Outstanding pieces of the day include Chanel’s celestial creations, and a sensational necklace made out of hollowed-out pebbles from Boucheron
Paris is burning! And I’m not just talking about the rising temperature here. Haute Couture Week is underway in Paris right now, but what we’ve got our eyes on are the incandescent creations about to be unleashed by jewellery’s greatest minds in the form of haute joaillerie. Kicking off our glittering week in the City of Lights is Chanel, presenting their ‘1932’ high jewellery collection and Bijoux de Diamants re-editions (more on this later), and Boucheron, who unveils their second high jewellery drop of the year: the Carte Blanche ‘Ailleurs’ high jewellery collection.
Chanel takes a star turn with its ‘1932’ high jewellery collection and ‘Bijoux de Diamants’ re-editions
“Dense as they are, [diamonds] represent the greatest worth in the smallest volume,” Gabrielle Chanel once said. Well, the fearless fashion maverick might be starstruck, like we were, by the sheer brilliance (and size) of the maison’s latest creations from the ‘1932’ high jewellery collection.
But first! It’s a perfectly sunny day in Paris and we’re taking a walk back in time: stepping into the Grand Palais Éphémère, the cavernous space has been transformed into a a sparkling nightscape. We’re greeted by the blown up invitation of Gabrielle Chanel’s first and only high jewellery collection, Bijoux De Diamants, created in 1932 to revitalise the diamond industry at the behest of the London Diamond Corporation. To celebrate the 90 years since this historic collection, French maison has reissued the stunning creations—as breathtaking now as they were in 1932.
“I wanted to cover women in constellations,” the designer said at the time of the collection’s unveiling, and it was not a declaration she made in jest. Comets dressed in diamonds encircle the neck and wrist (as a necklace and bracelet respectively), stars are fixed in mesmerising arrangements (in one instance, as a set of three brooches that can be placed according to its owner’s fancy), and my personal favourite: a fabulously oversized brooch inspired by the rays of the sun. The re-editions of the Bijoux de Diamants collection were a celestial sight to behold, but also laid the groundwork for the house’s new ‘1932’ haute joaillerie collection.
In case you missed it: First Look: Introducing 1932, Chanel’s Latest High Jewellery Collection
The divine symbols that Chanel drew inspiration from for her Bijoux de Diamants collection were expanded in the new high jewellery collection. Movement and motion were key for the creative minds in the house’s jewellery ateliers—trailing comet tails fashioned in diamonds and sapphires, dynamic designs meant to seduce the viewer’s gaze, and brilliant combinations of precious stones (opals and diamonds? Inspired).
Another stroke of brilliance in the ‘1932’ high jewellery collection: the transformable element of the majority of their pieces. Many of you would have already seen the Allure Céleste necklace (top right), which features an eye-watering 55.55-carat blue sapphire, and seen how it can be worn as a necklace, three brooches and a bracelet. Other pieces also have the same versatility, being able to metamorphosise from necklaces to rings, brooches or earrings. Divine genius? I definitely think so.
Boucheron gets inspired by otherworldly landscapes
Crossing to the Place Vendôme, home to the world’s finest jewellers, Boucheron presented their second high jewellery drop of the year, its Carte Blanche collection, where artistic director Claire Choisne is given free reign to design anything she wants. This collection takes the theme of ‘Ailleurs’, which translates from French to ‘elsewhere’, and Choisne deftly creates five worlds to house her creations, all inspired by the natural world.
Of particular note are the way that she has elevated natural materials, such as rattan, rosewood, pebbles, and real butterfly wings, among others, to add an element of verisimilitude to her designs. Shells also feature heavily in the collection, seen on brooches, necklaces and a diamond collar with a carved mother-of-pearl cross section of the shells.
My top pick from the collection? The ingeniously crafted necklace made of hollowed-out pebbles decorated with diamonds, which showcase the natural beauty of the pebbles while keeping the entire piece light and wearable. A piece to collect for both its artistic beauty, as well as its technical mastery.
As the glittering week goes on, stay tuned for all our updates right here, and head over to our Instagram Stories to get a first look with us from the presentations in Paris.