10 Ideas That Shine For 2018
1-GET RED CARPET READY
Awards season started on Sunday night, January 7, 2018, with the 75th Golden Globes, which kicked off red carpet jewelry watching. This season started off with the actresses and attendees dressed in black to show solidarity with sexual misconduct victims. Empowering and elegant, many of these women are part of the Times Up movement, a legal defense organization funded by over 300 women in Hollywood to help women in and outside of Hollywood fight for legal rights and to stop sexual harassment. The start of a trend for strong statements has begun. Tune in to see if this direction continues (which we think it will) and what other celebrity trends will be made as the red carpet arrivals continue with The 24th Annual (SAG) Screen Actors Guild Awards on Sunday, Jan. 21, 2018. This will culminate with the big event—the 90th Academy Awards, which will be held on Sunday, March 4, 2018.
2-HIT THE BOOKS
If you didn’t catch the short but spectacular exhibit Résonances de Cartier, which was open to the public at the Cartier Mansion in New York from Oct 21-29th 2017, you won’t want to miss out on seeing the 65 pieces of the renowned houses most recently designed pieces of high jewelry in Resonances de Cartier: High Jewelry and Precious Objects by François Chaille (Flammarion, February 6, 2018). The book features dramatic tiaras to statement necklaces and everything in between and reveals the personality of the gemstones which are set in extraordinary dimensional and enduring pieces of jewelry. The book is a work of art in itself, pairing images of sculpture as well as the renderings, which inspired the drama, and glamour of the pieces. Cartier’s signatures are covered in the new collection in bejeweled fauna and well as the brilliant compositions, which sparkle with life, the spirit of the house and the enduring love of the art and craft of jewelry.
3-BE A EXHIBITION-ISTA
There are many wonderful jewelry and jewelry relate exhibits throughout the U.S. However a good number of them are closing soon in January or February. I have decided to choose one that starts at the end of spring and runs through the end of 2018 so you will have enough time to plan a trip to see it. Entitled Fabergé Rediscovered, it runs at Hillwood Museum in D.C. from June 6, 2018-Dec 31, 2018.
The storied jeweler to the Court of St. Petersburg and for Russian royalty and Europe nobility as well as consummate collectors, Fabergé pieces are surrounded by intriguing histories. This special exhibition at Hillwood will unveil new discoveries relating to its own collection of Fabergé imperial Easter eggs and other famed works. The fascination with Fabergé continues to uncover new facts and unveil recent research. It will bring to light new attributions and provenances and provide a broader framework to study, explore, and appreciate nineteenth and twentieth-century jewelry and goldsmithing. The exhibition and an accompanying publication will also explore how the name Fabergé, inseparable from the tragic fate of the Romanovs, came to be associated with extreme luxury and technical perfection.
4–GO ON AN ANTIQUING EXPEDITION
Although The Winter Antiques Show (January 19-28, 2018) at the historic Park Avenue Armory in NYC is heavier in fine and decorative arts—it definitely has its fair share of museum quality antique and vintage jewelry from some of the leading dealers and shops. Three of our favorites are Kentshire, A La Vieille Russie and James Robinson. We love that each object at the fair is vetted for authenticity, date, and condition by a committee of 150 experts from the United States and Europe. Even if you stop in just to browse—it’s worth the trip to see jewelry of this quality.
Whether you are an antique or vintage novice collector, connoisseur, dealer or retail store, you will not be disappointed by the Original Miami Beach Antiques Show (February 9-12, 2018, where you can find every period of jewelry, from the more accessible pieces to rare and high ticket items.
For starter collectors and anyone who has an interest in jewelry history, the show is running “The Jewelry History Series” two days prior to show opening and there are quite a number of lectures and conferences, which will provide context for similar jewelry you might see at the show. Three lectures that immediately peaked my interest are:
Exploring the Use of Gemstones in Mourning & Sentimental Jewelry: An exploration of the gems and minerals used in mourning and sentimental jewelry starting in the mid-17th c. to the early 20th century. Her Lovers, and Her Jewelry: Peggy Guggenheim, born into a wealthy New York family, led a colorful life spending much of it living in Europe. She is well known for her art collection, her affairs with now famous artists and the jewelry she accumulated during her unusual lifestyle. This lecture will interweave all of her passions into a fascinating story. The House of Fouquet: Three Generations of Artist-Jewelers: A look at the three distinctive styles of Alphonse, Georges and Jean Fouquet. This talk explores the stylistic developments of revival, Art Nouveau and modernist Art Deco periods, and discusses the influential family that was apart of all three movements. But check the schedule as the two days are chock full of information.
5-GO ON MODERN EXPLORATION
For all of you who love modern artisan jewelry, I have good news. The American Crafts Show, (Baltimore, MD) which starts off as a trade-only show turns into a retail event, open to the public for three days from February 23-25, 2018?
Here you will be able to find, all in one place such designers as Erica Molinari, Adel Chefridi, Denise Betesh, Jennifer Dawes, Lika Behar, Annie Fensterstock, Amali Fine Jewelry, Alex Sepkus and many more notable names. Or you can discover new talents such as the sophisticated bohemian style of sterling silver designer Pamela Zamore.
