The big houses pulled out all the stops in 2015 with some amazing high jewellery collections that literally took our breath away. From a riot of coloured gemstones including emerald and sapphire earrings, to a liberal sprinkling of diamond necklaces, unbridled creativity reigned supreme.
The graceful movements of ballet were reinterpreted by Boghossian Jewels in the colourful Ballet Oriental high jewellery collection, but here they were fused with the more evocative and freeform Oriental dance. Rich colours in the form of sapphires, emeralds, pink diamonds and rubies are set onto distinctive yet feminine designs, which reverberate with sensuality and elegance. Particularly impressive was a parure that boasted more than 200 carats of yellow and white diamonds mimicking the shape of a ballet dancer’s tutu.
With the launch of Étourdissant, this range of Cartier jewellery showed that the Maison is at the top of its high jewellery game. With a name that translates to “stunning”, the Étourdissant high jewellery collection pushes the creative boundaries with innovative designs and magnificent gemstones, while still retaining the elegance and precision honed over Cartier’s 160-year history. Rubies, sapphires and emeralds sit alongside Paraiba tourmalines, opals and diamonds in a collection that offers up delightful surprises whichever way you turn.
British jewellery house Boodles also turned to the Royal Ballet for inspiration for last year’s Pas de Deux collection. Every jewel in the 35-piece ensemble sings with the grace and beauty of a prima ballerina performing the most exacting physical feats with effortlessness. Creative director Rebecca Hawkins has translated these ephemeral moments into diamond-set abstract shapes that subtly hint at a perfectly executed pirouette or grand jeté.
The launch of a Tiffany Blue Book collection is always eagerly awaited by The Jewellery Editor team and as 2015 saw the first one created by new design director Francesca Amfitheatrof, the excitement was close to fever pitch. Luckily, The Art of the Sea more than lived up to our expectations with an assured collection of Tiffany jewellery inspired by the changing faces of the ocean. The colours of the sea flow throughout the Blue Book collection with tanzanites, blue diamonds, sapphires and tsavorites all making us dream of faraway tropical islands.
A similar sense of anticipation surrounded the unveiling of Chopard’s annual Red Carpet collection in the run-up to the 68th edition of the glamorous Cannes Film Festival. Once again, we were treated to a heady high jewellery extravaganza of 68 one-of-a-kind pieces set with the very finest diamonds and coloured gemstones. Some of the highlights included intricate chandelier diamond earrings dripping with Paraiba tourmalines, sapphires or emeralds. As 2016 marks the 10th anniversary of this high jewellery collection we’re anticipating yet another showstopper from the Swiss jeweller.
Nature in all its glory has been a recurring theme in Chaumet jewellery creations for more than 200 years. To coincide with a pop-up exhibition in Paris at its Place Vendôme store, tracing the Parisian jewellery house’s history from the romantic period to the 1980s, Chaumet launched Abeille, a 13-piece high jewellery collection centred on the iconic bee motif. The buzzing insect was recreated with diamonds and coloured gemstones on Chaumet necklaces, brooches, bracelets and earrings.
De Beers jewellery has been synonymous with the finest diamonds in the world for more than 125 years. The 1888 Master Diamonds collection showcased the jewellery house’s expertise in a series of exquisite diamond rings set with both white and coloured gemstones. Diamond master De Beers spent three years selecting non-heat-treated stones with remarkable colour and clarity to create some of the most covetable diamond engagement rings we have seen in a long time.
Given Gabrielle Chanel’s superstitious nature and obsession with certain talismans or lucky charms, the Maison that bears her name is spoilt for choice when it comes to iconic motifs. The Les Intemporels collection incorporates four of these - the star, the camellia, the ribbon and the lion - in a collection of white gold jewellery set with diamonds, pearls, spinels and sapphires. We were particularly bowled over by the Ruban, or Ribbon, collection, which includes a stunning Couture triple-strand pearl necklace accented with a diamond bow.
With Baselworld coming up in only two months time, followed by the Couture Show Las Vegas in May and another Biennale de Paris scheduled for September, we can't wait to see what jewellery delights 2016 holds in store for us.
Read more on the latest trends in the world of high jewellery 2015