Jewelry that’s vintage is also contemporary and suited to everyday wear. For TFJP with Christie’s Paris jewelry department, here’s the second demonstration from creative duo Laura Bonnefous and Stéphanie Brissay.
By Sandrine Merle.
The focal point of this image is a magnificent 1960s dolphin brooch by David Webb. Everything revolves around this statement piece in sculpted coral, typical of the fantastic bestiary created by the American jeweler. Next to it is a short necklace by Van Cleef & Arpels that can be transformed into two double-row bracelets, one of coral balls and the other of chrysoprase balls. Plus an octagonal pendant by Poiray, probably from the 1980s, in coral, blackened steel and diamonds.
Toying with false matches
This dolphin pendant is not just for collectors. It’s totally wearable as long as you don’t match it with other pieces that just as showy – the whole effect would be way too over-the-top. But then again if everything was graphic and architectural, like the Poiray necklace, the overall look might end up being boring. Imbalances and asymmetries are a hallmark of contemporaneity: nothing should be like anything else. A big brooch, a smaller pendant. A round shape, an angular shape. The aim is a blend of figurative and abstract, of proportions and shapes.
Drawing the eye
As it’s all about balance, don’t go for a total coral look! Of course, this pretty color is the main thread of the ensemble, but it’s better to introduce another one, just like this… to mix things up a bit. Hence the little touches of green, with the chrysoprase balls and two emeralds – one forming the eye of the dolphin and the other polished in cabochon adorning the ring (by David Webb). Set against the bracelet, the latter forms a beautiful luminous counterpoint. Your gaze is drawn back and forth, losing its way, lingering, making connections …
Clothes: be daring with difficult colors
Your choice of clothes, jacket and shirt is never trivial! They can be used to partly hide, provide a semi-camouflage, or slightly conceal: the collar of the shirt spills over the necklace and the sleeve of the jacket, slightly too long, covers the bracelet. The look must be casual, those aren’t museum pieces that you’re wearing! In terms of colors, it’s out with the black and white but also gray, avoiding any hint of careful coordination: go for colors thought to be difficult, like petrol blue or burnt bread with white dots. Don’t hesitate to choose ochres, mustard and parma, which are just as offbeat. It’s all about offsetting the vintage side of coral.
Jacket: Barbara Bui / Shirt: Comptoir des Cotonniers
Photograph: Laura Bonnefous
Model: Suzanne Meyer (Tribe Management)
Stylist: Stéphanie Brissay
Assisted by Matthias Debras
Hair: Nina Olivet
Make up: Laura Merle
Assistant: Loup Catusse
Retouching: Granon Digital