Beyond its well-loved travel attractions, Italy is a fine jewellery haven founded in centuries-old family tradition of goldsmithing and gemsetting
With a long and illustrious history, Italy as a travel destination can be wildly overwhelming. Surely, the country wasn’t built in a day — ancient mythology, mighty empires, and the Renaissance are just a few gold threads wonderfully woven into the country’s rich historical tapestry.
Bursting with artistic and cultural significance, Italy houses some of the world’s most impressive works of art. Nowhere on Earth has there been an overabundance of UNESCO World Heritage Sites than in Italy. From opulent basilicas to eerily majestic tombs, Italy offers a glimpse into glorious bygone eras. Italians love the sweet life and, when in Italy, one is expected to do what the Italians do. Indulge in the opulence of Rome, bask in the Neoclassical beauty of Milan, take a scenic wine tasting tour of Tuscany, explore the labyrinthine canals of Venice, or go hiking in the colourful villages of Cinque Terre — your options are limitless and the hardest decision you will ever make is which city to visit first.
Ancient mythology, mighty empires, and the Renaissance are just a few gold threads wonderfully woven into Italy’s rich historical tapestry
With so much beauty around them it’s no wonder the Italians love making beautiful things, too. Italian fashion is always on point, and their designs never go out of style. The city has had a long love affair with high fashion and jewellery making, and most shops still create their masterpieces using age-old traditions. Tasteful, timeless, and authentic are what shoppers come to expect in every part of Italy. So whether you’re here to shop or simply to admire, here’s a look at some Italian jewellery brands that are sure to leave you breathless.
Inside Fope’s boutique in Vicenza
Nicknamed “City of Gold,” the northeastern city of Vicenza is revered for its long history of goldsmithing. Here, transforming gold and other precious metals into works of art is a way of life, making Vicenza a premier jewellery hub in the country.
Vicenza’s production powerhouse has given birth to a breed of manufacturers who continue to keep the tradition alive. FOPE is a goldsmith company that has evolved into an international jewellery brand. Founded in 1929 by Umberto Cazzola, the business is now in its fourth generation and is looking strong to develop the brand even further. Blending craftsmanship with modern technology, FOPE meticulously crafts each piece of jewellery in-house before shipping them to more than 50 countries worldwide.
Eka Tiny bracelets in rose gold and white gold with diamonds
From its Novecento classic lines to its latest Flex’it creations, FOPE collections share a sense of subtle luxury, which can be defined both as timeless and modern, and appealing to a wide audience.
Founded in 1929 by Umberto Cazzola, FOPE is now in its fourth generation and is looking strong to develop the brand even further
FOPE’s original and patented “roll on” mesh chain bracelets are crafted solely in 18K gold and rendered fully flexible, thanks to tiny gold springs hidden between each link. The technology used here was first introduced in the early 1960s when the second generation of the Cazzolas invented and developed it for Swiss haute horlogerie brands. Little did the Cazzolas know that the bracelets they were producing were to become FOPE’s signature jewellery line. The company’s Flex’it invention is patented, and to this day, FOPE is the only fine jewellery brand that can make flexible mesh chains by using solely gold — no other materials are added.
Vendôme rings in white and rose gold and diamonds
The expertise behind each piece is outstanding. The company produces its own gold alloy, which gives its rose gold a distinct colour. It takes around 18 months to go from the designers’ sketches to the production of a new collection, with each new design tested with 12,000 tractions to guarantee an exceptional resilience and durability.
Prima diamond stud earrings
FOPE is featuring three lines under its 2018 Flex’it collections: Eka Tiny, Vendôme, and Prima. The Eka Tiny is a derivative of the larger Flex’it family, and is available in solid gold or with a white gold and diamond rondel. The Vendôme is characterised by an oval mesh chain, which gives the whole set of jewels a subtly elegant touch. Prima features an incredibly flexible and resistant fine slim design while concealing dozens of 18K gold springs. The latest variants of the Prima feature different rondels, several new necklets, and other design developments including the MiaLuce, a luxury suite with diamonds and multiple layers of mesh chains.
Prima flexible bracelet in white and rose gold and diamonds
Bangle in white and rose gold with diamonds
Verdi’s philosophy is to emphasise the personality of the product over and above its commercial character
Valenza in the Piedmont region carries a long history of jewellery making. The city is known for its large population of high jewellery brands, training academies, and talented goldsmiths and artisans. With a passionate and talented workforce, the Valenza jewellery business has become one of the driving forces of the Italian economy
Valenza-based Verdi has been a major contributor in the local jewellery industry. Founded in 1971 by Giuseppe Verdi and now headed by his son Marco, the company has put innovation at its core — from gemstone research to cutting and setting techniques. The company’s philosophy is to emphasise the personality of the product over and above its commercial character.
Verdi Ring in white gold with diamonds and tanzanite
Excellence, Italian Style, Personality and Womanhood are Verdi’s four major collections, each opulently designed with colour and form in mind. Verdi has its own playful way of combining gemstones and colours. Eye-catching and whimsical, Verdi’s jewellery pieces evoke the emotion of the designer, and are made for women who want to stand out and make a fashion statement.
Sofia ring and bangle set
Moraglione’s success is the fruit of a long history of passion and perseverance. The company has spent almost a century perfecting its craft, developing jewellery pieces that are not only aesthetically appealing but also highly durable. Founded in 1922 by Massimo Moraglione, the brand has stayed true to its commitment of creating high-quality jewellery.
Since 1922, Moraglione has stayed true to its commitment of creating high-quality jewellery
In 1943, brothers Marco and Pierino took it as a mission to strengthen the brand amid the backdrop of the World War II and its aftermath. With so many hurdles ahead of them, the company remained focused on crafting pieces that echo the “Made in Italy” label. Among its highly celebrated collections are Anastasia, inspired by Princess Anastasia from Russia; Letizia, a tribute to Queen Letizia of Spain; and Madame Butterfly, which celebrates the butterfly in many different forms.
Letizia double ring
“Italian jewellery is always innovative and ahead of style and trends. This is how we conceive our designs as well,” says Emiliana Caprioglio, International Sales Director of Moraglione. “We just have to be careful, though. Sometimes we are too innovative and the clients do not understand the designs right away. It is only after one season that the past collection picks up momentum and becomes popular.”
Anastasia necklace, ring, and earrings set
Moraglione specialises in doublettes and triplettes, which can be a pro and a con for the company. “Not many Italian producers are able to work and realise them. It takes skills and time. Of course, people do understand fine gems better, that’s why for us giving proper training to the end-retailer is fundamental,” Caprioglio notes.