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Posts Tagged Bracelets

A Stunning Art Deco Emerald & Diamond Tassel Bracelet

by on September 1st, 2009

Art Deco Emerald & Diamond Tassel Bracelet, $68,000

With the end of summer, pearls and corals are put away for another year and thoughts turn to the fall with the start of dinner parties, opera and the charity circuit. Maybe not in that order and perhaps different social functions (the head of our watch department asked me to include Giants tickets and tailgates), but for many, diamonds and other precious gems take center stage for increasingly formal events.

This magnificent sugarloaf emerald and diamond bracelet is a breathtaking example of those design elements that made the Art Deco period so special. It is as tactile as it is beautiful with a sinuous softness, each and every link crumples on touch like silk. There is a paradox in this object that is startlingly striking yet understated; everything about it is of outstanding quality.

Tassel bracelets were used with great effect during the Art Deco period, Cartier favoring a foxtail style tassel and Van Cleef & Arpels an exotic cupola (as illustrated in this bracelet). This bracelet shows off many of the diamond shapes that were created during that time period such as the baguette, bullet and lozenge cuts.

Created in the mid-1920’s, this bracelet exemplifies style, quality and beauty. It’s as flattering on a wrist as any bracelet you will find, and the ideal companion for any glamorous, fall gathering.

Verdura, Coco Chanel and the Iconic Maltese Cross Cuff Bracelet

by on August 1st, 2009

Fulco di Verdura & Coco Chanel

Born in Sicily in 1898, Duke Fulco di Verdura is without question one of the most important jewelry designers of the 20th century.

Characterized by large, boldly colored gemstones, and with a taste for gold settings and natural forms- such as animals, seashells and flowers- Verdura’s designs first manifested themselves in brilliant watercolors. Only later, were these sketches transformed into magnificent bespoke jewelry.

Verdura’s designs never conformed to the trends of the time: diamond jewelry, usually set in platinum. He boldly created his own designs, which have influenced generations of jewelers ever since.

Verdura 5-Stone Cuff Bracelets, from $28,000

Verdura 5-Stone Cuff Bracelets, from $28,000

It was this non-conformism that first impressed Coco Chanel, who was introduced to him in Venice in 1925. Chanel, already at the height of her fame, recruited Verdura on the spot, commissioning him to create her boutique jewelry line and to redesign many of the important pieces in her own jewelry collection.

In 1934, a year after opening a workshop in New York City, Verdura crafted a cuff bracelet that was built around a Maltese Cross given to Chanel by Grand Duke Dmitri of Russia. The Maltese Cross became one of Verdura’s most celebrated motifs and helped to propel Verdura into the spotlight. By the late 1930s, Hollywood starlets, including Katherine Hepburn and Greta Garbo, as well as aristocrats, such as the Duchess of Windsor and Countess Mona Von Bismarck, amongst many others were clamoring for his jewelry.

Today, Ward Landrigan, the CEO of Verdura, has updated the Maltese Cross cuff with a more modern and comfortable design. Betteridge just received the first of the newly designed cuffs to leave Verdura’s New York workshop in citrine, black jade and gold, as well as citrine, cocobola wood and gold. The cuffs are a spectacular tribute to Duke Fulco di Verdura’s impressive career.

A Magnificent Victorian Amethyst and Diamond Bangle

by on March 12th, 2009

Amethyst & Diamond Bangle, Circa 1890

In the Victorian era, jewelry was made and worn on a grand scale. Aristocratic women wore massive tiaras and corsage ornaments amongst elaborate silks and brocades. It was an era of glamour and opulence, especially in nineteenth century England.

Over a hundred years after their creation, many Victorian pieces still represent the height of fashion, a testament to their brilliant design. Although they may be worn alone with great simplicity, their dramatic impact endures.

This remarkable amethyst and diamond bangle features a number of characteristics that are typical of Victorian design, including foliate sprays and clusters, as well as dramatic swaths of color. In combination with meticulous craftsmanship, these elements bestow a sculptural form.

This bracelet belonged to Mary Russell, the Duchess of Bedford and Dame Commander of the British Empire.

Born as Mary du Caurroy Tribe, in 1865 at Stockbridge, Hampshire, she married Lord Herbrand Russell.

In a period when women were largely forced to assume subservient roles, Mary was a firebrand for women’s rights. She was a vocal supporter of the women’s suffrage movement, joining the Women’s Tax Resistance League to protest the disenfranchisement of women.

She was invested as Dame of Grace, Venerable Order of Saint John of Jerusalem and as a fellow at the Linnean Society of the Imperial College.

Mary was also an acclaimed aviator and ornithologist. She broke the records for the longest flights to India and South Africa. Moreover, her journals regarding migratory patterns on Fair Isle were published posthumously.

At the age of 71, Mary left Woburn Abbey on her way to Fair Isle in a De Haviland Gipsy Moth plane and crashed into the chilly waters of the North Sea. Mary’s body was never recovered.