High Jewellery: Louis Vuitton’s Majestic Tribute To The Medieval Period
Louis Vuitton’s latest high jewellery opus pays tribute to an ancient time when medieval codes of chivalry and heraldic crests reigned supreme.
Louis Vuitton’s latest high jewellery line is a seeming departure from the collections we’ve come to expect from the French fashion house.
Titled Riders of the Knights, the opulent collection is inspired by the oft-vilified Dark Ages, a period in European history marked by a decline of science and culture, and a descend into social and political chaos. Yet, during this treacherous period, heroes and heroines, such as the likes of Joan of Arc and Eleanor of Aquitaine, emerged as a beacon of hope and light for their nations.
Louis Vuitton’s Majestic Tribute To The Medieval Period
This haute jewellery range celebrates precisely that very spirit of the medieval heroine – someone who is brave, independent, and strong – qualities that also reflect that of the modern, Louis Vuitton woman.
In homage to them, the Louis Vuitton Maison has conjured up an insanely decadent range of light-bearing precious stones – 50 exceptional gemstones to be exact, with 50 more to come – that showcase the power and chivalry of these celebrated women.
The highlight of this pulchritudinous assemblage is most definitely the Royaume, a choker necklace so ostentatiously made that one’s eyes might hurt by simply glancing at its direction.
The Royaume features a beautifully velvety royal blue sapphire weighing 19.31 carats, set against a luminescent mesh woven with some 1,600 diamonds. It has refined, architectural lines that borrow from design components of a medieval fortress, such as a portcullis, chains, and a drawbridge. With a shape inspired by the gorget – a special piece of military armour designed to protect the throat – the Royaume’s exquisite and delicate enamelling drapes against the skin in the most supple fashion.
Another remarkable piece, the Cavalière necklace, showcases the spinel, a precious gem that symbolises ardour and courage. Here, the necklet has been cut after setting to contrast with diamonds. Spinels are distinctive for their deep red colour, infused with flashes of orange. This amulet features a central medallion of Lapis Lazuli, polished to an infinitely silky finish that sets off the emerald’s crystalline brilliance and highlights the lapidary’s painstaking work.
Tribute to the Queen – a leading figure in Medieval times – in the form of the Reine necklace, also appears in this collection as a nod to the independent and determined woman in control of her own destiny. Nine dazzling aquamarines of a Santa Maria-like blue – combined weight 153 carats – evoke the magnificence of dynastic jewels and sovereign power. The bezels are handcrafted to precisely fit each of the stones, each featuring a unique symbol, sculpted and mounted on a pavé chain set with 24 carats of diamonds.