You might think that there could be no stone left unturned when it comes to Chanel delving into the storied history of Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel’s archives and drawing inspiration. But for their latest Fine Jewelry collection, the brand looked to the designer’s love of exotic Coromandel screens to create a collection of exceptional, exquisite treasures.
Made up of 59 pieces, 24 of which are one-offs, the Coromandel Fine Jewelry collection beautifully dances around three themes close to the designer’s heart: florals, notably Coco’s beloved Camellia; animals, focusing on the types normally found on the ancient Coromandel screens; and minerals, echoing her love of precious stones.
Legend has it that Coco always travelled with her beloved screens, as they’d make her feel at home wherever she was in the world. This season, these very screens provide a wealth of inspiration for new jewels. Firstly, the new fine jewelry collection is focused around a color palette inspired by the lacquers found on Coromandel screens. Green Tsavorite garnets and emeralds, red spinels and rubies, and deep black onyx are used throughout the precious collection, reflecting ancient Chinese art. Further inspiration can be found on a reversible cuff, shaped to mimic the geometric structure of the screens. The same cuff also features acute attention to detail and a yellow diamond that pivots to be visible when worn either-way, while a necklace in yellow gold, dotted with clouds of mother of pearl and diamonds evokes the landscapes typically found on the screens.
At the heart of the Precious in Flight theme, birds appear with twinkling diamonds as feathered plumage, like this Précieux Envol necklace that took more than 980 hours of work to create. Each piece is carefully handcrafted in the Maison’s workshop on 18 Place Vendôme, Paris, illustrating the savoir-faire and impeccable craftsmanship that can be found throughout the iconic French fashion house, not dissimilar to the ancient Chinese artists who labored over Coco’s favorite Coromandel screens many centuries before.
“I’ve loved Chinese screens since I was 18-years-old…I nearly fainted with joy when, entering a Chinese shop, I saw a Coromandel for the first time…” - Gabrielle Chanel
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