CAST IN STONE | Solitaire Magazine

CAST IN STONE

As if making up for the low expectation due to a massively downsized exhibition this year, jewelry brands rallied with a scintillating array of new pieces

“Baselworld is the platform for the whole industry, not only watches, but also jewelry, gemstones and related branches,” says Mr. Michel Loris-Melikoff, managing director of Baselworld.

Participating brands brightened up the hall with jewelry and jewelry watches. Avant-garde designs took on innovative color combinations, forms and materials. Here are some trends expected this year.

Ablaze With Colour

The show wowed with an abundance of sparkling stones. Jewel-encrusted timepieces and high jewelry were ablaze with colors.

In one mega-statement spectacle, multi-colored gemstones came together in this year’s most exciting jewelry watches. Displaying a variety of colored nuances, sapphires are spotted in several key pieces. The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Day-Date 36 in white gold has a beautiful gradation of baguette-cut sapphires in a spectrum of colors as hour indicators.

All colours of the rainbow come alive in Hublot’s Big Bang One Click Rainbow watch, further enhanced by the magenta shade of pink sapphires. The joyful watch translates eight pop colors with a variety of sparkling gemstones: rubies, pink sapphires, amethysts, blue sapphires, blue topazes, tsavorites, yellow sapphires and orange sapphires.

The full colour spectrum is expressed through multicoloured baguette-cut sapphires in shades ranging from orange to violet through yellow, green, blue and indigo in Chopard’s Imperiale Joaillerie Rainbow bejeweled watches, complemented with either a white or gray dial. The stones are meticulously sorted and set so that their colors blend in a subtle gradient inspired by the glistening reflections of sunshine after rain.

Chopard, Chanel and Graff and confirm two more color trends. One, where significant-sized precious rare red rubies, blue sapphires and green emeralds in high jewelry dominate, and another where yellow is extravagantly articulated with yellow diamonds.

Graff’s Inspired By Twombly collection presents a diamond necklace with an important detachable 32ct cushion-cut blue Burmese sapphire drop. From Chopard’s Red Carpet collection, a jewelry cuff watch is set with two pear-shaped rubies of 3ct each, and another, with two pear-shaped fancy light yellow diamonds weighing 4.2ct each.

Chanel’s Golden Frog table clock and ring showcases a magnificent 22ct yellow sapphire. Graff also presented a medley of rare yellow diamond jewelry watches. In high jewelry pieces, a diamond necklace features a 40.32ct fancy intense yellow diamond, and a nearly 108ct fancy intense yellow diamond forms the center of a brooch.

Setting Stones

Pioneered by the watch industry, “snow” or “random” gem-setting is the technique of highlighting the shimmering effect created by pavé diamonds.

Round diamonds of different diameters are put together in such a way as to leave the least possible visible gold base surface between the stones. This demanding technique of setting results is a shimmering radiance that is unique. The new Rolex Oyster Perpetual Day-Date 36 Dial is fully paved with 542 diamonds in random setting.

 

The dial, bezel, crown and bracelet of the latest Patek Philippe Twenty-4 Automatic Haute Joaillerie timepiece are paved with an impressive 3,238 diamonds, totaling more than 17ct. In compliance with the Patek Philippe Seal, all diamonds are of Top Wesselton Pure quality and impeccable cut.

The first MB&F ladies watch, Legacy Machine FlyingT, has 558 diamonds totaling about 3.5ct in its paved diamond-set edition.

Chopard presents the new Magical setting, an innovative technique where the center stone of each cluster design is set in barely-there claws, whereas the stones around it are held in place, as if by magic. How is this achieved? The claws generally used to secure the stone are moved below the girdle of each surrounding stone, making the metal disappear entirely from the surface of the jewel.

“As a great lover of precious stones, I like to devise the most unexpected ways to enhance them. Thanks to our Magical setting technique, developed through the genius and virtuosity of our haute joaillerie workshops, we have the ability to make them appear to be floating while exuding brilliance and light,” reveals Ms. Caroline Scheufele, Chopard co-president and artistic director.

Material Shapes

Discreet elegance is abandoned for dramatic sculptural forms of opulence.

For Chopard, a unique material association together with the theme of love inspires the Red Carpet Jewelry set comprising a necklace, ring and a pair of earrings. The parure is created with heart-shaped tanzanites, Paraíba tourmalines, amethysts and paved diamonds set in 18k white gold and titanium, which is one of the strongest metals on earth but is only one-fourth the weight of gold.

Italian jeweller Roberto Coin’s new Rock and Diamonds Collection is designed to capture the rebel vibe of the 1990s glam rock style. Futuristic, architectural and strikingly sculptural in design, the pieces bring together diamonds and gold spikes. “Rock reminds me of the cheerful moments of my youth; it evokes hope and makes me want to dance,” Mr. Coin says.

Mother Nature continues to reign as designs of bejeweled frogs, snakes, bird feathers and waterfalls interpret flora and fauna in organic forms.

Jacob & Co’s ruby and diamond chandelier earrings with baguette-cut rubies and diamonds, remind one of a cascading waterfall. In the new Born To Be Wild collection by Messika, designer Valerie Messika takes inspiration from the cockerel feather for chandelier earrings, along with traditional Native American headdresses decorated with eagle feathers.

A serpent shimmers in Bvlgari’s Serpenti Misteriosi Pallini Watch, in which the snake’s diamond-encrusted head conceals the dial beneath. Meanwhile Graff’s plume design high jewelry watch in emeralds and diamonds also hides a secret watch.

A golden frog comes alive in Chanel’s Golden Frog table clock and ring, a near replica of a frog sculpture from Gabrielle Chanel’s apartment. The frog holds the Premiere octagonal watch in its mouth, and a secret drawer contains a sapphire ring, which is interchangeable with the diamond-set watch.

A touch of playfulness added to high luxury make a special statement.