One of the most recognized names in diamonds, Tiffany & Co., has unveiled its latest fine jewelry creations, and Only Natural Diamonds spoke with Tiffany’s Chief Gemologist, Victoria Reynolds, in an interview exclusive on some of the most amazing pieces from the new collection.
Jewels are the third and final expression of BOTANICA: Blue Book 2022. BOTANICA was released in three waves starting in spring 2022, with the second this summer, all featuring floral-inspired designs from the Tiffany archives as well as masterpieces. work of Jean Schlumberger. The pieces reimagine the floral designs that have long been part of Tiffany’s heritage, but for a new generation. The wisteria, magnolia, and orchid are inspirations for floral designs, and we learned why the orchid was among the most technically difficult to bring to life.
Nature has long been a source of inspiration for jewelry design. Precious metals and natural diamonds come from the earth, so what better design inspiration than flowers? Reynolds explains, “Rethinking nature is something that has been deeply rooted in Tiffany’s heritage and identity since the beginning of our nearly two-century history. When creating the BOTANICA collection, we knew it was essential to strike the right balance between honoring our heritage and maintaining a sense of modernity. We were able to achieve this by reinventing some of our most important floral themes that our designers have imagined for many years.
We have revisited patterns from our heritage. Everything from orchid brooches and dandelion hair ornaments by Louis Comfort Tiffany to wisteria glass shades reappear as innovative, transformable jewelry. Additionally, Jean Schlumberger’s floral themes are enhanced with special combinations of gemstones, bringing new life to his most remarkable designs.
A floral design and a flower-inspired design are two very different items. A floral design is a much more literal interpretation directly resembling the flower, while a flower-inspired design, if done well, captures the essence of the flower without directly resembling it. New designs from Tiffany provide many aha moments, as you keep looking, the inspiration for each piece comes your way. According to Reynolds, “Honoring the botanical splendor and organic curves of an orchid flower, our designers and master craftsmen collaborated to reimagine the flower’s distinctive profile. This theme’s intriguing silhouettes and rhythmic diamond pattern modernize the orchid motif while honoring its significance to our heritage, making the two indelibly intertwined.
Perhaps nature’s sexiest flower, the orchid is the perfect muse for fine diamond jewelry. “This theme highlights the most unique element of an orchid: its flowing curves. Tiffany & Co. artisans have captured the sensuous, organic curves of unique symmetry that enhance its elegant silhouette.
Fine diamond jewelry is often an investment as well as a work of art. Pieces like these frequently appear at auction years later, with sale prices eclipsing their original purchase price. This may mean that these jaw-dropping pieces are in a vault invisible to the world; however, Tiffany wants you to wear them. Reynolds says, “The ability to wear a design in multiple ways, like our Orchid Curve necklaces from the BOTANICA: Blue Book 2022 collection, adds versatility, desirability and, of course, wearability to these exceptional pieces.
The rarity and value of the diamonds and the beauty of the design are usually what amazes fine jewelry of this caliber. However, the complexity of making many parts, if understood, is impressive in itself. Reynolds explains, “The Orchid Curve necklace is one of the most exceptional designs in the BOTANICA: Blue Book 2022 collection. However, the hand-crafted process was perhaps the most technically challenging, and the result is an incredibly innovative work of art. This necklace is sculptural with its organic curves and crisp pleats. As a collar, it must have flexibility and movement; it must be both beautiful and comfortable. We’ve achieved this by custom cutting hundreds of diamonds to fit each setting. Each diamond has its own movement, and the artisan must conceal the mechanisms that facilitate the organic movement of the diamonds.
The designation of “Haute Joaillerie” is reserved for the best of the best in design, rarity, craftsmanship and value. The natural origin of diamonds and gemstones is essential for jewelry to be rare and still considered fine jewelry. Reynolds says, “Gem sourcing for our collections is a quest to find the rarest, most beautiful and most unusual gemstones in the world. My team and I travel extensively in search of these miracles of nature, and each diamond and colored gemstone is hand selected. While searching for the perfect colored gemstone for the Orchid Curve necklace, we were fortunate enough to find a rare unenhanced sapphire of substantial size with exceptional color and clarity. Its beauty cannot be overstated.