lthough fashion trends change through the years, for jewellery there are certain classic and essential pieces you should consider for your collection. Of course, the first and fundamental step is to know what you like; everyone’s tastes are different but the exciting part of choosing jewellery is understanding what represents your aesthetics. In other words, it should be something you will want to wear over and over again. Ahead of Sotheby's Magnificent Jewels II auction, we have selected go-to pieces with just the right versatility to work beautifully with any style and any occasion. At the same time these jewels represent distinctive, classic designs that stand the test of time.
Without a doubt, the staple of any jewellery collection is a pair of diamond earrings. Whether delicate studs or drops, the way the light reflects and refracts in a diamond creates a brilliance that adds glamour to its wearer. Try different sizes, which will complement your look depending on the length and style of the piece. Other gems such as rubies or jade capture the light in different ways, expressing and matching one’s unique personality.
Charm bracelets and whimsical pieces have the power to tell stories. Perhaps the most personal piece of jewellery, these whimsical interpretations of wildlife and botanical subjects rekindle our own youthful wonder of nature, all with a wink to suggest a light and sophisticated sense of humour.
“The idea of having a piece no one else possesses has become core motivation for antique jewellery collectors." David Bennett, Worldwide Chairman of Sotheby's Jewellery, says about the growing appreciation for period jewellery in a November 2019 interview. Antique pieces and vintage pieces should appeal to those seeking something unique and timeless. Many of the earlier periods are rich in possibility. For example, antique cut gems were originally meant to be seen in the glow of candlelight, thus they exude a subtle radiance and character. The practice of incorporating ancient coins in the design brings a sense of history in the piece, while Maltese crosses and giardinetto brooches, which were popular in the 19th century, evoke the glamour of an earlier time.
Inspired by Nature
Butterflies and diamonds, dragonflies and opals, flowers and sapphires – the natural world has been a muse to jewellers, inspiring the most memorable and adored jewels in the world. Because these pieces are inspired by nature, they have a sense of familiarity and may carry a special meaning to you, perhaps even becoming your own personal totem. These are the signature pieces that would become the highlight of any outfit.
A strong and striking statement piece, the cocktail ring is a must-have in any jewellery collection. They were first worn by 1920s flappers who, intent on enjoying themselves and flouting conventional standards of behaviour, dressed in luxuriously elegant jewels. Choose colourful gemstones to light up the room at a party, from coloured diamonds to emeralds, aquamarines, color-changing sapphires and alexandrites.
Iconic Signed Pieces
For the pride of your of jewellery box, think Cartier panther collection or the Tiffany bird on a rock brooch designed by Schlumberger. These are some of the most recognizable designs from the world's greatest jewellery houses, and it’s not difficult to see why each piece is a timeless icon in its own right.