When you think about Tiffany & Co. jewellery, what likely springs to mind are classic heart pendants and engagement rings. However, Tiffany also has a long history of working with resident designers to create opulent jewellery with a design-led approach.
One of the most influential designers at Tiffany is Paloma Picasso who has been designing jewellery for the brand for over 30 years. However, when your father is one of the world’s most famous artists how do you make your own artistic path through the world?
Paloma, being the youngest daughter of Pablo Picasso, may have been destined for a creative career the moment she was born, but she has carved her way through success in the fashion and jewellery industry rather than with a paintbrush. As the mastermind behind some of Tiffany’s most beloved collections, she has made her signature and legacy in the jewellery world and is still one of the most celebrated jewellery designers today.
In her youth, Paloma worried about being compared to her father and started avoiding all artistic pursuits. However, a job at the Théâtre de la Renaissance as assistant to the stage Director would change her life forever. Designing jewellery for an upcoming play at the theatre inspired Paloma to take her first steps in her design career, enrolling at a jewellery school in Paris.
It was on a trip to New York that Paloma fell in love with the Tiffany building, with its masculine exterior yet beautiful feminine jewellery inside. Paloma could feel how different the store was to the jewellery stores she was familiar with in Europe and sought out a career with Tiffany. After much perseverance, Paloma secured her dream job and began working for the brand in 1980. Her designs strike a perfect blend of European sophistication with opulent details and her vision has helped Tiffany to remain the brand in luxury jewellery for the last three decades and counting.
Her very first collection for Tiffany was inspired by the graffiti she saw around New York. The gold and silver scribbles and Xs she designed were an instant success; praised for their bold and high polished look.
The asymmetric soft waves and curves of these clip-on earrings echo the high-polished and striking nature that made Paloma’s jewellery successful. Highly polished jewellery has always been a firm favourite of Paloma’s as the light can reflect more brilliantly against the surface of the gold, even more so when it is faceted and sculpted like these pre-loved Tiffany & Co. earrings.
Knots have long been a favourite of Paloma Picasso, with the twisting shapes and lines bringing real depth and life to each piece. From her necklace designs through to earrings, Paloma has always given her jewellery a tactile and 3D nature, and these 18k yellow gold cufflinks continue this theme without relying on size to achieve this aesthetic. The cufflinks feature a double knot with one on the front and the back, as with all well-crafted jewellery, each piece should look beautiful from every angle and not just the front.
The enduring symbol of love and the emotional connection to jewellery has always been hearts, and this is one motif that’s synonymous with Tiffany Jewellery. This heart necklace inset with pavé diamonds is from Tiffany’s Metro collection. The collection was inspired by city lights and landscapes that twinkle much likes the diamonds in this necklace. Paloma was often inspired by her surroundings and the sensory world that connects us to a physical place. We love to wear jewellery that’s been handed down through our families or gifted to us by loved ones and the idea that someone would cherish her designs was an incredible feeling.
“Jewellery is eternal. Fashion is the moment, but jewellery is more than the moment.” – Paloma Picasso
Pearl earrings will always continue to be timeless and elegant, capturing the sentiment of enduring design that Paloma reached for when creating her jewellery. These earrings are set with Mabé pearls that are cultivated for their flat back, making them ideal for setting into jewellery. The subtle asymmetric design of the raised compass collet gives these earrings a delicate feature without detracting from the wearers face. The collet has a subtle curve but is set back allowing for more light to shine on the pearls while the omega earring back keeps the piece secure when worn.
Paloma always wanted to create jewellery that was not gaudy but kept glitz and glamour. Her design philosophy can easily be seen in this yellow gold diamond bracelet. From the Etoile collection, meaning star in French, the 18k yellow gold bracelet is set with 10 0.4ct diamonds in a platinum bezel setting. The diamonds give this bangle an instant touch of glamour without dominating the design and its ellipse shape makes this bracelet fitted and comfortable for the wearer compared to circular shaped bangles.
Paloma’s legacy in the jewellery and fashion world continues to be shaped and moulded by the inspirations around her. Her design philosophy has steered Tiffany jewellery to create designs which can capture the mood of a moment without relying on trends. With this creative gift, Paloma’s jewellery endures in a distinct but similar way to that of her father’s art, he once said to Paloma: “You can’t expect me to be the judge. You have to be your judge.”
For more information visit our pre-owned Tiffany jewellery page online at Xupes.