Autumn - Winter 2010-2011 Haute Joaillerie in Paris
Van Cleef & Arpels Les Voyages Extraordinaire
This Autumn - Winter season Van Cleef & Arpels invite you to join them on a Voyage of Discovery. Inspired by the novels of Jules Verne, Van Cleef & Arpels President Stanislas de Quercize and Creative Director Nicolas Bos kindly allowed some of us a sneak peak at the Haute Joaillerie collection that will be shown in full at the Paris Biennalle in September 2010.
This is Couture Jewellery created using the adventure of travel as it's theme and I think that the beauty of the creations reflect the joy and richness of the memmories that we treasure from travel. It is made possible by The Young Talents and Mains d'Or.
It is also important to note the deep romantic association that Van Cleef & Arpels have with Travel as the young Estelle Arpels and Alfred Van Cleef travelled the world in search of new experiences just as their clientele did. The boutique they founded oposite the Ritz in Paris also brought the world to them.
These pieces are groupled around 4 novels, Five Weeks in a Balloon, Journey to The Centre of the Earth, From the Earth to The Moon and Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea.
Above is the Maximus Brooch and the White Nile Earrings inspired by the novel Five Weeks in a Balloon. (C) Van Cleef & Arpels.
I love Elephants and Maximus is a very unique Elephant. As with all the other pieces he is a one-off couture piece.
To the right is is the Galactee Transformable Long necklace that can be shortened to
create a bracelet, shown to the left. Below the bracelet is the Autour de la Lune clip.
(C) Van Cleef & Arpels.
These pieces sparkle with the magic of the heavens and I
love the use of blue stones and diamonds together. I think
the idea of a transformable necklace is fun and you can
wear the piece in different ways. The necklace when
shortend can be worn beautifully with the bracelet.
Below, these 3 clips explore the maritime world and are among my favourites from the collection. I love the way that the Maison has depicted animals in their couture creations.
I love the Polaire clip, it's both opulent and very cute and he is accompanied by many sea creatures such as a little Whale that blows a water jet when the secret of the Jewel is activated. The Octopus of the Olindias clip below has a mysterious Medusa like quality according to Nicolas Bos and I think what is extraordinary is that the piece does caputure a real sence of movement.
These marine themed pieces also
give an opportunity to mention the
Peace Parks Foundation that the Maison
supports. It protects Loggerhead and
Leatherback turtles creating a network of
protected areas that connect ecosystems
beyond international borders. The project
will see surveillence posts set up
along the East African Shoreline.
Balaine Bleue Clip. All above images (C) Van Cleef & Arpels.
I found this collection inspirational and there are
many, many more pieces from the Haute Couture
Joaillerie collection to see. I will leave you with
another piece from the collection, the plancton
earrings. They are an amazing example of the
beauty of High Jewellery craftsmanship.
I would like to thank Van Cleef and Arpels for the
introduction to their atelier in Paris and would like
to thank Frederic Morales for showing me the collection
in such great detail.
Plancton Earrings. (C) Van Cleef & Arpels.
Boucheron Le jeu de la seduction
At Boucheron across the Place Vendome I had the pleasure of speaking with the lovely Laura Schuetz who guided me through the Maison's Autumn - Winter 2010-2011 Haute Joaillerie collection. Love is in the air at Boucheron.
The collection is based around several different themes of the game of seduction. So to get you in the mood for some romantic times with a special person this Autumn and Winter enjoy the collection below and please contact Boucheron if you would like to know more.
I begin with a beautiful piece themed
'Hour-Glass Figure' (Taille de Guepe) the
essential attribute which most men cannot
resist for long. This is a very beautiful
necklace that will suit the curves of any
woman who wears it.
Boucheron says of this piece " The white diamonds
and cultured pink pearls used in its design hint
at the hues of a blush pink corset outfitted with
silk ribbon laces that crisscross up the body.
On one side of the necklace, rivulets of diamonds
move freely as if to echo silk ribbons that have
released a cinched waist."
"The pink pearl topped pendants that adorn
the necklace are embellished with leaf shaped
diamond petals. The hourglass shapes of the
pendants are a subtle reminder of the inspiration
of the set." The beauty of this necklace is that
the pendants are detachable and it is possible
for several ladies to wear the pieces as a set ensemble (C) Boucheron. Hourglass Figure necklace.
or on separate occassions.
I remember thinking as I saw it that a lady could allow her daughters or granddaughters
to wear the pendants individually for example.
Below are two pieces from the Fatal Attraction theme. I love the marine blue, it's mesmerising like the sea around Greece and Italy also for me the shapes suggest marine life. I think it's beauty is very inviting. These pieces are created using saphires, diamonds and white gold.
