Making of a Legend
Le Bal Oriental Helene necklace in white gold with turquoise, diamonds and pink sapphire, from the Bals de Légende collection by Van Cleef & Arpels. Tassel decoration and Oriental chest, from Fairprice Antique.
While other jewellers might be content to let nature play muse to them, Van Cleef & Arpels has set its sights on nothing less than glamour itself for its latest haute joaillerie collection: The Bals de Légende range features over 180 designs themed to five of the 20th-century’s most extraordinary galas. From St Peterburg’s Winter Palace Ball at the turn of the century comes regal, aristocratic pieces inspired by the splendour of the Russian Court. Venice’s Bal du Siècle, 50 years later, breathes life into dramatic designs that recall Venetian architecture and glorious masked beauties. Truman Capote’s 1966 Black and White Ball inspires bold, monochromatic Art Deco pieces, while the 1969 Le Bal Oriental in Paris does the same with Eastern mysticism and opulence. Le Bal Proust, held in Ferrières two years later, rounds off the collection with whimsical designs of wondrous beauty. With this impressive array of gems and exceptional craftsmanship, Van Cleef & Arpels has swept us off our feet once again.
Photography Ching Styling Tony Law