Inspirations

Live from SIHH: Richard Mille’s Bonbon Watch Collection is the Sweet Fix You Need Today

Geneva, Jan. 22, 2019. Get your sugar buzz without letting a drop of the sweet stuff hit your lips through Richard Mille’s new Bonbon collection. The watch brand known for its technically super-charged luxury models tapped newer artistic director Cécile Guenat, daughter of Richard Mille’s friend and business partner Dominique, to bring these playful pieces to life. It’s a departure, for sure, for the brand typically known for more serious styles. Remember its RMOOI? The gem-free number was exceptionally engineered, and its 80 units sold out almost immediately for around $180,000 apiece upon debut. Bonbon, meanwhile, is also virtually gem free but manufactured to make smiles and disrupt the market and mindset of typical luxury watch buyers.

The Citron watch from Richard Mille's new Bonbon collection
The Citron watch from Richard Mille’s new Bonbon collection.
For purchase, see the brand’s store locator tool.
Cerise ring from Richard Mille's new Bonbon collection
Cerise ring from Richard Mille’s new Bonbon collection.
For purchase, see the brand’s store locator tool

Ten models based on the iconic RM 07-03, RM 16-01, and RM 37-01 are limited to 30 pieces each and are made in 60 different colors of Carbon TPT and Quartz TPT ceramic cases. Tiny candy and pastry and fruit motifs (four and six, respectively) are on display. Guenat’s jewelry training is evident in 3,000 of these miniature sculptures that are painted in acrylic and lacquered by hand, with a sugar-coated effect achieved through powdered enamel and the fine sand seen in hourglasses.

The Richard Mille booth at SIHH this year celebrate its new Bonbon collection.
The Richard Mille booth at SIHH this year celebrate its new Bonbon collection.
Photo courtesy SIHH, Nencioli Gilbert, and Morvan Alain

To advertise, contact Nicole@thejewelrybook.com.

“Through our Kongo artist collaboration, Richard Mille learned to work with paint,” observed a representative during the press presentation, held in the brand’s booth. The booth doubled as an offshoot of Dylan’s Candy Bar, with oversize candy fixtures hovering like clouds above buyers’ heads.

Fraise model from Richard Mille's new Bonbon collection
Fraise model from Richard Mille’s new Bonbon collection.
For purchase, see the brand’s store locator tool.

Grand fire enamel, too, plays a role in production and helped the marshmallow watch achieve its pillowy 3D-like look. “To keep the puffy quality, we painted each section separately and built up the paint levels higher,” added the rep. Some of the acrylic brushes used to hand paint the watches have just one or two hairs.

To advertise, contact Nicole@thejewelrybook.com.

Cupcake model from Richard Mille's new Bonbon collection
Cupcake model from Richard Mille’s new Bonbon collection.
For purchase, see the brand’s store locator tool.

Playful features abound. A sweet cupcake watch features ribbed sides mimicking those found on liners, with a miniature icing-topped muffin finishing off the crown. Citrus slices—lemons and oranges—dot dials in several fruit variants, while mesmerizing lollipops and candy peanuts perch from prominent places on more faces, and a black licorice coil consumes the center of the Réglisse. Then there’s the Marshmallow model—a clear favorite among the press corps for its über whimsical vibe—that is made in the likeness of Marpoles Marshmallow Candy Twists.

Marshmallow watch from Richard Mille's new Bonbon collection
Marshmallow watch from Richard Mille’s new Bonbon collection.
For purchase, see the brand’s store locator tool.

The cost to own one of these sweet pieces? They come calorie free in the $122,500 to $158,000 price range.


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Inspirations

Live from SIHH: Ulysses Nardin’s Milo Manara Erotic Cartoon Watches Are for Carnal Minds

Geneva, Jan. 22, 2019. The Manara My Love collection of erotic watches isn’t the first time Swiss luxury watchmaker Ulysses Nardin, a firm forever inspired by the sea (and sex, apparently), has dabbled in X-rated numbers, nor will it likely be the last. For this naughty foray, the brand unveiled a collaboration with Italian comic book artist Milo Manara, a kindred soul in his love of the sea and desire.

