What’s New -Volume 86

Joden Girl

Baubles, Bling and the Latest Things

Emitting a deeply fragrant scent, perfumes have been widely used for thousands of years to mask the often unpleasant odors that accompany animals, food and of course, the human body.  Ancient civilizations utilized organic herbs, spices and flowers to distill hauntingly beautiful aromas that heightened the senses and stimulated the emotions.  Perfume is often described as a musical metaphor with top, middle and base notes.  The top notes give the first impression – mint, lavender and coriander are popular choices.  The middle notes compose the heart of the perfume and blend with the strong scent of the base notes – think jasmine and sandalwood.  Finally, the base notes bring depth to the fragrance and take time to develop – amber and musk are good examples.  In the proper hands, a symphony erupts.


Such a powerful potion deserves an equally decadent decanter, like this necklace.  Thirty-two inches of 18-karat yellow gold links featuring brightly colored enamel that culminates with an elegant bottle – this is no ordinary vial of perfume.  Two distinct techniques combine to create this turn of the century charmer. 


Shown in close proximity, repoussé and champlevé sing in perfect harmony.  Repoussé is a style of metalwork in which the gold is hammered into lovely patterns from the reverse side.  The elongated hollow links have intricate floral swirls…  between each of them is a stretch of flat relief.  With a center flower and petaled edges, the muti-color enamel shines.  The surface of the rich, buttery gold has been cut away to form a channel or recess.  Bold black, red, white, blue and green enamel fills each cavity and brings the design to life. 

Finally a shapely urn dangles from the chain.  The arched handles curve into the top of the tiny flask.  Mimicking the floral vibe of the chain, this bottle shines with botanical beauty.  As the 19th century ended and the 20th began, the Victorian era gave way to the artistry of Art Nouveau and stunning creations like this were the result of those years.  Although the aroma has long since faded, the charm of this antique necklace remains – make it yours for $6,500.00.  

“You can go to a museum and look, or come to us and touch.”

Written by Carrie Martin

Photos by Dana Jerpe

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