Tiffany’s Latest Catalog Explores Jean Schlumberger’s Designs

by admin

Jean Schlumberger, a French designer who joined Tiffany & Co. in 1956, had a deep love for the ocean. Many of his iconic jewelry pieces were inspired by sea creatures, which he either imagined at his beachside vacation home in Bisdary on Guadeloupe or found in the illustrated books in his library.

Schlumberger’s creations were not just realistic representations of marine life; they incorporated elements of surrealism that he had learned during his earlier career working for Elsa Schiaparelli in Paris.

His sea creature designs were vibrant and three-dimensional, elevating precious metals like gold and platinum into sculptural elements. Compared to Schlumberger’s work, other fine jewelry pieces seemed flat.

During the 1960s, many well-known American clients of Jean Schlumberger owned sea creature-themed jewelry. For example, Richard Burton gave Elizabeth Taylor a Dolphin brooch, which was not a realistic representation but a decorative fantasy fish reminiscent of the Renaissance.

Following Bunny Mellon’s encounter with a jellyfish sting, Schlumberger crafted a Méduse Brooch as a surprise gift to ease her pain. Mellon was captivated by the masterpiece when she saw it six months later.

Tiffany & Co.’s Chief Artistic Officer of Jewelry and High Jewelry, Nathalie Verdeille, drew inspiration from Schlumberger’s creations for her debut Blue Book collection titled “Out of the Blue.” She explained that Schlumberger viewed the sea as an unknown, infinite world and expressed its majesty and mystery through his designs.

In the Out of the Blue collection, Nathalie reimagined Schlumberger’s jellyfish designs into earrings, pendants, and brooches. She added her own artistic touch by altering the scale, proportions, and color palette, incorporating tanzanites alongside moonstones and sapphires.

Another standout piece in the collection is an oversized fish brooch decorated with rare unenhanced padparadscha sapphires, weighing over 12 carats. The diamond body and fins of the fish give it a graceful swimming motion.

The Out of the Blue collection features seven categories: Shell, Coral, Jellyfish, Pisces, Starfish, Sea Star, and Star Urchin. Each category showcases daring and bold designs, with the Star Urchin pieces being particularly eye-catching.

Among the Star Urchin collection is a choker made of hand-carved chalcedony and tanzanite, which has become highly sought-after among Tiffany’s Blue Book clients. Another notable piece is a Fancy Intense Purplish Pink diamond ring, surrounded by gold and diamond-encrusted spines.

Schlumberger’s designs were popular during the 20th century because they complemented the fashion and mood of the era. Similarly, the Out of the Blue collection captures this timeless appeal and wearability. These pieces can be easily worn for various occasions, from casual outings to formal events.

One example is the diamond shell pendant necklace, recently worn by Tiffany’s brand ambassador, Rosie Huntington Whiteley. The necklace strikes the perfect balance between elegance and versatility, suitable for both formal and semi-formal occasions.

“These creations possess Schlumberger’s distinct quality and personality, while showcasing new designs,” said Anthony Ledru, CEO of Tiffany & Co. The collection successfully captures the spirit of the renowned designer while adding a modern touch.

Related Articles

Leave a Comment