Van Cleef & Arpels: a hymn to golden beads

Temps de lecture : 6 minutes

In a joyful and lively spirit, Van Cleef & Arpels is today revealing new Perlée creations that showcase the emblematic golden bead motif. In yellow, rose or white gold – and combined with precious or ornamental stones, mother-of-pearl or coral – they lend their rounded forms and shimmering reflections to a variety of jewelry and watchmaking pieces with graphic, luminous silhouettes. With their wealth of styles and materials, the creations illustrate the expertise of the Maison’s savoir-faire in a light and delicate style.

A selection of Ashmita Muthoora / @TRP, Public Relations Cabinet
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Perlée diamonds 5-row ring in yellow gold, diamonds; Perlée

A symphony of colors

In keeping with the Perlée collection’s cheerful style, five new rings adorned with golden beads give pride of place to a dazzling palette of ornamental stones. With their rounded shapes, these creations reinterpret the aesthetic of the Philippine rings created by the Maison in 1968. The latter also combined ornamental stones and diamonds in bold and colorful compositions, typical of the jewelry of the period. These new pieces bring a fresh breath of creativity to the collection, imbuing it with a sunny, pop feel.

At the center of a three-dimensional setting, each jewel showcases a stone carefully selected for its vibrant color and generous dimensions. They range from the brilliant black of onyx and the elegantly striated deep green of malachite to – available in smaller quantities due to their rarity – the lightly glittering blue of lapis lazuli, azure turquoise and the orangey-red hue of coral; all these shades combine with yellow gold to create luminous pieces. Two rows of delicate golden beads fan out on either side of the gem, along with a line of round diamonds. By heightening the sheen of the precious metal, the mirror polishing technique endows the creations with interplays of reflections and contrasts.

yellow gold, turquoise, diamonds
yellow gold, malachite, diamonds
yellow gold, lapis lazuli, diamond

Sparkling duets

The Perlée couleurs collection is also enriched by two sets: made up of a bracelet and a pendant, they reveal new harmonies of materials. Revisiting a style launched in 2017, the bracelets bring together a dome in yellow gold set with diamonds, and a cabochon in lapis lazuli or coral. This precious encounter is presented on an open bangle, composed of a multitude of golden beads, which unfurl like a shimmering cascade around the wrist. On the pendants, the lapis lazuli and coral cabochons are elegantly framed by a border of golden beads, emphasizing their rounded lines.

Featured for the first time on these types of pieces – only available in small quantities – the rare materials of lapis lazuli and coral have been carefully selected. They display an intense and even color – deep blue for the lapis lazuli, orangey-red for the coral – and a smooth and regular polished surface. They complement the various stones already showcased on these styles, such as malachite, carnelian and turquoise. Diamonds add brilliance to this warm dialogue.

Perlée couleurs bracelets in yellow gold, coral, diamonds

Variations of precious colors

For the first time since its launch in 2008, the Perlée collection invites colored precious stones onto three sparkling new rings. Inspired by the Caroline rings and bracelets created by Van Cleef & Arpels in the late 1970s, this aesthetic sets up a dialogue between the shimmer of the emblematic spheres, and the colorful overtones of rubies, sapphires and emeralds. Rigorously selected by the Maison’s expert gemologists, carmine rubies respond to the tender nuances of rose gold, while intense blue sapphires and emeralds of luminous green harmonize with the warm glow of yellow gold.

In line with the playful spirit of the collection, these pieces are characterized by their asymmetric design and interplays of light and shape. On each of them, five rows of golden beads wrap themselves around the finger – the widest at the summit of the ring, with the thinnest below – on either side of an oblique band of precious stones, which catches the eye. The gems are held in place by polished gold nails positioned between the stones. Used in the collection for the first time, this technique calls for great dexterity from the stone-setter, especially when working with delicate materials like emeralds. To intensify the ring’s shimmer, the mount has been pierced with honeycomb openwork, and the entire piece intricately polished.

Reflections of gold and diamonds

This same aesthetic has brought three Perlée diamonds rings into being: the fires of round diamonds respond to the radiant color of yellow gold, the clarity of white gold, and the warm hue of rose gold. With their graphic style, these creations sparkle according to the movements of the hand. As with all Van Cleef & Arpels pieces, the selected diamonds meet the most stringent quality standards (D, E, F for color and IF to VVS for clarity).

Perlée diamonds 5-row rings in white gold
Perlée diamonds 5-row rings in rose gold

To accompany the Perlée diamonds pavé rings launched in 2020, the Maison is today unveiling three pairs of matching earrings in yellow, white and rose gold. Echoing the rings, these new pieces reveal generous gadroons, framing a dome paved with 74 round diamonds of varying diameters. Each gadroon is worked by hand and polished to ensure the harmony of the ensemble, while honeycomb openwork allows the light to pass through the stones. These three-dimensional creations are a treat for the eyes, which flicker between the brilliance of the gems and the gleam of the gold.

