Just this year, the renowned French jeweler Van Cleef & Arpels unveiled its new fine jewelry collection Sous Les Étoiles during Paris Haute Couture Week. 150 stunning pieces in a variety of styles, from striking necklaces to timepieces, are a magnificent exploration of the stars, the sky and the wonders of galaxies near and far.
The celestial phenomenon that has always fascinated Van Cleef & Arpels’ designers dates back to the very beginning. 1907 saw the sale of a star-shaped pearl and diamond brooch mentioned in the brand’s first ledger.
Some ten years have passed since Les Voyages Extraordinaires in 2010, the point of inspiration for VCA’s last turn to celestial bodies, with themes drawn from four novels by Jules Verne, including De la Terre à la Lune (From the Earth to the Moon).Sous Les Étoiles is intended to be the brand’s journey through Sous Les Étoiles is intended to be a continuation of the brand’s journey through time and space as it seeks more challenging and infinitely fascinating raw materials to inform its designs.
“The brand has always been interested in observing the moments when nature meets poetry and imagination”, explains Nicolas Bos, President and CEO of Van Cleef & Arpels. For this new collection, we wanted to continue the adventure that began with Jules Verne by exploring the literary and scientific tradition that his work embraces. It takes us to the classic writer Samosata’s Lucian voyage through imaginary space, to Kepler and his inspiring literal dreams, or lunar astronomy – written in the early 17th century – and to Camillo, who published his marvelous populaire showing astronomy in 1880.
Various astronomical entities and phenomena – as well as key parts of the brand’s archives – give these jewels a unique form. The necklace below is a tribute to Halley’s Comet, which is visible on Earth once every 75 years. Representing the head of the comet (often formed from ice, gas and dust) is an old brilliant yellow diamond trailing a luminous white and yellow diamond. In keeping with the brand’s tradition of convertible pieces, the central yellow diamond can be removed and secured to a ring with a similar design.
A buttercup yellow oval-cut sapphire from Sri Lanka, weighing over 50 carats. It represents the sun in the Sun God necklace below.
Spiraling galactic antennae collide, mixing stars and nebulae just 45 million light years from Earth, captured in an extraordinary reversible necklace.
Inspired by pieces created by Van Cleef & Arpels between the 1930s and 1950s, it conceals a circle of diamonds and blue sapphires on one side, with a sparkling clasp on the front below.
When reversed, it is the same. The necklace is worn on the back, with the knot tied behind it. Van Cleef & Arpels’ gemologists spent more than two years assembling the extraordinary sapphires in the design, which range from pale pink to deep purple.
Here are more highlights of this spectacular cosmic rhapsody, including a tribute to the Milky Way and a timer featuring the Christian van der Klau Planetarium module (a planetarium is a complex feature that shows the relative position of the solar system around the Milky Way) the Sun, taking into account the different speeds of its planetary orbits.