The Bling From Basel

The only thing more intoxicating than the smell of narcissus outside Hall 2.0 at Baselworld was the new crop of jewels inside. Designs at the March 2010 World Watch and Jewellery Fair highlighted wearability (e.g., long necklaces that offer multiple layering options for the neck or wrist) and affordability—even high-end firms showed lower-priced lines. The big story at Mikimoto? Length. A double strand of blackened 18k gold chains studded with Tahitian pearls measures 30 inches and 36 inches (priced at $5,500). Whopping 100-inch akoya strands, which Mikimoto debuted two years ago, made a dramatic comeback—perfect for achieving that Audrey Hepburn-in-Breakfast-at-Tiffany’s look (starting at $20,000). And more South Seas varieties—like a 50-inch strand of whites for $135,000 (prices for 100-inchers-available upon request)—were on view. Meanwhile, Australian brand Autore unveil

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