Gabrielle Chanel was quite superstitious. Mysterious symbols, lining figures and talismans which Mademoiselle easily introduced into new collections, thereby prescribing them in the historical code of her House, saved her from frequent fears, complex circumstances and blows of fate. Les Talismans de Chanel Haute Joaillerie collection is just about them.
Chanel’s codes in Les Talismans collection
This time round there were no feathers and lions. As a leitmotif, a four-leafed clover was chosen. It was described as a protected amulet by those as far back as the druids. The motif is caught in monochrome diamond necklaces, bright colored rings and stylized brooch-insignias. Camellia, a laconic, odorless flower, which the English dandies pinned on lapels of jackets, is also reflected in some pieces.
The inspiration by wandering
The sensual nature of Gabrielle Chanel found inspiration in virtually everything: medieval stained-glass windows, Russian icons, Chinese screens, Byzantine mosaics, Egyptian drawing letters and much more. In Les Talismans, three «national» themes are presented — China, Venice and Byzantium. These are historical and geographical points that were of interest to the Great Mademoiselle.
The first one can be traced in the «Fascinante» (Charming) set with gray-blue enamel camellias written in the «grisaille» technique. The second one was reflected in a series of Renaissance-like medallions, for example, «Envoûtante» («Charming») and «Magnétique» (“Attractive”). And the latter one — in sets like «Solaire» (Solar) made of matte chased gold with diamonds, and «Charismatique» (Charismatic) in white gold with diamonds, sugar head tanzanites, baroque pink and purple sapphires and Japanese pearls. There was also a place for the stylized Maltese crosses «woven» into the «Attirante» (“Attractive”) pieces with colorless diamonds, as well as a brooch with a red spinel, orange and yellow sapphires and enamel.
The influence of Fulco di Verdura
In the forms, ornaments and manner of Les Talismans de Chanel, there is the influence of the Sicilian Duke Fulco di Verdura. It was he who invented the famous pair of cuffs for Mademoiselle. Necklaces, consisting mainly of rhythmic links, are crowned with large medallions. And massive bracelets tightly cover the wrists. Year after year, repeating the themes, Chanel designers and jewelers denote codes all the more clearly, not forgetting about the traditional Parisian quality. And although the Haute Joaillerie «title» implies the appearance on special occasions, most of the items can easily be worn throughout the day. For example, the aforementioned «Solaire» set or the Byzantine-mosaic «Charismatique» sautoir — they will surely bring good luck.