(C) Fatal Attraction Pendant earrings (L) & Fatal Attraction Ring (R).
For the Fatal Attraction Haute Couture Joaillerie pieces
Boucheron have channelled the theme of water to
capture the sence of the rushing, pouring and cascading
like the feelings of love that lead to attraction.
The centre piece of the Fatal Attraction pieces is this stunning
long necklace. It can be worn down the back with an open -
back dress or as a traditional necklace worn long at the front or
wrapped more close about the neck. The jewel feature can be
detached as a brooche and worn alone. This piece can also be
worn about the waist or in the hair.
(C) Boucheron. Fatal Attraction necklace.
The Stolen Kiss collection was created using a voluptuous selection
of rubies, red saphires and diamonds. These pieces have the warmth
and excitment of the quick moment of passion that is aroused by that
most fleeting of romantic interludes. With one of these pieces gracing your
hand, ears or decollette you will have a memory of that special kiss forever.
(C) Boucheron. The Stolen Kiss Ring
(C) Boucheron. The Stolen Kiss Brooch
Using teardrop emeralds and a flower features of the 'Chic Lingerie' collection express the delicate feminity of those secrets that we keep closest to our chest. Boucheron sum it up very well "The diamond paved flower motif of the set evokes the idea of delicate lace lingerie. While a second double strand of diamonds on the necklace echoes the silk ribbon details often used on intimate apparel. A series of nine teardrop cut emeralds are a clever addition to the design and should resonate with any woman who is a connoisseur of fine lingerie."
(C) Boucheron. Chic Lingerie Necklace
(C) Boucheron. Chic Lingerie Ring. (C) Boucheron. Chic Lingerie Bracelet
Further romantic guestures are made by the Pretty Puff piece that references the woman's time spent making up. Curlicue celebrates the crowning glory of women, our hair and Heavenly Aroma captures the mystique that women create from their perfume. I was given Boucheron's Fragrance Initial a few years ago and it's still one of my favourites.
I said farewell to lovely Laura and her colleagues at Boucheron and left wondering what my favourite romantic moment would be surmised by this collection. I think it would be one of the pieces from the Stolen Kiss collection.
Chaumet - Bijoux de Tete.
The legendary Maison that brought the Tiara to the modern age opened it's doors for an amazing Catwalk show of Haute Joaillerie in the parfect setting. The Maison's own palatial home in Place Vendome.
Chaumet had the opprtunity to show it's collection in it's traditional setting.
Here is a picture of one of the models that I met in the Grand Salon of Chaumet
before the show. (C) Angela Cliffe 2010 at Chaumet.
I found it really wonderful to see the tiaras and 'Bijoux de Tete' shown in this way.
It was like stepping into history or seeing history coming to life in front of me. I was fortunate to be able to speak with Beatrice de Plinval who is the Curator of the Museum
of Chuamet and 'The memory of this great House'.
Beatrice was kind enough to explain to me the significant role that Josephine Beauharnais played in building the renown of the House.
The entrance to the salon was a beautifully decorated ante-room decorated with two large portraits of Josephine Beauharnais and Marie Lousie of Austria, respectivly the first and second wives of Emperor Napoleaon. There, in the drawing room that could have been a room in Josephine's Palace, Beatrice explained to me the important role that Tiara's had in court ceremonial and also told me about Josephine and her role in European history.
She was a clever lady who understood the
politics of the Drawing Room and the Grand
Theatre of Europe equally well. She probably
played a larger role politically in her husband's
career thatn will ever be known and even
arranged her husband's second marriage with
care for what would be in the best interests of
France. She found him a new wife as she
could not give him children.
Josephine had a crucial role in the early decades
of Chaumet. She commissioned her tiara for the
coronation of her Husband from the house and
as a leading light in Paris fashion this prompted
all the ladies of the Napoleonic Court to follow
suit. The end result was that the House of
Chaumet became intimately associated with
Bijoux de Tete, Ornaments of the Hair.
Right. Josephine Beauharnais Empress of France.
She was originally born as Marie Joseph Rose Tascher de la Pagerie to a Creole family in Martinique with
ancestry from the French gentry and Anglo-Irish plantation families. She was known as Rose until her marriage to Napoleon.
Josephine's influence lives on in modern Royal Europe and beyond as women still wear tiara's at special events. Beatrice told me that they still create tiara's and tiara models each year for clients. As the models below show hair ornaments have never gone out of fashion. The last time that tiara's where seen on a large scale in the UK was at the coronation of Elizabeth II. This collection shows that hair ornaments of varying types from the tiara to the beautiful bijoux bumble bee (see below).
