For years, Van Cleef and Arpels has harboured a close relationship with rubies. The fiery gemstone has seen its potential eased out in the most stunning ways, as plump ruby cabochons, as a blood-red faceted gem or in a velvety ‘intricate weave’ carefully pieced together through the jeweller’s famous Mystery Setting.
There’s no doubt that the vitality of ruby, in colour and depth, has made quite an impression of Van Cleef and Arpels’ artisans for a long time.
The Rubis Flamboyant necklace, the collection’s tour de force, centres around a pendant set with a ruby weighing more than 25 carats and a halo of emerald-cut diamonds. The pendant can be detached and worn as a ring, showcasing the brilliance of the vermillion stone without additional frills. Another, the Priya necklace, sees tassels of ruby beads, pearls and pink sapphires. Each string can be strung up as a bracelet or made into a shorter necklace.
The collection also takes inspiration from Indian aesthetics. Necklaces bore diamond-encrusted paisley motifs and blossoming flowers decked in ruby. The Maha ring, which boasts an 8.03-carat diamond with a frame of Mystery Set-rubies, is an elaborate interpretation of crowns worn by maharajas.
Behind the scenes, the collection took well over a decade to put together. The main difficulty lies in the sourcing of exceptional rubies — all 3000 carats of them. Matching colours and finding symmetry between the gems to create consistency in each piece is another major challenge to overcome as well.