6- GET TO KNOW A QUEEN
Yes I know—all of my UK readers have already seen the 2nd season of Victoria, but here in the U.S., it will begin on January 14th on PBS. The show that took Downton Abbey’s time slot last season returns after Queen Victoria gives birth to her first child. And, although I am a huge fan of the Victorian era and am obsessed with learning as much as I can about Queen Victoria, I must say that the series doesn’t compare in writing or acting to The Crown, the 2nd season, which I recently binged watched. I am hoping that Victoria will take The Crown’s lead and keep me glued to my TV during the 2nd season. Writer Daisy Goodwin admits to taking liberties with the accuracy of the events in the series. In an interview with Radio Times, she explained, “ My challenge in Victoria is always to keep the balance between drama and accuracy. My rule is that I can change the odd date, move people around here and there, so long as I am faithful to the emotional truth of the characters.”
But meanwhile, what we do know is that costume designer Rosalind Ebbutt has done a wonderful and believable job of showing how Victoria grows from a teenager to a married woman who is also is Queen of England. Ebbutt has also shown how fashions and jewelry changed from the more serious exaggerated styles that defined the 1830s to the 1840s, which are more feminine and refined. When not in court jewels, Jenna Coleman’s jewels also adopt the styles of the times—single and double drop earrings, diamond swag and fringe necklaces, simple pendants and brooches and more brooches. Enough to keep Victorian enthusiasts watching.
7-SPEND A NIGHT AT THE MOVIES– in front of your TV, revisiting a jewelry film classic. In 2017, we recommended Hitchcock’s Rear Window and for 2018 we recommend another Hitchcock film. A Cartier diamond bracelet features against the far darker backdrop of the World War II psychological drama Lifeboat (1944) based on a John Steinbeck story. In the first scene, ‘Constance Porter’ (Tallulah Bankhead) appears in a lifeboat, amid a group of other survivors from a torpedoed ship, wearing a Cartier diamond bracelet. A famous reporter, she also has a camera, a fur coat, a gold cigarette case, a typewriter, a pocket flask of whiskey, and a handbag surrounding her. Her possessions gradually turn into necessities for survival, rather than the luxury items they once were. ‘Connie’ uses her coat to keep a shell-shocked woman warm; her gold lighter sterilizes the knife that is used to amputate a passenger’s leg. Eventually, the one possession she has left that she can offer the castaways—who are at this point starving—is the diamond bracelet. A gift from her first husband, it had functioned as a good luck charm for fifteen years. The survivors want to catch fish, but realize they do not have anything to use as bait. ‘Connie’ removes the bracelet from her wrist and says: “Sure we have bait—my Cartier!” When one of the passengers asks, “are you kidding?” she remarks, “Kidding my foot, I’m starving. “…More conversation ensues and Connie adds, “I can recommend the bait. I ought to know… I bit on it myself.” She then looks on, laughing; as the bracelet is washed away just at the point they think they have caught a fish. It’s one of those films that you should own in your movie library.
The next three are holdouts from last year with a few minor updates but we still believe wholeheartedly in these for 2018
8-CHANGE IT UP
Breathe new life into a piece of jewelry or two that lays deeps within the dark recesses of your jewelry box. For example, if you lost one of a pair of earrings and have been toying with the idea of turning the remaining one into a pendant, but haven’t gotten around to it, then think of creating a mismatched earring to wear in the other ear and be on trend with the times. Or you can go for something more striking by re-fashioning it into a ring like this fire opal and rose diamond cluster ring with a simple shank. You can wear alone or stack with other rings and you might never miss the fact that it once had a mate.
Or…If you have pearls that are desperately in need of restringing like I did (mine are ultra long) you can choose a subtle contrasting color thread rather than a matching one, add an odd pearl into the mix and perhaps another element such as a brooch which can clip strand into place if you wear it graduated two or three times. Here I have chosen a Lene Vibe pearl with small gold flowers and diamonds and an Art Nouveau dragonfly brooch in a textured gold with demantoid garnets.
Additionally, you could ask the multi-talented Mizuki to create a ring like this one she designed as a one-of-a-kind for her collection. If there is a pearl that might have been handed down to you but that sits in your jewelry box, allow Mizuki to work her magic to creates a modern style like this ring.
9-DON’T LET IT GET AWAY
This year, why not add the antique or retro piece that has been haunting your dreams to your collection. If you are a consummate collector, then it might be time to invest in the big-ticket item from the time period you have built your pieces around, rather than similar styles to those you already own. Not only are authentic pieces sound investments—many of them appreciating with time—they have provenance and sentimentality behind them. Many dealers and antique stores offer a layaway policy so if you cannot purchase it outright, you can pay it in installments over a period of time and then you will be secure in the fact that you aren’t going to lose it to another collector, like some of the other jewels you let ‘get away’.
I let this rare and exceptional piece at Humphrey Butler get away at the Las Vegas Antique Jewelry & Watch Show. It is a memorial pendant of a bloodstone on the front, with a flaming double heart representing burning passion, encircled by a gold serpent, which symbolizes eternal love. The back is an enamel open book on a black background with an inscription inside the book that reads “Thy Love I knew Thy Loss Deplore”, encased in glass. And I am still dreaming about it. Don’t let this happen to you.
10-IF YOU”VE GOT IT, FLAUNT IT
Or at least… wear it. Too many of us, lock our ‘good’ jewelry away in the safe –only to take pieces out for special occasions. But why own them, if we aren’t going to wear them. Think like the leading ladies of Hollywood in its heyday—collectors like Joan Crawford, Mary Pickford, Paulette Goddard, Merle Oberon and the one and only Elizabeth Taylor –they didn’t stash their favorites away—they wore them happily and so should we! Just not all together!