Happy Friday, my dears! I’ve got something special for you to daydream about over the weekend (the three-day weekend, for my US readers). It’s time to show you the goods from Couture 2016.
Well, not all of them. If I showed you everything that came under the heading “jewels I liked at Couture 2016” or “pretty things at Couture 2016,” we’d be here all day. So instead, here are pieces that I not only liked, but found to be noteworthy in some way: a fresh take, a unique point of view, an exceptional stone, etc.
I thought we’d kick things off with one of my very favorite, extremely wearable finds of the show.
These angular hoop earrings by Melissa Kaye are just too cool for school. The pointed shape is an edgy departure from the traditional round hoop, and the visual effect of having diamonds on the front with colored gemstones showing through from the inside slayed me. When I was daydreaming about what I wanted to take home and add to my personal IRL jewelry wardrobe, these were top of the list.
Roule and Co was one of the most talked-about brands at Couture 2016, and for good reason: their whimsical, mesmerizing style, which centers around gemstones trapped in geometric cages, is as fun as it is impeccably crafted.
It’s impossible to look at these designs and not want to touch them.
I’ve said before – and will probably say again – that I don’t generally get excited about pearls. There are exceptions to that rule, however.
These two are by Jewelmer, and the combination of their lustrous golden South Sea pearls in bold, architectural settings is really checking all my boxes. Gold on gold, soft on hard, round on angled: each piece is a masterpiece of contradictions.
This necklace from Caratell is a modern fairy tale dream of a piece. Light and comfortable to wear, its extraordinary beauty comes from the fact that the flower petals are made out of anodized titanium. With that rainbow iridescence as a centerpiece, the necklace flows outward in elegant angles graced with diamond buds and leaves. A glamorous, refreshing take on the classic floral motif.
(And yes, I did climb into a window frame at the Wynn in order to use their curtains as a white backdrop. Never let it be said that I lack dedication.)
I’ve had a jewelry crush Tomasz Donocik’s Electric Night collection for ages, and I was thrilled to finally see these pieces in person at Couture 2016.
The vivid colors and dynamic lines – which designer Tomasz Donocik says were inspired by a futuristic Art Deco take on the aesthetics of the 1980’s movie Blade Runner – are utterly fantastic.
Speaking of color…how incredible is the scale of this Suzy Landa cuff bracelet? That enormous canary beryl (just shy of 80 cts) in its streamlined gold setting with the popping, asymmetrical halo of bezel-set stones nails drama without feeling overdone or unwearable. Such a perfect balance of excess and restraint.
If you follow me on Instagram, you already know that seeing Turkish master jeweler Sevan Bıçakçı‘s work in person at Couture 2016 was a dream come true for me. I was actually so excited to be in front of these jewels that I took very few pictures of them.
Trust me that they’re as gorgeous inches from your nose as you would expect them to be. You can get a closer look at Sevan’s work here.
These wonderful earrings – which remind me of sugar skulls, are by longtime personal favorite and recent Couture Award winner Anthony Lent.
They have that classic Anthony Lent mix of first rate materials, impeccable craftsmanship, and a slightly eerie aesthetic that always does me in. The pearl hair is absolutely my favorite touch.
Omi Prive was dependably perfect, serving up mind-blowing sapphires here in an array of designs, from the iconic to the outside-the-box (note the black rhodium on my ring finger).
This sapphire-full photo is dedicated to longtime DitL reader, Pepper Reed, who asked me to fondle sapphires for her in Vegas.
This glorious Arunashi pendant is what I will be wearing if I ever become an glamorous evil queen. This exquisite piece oozes dark beauty and I could not be more into it.
You may remember Alison Lou as the designer of the amazing champagne bottle necklace I featured for New Years – or maybe you know her collection of emoji jewelry.
It was her newest collection, inspired by flowers, that captured my attention at Couture 2016. This combination of luxury and fun is hard to get right, and these pieces strike just the right balance.
I always love Single Stone‘s antique-inspired engagement rings, but I was particularly intrigued by their oxidized gold collection at Couture 2016. The design brings a subtle something different to the overall feel of the rings that’s perfect outside-the-box consumer who still wants their engagement ring to have a lot of traditional elements.
Hand pieces like this one are a style I’ve been intrigued by in theory, but somewhat skeptical of in practice.
Now that I’ve tried on this one – from Paige Novick’s Diamonds with a Story collection – I can tell you that this baby is not only awesome, it’s actually comfortable. As long as you’re not doing anything complicated with your hands, you’d be all set to go about your business, looking even more fabulous than usual.
From the new and fresh to the old and fresh: these pendants from Zaffiro jewelry are noteworthy because of both the craftsmanship and the materials.
The central element of each pendant is a remnant of an ancient artifact, each dating to the 9th-12th centuries, lovingly translated into a wearable, contemporary form. The beadlike, texture gold is Zaffiro’s take on the ancient Etruscan technique of granulation.
I’ve admired Kataoka‘s tiny, beautiful designs from afar but had never had the pleasure of trying them on before Couture 2016. They’re even daintier and more perfect than you would expect, and I loved them even more than I thought I would.
I’ve been dreaming of this gemstone cuff from the Nikos Koulis Mykonos collection ever since I first glimpsed it on somebody else’s Instagram during Baselworld.
It’s even more magnificent in person, all angles and colors and depth. Do yourself a favor and check out the video of this piece in action.
This ridiculously cool ring from Arunashi looks like the eye of a monster. Please note there’s a yellow diamond SET INTO an opal up there.
