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From the best high jewellery piece to one studded with coloured gemstones, we bring you the top five jewellery pieces in 2016.
Award: Best Classic Style
The rose cut dates to as far back as the 1500s and was commonly seen in 18th-century jewellery. One of the most famous rose-cut diamonds is the Great Mogul. A property of Shah Jahan, the fifth Mughal emperor, it was believed to have been discovered in 1650 in a South Indian mine and transformed from a rough to a rose-cut gem of 280 carats by a Venetian cutter. Its ownership was transferred to Nadir Shah in 1739 when Persia invaded India.
Unfortunately, the stone mysteriously disappeared after the assassination of the Persian ruler in 1747.
History and provenance has imbued many a rose-cut diamond with a certain old-world romance and this is where most of the style’s appeal lies today. Damiani Juliette collection is a celebration of the beauty of this timeless cut. Comprising necklaces, earrings, bracelets and rings, it mounts rose-cut diamonds on semicircles and links them up into elegant chandeliers or curvaceous forms that move with the wearer or wrap around a finger or wrist perfectly.
2. Pave Tiffany Setting
Brand: Tiffany & Co.
Award: Best Bridal Jewellery
In 1886, Charles Lewis Tiffany unveiled a revolutionary way to set diamonds – the founder of Tiffany & Co lifted them above the ring band and held them in place with six prongs so that the light reflection from the gems can be maximised, further enhancing their fire and brilliance. Prior to this, diamonds were contained within bezels and mounted close to the band, a setting style that blocked the light and dulled their sparkle. Today, the Tiffany Setting is one of the most popular setting styles for solitaire diamond engagement rings, and has been adopted by jewellers worldwide.
This year marks the 130th anniversary of the Tiffany Setting. In celebration of this significant milestone in its history, the American jeweller created the Pave Tiffany Setting collection of just 130 rings with centre stones ranging from 1.5 to more than six carats, each fully set with pave diamonds on the band and prongs.
The collection is inspired by a unique ring featuring a single 8.55-carat round brilliant diamond set in the Tiffany Setting and held above a dazzling band of hundreds of pave diamonds. Unveiled with the 2016 Blue Book Collection
2016 Blue Book Collection, the stunner was immediately snapped up by a discerning collector.
3. La Nature De Chaumet
Award: Best High Jewellery
Two words are synonymous with Chaumet: royalty and nature. The maison had often dressed the former and consistently used the latter as inspiration for its designs. La Nature de Chaumet is the new high jewellery collection from the brand that combines both royalty and nature. Four motifs from nature are used – the lily, laurel, oak and ear of wheat – and it’s no coincidence that each is closely associated with powerful figures in history and mythology.
The lily is the emblem of French kings. In the pieces inspired by this noble flower, red spinels and rhodolite garnets exude power and passion, while green Paraiba tourmalines call to mind summers in beautifully manicured French gardens. The creations inspired by the laurel are an ode to the Greek god Apollo. The blue sapphires signify his strength, while pink spinels represent the love between him and Daphne. The oak has close associations with Zeus and is believed to be the link between heaven and earth. Pink, purple and green from spinels, sapphires and tourmalines express the beauty of our planet. The ear of wheat is believed to be a gift from the gods to mortals, so the jewellery carrying this motif are created from diamonds, the most precious of all gemstones.
4. Sparkling Cluster
Brand: Harry Winston
Award: Best Diamonds
Harry Winston’s passion for diamonds is almost legendary – it’s believed that he used to carry diamonds in his pockets so that the gems accompanied him everywhere he went. In creating jewellery for his own brand, the famed diamond collector believed in allowing the gems to guide the design, always working to highlight the natural beauty of the stones and allowing them to take centre stage in
The Sparkling Cluster collection is testament to this philosophy. Pear-shaped and round brilliant diamonds are set fluidly so that they almost resemble the most dazzling of nature’s creations – scattered stars in the night sky.
5. Emeraude En Majeste
Brand: Van Cleef & Arpels
Award: Best Coloured Gems
The affinity Van Cleef & Arpels has for emeralds goes back 50 years. In December 1966, Pierre Arpels received a commission from the Iranian royal family to create a coronation crown for the new princess. Eleven months later, the Shah of Iran placed a crown, comprising a shell-shaped emerald of more than 50 carats and a hexagonal one of 150 carats, on Shahbanu Farah’s head. This masterpiece was accompanied by necklaces, diadems and earrings for the other princesses as well as the empress. In all, almost 2,000 carats of emeralds set in designs by Van Cleef & Arpels were showcased at the coronation ceremony. This was only the beginning of the French jeweller’s love affair with the green gem. Following the coronation, the maison also created emerald jewellery for Wallis Simpson, the duchess of Windsor, princess Faiza of Egypt, and Sita Devi, the maharani of Baroda.
The Emeraude en Majeste collection is a tribute to Van Cleef & Arpels’ relationship with the emerald. Comprising more than 1,400 carats of the stone collected over a decade, it brings together gems from places as diverse as Colombia and Zambia.