The variations on the animal and floral theme are countless and the interpretations infinite. At Chanel, the Sous le signe du Lion collection interprets every facet of the king of the jungle through highly modern variations. Mademoiselle Chanel’s favorite animal, already proposed in elegant jewelry options in 2012, now appears in an entirely new aesthetic guise. Leaping from a yellow gold monolith, this arty lion neither bares its teeth nor shows its claws. Instead, it caresses the wrist in the form of a cuff bracelet featuring pure, geometric lines.
The Carpe Koï cuff model by Van Cleef & Arpels is just as gently enveloping. More bracelet than watch, this one-of-a-kind creation inspired by Japanese culture highlights nature in movement in the Zen gardens of the land of the rising sun. Skillfully set yellow sapphires join with spessartine garnets in forming an array of subtly graded orangey hues, while Paraïba tourmalines and diamonds bring to mind the tumultuous softness of sea life. This stunning example of the goldsmith’s art features 8,000 colored stones set with remarkable perseverance – a quality symbolized by the Koi carp. As well as inspiring shapes, nature also sees its colors transposed into jewelry through subtle combinations of precious stones. With the Pushkar ring from the new Cartier Haute Joaillerie Etourdissant collection, the Parisian Maison reinterprets the motif of foliage with saturated colors. Finely engraved mandarin garnets, tsavorite garnets and tanzanites contrast with cabochon-cut black opals and brilliant-cut diamonds.
While nature offers an abundance of colors and shapes, the floral motif is consistently explored by jewelry designers. Powerful or delicate, monochrome or multicolored, the flower is a favorite theme when it comes to jewelry creations, across all cultures and eras. At de Grisogono, subtly shaded pink, yellow, green and blue sapphire petals surrounding a shimmering pearl slip onto the finger with both grace and gaiety. At Graff, the floral motif is simpler with more streamlined contours. Inspired by the flower of the same name, the Carissa collection highlights this design with incredible simplicity through a composition of carefully set sapphires and diamonds. At Bvlgari, the Giardini Italiani collection is an invitation to a bucolic stroll through a precious Italian-style garden where emerald flowers bloom on a bed of mother-of-pearl and platinum. And finally, for Bucherer, a veritable bouquet of cherry flowers unfurls around the neck. White and pink quartz, dainty corollae set with finely set diamonds and pink sapphires transform the jewel into a piece of romantic poetry.
Only Gübelin’s interpretation of nature is undoubtedly less explicit. One must allow the gaze to wander through the inclusions found inside the precious stones – such as the “gardens” of an emerald – to understand the inspiration that led Gübelin to create a new line christened Deeply Inspired. Three collections bearing evocative names – Mystical Garden, Deep Sea and Glowing Fire – illustrate the strength and beauty of the elements. Jewelry and nature sometimes connect… quite naturally.