The nearly 100-year-old pearl house Assael, known for its exquisite rare pearls, is turning its attention to wildlife preservation with the Endangered Species Collection by Julie Parker for Assael, a line of jewelry created in collaboration with the London designer Julie Parker. Each piece in the collection—featuring large-pendant necklaces as well as cuff links and a bracelet—depicts an animal known to be at risk of extinction, from a Siberian tiger to a polar bear. The 18-karat, white- or yellow-gold sculptures have simple diamond details or are entirely encrusted in the precious gems, with over a thousand diamonds adorning select pieces. Still, Assael keeps pearls at the heart of the collection with the use of rare cultured and South Sea baroque pearls, distinguishable by their irregular shapes.
The pearl purveyor originally debuted the series in 2013 and has since grown its roster to 24 distinct pieces (priced from $5,600), most recently debuting five of the collection’s most exclusive necklaces at this year’s Baselworld in March, including one depicting an African rhinoceros affixed with 1,227 10.38-carat diamonds ($89,500). Only five examples of each objet d’art will be made—echoing the scarcity of the species that inspired them—though Assael also accepts commissions for the Endangered Species Collection (by appointment only; price upon request). Proceeds from the collection benefit the Tusk conservation organization. (assael.com)