Jewelry collection

Prada presents Eternal Gold, a new high jewelry collection


When we talk about Prada runway collections, it’s easy to identify the “Prada-ness”, the brand’s DNA, if you know where to look. Since Miuccia Prada joined the family business in the mid-1970s, she has developed timeless signatures, materials like black nylon to the pretty ugly prints and styling maneuvers. Of course, Prada-ness is constantly evolving. In 2020, Raf Simons joins the fold. And this week, the brand launched a new high jewelry collection called Eternal Gold. This is a first, and it begs a question: how do you bring Prada-ness to jewelry – specifically, gold jewelry?

In typical Prada fashion, when Timothy Iwata, the brand’s director of jewelry, first spoke to the team last summer, they started by asking even more important questions: is jewelry? Why do people wear it? What are the archetypes? What are the cliches? “We felt we could use our voice to make them relevant in today’s world,” said Iwata, who joined Prada last year from Cartier, during a press preview at Milan this week. In the same way the brand will revisit classics like a tank top or miniskirt, for example, Iwata and her team sought to give a contemporary update to archetypal jewelry styles like, say, the heart-shaped charm. “Everybody sells love,” he said. What is Prada’s view on this?

Photo: Courtesy of Prada

Well, for starters, it’s not heteronormative. According to the brand, the Eternal Gold collection is genderless. But with the heart charm in particular, you’ll notice it’s large, about the size of your palm. It’s reminiscent of Mrs. Prada’s personal collection of vintage jewelry, which often includes a large, chunky necklace. Iwata also played on contrasts: the top of the heart is voluptuous, like a Valentine’s Day balloon, but the bottom is cut in very sharp angles, revealing the signature Prada triangle. Overall, the piece is romantic, almost cheesy, but also strong and bold. And although it may feel heavy, it’s light when you put it on.

Contrasting elements are used throughout the collection, which comprises 48 pieces, ten of which are available to order, and range in price from four figures to $60,000. A choker, for example, combines soft velvet ribbons with Prada’s pointed triangle, reimagining a style you might find in Victorian times for a modern-day wearer like star Maya Hawke or Amanda Gorman. of the campaign photographed by David Sims. The piece can also be personalized with add-ons. Chain links throughout the collection also play with soft and hard edges.

Photo: Courtesy of Prada

Another way Prada constantly pushes the boundaries of its products is through the use of modern manufacturing techniques. The Italians have a long history as goldsmiths (the entire collection is made in Italy), and advancements in this category are perhaps best represented in a snake armband – another jewelry archetype. The way Prada interpreted it is with soft, clean lines and the triangular logo for the serpent’s head. The piece is also flexible, allowing customers to easily put it on and take it off their arm; expert goldsmiths need four weeks to create such a thing.

Finally, besides the design and technical elements of the Eternal Gold collection, what really sets it apart is its durability; hence the name. It’s something that many fashion and jewelry brands want to claim, but Prada actually has a reputation for and, in this case, can back up. Made from 100% certified recycled gold, that is, gold collected from objects such as electronics or other parts that have been melted down, each item is registered and certified by the Responsible Jewelry Council, and every step of the gold and diamond production chain is verifiable and traceable. using blockchain – something offered by no other fine jewelry or luxury fashion house in the world, according to Prada.

“We knew it was tough, but it had to be done,” said Iwata, who wore one of the brand’s recycled nylon jackets. “We took our time. To be honest, it took longer than design and development. But we have worked with the supply chain to provide transparency to drive change in the industry.

Photo: Courtesy of Prada

Photo: Courtesy of Prada

Going forward, Iwata and her team will strive to release one new collection per year, with some pieces from the most recent remaining evergreen. Eternal Gold is currently available in select stores worldwide and will also be available online from October 17 in select countries. As the Prada-ness continues to evolve, the brand will also keep in mind what it is not, which is just as important. For now, it won’t produce its own watches, for example, since the Prada family has no history with them. “That wouldn’t be authentic,” Iwata said.

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