Erotic watch from the Manara My Love collection
Erotic watch from the Manara My Love collection
The making of an erotic watch from the Manara My Love collection
The making of an erotic watch from the Manara My Love collection

To advertise, contact Nicole@thejewelrybook.com.

Manara painted 10 scenes featuring the mermaid Ulyssa and the human Nadia, who meet and fall in lust or a “timeless, nautical reverie” as the brand describes it, all while a seemingly pervy shark looks on from the distance. After Manara painted each scene, the Nardin team went to work recreating them in micro paintings, an endeavor that took 50 hours to do per dial, whose surfaces are about 10 times smaller than the original watercolors. The details are mind boggling—from explosions of waves to jewels on the mermaid, all painted with a brush the width of a single eyelash. Upon completion, a lacquer topcoat seals these acrylic stories into their exhibits to best reflect light.

Image from the Manara My Love watch collection from Ulysse Nardin
Image from the Manara My Love watch collection from Ulysse Nardin
Erotic image on one of the Manara My Love watches from Ulysee Nardin
Erotic image on one of the Manara My Love watches from Ulysee Nardin

To advertise, contact Nicole@thejewelrybook.com.

Erotic image from the Manara My Love collection from Ulysse Nardin
Erotic image from the Manara My Love collection from Ulysse Nardin

The watches themselves are available in 10 pieces per drawing in stainless steel and 5N rose gold (a specific mix of gold, silver, and copper that offers a more reddish hue), limiting the series to just 200 pieces total. A UN-320 self-winding movement powers them, and just the hours and minutes are displayed, leaving more room for the libidinous though masterful drawings. Faces are 40 mm in size, and the models are set on dark blue alligator straps. Each purchase comes with an original numbered and signed print from Milo Manara himself. 

Erotic image from the Manara My Love collection from Ulysse Nardin
Erotic image from the Manara My Love collection from Ulysse Nardin
Erotic image from the Manara My Love collection from Ulysse Nardin

The price for these kinky styles? They range from €26,900 to €29,600.


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Inspirations

Sharing the Rough Jewelry Brings the Same-Name Film to Life, and to Your Own Collection

Pocatello, Idaho. Jan. 7, 2019. Like many in the industry, Brecken and Jonathan Farnsworth were moved when they watched the 2015 documentary Sharing the Rough. The owners of Parlé Jewelry Designs were also friends with producer Orin Mazzoni, who has family in the jewelry industry, so when he expressed interest in a collection that would help bring the film to life, the Farnsworths—whose company motto is “Stones That Speak”—knew they could accomplish the task. The pair were already offering stones—including myriad colors of garnet—from East Africa, so the challenge would be in telling the story of the stones in a more specific way as well as designating a portion of sales to a charity that would ensure the funds would benefit the communities mining the gems.

To advertise, contact Nicole@thejewelrybook.com.

The Farnsworths became aware of the Devon Foundation, a charity organized by jewelry store owner Nancy Schuring of Devon Fine Jewelry in Wyckoff, N.J., who had visited East African mine sites and even appeared in the film! Schuring was already funneling funds for education and meals to those living in mining regions, so they elected to give their collection proceeds to the Devon Foundation to distribute. One of the beneficiaries? The Kitarini Primary School located in Tanzania near the Kenyan border. The school serves the children of the area’s Masai tribe. Five percent of wholesale dollars of the Farnsworth’s Sharing the Rough jewelry collection benefits Kitarini, helping to provide meals, books, uniforms, and more to elementary-age students. Retailers who carry the collection are encouraged to match monies. For a firsthand look at Devon’s efforts, the Farnsworths visited the school in September, afterwards pledging “to give $15,000 to the Foundation,” explains Brecken.

Jonathan and Brecken Farnsworth visited the Kitarini Primary School in September to see how proceeds from sales of their Sharing the Rough jewelry collection would be utilized.
Jonathan and Brecken Farnsworth visited the Kitarini Primary School in September to see how proceeds from sales of their Sharing the Rough jewelry collection would be utilized.

