In this past year, extreme anxiety and mind-numbing ennui more or less punctuated our lives. Every day rolled out like the one before, an endless cycle of waking up, watching the news and then wondering what to do. The jewellery world, however, was a little different. Periodically lit up with fascinating creations, high jewellery Maisons refused to give in to the sheer disappointment that was 2020. Right from the outset, jewellery collections launched by the Place Vendome Haute Joaillerie houses were defiant, bold, exquisite and dramatic, transporting jewellery lovers into as yet undiscovered worlds of wonder and beauty.
While most high jewellery collections launched in 2020 were outstanding, it would be wrong to say that I did not have a few favourites. Let’s start with Bulgari’s Baroko High Jewellery Collection. Opulence and colour are the two defining features of this collection. While each of the fifty or so one-of-a-kind high jewellery pieces were exquisite in their own way, there is one necklace that stole my heart. The Cabochon Exuberance necklace is a sumptuous offering of coloured gemstones, classic design and mesmerizing craftsmanship. Tanzanites, aquamarines, tourmalines and one rubellite, each cabochon gem perfectly smooth and exceptionally clear, as if lit from within. There is a certain sensuality to this necklace which I feel stems from the gems themselves There is also a richness which comes from more than just the gems-it is the design, the craftsmanship and ever-present spirit of Rome which makes this piece truly unforgettable.
Chopard thrilled jewellery lovers everywhere with its Red Carpet 2020 Collection. Inspired by Nature, this collection is a confection of jewels that are both symbolic and feature Fair-mined certified, ethical gems, highlighting the Maison’s emphasis on sustainable luxury. Exceptionally vibrant Columbian emeralds and sparkling white diamonds are featured in a suite of necklace and earrings designed which is my personal as garlands of flowers, what better way to celebrate Nature than through high jewellery pieces fashioned as flora? Looking beyond the exceptional gems, I was entranced by the skill and talent of the artisans of the Maison, whose painstaking dedication to beauty and precision, crafted such an outstanding suite.