Boardroom Fairy Tales: The Return of the Tiara



You may only associate tiaras with princesses and fairy tales, but they’re making a comeback. We suspect it’s a conflation of the global elite’s creative play coupled with newly reinvigorated female empowerment, but tiaras have found their way into the jewelry cabinets and even boardrooms (!) around the world.

Regardless their use (the boardroom example is real – one Chinese businesswoman is said to occasionally don a tiara during special business gatherings), tiaras are always a statement, an exclamation point – and a distinctly feminine one at that.

One jewelry house notably has tiaras on lock: Chaumet has made tiaras for over 200 years, with their oldest example dating to 1811.Chaumet was commissioned to create a tiara for Empress Josephine in the late 19th century and has over 3,000 tiaras in its archive; they continue to produce a limited number every year, may of which are special orders for powerful women looking for something special. In a world seeking differentiation and distinction, the elegant tiara is again taking its place as queenmaker.


Strength of the Sea: Jewels Evoking the Ocean

With the rich diversity of colors and natural materials available for designers and creators, it’s no wonder the ocean plays such a central role in many collections – especially for the summer. Here you’ll find some of our favorites.


The strength and enigma of the ocean have been my main sources of inspiration for several weeks now. Watching waves through my window has been my primary landscape, and seeing such power and variation paired with such stillness and repetition has me in something of a trance. It’s amazing how something so technical – the translation of wind and tide into such visible, obvious power – can yield such inspiration and beauty.

The gorgeous photography of Andrea Hamilton has proven to be compelling company for this too, her work capturing the ocean’s power and movement so fully that I can feel it.

In line with these meandering summer thoughts, I’ve picked up the most gorgeous drop earrings from Amrapali. The color play of their deeply colored blue-green tanzanite stones is unforgettable.

To pair with some of these pieces check out an awesome great summer dress by Johanna Ortiz, and a few additional fine jewelry pieces, including Amrapali, Wendy Yue, Lizzie Fortunato, Yi Collection, Matteo x Muzo.


David Morris : [The London Jeweler]



Leading ladies have dazzled wearing his designs in no less than 14 James Bond movies. And the British luxury jeweller that is David Morris continues to attract celebrity clients in scores. Oh, and get commissions from royal families: a David Morris creation was seen on the bonnet of the vintage Aston Martin car chosen by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge for their wedding day.

What is it about this London designer whose creations form part of the permanent exhibition of the Jewellery Room at the V&A. What is distinctive about this London brand, with its workshop on Bond Street, that has made it a destination for dealers in big coloured gems the world over?

I think it’s what is best described as the jewelry’s softness. Although there aren’t many men with golden guns milling around, there are plenty of James Bond girls in the world! And David’s jewelry is perfect for them: the spirit and soul of Bond style with constantly original takes on the genre.

These are some of my favourite David Morris pieces, all of which can be purchased online. Hakan Arblom’s illustrations showcase them beautifully.


Christie’s Important Jewels Auction June 12, 2019

#DONTMISS the Auction is today!


SALE OVERVIEW: Christies Important Jewels Auction
The London Important Jewels sale on 12 June features a beautiful array of period and modern pieces ranging from £1,000 to £350,000. The auction also features fine coloured gems and diamonds, Art Déco jewels and a grouping of modern creations from the foremost jewellery maisons including Bulgari, Cartier, Graff, Harry Winston, Lacloche, Schlumberger, Tiffany and Van Cleef & Arpels amongst others.
I’m wearing Art Deco Diamond Earrings, Chanel Diamond ‘Camelia’ ring, elegant George III diamond ear pendants.


Offer an olive branch

Luz Camino’s beautiful brooch is a timely reminder of how important it is to conserve the olive tree


The health properties of olive oil’s unique molecule oleuropein are staggering. It can lower blood pressure and cholesterol, help guard against cognitive decline and even prevent cancer. But the beautiful tree whence it all comes, a tree long associated with wisdom, its branches a symbol of peace, can’t cope with the changing climate and rain fall brought by global warming. Its green fruit are literally withering on the vine.
This cool brooch, crafted in silver, enamel and olive tree wood, and designed to resemble an actual olive branch, is a beautiful and salutary wake-up call. It is so important to conserve this ancient tree that has been considered sacred since ancient times.


The Jewel in the Crown


The most important jewelry exhibition since Elizabeth Taylor’s is going under the hammer…

On 19 June the Maharajas and Mughal Magnificence sale at Christie’s will auction almost 400 pieces of spectacular Indian jewellery and bejewelled objects in what the auction house describes as “the most important jewelry sale since Elizabeth Taylor’s collection was auctioned in 2011.”
Spanning five centuries the Al Thani collection showcases the history of Indian jewelled art, much of with royal provenance having been passed down through generations of Maharjas. Its sheer scale, charts new territory for Christie’s and pieces such the 1907 Diamond Turban Ornament and gemstones yet to be turned into jewels, including a 52.58-carat D-colour, Internally Flawless diamond known as the ‘Mirror of Paradise’, are so valuable that museums, the natural home for these world-important pieces, cannot afford to acquire them at such short notice.
Which means, in turn, that the New York auction, to feature pieces by prestigious houses including Cartier, Bulgari and Mauboussin and revered contemporary jewellers JAR and Viren Bhagat, will be a melee of the world’s super wealthy to see who can bag first them for their personal collection.