Perlée diamonds pavé earrings in yellow gold, diamonds

The dance of time

Van Cleef & Arpels is now introducing the Perlée collection’s emblematic aesthetic to new watches. These five timeless pieces combine gentle curves and subtle details, watchmaking savoir-faire and jewelry inspiration. With their fluid lines and playful spirit, the novelties offer a contemporary take on jewels that tell the time.

Elegant and feminine, they have a round shape fringed with a very modernlooking double row of golden beads, displaying an edge in mirror-polished yellow gold. Beneath a convex glass, their dials range between mother-of-pearl, onyx and yellow gold. Adorned with a radiating guilloché motif, they catch the light to create intense reflections. The time is set using a push-button on the back of the case, which is completely invisible when the watch is worn.

Four of the five new models have a case of 23mm in diameter, while the case of the fifth has a diameter of 30mm. Each watch is supplied with an interchangeable bracelet in gros-grain fabric, along with a flexible bracelet to be chosen among those of the collection. In the spirit of a jewel watch, a precious bracelet – made up entirely of articulated gold bead links and matching the watch’s beaded contour – is also available. Using a simple procedure, the bracelets can be changed to match their wearer’s mood.

Perlée watches, 23mm in yellow gold, guilloché white mother-of-pearl
yellow gold, guilloché white mother-of-pearl, Swiss quartz movement, yellow gold bracelet
yellow gold, guilloché onyx, Swiss quartz movement, black gros-grain bracelet.

Time kept secret

The golden beads come together once again in a delightful dance, to adorn secret jewelry watches. These pieces combine the delicate spheres with the intense colors of ornamental stones, to form joyful associations.

Inspired by “you and me” jewels, these wrist watches bring two differentlysized motifs face to face, on an open bangle entirely composed of the golden beads. Pivoting delicately through 360°, the larger one reveals a dial in white mother-of-pearl, surrounded by a border of round diamonds. In keeping with the spirit of the Perlée collection, these three creations each offer a combination of different materials.

On the first, the warm red of carnelian contrasts with the captivating aspect of black pietersite, while on the second the bright blue of turquoise complements the brilliance of diamonds and yellow gold. In a luminous harmony, the third watch – available in limited quantities – combines the lively tones of turquoise and coral. The round silhouette of each cabochon is emphasized by a golden bead surround, whose intense shimmer adds the finishing touch to these colorful creations.

rose gold, diamonds, turquoise, coral, white motherof- pearl
yellow gold, diamonds, turquoise, white mother-of-pearl
rose gold, diamonds, carnelian, black pietersite, white mother-of-pearl

Golden beads, a savoir-faire at the heart of jewelry creations

Faithful to the tradition of the Maison, the new Perlée jewelry creations give pride of place to the golden bead technique, which calls for collaboration between different craftsmen. These spheres of varying diameters are produced from precious metal – yellow, rose or white gold – using the lost wax casting technique. Jewelers then rework them individually by hand: their precise and intricate gestures give a harmonious and consistent roundness to the ensemble. Several stages of polishing are also required, to ensure the beads present a smooth surface that will encourage effects of brilliance.

Jewelry work on a Perlée couleurs 5-row ring.

At the crossroads of watchmaking and jewelry

The Maison’s expertise is also expressed in watchmaking creations that combine French and Swiss savoir-faire: the gold bracelet of the secret watches is produced in French workshops, while the dials and movements are assembled in Van Cleef & Arpels’ Watchmaking Workshops, in Geneva. The collaboration between these crafts results in poetic watches, which bring enchantment back to the art of telling the time.

For the first time this year, links of golden beads have been assembled to create a watch bracelet of extreme flexibility. It hugs the wrist like a second skin, ensuring optimal comfort when worn.

Jewelry work on the golden mounting of a Perlée Toi & Moi secret watch.

The choice of precious materials

Selecting the materials is an essential stage in Van Cleef & Arpels’ tradition of excellence. From precious and ornamental stones to mother-of-pearl and coral, the Maison chooses the most beautiful specimens in line with the strictest criteria of quality.

All the diamonds used by Van Cleef & Arpels meet the highest gemological standards: D to F for color, and IF to VVS for clarity. They sparkle intensely on the Perlée creations, thanks to an openwork structure that allows the light to pass through. Natural and untreated, the rubies, emeralds and sapphires set on the Maison’s pieces display crystal clear materials, balanced cuts and dazzling colors.

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