was every young woman’s dream come true, a chance to own a piece of movie history that would be with them forever. But of course things kind of went off the rails after a while. The J. Petersen Company was accustomed to only making so many reproductions so that the value would hold rather than drop when it as discovered that they had a surplus of items.

With the Heart of the Ocean gem however they soon began to see dollar signs rather than sense. While the demand was there the orders for the stone reached up into the thousands, bringing more money than they’d believed possible for this item. This in turn prompted them to open 10 new brick and mortar stores so that people could come and purchase their items. Such a move turned out to be a mistake however since after only a year they had to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The company simply couldn’t keep up with the rapid growth and eventually had to fold. This happens from time to time with those that see a worthy product and start thinking that it will carry them far enough that they can bank on it just enough to start planning for the future. Once expansion starts though there comes a whole new list of items and to do’s that have to be done in order to sustain the rapid growth or the bottom will fall out very quickly, as it did with J. Petersen.

Eventually the company got to buy back it’s brand thankfully, but you won’t be able to find the Heart of the Ocean anywhere on its catalog now. It seems that the company has had enough of that particular item and the trouble it brought. If you still have to have the gem though it can be found on a number of sights and usually costs three to four figures easily if you want quality.

Personally if I’m going to buy jewelry for anyone and am spending that kind of money it needs to be real.

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