Dauphin: Cultivated, Contemporary, Cool

Dauphin creates jewelry for today’s woman…


I love the clean, structural lines of Dauphin’s work. It exemplifies what I am looking for in jewelry, and what I personally like to wear. So I was delighted to hear this cool house is working with Modus Operandi, the platform that enables women to pre-order designer pieces straight off the runway.
In her latest collection, the French designer who spent more than a decade at ballet school, injects her diamond wave earrings and pendants with a kinetic energy: this is passionate jewelry that moves with the body.
She has said elsewhere that her work is more than decoration and ornamentation. And I couldn’t agree more. This is jewelry for the contemporary woman who is feminine yet strong, free not fashionable.


Chanel High Jewelry collection : Coromandel [ Something to screen about]

“I’m like a snail. I carry my house with me. Two Chinese screens, books everywhere. I’ve never been able to live in an open house. The first thing I look for is screens,” Coco Chanel


Her precious 17th and 18th century Coromandel screens, discovered in the 1910s, were everything to Coco Chanel. They followed her from residence to residence, and were also constantly on the move in her various homes, detaching, reducing, masking and magnifying doorways, fireplaces and mirrors according to her needs and desires. For Coco, décor was a poetic landscape in which she liked to lose herself across the oceans and the centuries.

The imaginary world of Coromandel is the inspiration for this poetic collection of 59 pieces that is designed around the floral, animal and mineral themes depicted on the Chinese screens. Coco’s signature flower, the Camellia, birds just about to take flight and the French fashion designer’s love of crystal and gemstones – as they appear in the screens, they feature in the jewelry. It is ingenious and hypnotic!


Writing That Sparkles

Maison Chaumet Presents ‘Brillantes Ecritures’ Exhibition,22nd February – 1st April 2019, Paris


Chaumet shows that jewelry and literature are a natural pairing.

The maison’s fans will know that throughout its history Chaumet has been a source of inspiration to men and women of letters. From Balzac to Dumas, Wharton to Rostand, Collette, Olga Picasso and Alfred de Musset, the list is long and distinguished. Now Chaumet is telling the story of its fascinating links with writer clients and literary figures in Brillantes Ecritures, an exhibition that brings together romantic novels, society columns, historic jewels and archive documents.

From February 22 to April 1, at 165 Boulevard Saint-Germain, Paris


Haute Joaillerie: Four Questions with Christian Hemmerle

December06Jewelry Now

Hemmerle, the renowned 126-year-old German jewelry house, has been a perennial favorite of ours to cover simply because their work is among the best in the world. Always balanced, sumptuous, and employing a unique approach to textures and shapes with incredible attention to detail, the house of Hemmerle has earned its special place among European design houses. Besides, each piece I encounter evokes a deep sense of pleasure and wonder – what else could be asked of a piece of jewelry?

Their latest collection turns to the culture and tropes of East Asia. We spoke with Christian Hemmerle to learn more about what it all means.

JI: So we’ll start with fundamentals. These pieces are incredibly detailed; how much time needed for their production?

CH: We set no limits on the time it takes to make each piece. We make around 200 one-off handcrafted pieces of jewelry a year and each piece is made on site at our Munich atelier by our team of 20 master-craftsmen. It can take years to treasure hunt stones whose proportions fit together and once in production, a piece can take over 500 hours to complete. Usually, the same craftsman will work on a piece from beginning to end drawing expertise and advice from across the workshop.

For over 15 years now we use a very precise technique of setting stones in reverse pavé. The setting adds an unexpected depth as light is reflected from many different angles due to the increased exposed surface area. In these iron and diamond earrings we have reverse-set over 300 diamonds in a variety of sizes to achieve a seamless surface layered behind the cut-out iron structure. Similarly in the earrings featuring Japanese Gods, the reverse of each porcelain panel is reverse-set with over 400 diamonds to add an extra layer of craftsmanship and detail.

JI: Are there any particular creative techniques that has have been used to create these pieces? The house is known for their innovative technical processes…

Each piece is a new discovery for us and we never get bored of experimenting and innovating with design and process. We aim to continuously challenge our craft and push boundaries in what is feasible. In the earrings below the iron used for the lattice over the diamond-set surface has been engineered so it appears curved from the creation’s profile allowing for an elevated aesthetic and unique physical volume to our piece. Similarly, In the copper and jade earrings, the honeycomb structure which fuses the natural zircons and orange jade discs was a challenge technically to achieve but we tackled it through experimentation. We often innovate in our pieces that include technical elements created uniquely as prototypes, facilitating accordingly our creative vision.

JI: Tell us more about the stones used here: how they were sourced and why they were chosen.

CH: We are continually searching around the world for the most beautiful, intriguing stones and materials, both old and new, to add to our creative vocabulary
The pearls in the topaz earrings feature natural melo and conch pearls. Melo pearls are unfathomably rare; found in melo melo snails in the waters of the South China Sea, melo pearls remain unique as only one in every 10,000 snails produces a pearl and, most often, it is small. Conch pearls are similarly hard to come by and it took us many years to find four pearls whose proportions worked perfectly together like this.

JI: These earrings in particular‘Seven Gods of Fortune’ are incredible. What’s the story?

CH: These earrings boldly use porcelain portraits depicting the Japanese Seven Gods of Fortune. According to myth, the Gods arrive on New Year’s Day on a ship carrying treasures that symbolize honesty, fortune, dignity, amiability, longevity, happiness and wisdom. They were chosen from Hinduist, Buddhist, Taoist and Shintoist gods or saints, and settled into Japanese Folklore Gods, believed to have been grouped together around the 17th century. In our earrings, each of the six Gods used face inwards towards the viewer.
Beyond the beauty in the colour of the orange jade used, the material also holds cultural significance intricately woven into Chinese history. We have found much inspiration in the material and have previously used both ancient and antique jade in an array of colours from lavender, red, orange, yellow, brown to white, black, and grey, in each case selected for its unique color and texture.


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