Chapter three of Gucci’s Hortus Deliciarum high jewellery collection is a riot of colour

Gucci drops the third instalment of its high jewellery collection during Haute Couture Week and it’s a delight.

Jessica Chastain wearing Gucci jewels

Almost four years after making its high jewellery debut in Paris, Gucci has unveiled the third chapter of the Hortus Deliciarum collection. Evolving its signature painterly approach to high jewellery craftsmanship, it is more considered than previous chapters and surprisingly understated in places – and is all the better for it. 

With these newest Hortus Deliciarum creations, the Italian fashion house known for its romantic eclecticism plays to its strengths. Gone are the micro-mosaics depicting Roman landmarks – undoubtedly impressive but not to everyone’s taste – replaced with space-age cocktail rings topped with some of the juiciest gems of Haute Couture Week, fashion-centric pieces featuring Gucci’s Lion Head and Tiger Head motifs and a waterfall-inspired suite trimmed with Victorian-esque stars and bows, all the more beautiful because it is set only with diamonds.

Finding your stride in the world of high jewellery when you are a relative newcomer is no easy feat. When you are Gucci, a fashion house, first and foremost, that has openly courted Gen Z and millennial clients, the challenges are even greater. Paring back the baroque and rococo flourishes that were present in earlier Hortus Deliciarum pieces, the latest jewels reveal a sharper focus, with less historical references and more extravagant coloured gemstones.

High jewellery ring by Gucci
A series of space-age cocktail rings reveal some of the most impressive centre stones in Gucci’s Hortus Deliciarum collection, including this hexagonal 14.70 carat tanzanite.

A true gemmological feast for the eyes, a series of towering, diamond-embellished solitaire rings showcase some of the chapter’s most impressive centre stones, including a hexagonal 14.70 carat tanzanite and an 11.50 carat heart shape pink tourmaline. A heavily saturated 9.40 carat emerald cut indicolite, a rare type of blue tourmaline displaying a beautiful indigo colour, has also been Guccified, set east-west among an ornate setting of yellow gold and diamond feathers. 

Born to be on the red carpet, the latest drop of Hortus Deliciarum creations is perfectly timed to coincide with awards season. Indeed, Gucci ambassador Jessica Chastain has already been spotted in two vibrant Hortus Deliciarum creations at the 2023 Screen Actors Guild Awards in LA: chandelier earrings featuring two lion’s heads clasping heart shape rubellites in their jaws and a huge tourmaline ring, worn across two fingers. A close-up of the ring reveals what makes this jewel so Gucci: through the sleek, emerald cut facets of the centre stone, a starry scene is revealed. 

During his time as creative director of Gucci, Alessandro Michele proved to be a master of this kind of childlike whimsy. Now that he has departed the fashion powerhouse, will we see a new direction for high jewellery at Gucci? Only time will tell. 

Click the link to read more about Gucci on The Jewellery Editor


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