From Van Gogh’s twirling sun, through flocks of wading birds on Japanese prints, to Turner’s swirling skies, the celestial world and its wild inhabitants have always inspired the most beautiful works of art. Following the example of the great masters, Parisian jewellery house Chaumet also reached up to the heavens for inspiration for its new high- jewellery collection, Les Ciels de Chaumet (Skies of Chaumet), extending a journey that has celebrated nature since the maison’s inception in 1780.
Les Ciels de Chaumet comprises four lines, all featuring a pictorial and poetic theme, which come complete with tiaras, head jewellery, brooches, body ornaments, necklaces, pendant earrings and watches. According to Chaumet’s CEO Jean-Marc Mansvelt, the new collection shows how the jewellery house is moving forward with more contemporary styles by experimenting with new materials and techniques, while still adhering to house codes and trusted formulas.
“Elements of nature — the sky, the sun, the birds — have always been part of the creative DNA of Chaumet,” he says. “What we’re doing is to reinvent some aspects of fine- jewellery making by adding new perspectives and dimensions. We don’t try to adapt or twist or squeeze just to be trendy. Chaumet is what it is. This pleases our customers, even the younger ones, because they understand our heritage.”
The new collection starts with Les Caprices du Ciel (Capricious Sky), a suite of jewellery that attempts to capture the delicacy of clouds and the power of lightning. Illustrating the theme best is a stunning necklace featuring a host of glorious sapphires, amethysts and tanzanites and an exceptional 37.68-carat imperial topaz that serves as a detachable pendant.
Another showstopper is the Soleil Glorieux tiara. The colour palette may be simple, but this piece is still opulent and regal — set in white and yellow gold, a huge fancy-intense yellow diamond is the focal point, surrounded by clouds of cabochon-cut rock crystals and an array of diamonds.
Meanwhile, Les Couleurs du Ciel (Colours of the Sky) captures the magical allure of the sun in all its guises. Whether it’s the soft light of dawn, the uncompromising brilliance of midday or the Technicolor vibrancy of sunset, Les Couleurs du Ciel bursts with fiery hues.
Colourful spinels from Tanzania and Vietnam, ranging from blue and red to green and yellow, run through to compose a richly hued parure. A stunning piece is the Soleil de Minuit bracelet in white gold, which is set with five pear- shaped absinthe-green chrysoberyls totalling 6.29 carats.
Twinkling stars light up Les Fulgurances du Ciel (Dazzling Sky). The star motif is a favourite of Chaumet, having existed in its library of works for the past 200 years.
And what better way to show off a star-spangled night than crisp white diamonds floating like a galaxy of stars on the Étoiles Étoiles tiara? Complementary earrings feature strands of brilliant-cut diamonds cascading down like a starry waterfall.
There’s still plenty of colour elsewhere in this line. The Passages range of rings features large black Australian opals mixed with ice-blue and purple tourmalines. Exotic birds are placed in the spotlight in Les Habitants du Ciel (Inhabitants of the Sky), ably demonstrating the craftsmanship, virtuosity and creativity of Chaumet’s artisans. The Envol suite of bejewelled swallows — bodies encrusted by garnets of green African tsavorite, while diamond wings are tipped with orangey-yellow gems — shows the birds dipping and diving across a necklace, rings, earrings and brooches.
And in a joyous ode to the majestic crane, the Parade suite features the elegant bird in innovative designs. Standout pieces include a brooch in which a pair of birds with entwined necks dangle a large yellow diamond, and earrings that depict two separate avians clutching pink and blue sapphires.
The Les Ciels de Chaumet collection has already received rave reviews. With everything right going for it, it’s bound to become a coveted investment for those who can afford it.
For more information, visit chaumet.com.