We are fascinated by designer jewelry. Whether it's the design, the history behind it or simply the name, signed jewelry is among the most popular for collectors and jewelry enthusiasts. Keep reading to learn the history behind some of our favorite pieces from Cartier, BVLGARI, Van Cleef & Arpels, Carlo Weingrill, and Erté!
1. CARTIER MYST DE CARTIER 18K WHITE GOLD ROCK CRYSTAL DIAMOND PENDANT
2. CARTIER 18K YELLOW GOLD LOVE HOOP EARRINGS
3. CARTIER 18K WHITE GOLD SMOKY QUARTZ AND DIAMOND RING
ESRG7178 || $4,500 || SHOP NOW
Cartier was founded in Paris in 1847 by Louis-François Cartier. Since then, the Cartier name has become synonymous with exquisite jewelry. One of their most famous collections is the Cartier LOVE collection. It began in 1969 in New York with the Love bracelet designed by Aldo Cipullo for Cartier. Since then, the Love bracelet has become one of the most iconic, and most popular, pieces of jewelry ever created. The bracelet was designed in the shape of an oval in order to fit as closely as possible to a loved one's wrist, and, unlike traditional bracelets, which are either wide enough to slip on over the hand or can easily be opened in order to put them on, the Love bracelet was designed to be opened only by using a special screwdriver that comes with the bracelet. It was intended to be worn by both men and women with any outfit, day or night. Cartier has since branched out from the original bracelet, creating matching rings, earrings, necklaces, cufflinks, and watches. At Long's, we have a pair of Cartier Love hoop earrings set in 14k yellow gold. We also have a Myst De Cartier pendant set in 18k white gold with full cut diamonds beneath a cabochon rock crystal, as well as a Cartier 18k white gold smoky quartz and diamond ring. The ring is set with a cabochon smoky quartz measuring 16 mm. and further set with 20 full-cut diamonds.
BULGARI 18K YELLOW GOLD DIAMOND RING
ESRG6957 || $4,350 || SHOP NOW
Richard Burton once said about his jewelry-loving wife, Elizabeth Taylor, “The only word that Elizabeth knows in Italian is Bulgari!” Bvlgari is one of Italy’s oldest jewelry houses. The jewelry and luxury brand traces its roots back to 1884 when it was founded by Greek designer Sotir Bulgari in Rome. The city of Rome has always had a special influence on the Bvlgari brand. The legacy of the eternal city is reflected in the designs of the fashion house, which steers clear of common trends and sticks to original, elegant and everlasting styles. The core inspiration for Bvlgari pieces comes from classical design and elements from ancient Roman and Greek periods as well as the Italian Renaissance. Shown above is an 18k yellow gold Bvlgari ring pave set with 34 full cut diamonds, available at Long's. It is a perfect example of the Italian elegance that has long been associated with the brand.
VAN CLEEF & ARPELS 18K YELLOW GOLD DIAMOND LION BROOCH
ESPN1940 || $24,900 || SHOP NOW
Van Cleef & Arpels, founded in 1896 by Alfred Van Cleef, has been a favorite of style icons such as Wallis Simpson, Grace Kelley and Elizabeth Taylor for years. Their pieces often feature flowers, animals, and fairies. It’s no surprise that one of their most famous pieces belonged to Elizabeth Taylor. The “Granny Necklace” and matching earring were given to Taylor, 39, by her then-husband Richard Burton to mark the birth of her first grandchild. The lion-themed, barquerolles necklace is made of diamonds and emeralds, and features a detachable brooch. "My heart was clicking like a castanet when I saw this set," she wrote of the gift. "Richard loved it on me and he said, ‘Wow! You are so beautiful; nobody is going to believe you’re a grandmother.’" Currently in our collection, we have a Van Cleef & Arpels lion pin that matches the one featured in Elizabeth Taylor’s necklace. The brooch, circa 1970, is set with 164 round brilliant cut diamonds and has two marquise cut emerald eyes.
CARLO WEINGRILL 18K WHITE GOLD DIAMOND TUBOGAS NECKLACE
ESNK5086 || $6,995 || SHOP NOW
Weingrill was founded in 1879 by Carlo Weingrill, an undisputed master of golden craftsmanship, and is today managed by the fourth generation of the Weingrill family. The company follows the tradition of artisanal production with every piece being made by hand, using the artistic principles of quality and craftsmanship handed down through the generations. Carlo Weingrill himself was the original manufacturer behind some of the most classic and recognizable designs in jewelry including Bulgari’s famous tubogas-style bracelets, necklaces and rings, various gold cuffs for Tiffany & Co. and the Trinity bangle bracelets for Cartier. The widely-copied, classic Weingrill rolling bracelet was designed in the late 1980s by third generation family member, Arnaldo Mensi. The bracelet is a reinterpretation in tubogas of the Trinity bracelet Weingrill made for Cartier in the 1920s. Here we have a tubogas necklace of his design. The necklace is set in 18k white gold with 29 full cut diamonds, completed by an 18" tubogas link.
ERTE 14K YELLOW ONYX AND DIAMOND INITIAL I PIN
Erté was a Russian-born French artist and designer known as the father of Art Deco. He started his career in 1915 by designing covers for Harper’s Bazaar. As a result of this highly visible periodical, his work influenced an entire art movement known today as “Art Deco.” Throughout his life he designed many things: clothes and costumes for screen actresses, including Joan Crawford and Marion Davies, set designs for venues like the New York City Radio Music Hall and the Paris Opera, a variety of bronze sculptures, and, eventually, wearable art. When it was suggested that his drawings would make beautiful jewelry, Erté agreed and started the task of transforming his intricate designs into “Art to Wear.” In 1979, Circle of Fine Art (CFA) produced the first of Erté’s limited edition jewelry. At Long's, have a lovely example of Erté’s work in our collection. This “I” initial pin is set in 14k yellow gold with square and tubular shaped onyx accented by single cut diamonds. The piece is signed by CFA, and part of an alphabet collection based on a series of lithographs.