This piece is psychedelic and rare and powerful, and I wanted to wear it home.
One of the highlights of Couture 2016 for me was finally meeting the wonderful Erika Winters in person. We’ve been online friends for years now, even before she’d started designing her beautiful collections.
She’s as delightful in real life as her jewelry is and – as I think you should be able to tell from the picture above – that’s saying quite a lot. Her engagement ring designs are some of my very favorites available in the contemporary market today. Every element shows quality and attention to detail that will knock your socks right off.
I have never wished harder that I were a mermaid on my way to a glamorous cocktail party than when I was looking at Neha Dani’s wonderfully dramatic designs.
This pair – which is actually one of the smaller ones – features diamonds and sapphires in white gold and custom blue rhodium. Thanks to the rhodium, rocking this much look isn’t painful to the ears (and yes, I tried some on to make sure). Endlessly glamorous and fun.
Pamela Froman is one of the designers who’s making me excited about contemporary bridal right now. Just look at that custom-cut lilac sapphires, that innovative three-ring stacking set, those delicious whorls of metal. Yes, please.
Pearl and diamond bracelets are nothing new, but I thought there was really something special about these chic, minimalist cuffs from Yoko London. The thin lines of diamonds paired with that expanse of negative space broken by two matched natural pearls create an impactful, stylish product that feels light, fresh, and oh-so-easy to wear.
Hello, beautiful. This intricate necklace from Sutra features diamonds and red spinels, and it made me weak in the knees. I tried to take a selfie, but it didn’t do the piece justice. Here’s a close-up of its luscious beauty instead.
I always love when Todd Reed comes up with something new, because you just know it’s going to be interesting. Here’s a close look at Reed’s new diamond cabochon collection. Those glistening gray/brown spheres are naturally colored diamonds, perfectly polished into cabochons. They look otherworldly, like tiny translucent moons captured in yellow gold.
I can’t look at this opal-bellied monster from Lydia Courteille without smiling, and why should I resist? He’s a delight and I love to love him.
More than one friend told me that Mousson Atelier’s booth was a not-to-be-missed part of Couture 2016 and I’m so glad I listened to them. This Russian brand’s designs spanned from lovely wearable machine-turned enamel pieces to fantastical masterworks like the opal and snake ring above. A fabulous discovery.
A handful of stud earrings from Polly Wales‘ new collection. I was thrilled to see this wonderfully textured new take on the designer’s distinctive “cast, not set” style.
These are cool-looking, right? And they’re so much cooler than they first appear: the primary elements of all jewels by new brand R.Y.M. jewelry are completely convertible. The geometric element with the gemstones that you’re seeing here as a pendant and an earring can also be worn as a ring or as a bracelet – the decorative piece snaps on and off of different adapters with mechanisms on the back of the pieces. It’s the ultimate build-able collection.
I’ll keep sharing my other Couture 2016 finds on Instagram, but that’s all for today! Even making the list of exciting finds this small was a challenge – it’s really a fantastic show. I was thrilled to finally have the chance to attend in person, and I recommend checking it out yourself if you ever have the opportunity.
So now you’ve see the antique jewels I saw in Vegas, and now the most exciting jewels from Couture 2016. There’s just one more piece to share with you from my Vegas jewelry week adventure, and it’s coming soon. Stay tuned.
Valerie Deas says
Please sign me up for Diamonds In The Library’s email updates! Thank you.
Will do! Thank you, Valerie.
Jennifer Heebner says
Yes, I nearly died when I tried on that Koulis cuff in Basel!!! It was amazing!!
I seriously freaked out when I saw it. I’ve been dreaming of it for months! I only took it off because the Couture angels brought around a reeeeallllyyy good looking afternoon snack and it seemed like a faux pas to eat ice cream while wearing a borrowed something that perfect.
Pamela Froman says
I just same this! Thank you so much for including my work with this great group of jewelers, everything is yummy!!
MY pleasure!! It was a delight to finally meet you in person, and I always love the chance to see your designs. Hope you’re doing well!!
So much to love here, Becky; thanks for sharing! My favs are the angular hoop earrings that you really like (I’m thinking about hanging little interchangeable drops from them!), the hand bracelet, and those amazing sapphire/diamond blue-rhodium earrings. Of course all the sapphire rings are gorgeous and I wouldn’t turn my nose up at any one of them. If I had to pick, it’d be the e/c sapphire with the two e/c diamonds.
Some incredible workmanship in these pieces, too. I’m trying to wrap my head around the diamond set INTO the opal. Opals are so fussy, they’ll break if you look at them the wrong way. How did they do that?! Kudos to that setter!
Talisman Collection says
Your picks mirror many of my favorites. What a fun read. As always, you’re prolific, Becky. Thanks for helping me re-live the beauty.
My pleasure, as always! Thank you for enjoying it.
Shout-out and Sapphires!?! Awesome! ;^) Such amazing jewelry — that Nikos Koulis Mykonos cuff is beyond words, and I wear those Melissa Kaye hoops Forever. Such deliciousness — how did you not go blind from all the sparkle? You have the coolest job ever!
It also seems that opals are a big thing now and cabochon’s are everything — Love them both!
Ahah I pretty much did – I basically had to spend the next couple of days after I got home sitting alone in a quiet room. And <3 <3 <3 forever to both the Melissa Kaye hoops and the Nikos Koulis cuff.
It was the most incredible week.