Eschewing the fleeting transience of trends, Cartier’s storied history is a testament to its mastery over the timeless. With an unparalleled commitment to craftsmanship underscored by its eye for the avant-garde, the house has since become synonymous with one-of-a-kind creations and the spell-binding stories they narrate. With its newest high jewellery collection, Le Voyage Recommencé, introducing 90 never-seen-before pieces, Jacqueline Karachi-Langane, creation director of high jewellery, walks ELLE through the collection.
ELLE: What can you tell us about the inspiration behind the collection, Le Voyage Recommencé?
Jacqueline Karachi-Langane (JKL): Every high jewellery collection is an opportunity to reveal a new and distinctive aspect of the Cartier style, a style that is unique and multi-faceted at the same time. This new collection is a fantastic opportunity to dive into the essential themes of the Cartier style – to go further and to take a fresh look at them, nourished by the spirit of the times. It is a journey to the heart of the Cartier creation, starting anew, where everything starts with the stone.
ELLE: What was the starting point for this collection?
JKL: We are at the service of the stone. What makes the difference is the Cartier eye, which has developed in relation to stones. Our eye evolves according to what has been done before. We are always in search of something new. It takes two years from the moment the stone is first selected by the designer to the completion of the creation. At first, the selection of the stones is conducted together with a gemologist, the buyer and the designer. The designers work in close collaboration with technical experts so they can create achievable pieces and push ever further the possibilities for transforming the jewellery. It’s a dialogue without talking only about technique; we tell them a story and invite them to travel with us. This dialogue continues throughout the development of the pieces.
ELLE: What are some aspects of Indian culture that we can expect to see in this collection?
JKL: Within each of our high jewellery collections, you can find a lot of influence of Indian culture, especially in the Tutti Frutti pieces. This colour combination is emblematic of the style of the Maison since the 1920s. Ribbed and gadrooned balls, rubies and emeralds engraved in the shape of leaves, flowers and berries all bear witness to the Mughal dynasty that ruled northern India until the 18th century. Great lovers of ornaments and precious stones, the Mughals employed the expertise of Indian artists, the only ones who knew how to cut emeralds, sapphires and spinels in relief and engrave them in the imperial workshops of Rajasthan. All these stones, emblematic of traditional Indian jewellery, inspired Cartier to create colour combinations that had never been seen before, using red, green and blue.
ELLE: Tell us about some of the remarkable stones present in the lineup.
JKL: At Cartier, we like to use stones with that little extra soul, more evocative specimens, with more graphic shapes, with co – lours that are subtle or, on the contrary, very intense. A special stone used in this collection is the grey-violet diamond in the Ondule ring. Although the stone may appear small, it is an extremely rare specimen. This diamond comes from the Argyle mine in Australia, which produced only red and purple diamonds of about one carat and intense pink diamonds. This mine has been closed since November 2020, and no other mine is known to produce this kind of diamond colour at the present time. This makes the diamonds some of the rarest ones in the world. The whole structure of the ring is designed to give the stone an aura, it radiates and resounds like a pulse. The half-moon diamonds, like a halo on both sides, multiply and amplify the energy of the stone.
ELLE: What are the jewellery trends that will dominate the year?
JKL: The role of jewellery in society has evolved—high jewellery can now be worn for more casual and private occasions as well as for grand events. People are now looking for that unique and beautiful piece that lasts, something timeless that they can keep longer and can transmit to others after them. We are here to see beauty where it may lie, to capture that into our creations and serve this beauty to our clients. ”
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