Upon entering the hushed, plush salons of the Place Vendôme, one might almost be tempted to slip on a pair of sunshades as protection from potential blinding. Even state-of-the-art autofocus cameras find it hard to cope with the countless reflections of the glittering diamonds that make it virtually impossible to adjust correctly. Welcome to the Parisian jewellery presentations, held as a prelude to the summer Fashion Week and making the most of the presence of thousands of buyers, bloggers and fashion journalists in order to flaunt their curves, their gems and their unbridled creativity.
Among the flurry of rings, necklaces, brooches, tiaras and earrings, the watch has a place all its own. Different themes give rise to a whole host of interpretations linked to various jewellery formats. The watch makes its presence felt by adopting a wide variety of forms. At Boucheron, the Plume de Paon d’Exception is entirely clad in white. Diamonds vie with the dazzling purity of white marble, the very material that served to build the Taj Mahal, as indeed one would expect from a collection named Bleu de Jodhpur…
On a more familiar note, Bulgari once again interprets the extremely flexible Serpenti concept in lacquered or exquisitely gemset versions. As ever, the secret of the House lies in its art of combining colours: a coiled body composed of red and blue scales against a pink gold background remains a fascinating option.
The extravagant profusion of stones remains one of the key features of these models, incorporated within extremely precious collections composed of one-off creations. Chopard for example fully exploits the marquise-cut diamond in its Green Carpet watch: 55 stones featuring this exquisite cut surround this graceful timepiece. When it comes to colour, the brand has opted for the blue of sapphires, with 278 of these gems lending their vibrant shade to the 1,224 diamonds on the Heure du Diamant watch. The same chromatic choice is made by deGrisogono for its white gold Grappoli watch set with 70 tanzanites, 519 blue sapphires and 173 diamonds, most of them briolette-cut and suspended in mid-air like tassels – a longstanding brand speciality.
The colour that seems to be the guiding thread at these presentations is the shimmering rainbow hue of a highly distinctive stone: opal. While some say that it brings bad luck and superstitions with regard to stones tend to be tenacious, this has not prevented Louis Vuitton from choosing it to craft the dial of its Majestic watch that is part of its Acte V ‘The Escape’ Louis Vuitton collection. Piaget has opted for pink natural opal to adorn the dial of a pink gold Gala timepiece. And finally, Dior uses it to adorn its Mini D Précieuse, a dainty little model abundantly set with diamonds and rubies.
Diamond nonetheless remains the queen of precious stones. Breguet has chosen it to create its craziest jewellery watch to date: Be Crazy appears embellished with 1,000 baguette-cut diamonds totalling more than 70 carats, most of them mobile and set on articulated appendages. They literally give life and movement to this extraordinary ‘pompon’ watch, a one-of-a-kind creation that confirms Breguet’s ambitions in the field of jewellery and its activity dedicated to women.
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