I’ve been lucky enough to have many jewelry adventures since starting Diamonds in the Library, but VicenzaOro remains one of my very favorites.
Located in Vicenza, Italy – a city at the center of the country’s vibrant jewelry industry – VicenzaOro is an event of great importance in Italian, European, and even global jewelry markets. It’s absolutely huge and offers a staggering variety of finished jewelry, as well as loose gemstones, components, and more.
The finished jewelry is obviously my favorite part of the show, but I love the whole experience together: it thrills my imagination to be able to walk from Hall 7, filled with looming, lavish booths from mammoth brands like Roberto Coin and Pasquale Bruni to the GlamRoom, where up and coming designers show their wares (sometimes for the very first time) on arrangements of small tables.
I only had two days on the show floor this year, but that was enough time to see quite a range of jewelry: both exciting pieces by completely new-to-me designers and new stunners from old favorites.
Shall we take a look?
Let’s kick things off with some fireworks!
These glorious cocktail rings are by Vendorafa, an Italian brand famous for its richly textured gold. These babies feature Vendorafa’s iconic goldwork in a an irresistibly fun and joyful way. If you look closely at the orbs without stones on the yellow gold ring, you’ll that see the metal isn’t smooth. These details help every surface of the ring catch the light in a spectacular way, stones or no stones.
Vendorafa is a well established brand, but I’d never had an opportunity to meet them before. Now I have a very severe craving to own one of their glorious gold bangles. (I loved the rings, but the bangles took my heart.)
Here I am with visionary jewelry designer Alessio Boschi! As if you’re paying any attention to the humans in these pictures when that jaw-dropping SHARK brooch is visible.
Can you even with that piece?? I firmly believe that every man should have a bejeweled shoulder pet as fine as this one. For the record, he was not just modeling it for me: he wore it all day, because Alessio Boschi is just that cool. He makes masterpieces and then rocks them himself.
In addition to being a jewelry genius and very dapper gentleman, Alessio Boschi is also a delightful person. It was so lovely seeing you at VicenzaOro, Alessio! Thanks again for letting me take so many pictures of your shoulder.
Here’s another jewel by Alessio Boschi.
This gorgeous bracelet was inspired by the architecture of the Italian city of Florence. This whole collection – as well as a similar one inspired by Milan – is utterly beautiful. In the background, you can see the designer’s original designs and calculations.
Oh hello, magnificent amethyst cabochon! As if this stone weren’t enough, it’s set in a beautiful blooming halo of delicate, textured goldwork set with bright diamonds.
This killer piece is one of the showstoppers from Roberto Coin‘s Roman Barocco collection, which (as you might have guessed) is the same collection that brought us the magnificent pen I showed you up above. The irresistible goldwork and use of cabochons are both hallmarks of the collection, which ranges from a few killer pieces like this ring to extremely wearable and majorly beautiful smaller pieces.
I had the honor of meeting Roberto Coin himself at VicenzaOro this year! He’s as charming as his designs would lead one to expect.
I complimented his jewelry and the colorful array of couches in his booth, both of which I’ve admired for years. We ended up talking about couches for several minutes and jewelry not at all. I was highly amused.
This is one single glorious ring by new-to-me brand Ferrai Firenze (pictured with my wedding rings). This piece is a fantastic example of my favorite emerging trend in jewelry, which I like to call Jewelry That Does Tricks. I’m talking about pieces that are articulated in some way to move or pieces that convert into multiple forms.
On this ring, every single bezel-set diamond teardrop can flip over completely. They’re individually articulated and the way they move when you’re gesticulating with your hands is incredible.
I love the design of this gold cuff bracelet by Luisa Rosas! This brand’s jewelry is inspired by nature.
Luisa Rosas was another new discovery for me and I think their aesthetic is so unique and compelling. Lots of gold pieces with very satisfying texture and delicate, intricate lines that still feel gorgeously simple and clean.
