For Chanel’s new High Jewellery collection Escale à Venise, Patrice Leguéreau offers an invaluable interpretation of the brand’s iconic pieces through the majestic symbols of Venice. In this collection, Mademoiselle’s favourite destination, La Serenissima is adorned by unique and exceptional gemstones, carefully handpicked by the house’s master jewellers. The seventy jewellery pieces convey the very essence of this unparalleled city: its architecture and palaces, canals and gondolas, Métiers d’art and winged Lion – keeper of the Queen of the Adriatic.
1st stopover of the Escale à Venise: “Sérénissime”
Éblouissante – which means « dazzling » in French – is the apt name of this line. Absolute favorite of ours, this set composed of white and pink geometric designs is reminiscent of the façades of the palaces and the marble floors of Venetian churches. For instance, the rose gold and platine necklace adorns a staggered motif set with baguette diamonds. Drawing inspiration from the emblematic quilting created by Gabrielle Chanel, the piece offers for a subtle glimpse of delicate skins. A small but far from trivial detail: this transformable necklace can be worn in seven different ways by removing some features, such as the earrings placed on each side.
For its part, the Sérénissime piece flaunts a neo-baroque style reminiscent of the Byzantine spirit of the mosaics on gold background of St Mark’s Basilica. Like this plastron illuminated by a shower of diamonds, onyx and diamond squares of pink, yellow and orange sapphire tesserae and spessartine garnets reflect the light over a stunning 27.09 carat oval mandarin sapphire.
2nd stopover of the Escale à Venise: “Gran Canale”
Volute Croisière, Volute Vénitienne, Volute Marine and Ruban Canotier are the four sets of this second stopover inspired by the nautical charm of the lagoon. The emblematic white and blue mooring poles of the gondolas are represented in lapis lazuli and diamonds three-strand sautoir made up of pearls and yellow gold as well as on a white and yellow gold pair of earrings.
A red and white version of the mooring poles is also featured on a red spinels and diamonds necklace. Wrought to create a twisting effect, the gems remind of the ropes anchoring the gondolas. A tribute to the Grand Canal, these pieces of Chanel’s Escale à Venise collection are extremely modern.
3rd stopover of the Escale à Venise: “Isole della Laguna”
The camellia, Coco Chanel’s favourite flower, is the core of this third piece, which is an ode to the Métiers d’art. Camélia Byzantin celebrates the ancient mosaics found on the island of Torcello with an awe-inspiring necklace made of hard stones. Just like the small irregular pieces of mosaics, they outline a motif: a red camellia in carnelians and fire opals, with a pistil composed of a 10.07 carat yellow diamond.
The historic glass work of the island of Murano inspired Chanel, and was transformed into the Camélia Vénitien set, combining rock crystal with yellow gold.
Cut from this translucent gem, the camellia is embellished with garlands and flaunts its beauty on asymmetric earrings in yellow gold, diamonds, and rock crystal. The pair is as modern and stunning as the hoop earrings – a rare shape in High Jewellery – as it adorns the same precious features.
As for the Camélia Baroque jewelled watch, the fetish flower conceals the diamond-covered dial.
4th stopover of the Escale à Venise : “Spirito di Venezia”
Keeper of the Floating City, the lion always embodied the spirit of Venice – but is also an omnipresent symbol in Chanel’s creative universe. Indeed, the feline was Gabrielle Chanel’s zodiac sign and an entire high jewellery collection was even dedicated to it in 2013. The lion now takes over this fourth and last set.
The Lion Secret necklace shows two white gold lions with a mane set with pear and shuttle-cut diamonds watching over a 15.55 carat pear-shaped diamond. The jewel looks like a bas-relief from one of the city’s monuments.
The Constellation Astrale necklace is truly an eye catcher. Chanel’s expert jewellers had the talent and inspiration to transpose on this unique set the sky where the winged lion appears on the façade of Saint Mark’s Basilica.
Carved from a lapis lazuli mosaic, the necklace features a central star set with a 4.47 carat yellow sapphire illuminated by a myriad of stars. Adapted in a bracelet, a pair of earrings and a ring, the set forms a poetic whole.
Now that you’ve discovered Chanel’s Escale à Venise, why not read our article on the extravagance of high jewellery: