The symbolism of jewels Elizabeth Gage

The symbolism of jewels Featured

 Following a strong tradition in symbolism, jewels are hardly ever just accessories in the modern world: they are usually statement pieces, through which their wearers manifest their identity.

by Sara Kaufman 22 January 2019

Historically, jewels have always had a strong symbolic value, frequently associated with power. In medieval times, noble families used to engrave their coat of arms on jewellery pieces while social and political figures often had their seal on brooches or rings. The engagement or wedding ring is also a symbol, and so are the rings bearing the crest of a specific school or college. Several of the world’s finest jewellery houses have embraced the language of symbolism that best allows individual expression.

Mademoiselle's zodiac sign 

Coco Chanel used symbolic language in her creations, mostly adopting symbols that reflected her own style and personal story. It is the case of the Lion, Mademoiselle’s zodiac sign. Gabrielle Chanel identified herself with the qualities of the lion, as strength and fiery passion characterised her life. The high jewellery collection “L’Esprit du Lion” is inspired by the many lions found in Chanel’s apartment at 31 Rue Cambon in Paris, carved into furniture or resting on mantelpieces. In this collection, yellow and white gold lions guard diamonds, sapphires and topazes, transmitting some of Mademoiselle’s spirit to their wearer.

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Related article: Romance the Stone

The power of amulets

Different cultures and old civilisations inspire Elizabeth Gage’s work, enriching it with powerful symbols, turning her exclusive creations into amulets. For her Templar rings, 18k gold is worked into 14th century pageantry-inspired pieces, set with sapphires, amethysts and brilliant-cut diamonds, recalling the mysterious power of the ancient military Catholic order. For her Roller Seal rings, Gage dives deep into the Sumerian and Sassanian age of fantastic creatures, creating pieces that bear all the magic of ancient history.

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Related article: SIHH 2019: Unveeiling The Trends 

The mother 

Dolce & Gabbana pay tribute to one of the most evocative figures ever: the Mother. Their hand-made Mamma collection features the traditional Catholic cross embellished with Elatius pink coral roses, Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana’s favourite flower and symbol of unconditional love.

One of the undisputed totems of Cartier is the panther. This dark predator, who inhabits the deepest heart of the jungle and hunts at night guided by the moon, gives alluring strength to Cartier’s Panthère High Jewellery and many iconic collections. Whether with emerald eyes or coated in diamonds, Cartier’s panther arms its wearer with dangerous beauty and absolute power.

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 For more Jewellery ideas, visit our Lifestyle page.