This bracelet is “tutti frutti” style, a design approach involving colorful gemstones, often carved, to make up brightly colored and cheerful designs. Cartier popularized this style in the 1920’s, inspired by the jewels of India. (Thanks to Lang’s AJU for the historical context.)
I think it’s so interesting that the exuberant, colorful, almost garishness of tutti frutti design flourished alongside the clean geometric lines of what we typically think of as Art Deco style. I suppose it was filling a niche – everything can’t be clean lines all the time.
This particular tutti frutti bracelet was made by Cartier, London, in 1930. Designed as a meandering diamond vine, the bracelet is set along the top and bottom with carved ruby, sapphire and emerald leaves, enhanced by emerald bead berries and collet-set old European-cut diamonds.
Please note how every leaf and berry is individually carved. (So tutti and fruitti!) I don’t imagine anyone more than a foot away from the bracelet would even be able to see the carving, but that’s the kind of detail that makes Cartier exceptional.
The bracelet ends in a pavé-set diamond buckle clasp, to the pavé-set diamond buckle clasp, decorated with triangular and rectangular-cut black onyx geometric detail.
What do you think, my darlings? Are you on board the tutti frutti bracelet train, or do you prefer the more crisp, geometric designs of classic Art Deco style?
This tutti frutti bracelet was listed in Christie’s 22 April 2010 Jewels auction. All images and info are thanks to Christie’s.