Some more dramatic Ferrari Firenze rings! How fun are these colors?
These babies are articulated for movement too, although in a less dramatic way than the diamond ring above. You can see a video of one of these rings here on my Instagram.
This peacock cameo pendant by Syna Jewels stopped me in my tracks. It’s a traditional carved shell cameo surrounded by tsavorite garnets and blue diamonds. You can see a video of this piece here.
Syna is a new-to-me brand with some truly beautiful pieces. They source their gemstones from India and they have an affinity for gorgeous opals – the strand I’m wearing here is just one example of many.
A closer look. Because it’s worth it.
The Frog Prince ring by Cedille Paris!! He’s just waiting for a kiss. He even has a little golden crown – can you see it? It’s small, but it’s the most perfect little detail.
It’s not VicenzaOro without a visit to Pasquale Bruni! This is one of the brand’s classic collections, and a longtime favorite of mine. I love how the elegant diamonds leaves/petals all curve gently in an unseen wind, so that they look like true plants just tucked into my hair and behind my ear.
What you can’t see about these Pasquale Bruni pieces in the pictures is how comfortable they are. The design is truly brilliant: each piece curves in exactly the right way to comfortably lay along your finger, earlobe, clavicle or wrist. I’d say you can’t tell you’re wearing them, but it’s impossible to forget pieces with this much presence.
Oh my, these Carlo Barberis rubies. I love them so much!!! This set has a fresh, modern Art Deco vibe that I’m super into. I don’t usually like chokers but this one was so well made that I was fully into it.
The collar piece is extremely light and flexible: easy to put on and very comfortable to wear. The dangling ruby and diamond piece of the necklace is articulated so that it drapes sensuously along the wearer’s skin. It feels incredible.
Carlo Barberis was a new discovery for me at my second VicenzaOro and they’ve become one of my very favorite Italian brands to visit at the show. Their design is what I’d call classic with a modern edge, and their craftsmanship is exceptional.
These two rings are Carlo Barberis as well. This kind of tone-on-tone gemstone pairing is another mini trend I’ve been noticing more of lately and I find it very chic.
I saw Alessa Jewelry briefly at the Couture show during Las Vegas Jewelry week and I was excited to see them again at VicenzaOro!
They have lots of very fun, stylish pieces, but these colorful enamel bangles were my favorite. So pretty and easy to love, and in so many colors! Very collectible.
One of the mini-trends I noticed at VicenzaOro was an increase in the use of aquamarine! I wonder if Meghan Markle can take credit for this one.
I’m a big fan of aquamarine. I know it’s on the subtle side as stone colors go, but it’s my birthstone and I happen to think its gorgeous. These Casato rings featuring tanzanite alongside aquamarine show how glamorous a well-used aqua can be. This is part of a whole collection featuring the tone on tone combo of tanzanite and aqua.
I love the bold design of these gemstone earrings by Italian jewelry brand Mattioli! They are chubby hoops, bursting with reverse-set gemstones.
“Reverse-set” simply means that the stones are upside-down: the pointy part is up instead of the flat part. It’s an edgy, dangerous look. The reverse-set stones catch the light in a really cool way.
I will now sign off by showing you the most beautiful pen I’ve ever seen.
This pen, a Roberto Coin masterpiece, is made from lacy gold, studded with diamonds, and topped by an otherworldly amethyst cabochon. It’s enough to make a blogger long for less digital days.
It’s always a pleasure to be part of the International press delegation at VicenzaOro! Here we all are: journalists from Russia, Denmark, Canada, France, Poland, and Australia; to name just a few of the countries represented.
A huge thank you to all the designers and brands at VicenzaOro for being so welcoming, and to VicenzaOro and IEG for making this trip possible! Special grazie to Jen, Alessio, Marco, Patrizia, and Michela – you’re the best.
Disclaimer: my travel expenses for VicenzaOro 2018 were covered by VicenzaOro and the Italian Exhibition Group.