Haute Under the Collar

August 25, 2010, 13:52 pm  Posted by Lark Jewelry & Beading

“There is two kinds of music, the good, and the bad. I play the good kind.” Louis Armstrong

I love the Sunday New York Times, especially when a hefty T Magazine is tucked inside. Super-duper-especially when it’s the fashion edition, and I can pour over the high-end designer ads and editorial spreads.

I’m probably not the typical reader. I don’t pay much attention to the clothes. My eyes make a bee line to the jewelry, hoping (always hoping) for some innovative designs. And just when I expected to be disappointed once again…well, hello Lanvin!

Lanvin’s collection for Autumn/Winter 2010 (above, images 1, 2 & 3) ) is a mash-up of primitive and post-apocalyptic style. Mad Max’s Clan of Cave Bears or The Road Warrior’s Quest for Fire. This “ancient to the future” aesthetic definitely hits one of my sweet spots.

Was this particular collection an anomaly for the prestigious house of Lanvin, or do they regularly produce such artful jewelry? Who was the designer behind these bold pieces? Are other couture designers embracing avant-garde jewelry?

Turns out that Lanvin does have an affinity for experimental jewelry. In previous seasons, they’ve featured a “debutante-in-a-hardware-store” look (above, images 4, 5 & 6), which I find quite original, and they’ve firmly latched onto the “flattened-facet-mock-gemstone” trend (above, images 7 & 8). So, kudos to Lanvin, but…is anyone else out there?

A bit of Internet surfing turned up this lovely collection for Bottega Veneta. I find its oxidized silver muscle, abstract floral forms, and neutral stone palette to be warm and rich and thoroughly inviting. I’m not sure what season it’s from, but I’m going to pretend it’s from the “Jewelry for Marthe to Wear at a Resort in the Seychelles” collection.

And I must mention Karl Lagerfeld, a jewelry icon for his personal style. The man rocks a fistful of rings like no one else. Occasionally, this bravado spills over into his runway looks. I love, love, love the over-the-top absurdity of the earrings that mimic multiple piercings, and the “art-nouveau-for-the-leather-set” glove.

Here’s where the Louis Armstrong quote comes in and where I jump up onto my soapbox. Thank you for your patience.

I believe that there are only two kinds of jewelry design. One is is thoughtful, interesting, pleasing, well-executed, confident, and resolved. In the other, one or more of these qualities is absent or falls short. I believe that both kinds exist in every part of the jewelry world, from glamorous runways to gumball machines, and that we can and should be inspired by, value, and champion good design regardless of its course of distribution or the anonymity of its maker.


10 Responses

    Ecbp500 says:

    Wow Marthe! I couldn't agree with you more on this…I have made a lot of jewelry in my time and have yet to discover that mysterious line that makes a piece amazing or makes it fall short, but i sure know that line is there! High Five!

    Abby1886 says:

    These are so beautiful! How amazingly sheik is ole Karl.

    Karen B. says:

    Of the pieces, I definitely like the Bottega Veneta best. But what I REALLY like, Marthe, is your title for this blog post! Haute Under the Collar: very clever!

    Valerie says:

    Marthe, like Karl Lagerfeld, this post rocks!

    Ale bremer says:

    Love the Bottega Veneta pieces.. they are so amazing!! I love this post, thank you! I'm pretty sure I'm going to get plenty of inspiration for my own pieces from this!

    Bbbsimon says:

    I love the last paragraph, Marthe. No one has said this better!!!!!

    marcy says:

    WOW! amazing stuff, makes me wish I received the New York Times and/or T magazine.

    The root of your writing whilst appearing agreeable originally, did not sit well with me personally after some time. Someplace throughout the paragraphs you actually managed to make me a believer unfortunately just for a short while. I however have got a problem with your jumps in logic and one might do well to fill in those breaks. In the event that you can accomplish that, I would definitely be amazed.

    Hey just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The text in your post seem to be running off the screen in Safari. I’m not sure if this is a format issue or something to do with internet browser compatibility but I thought I’d post to let you know. The style and design look great though! Hope you get the issue fixed soon. Cheers

    Good to reply

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