To advertise, contact Nicole@thejewelrybook.com.

As for the Sharing the Rough jewelry collection, which is sold by retailers nationwide, it features mixes of uncut and faceted gems to reveal the transformation of the stones. Collection-wide, styles have a hand-hewn look and are carved in wax for authenticity. Gems include Lotus garnet (a pink stone) as well as rhodolite, mandarin, tsavorite, and mint Merelani garnets. “We’re expanding offerings and increasing style selections for 2019,” adds Brecken. Retail prices start at $595.

Want to learn more about Parlé’s involvement? Check out their podcast Gem Junkies on iTunes and queue up episode no. 11, “Journey to the ‘Rough’, What Happens in Tanzania,” when they had just returned from Africa in September.

Necklace in 14k yellow gold with cabochon-cut Indicolite tourmaline, $18,600; Contact  jonathanf@parlegems.com for purchase
Necklace in 14k yellow gold with cabochon-cut Indicolite tourmaline, $18,600; Contact jonathanf@parlegems.com for purchase
Drop earrings in 14k yellow gold with purple garnets and diamonds, $1,300 at K.Jon’s

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Inspirations

Irene Neuwirth’s Whimsical Flat Gold Jewelry Collection Should Be Your 2019 Obsession

Los Angeles. Jan. 3, 2019. Gemstone junkie Irene Neuwirth’s love affair with color rages on, though you wouldn’t know it from her new Flat Gold jewelry collection. It features girly-glam looks like hearts, bows, and horses, but without a gemstone in sight. That’s right—no opal hearts, white pearls mixed with turquoise cabochons, or fire opals married to a dozen other gemmy-delish and freeform-in-appearance stones. These are, after all, the lighthearted driving force of this Los Angeles-based designer’s design repertoire. But, like the name suggests, Neuwirth’s new collection is mainly flat and gold. Period.

To advertise, contact Nicole@thejewelrybook.com.

Neuwirth dishes that she’s had some of the styles in mind—and in her collection—for more than a decade, though a new crop of horizontal cuties debuted this fall. To date, 36 looks are available in 18k yellow, rose, and white gold. While some have diamond and pearl accents, most are level and free of surface adornments. Why? Neuwirth wants to stay nimble.

“I have been trying to develop this collection for years—lots of people have been asking for more, but I was so obsessed with the stones that it was hard to pull me away from that direction,” she explains. “So I took it as a challenge to myself.”

Plus, the airy and fun aesthetics of the styles are still in line with the artist’s DNA. “I see women in restaurants and in airplanes wearing them, and I love how lightweight and feminine they look and feel,” she adds. “I think the whimsical yet fine nature of the collection makes them clearly mine. I love the irony of the hearts and bows and horses and how playful and sugary sweet they are.”

To advertise, contact Nicole@thejewelrybook.com.

Expect flat gold flowers (Yay!) next and find all the pieces—ranging in retail price from $680 to $19,460—in the Irene Neuwirth boutique in Los Angeles and online.

Meanwhile, her biggest accolade to date doesn’t come from a celebrity or revolve around a certain motif; it has to do with the collection’s absence of gems—Neuwirth’s signature.

“The biggest compliment is that although there is no color—what I’m typically known for—people still look at the pieces and know right away they are mine.”

Small Love Link bracelet in 18k rose gold, $4,710; Irene Neuwirth
Small Love Link bracelet in 18k yellow gold, $4,710; Irene Neuwirth
Little Filly Link necklace in 18k yellow gold, $5,980; Irene Neuwirth
Little Filly Link necklace in 18k yellow gold, $5,980; Irene Neuwirth

Medium Strawberry earrings in 18k yellow and rose gold with 0.36 ct. t.w. diamonds, $7,790; Irene Neuwirth
Medium Strawberry earrings in 18k yellow and rose gold with 0.36 ct. t.w. diamonds, $7,790; Irene Neuwirth


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