Robb Design Portfolio: Grand Illusion

The House of Chanel (800.550.0005, www.chanel.com) has long been inspired by the designer’s life and legend, and its new high-jewelry collection is drawn from a particularly artistic moment: Coco Chanel’s 1925 collaboration with Jean Cocteau, when she designed the costumes for his play Orpheus. The collection, called Contrastes, was unveiled at the July haute couture shows in Paris. In a surreal presentation that might have been art-directed by Cocteau, Chanel’s Place Vendôme boutique was transformed with dramatic lighting and props, like a white staircase to nowhere, with extravagant jewels replacing actors in the spotlight. The designs, mysterious and dreamlike, explore a series of contradictory qualities: darkness and light, softness and rigidity, permanence and ephemerality. The rock-crystal-and-diamond pieces especially capture Chanel’s innovative spirit. The large, organically shaped crystals are inset with a swirling arabesque of diamonds, creating a fascinating illusion of diamonds floating within the stones. Only six of these one-of-kind pieces were created; prices are available upon request.

Chanel, Mikimoto, Todd Reed, and others reinterpret the classic gem…
The reportedly $2 million Pearl Egg is Fabergé’s first piece in a new series of private commissions…
Two extremely rare jewels, one of which was owned by Napoléon’s niece, will headline the sale…
Photo by Bertrand Moulin
A cloak of secrecy has long kept the jewelry trade hidden from public view...
The show will spotlight a selection of rare pieces from seven of the world’s top diamond houses…
Photo by Doyle New York
In its 53 years, Doyle has auctioned the estates of Gloria Swanson, Bette Davis, and other film...
Exceptional colored gemstones were in high demand at the annual fair…
In celebration of Easter, here are some of Robb Report's favorite Fabergé eggs...
The internally flawless type IIa stone is one of the largest and rarest in existence…
The Milanese jeweler celebrated the opening with one-off jewelry pieces inspired by paintings…