From the Biebers in Tiffany & Co. to Rihanna’s piles of diamonds (including Thelma West’s fiercer-than-fierce ring that wowed our Instagram followers and is part of this week’s Sotheby’s “Brilliant and Black: a Jewelry Renaissance” selling exhibition), the 2021 Met Gala was a return to the red carpet jewelry flex as we formerly knew it. The event was by far the most glamorous gathering of the pandemic era, and no one held back.
You can check out JCK’s report of all the most memorable jewelry looks at the Met Gala, but I’m here to spotlight a jewel worn by attendee Sudha Reddy, a philanthropist, entrepreneur, lover of fashion and fine arts, and wife of billionaire Megha Krishna Reddy. Even if her name is not familiar to you, you almost certainly know that of Farah Khan, a prominent jeweler to the stars in India (and beyond) who created a bespoke ear cuff for Reddy’s stint on the museum’s red-carpet-clad steps (pictured at top).
“I have known Sudha Reddy for five years now,” Khan tells JCK. “She is very particular about her style and has very discerning taste, and has always challenged and excited me at the same time to create statement bespoke pieces for her.”
Khan only had one month to create the jewel, which was designed as a complement to Reddy’s haute couture gown by Falguni Shane Peacock.
The garment was a star-spangled affair in every way—in keeping with the ball’s theme, a tribute to American fashion—and so the jewel needed to hold up to the gown’s lavish embellishments while also meshing with Reddy’s “sensual and strong” personality.
“I wanted to create a statement bejeweled accessory for Sudha, one that would be distinctive and quirky, yet one that would accentuate her almond-shaped expressive eyes and glide seamlessly along the contours of her face,” says Khan. “I was given all the creative liberty I required, and the only thing she was insistent on was that it fit well.”
The result: a unique jewel, titled Dreamy Decadence, crafted in 18k gold with 38.72 cts. of diamonds on stars that start from the cheek and float up into the hair.
Since a comfortable, seamless fit was key, the ear cuff required many hours of craftsmanship and a number of fittings between two cities, Hyderabad (where Reddy resides) and Mumbai (Khan’s home base).
There was also Reddy’s hairstyle to consider: “Not wanting everything to be too busy, we decided to keep her hair pulled back in a [high bun] that would perfectly support the ear cuff in place,” says Khan.
The jewelry designer also added an extension string of bezel-set diamonds that wrapped around Reddy’s bun, plus two additional strings of diamonds (39 cts. t.w.) that dangled from her hair down her bare back.
“American” splendor, indeed!
Top: “Since this was for the Met Gala, which is about setting fashionable style statement, Sudha and I were both keen on designing something unusual that stood out on the red carpet,” says designer Farah Khan of the Dreamy Decadence ear cuff she created for Sudha Reddy. (Photo: Getty Images)
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