DIAMOND RING BY SUZANNE BELPERRON, PARIS, 1956
A ring of bombé design set with baguette diamonds; mounted in platinum, with French assay marks
- 76 diamonds, total weighing approximately 7.50 carats
- Measurements: 1 1/16 × 7/8 × 1 inches
- Ring size: 4 1/2
- Olivier Baroin Certifcate of Authenticity no. 150330a Bp/GLv-Lg Sth 150512GE stating that the diamond ring is Suzanne Belperron, 1956.
- cf. Raulet, Sylvie, and Olivier Baroin. Suzanne Belperron. Woodbridge, Sufolk: Antique Collectors’ Club, 2011, p. 328 for a plaster cast of a similar ring.
Along with Chanel and Schiaparelli, Suzanne Belperron was one of the innovators of modern dress and jewelry. Belperron began her career in 1919 designing for René Boivin. Her 1933 partnership with Bernard Herz (and later his son Jean) allowed her to develop her bold, imaginative style mixing hardstones, such as chalcedony and rock crystal, with precious stones, such as diamonds and sapphires. Te elegant beauty became a favorite jeweler to the fashionable elite including Diana Vreeland, Colette, Elsa Schiaparelli, and Wallis, Duchess of Windsor. Belperron retired in 1974 and continued consulting on jewelry designs until her death in 1983.
Described by many as strikingly beautiful and elegant, Suzanne Belperron was an exceptionally talented jewelry designer who became highly regarded among her peers and clients due to her artistic training and talent for design. Not born into the industry, Belperron began her career at an early age and had a keen eye for the new modern aesthetic, quickly gaining the trust of an elite clientele. Her clients included European aristocrats, Hollywood stars, maharajahs, financiers, leaders in fashion, and artists. Each piece she created was born from several sketches in gouache, redone numerous times until the design resembled her ideal, then produced in a three-dimensional version in metal or wax with the stone placement carefully planned, and finally, the jewel was constructed. Throughout the entire process she kept a keen eye on her assistants and workshop, always maintaining the quality and design concept.
Belperron’s focus on design can be seen in this ring. Constructed of platinum covered in baguette diamonds meticulously set so that the surface is flush, this ring is a study in line and volume. The hard geometry of the diamonds is set against the bulbous shape of the mounting. The simple and clean color combination allows for the subtleties of the smooth platinum and luminous faceted diamonds to play off of each other giving depth to a monotone color scheme. There is balance in the way the diamonds are set, each having a purpose in its placement and the result is beautiful from all angles. This ring, made with a simple palette of color and materials, is brought to life by great design and impeccable construction.
Rather then have her store located on the place Vendôme where all other jewelers desired to be in the 1930s and 1940s, Belperron chose a discrete location on the third floor of 59, rue de Châteaudun. She never set up a boutique, but her address was passed by word of mouth to a chosen clientele. Treating each commission with great care, she found about her client’s lifestyle, examined their appearance, and took meticulous measurements like that of a tailor. Each jewel was original and fresh and she decided not to sign her pieces stating, “My signature is my style.” Belperron’s jewels are unique, modern, and impeccably made and this stunning bombé diamond ring will be highly coveted as it was in 1956.