A history reaching back to 1735 has given the House of Garrard cause to celebrate many anniversaries. With each new year its design archive has swelled to include new jewels, creating moments to be observed in the future too.
The House has now reached just such a moment. It is fifteen years since the launch of Wings, a collection that has proved popular the world over, repeatedly inspiring new ideas from Garrard’s designers. Fittingly, this anniversary is being marked with the introduction of a fourth design.
Since its first appearance in 2003, Wings has had added resonance through its associations with peace, protection and purity. These connections have made it a popular choice of gift and they are now enhanced with Wings Embrace which uses shape and movement to evoke the feeling of being gently held within an angel’s wings.
“We wanted to explore how we could make more of the feathers in this design,” says Sara Prentice, Creative Director. “We had in mind the idea of being comforted, cared for and sheltered by the curve of a wing.”
The feathers of Wings Embrace are clearly defined through openwork and round white diamonds. They wrap as a ring around a finger and fold as an earring over the ear, combining light wearability with a sense of calm beauty, making them this year’s perfect gift.
“This is a collection that’s both beautiful and meaningful, which is why we often see it chosen for important birthdays or significant occasions,” adds Claire Scott, Head of Design. “It speaks for you, in some way.”
“This is a collection that’s both beautiful and meaningful, which is why we often see it chosen for important birthdays or significant occasions.” Claire Scott Head of Design
Choices include a double feather pendant, tassel earrings and necklace, which move with the wearer, as well as rings that wrap around or flutter above the finger. Pink or blue sapphire beads introduce a touch of colour to the tassels, enfolded within the curl of the diamond feathers.
Wings Embrace joins the collection’s three existing designs: Classic, Lace and Reflection. Each presented the House Studio with an opportunity to explore different settings, materials, shapes and colours. Together they have built on the symbolism popular from the years when Garrard first became Crown Jeweller to Britain’s royal family.
With the ascent of Queen Victoria to the throne in 1838 the country gradually shifted in sentiment towards allowing a greater freedom to show love and feeling in gifts that were given. This often took the form of a symbol, such as a lover’s knot or Cupid’s bow and arrows, both of which were brought to life in Garrard’s royal jewellery designs.
Among the Queen’s private collection is a brooch with angel wings set in diamonds, rubies and emeralds, which she received from her husband, Prince Albert. It includes a miniature painting of their first child, Princess Victoria, and brings with it all the attendant associations of purity and love.
These concepts are still treasured today, making Wings Embrace just the latest chapter in this rich and meaningful story.