Bvlgari Goes Tribal

Creating a synthesis of the ancient and the modern, the sophisticated and the primitive, Fabrizio Ferri has photographed a commemorative calendar for Bvlgari using images of the company’s silk and cashmere scarf designs painted on the bodies of dancers from the American Ballet Theatre.

The dancers were hired for one week, painted with images taken from Bvlgari’s latest Tribale collection, and photographed in motion using sophisticated digital technology. The result is the Tribale Calendar, featuring 12 photographs using the symbols and colors of the silk collection.

One Size Really Fits All

Jean-Francois Albert of Irvine, Calif., known for his award-winning ring designs, has devised a solution to the gift-giver’s problem of not knowing the exact ring size of the recipient’s finger.

The secret to his “Signature Fit” line of self-sizing rings, offered in 18k gold and platinum, is in the mounting. It rests in a groove carved into the band or shank portion of the ring. With gentle pressure, the mounting may be raised or lowered, thus widening or shrinking the finger opening as desired.

In addition to helping gift-givers, Albert says his ring, which has a patent pending, is good for women with arthritis or enlarged knuckles. It also will enable mothers to pass rings to their daughters, knowing that difference in size won’t be a problem.

Albert, whose early training was as a Swiss watchmaker for Piaget, has long been concerned with comfort of ring fit. The Signature Fit joins the designer’s other innovation, the “soft square” band designed to follow the natural rectangular shape of the human finger that resists twisting when worn. JFA Designs, 17791 Fitch, Irvine, CA 92614; (949) 263-9909.

Fit for a King

He might have been king for only a few days, but it’s impossible to deny that Edward VIII, the Duke of Windsor, exerted influence on the world of style throughout his long lifetime. To commemorate his taste and style and to allow less-highborn citizens to own a piece of the duke’s magic, two partners have created a luxury-accessories line inspired by the estate of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor.

English-born Barry Peele, real estate broker to the Hollywood stars, attended the Windsor auction in February last year to buy a gift for his grandmother. He purchased several lots with the intention of breaking down the pieces and offering more-affordable versions to others who wished to be a part, if only very distant, of the Windsor aura. What he did instead, along with partner Sam Bargad, an art collector and dealer, was develop a collection of jewelry using designs and motifs of pieces owned by the duke.

The current line includes a set of cufflinks and ring with the Royal Yacht Squadron insignia and a pair of signets bearing the duke’s motto. The collection, styled in 18k gold and platinum, retails from $2,500 to $6,500. For information, call Cohen Communications, New York, (212) 352-1881 or fax (212) 807-7432.


Spring … In Winter … In Pearls” was the theme of a preview of pearl jewelry trends for this spring at New York’s trendy new hotel, simply called “W.” The event, cosponsored by the Cultured Pearl Information Center and the Jewelry Information Center, featured collections from Cynthia Bach, Annamaria Cammilli, La Nouvelle Bague, M+J Savitt, and Paul Morelli.

Among the trends featured by the designers were:

  • Elizabethan, romantic designs inspired by such films as Shakespeare in Love and Elizabeth.

  • Multi-strand collars, with feminine drama.

  • South Seas pearl solitaire necklaces accented with platinum and diamonds.

  • Pastel-colored pearls from peach to lavender.

  • “New Bohemian” designs incorporating nature and floral motifs.

  • Pearl bibs, multiple strands for the little girl in every woman.

  • Floating “illusion” necklaces of pearls on microcord.

  • Black pearls for men. Yes, for men.

In addition to the featured designers, the display showcased a sampling of complementary pieces from Barbara Berk, Katey Brunini, Aaron Henry Furlong, Robert Watner, Kara Varian Baker, Golay Buchel USA, Cathleen Bunt, Russell Trusso, Gloria Bass, Stefan Hafner, Robert Lee Morris, Deborah M. Blohm, Mario Panelli for London Jewelers, Charles Turi Co., Christopher Walling, Gumuchian Fils, and Honora.

Devin Macnow, head of the Cultured Pearl Information Center, says he expects the Elizabethan look to be a hot jewelry trend this year.

Designers Pay Attention to Detail

Minimalism has been redefined these days to mean simplifying your life rather than stripping yourself of adornment. Jewelry designers are creating new collections with intricate, lacy, scrolled, and engraved designs. They’re taking advantage of the great strength and durability of platinum, which allows the construction of airy designs with deceptive fragility.

Victorian, Edwardian, and art nouveau designs continue to be hot sellers. Openwork constructions, finely detailed motifs, and scrollwork capture the delicate, romantic mood of the period.

Today’s jewelry buyers are responding to the new detailing and wearing these delicate pieces in profusion. Here, from a selection of international designers, are some examples of this look.