(C) Above images Chaumet. L - Model - Arrape Moi. R Model Le Grand Frisson
At the Chanel Haute Couture show in July 2010 Daphne Guinness was noted for wearing diamonds in her hair. Hair ornaments will never go out of fashion and I think day to day it's a fun way to decorate your hair. When I'm reporting from Fashion Weeks I try to wear a Rose emblem in my hair.
Here are two pieces from the Autumn - Winter 2010-2011 collection. Chuamet's pieces are Haute in the truest sence as you cannot wear Haute Joaillerie any higher than on the head.
(C) Chaumet Attrape-Moi tiara. Bijou de Tete A-W 2010-11.
Left (C) Chaumet Josephine tiara 1.
Bijoux de Tete A-W 2010-11.
Center: Pear cut Yellow diamond.
The Haute Couture Joaillerie show was held in a room with the most amazing display. The walls where lined with 'vitrines'. These cabinets displayed both tiara's and the equally beautiful models and casts that are made, to full scale before the finished tiara is produced. The defiles danced to a mixture of classical music exerpts interspersed with modern dance music. The music was synchonised to lights over them as they danced as chess pieces on their squares and one by one as the music changed and they had their cue to move from the light above.
Image below from Haute Couture Joaillerie at Chaumet. Defile Bijoux de Tete (C) Angel Cliffe.
(C) Chaumet. The Josephine collection tiara 2. 2 Periots, 2 Pink tourmalines, 1 Green Tourmaline and 101 brilliant-cut diamonds.
I would urge as many people as possible to discover Chaumet and it's wonderful history. They have created a whole genre of Haute Joaillerie in the last 200 years.
CHANEL Bijoux de Diamants 1932.
At CHANEL for Autumn - Winter 2010 they have chosen to recreate and expand the collection of Jewellery that Coco Chanel created. This collection like the others above was prepared ahead of the Biennale des Antquires in September 2010 in Paris.
Many people don't know that Coco Chanel
actually created her own collection of diamond Haute Joaillerie and it was launched in November 1932.
This was the only collection of Jewellery
that was designed by Coco Chanel and
like many areas of her life it is a mystery as to why she did not continue.
The original pieces where and are to this
day very beautiful and capture the essence of classic CHANEL style.
(C) Above the Broche Plume CHANEL.
The original bold symbol of the feather has been expanded
to include the sun, moon and bow. The collection to be
shown at the Biennale des Antiquaries in September 2010 will
contain a further 30 new pieces and be displayed in a space
designed by American Architect Peter Marino.
To the right is an image from the original Plume collection
of Madam Chanel in 1932.
Below is a drawing of the 'Aigrette Brooche', to be shown in
September 2010. It features a 2 carat Rose-cut diamond at
it's center and a Briollette cut 8 carat diamond. Picture by Andre Kertesz
(c) Vogue Paris. Jan 1933
The stones are set in 18k White gold.
I have found that this is the best choice for working with diamonds in Haute Joaillerie as White gold enhances the luminosity of diamonds even further.
(C) CHANEL Brooche Aigrette (C) CHANEL Collier Plume.
Below is a final picture to illustrate the Savoir
Faire of the work shops. This image shows
how the pieces have been crafted with the
aid of original photographs of the 1932
collection. This collection took 14 months
to develop for presentation at the Biennale
in Septemebr 2010 and it is the third time
that the House of CHANEL have exhibited there.
I think that this collection is something to be
treasured by people who admire not only the
House of CHANEL but the memory of the founder
herself.This collection based on the Plume is from
her inspiration, her thoughts her passions. The
feather can symbolise many things, freedom,
written ideas, luck, innocence, all evoke hopes and
wishes and the beautiful potential of ideas. Yet this
is such a simple moteif that it retains it's own
natural simplicity and elegance.
Coco Chanel herself had many way to describe
simple elegant style and in the feather I think she
found a very perfect symbol. (C) CHANEL Savoir Faire.
It was wonderful to visit Paris for Haute Couture and Haute Joaillerie week in July and I would like to say a big Thank You to the Houses of Van Cleef & Arpels, Boucheron, Chaumet and CHANEL for such a warm welcome and a wonderful guided tour of their collections.
I know that many pieces from these collections have been sold ahead of the Paris Biennale and that Haute Joaillerie is very much in demand. I've seen many inspiring visionery pieces of Joaillerie that are simply the most magnificent form of High art. I am very glad that Haute Joaillerie has been designated a part of Haute Couture week and can take it's rightful place alongside fashion in Paris.
(C) Angela Cliffe 2009-2010