Known as “bijoux couture”, costume jewellery became a part of Christian Dior’s looks with his second collection, presented in 1947. Unlike fine jewellery wrought in gold and precious stones, “couture” jewellery was a fashion accessory in its own right, with a personality and spirit all its own.
The notion of couture is interwoven with the concept of jewellery, and at the Dior ateliers, craftsworkers assemble the statement necklaces with meticulous precision and care.
Camille Miceli, Dior’s creative director for accessories, presented the latest collection, which is in tune with the ready-to-wear collection. It share the same inspiration, the world of dance in general and dancers in particular.
Selected pieces are included in the show “Danser sa Vie” (Dance Your Life) at the Centre Pompidou in Paris, which is running until 2 April, 2012, with photographs by artist André Kertész, and performances by Loïe Fuller to choreography by William Forsythe, part of Camille's creative inspiration.
“In dance, there is a discipline so rigorous it is almost destructive, yet at the same time there is great delicacy,” explains Miceli. “I wanted to explore that contradiction.” The result can be seen in pear- or oval-shaped cabochons that have been heated until they splinter, as if martyred by a drive to push the limits, and then mounted on slim velvet ribbons. Wooden bracelets seem to wrap around the wrist, like the bandage that a ballerina uses to swathe her feet and protect them inside her pointe ballet shoes.
The result is beauty enhanced by design and innovation.