See Boucheron’s ‘New Maharajahs’ High Jewelry Collection

CollectionsJan 26, 2022

See Boucheron’s ‘New Maharajahs’ High Jewelry Collection

The French jeweler’s illustrious archives inspired the collection.

The “New Maharani Necklace,” set with a 4.08-carat cushion-cut diamond in 18-karat white gold with additional diamonds and rock crystal, is from Boucheron’s new high jewelry collection.
New York—This week, Tiffany & Co. has been criticized for allegedly copying the design of two Mughal-era bejeweled spectacles that failed to sell at auction last year without referencing their historical inspiration. (You take a look and be the judge.)

One fine jewelry house, however, debuted a collection that is rich in historical context.

Boucheron’s latest high jewelry collection, “New Maharajahs” references a magical moment in the jeweler’s history nearly a century ago.

According to the Kering-owned French jewelry house, Bhupinder Singh, the Maharajah of Patiala, arrived in Paris in 1928, where 35 rooms at the Ritz Paris at Place Vendôme awaited him and his 40 servants.

The Maharajah was known for his love of jewelry, and Place Vendôme jewelers could only guess if the 6-foot-7 royal and cricket player would visit their stores.

On Aug. 2, accompanied by bodyguards carrying iron safes, the Maharajah arrived at Boucheron, where he would commission the largest special order in the history of Place Vendôme.

As the story goes, Louis Boucheron, son of Frédéric Boucheron, examined the Maharajah’s safes, filled with thousands of diamonds, rubies, emeralds, and pearls. From there he imagined 149 creations—emerald and diamond collars, multi-strand pearl necklaces, and even belts adorned with gemstones.

Boucheron Creative Director Claire Choisne said, “This commission by the Maharajah of Patiala seemed like a fairytale; it is the stuff of dreams.”

With all 149 designs housed in the Boucheron archives, Choisne mined this fertile inspiration to create the “New Maharajahs” high jewelry collection.

Elements like lotus flowers, turban ornaments, and wedding bracelets reference ancestral India, Boucheron said. A technique common to India—glyptics, or the art of engraving stones—is also represented.

But while the Maharajah’s treasures featured many colors, Choisne chose to use color sparingly, focusing more on white and transparent shades via diamonds and rock crystal, with a pop of green courtesy of emeralds in select designs.

Above is the single emerald set, featuring platinum, diamonds, emeralds, and rock crystal.

Choisne said, “This is the only colorful parure of the collection. It tells the story of the Maharajah of Patiala’s commission, but without the weight of history.”

Like much of Boucheron’s high jewelry, the necklace is convertible, with the center component detaching to be worn as a brooch, with the collar worn separately.

The necklace’s center component converts into a brooch, and the collar can be worn separately.
The necklace’s center component converts into a brooch, and the collar can be worn separately.

The bottom dangling gems aren’t emeralds as they were in the original 1928 designs; instead, they are diamonds overlaid with rock crystal for a unique glow.

The detachable brooch
The detachable brooch

There are 38.73 carats of Colombian emeralds in the center brooch component.

A necklace from the Maharajah’s 1928 commission inspired the set’s earrings (below). Scaled down to earring size, the hoops are sun-shaped and mounted with a total 35.93 carats of emeralds.

The elaborate set pictured below is called the “New Maharani” set. It features three separate necklaces.

Among them is a lotus-inspired collar, below. At its center is a 4.08-carat cushion-cut diamond surrounded by diamonds, rock crystal, and white gold.

Choisne said, “We have chiseled the proportions of this piece from its empty parts and have associated diamonds to it, to give even more lightness to the final result.”

Another view of the “New Maharani” lotus necklace
Another view of the “New Maharani” lotus necklace

The longest “New Maharani” necklace, set with a 0.71-carat diamond, additional diamonds, rock crystal, mother-of-pearl, and cultured pearls in 18-karat white gold, converts into seven different looks.

It transforms into necklaces of varying lengths, as well as two pearl bracelets. The main design element can also be worn as a brooch, seen below.

The “New Padma Nacre Earrings” are also a tribute to the lotus flower, with the word “Padma” translating to “lotus.”

The “New Padma Nacre Earrings”
The “New Padma Nacre Earrings”

Boucheron compared the New Padma to a “reversed miniature necklace.” The piece features diamonds and engraved mother-of-pearl drops that reference glyptics, and it is meant to sit atop the ear.

Elaborate carved rings (above) also make an appearance in “New Maharajahs.”

Featuring diamond, rock crystal and white gold, the ring at left has a 2.01-carat pear-shaped diamond center stone, while the ring at right incorporates opaque cacholong opal in its shank.

Choisne interpreted a turban pendant, or sarpech, as a hair jewel (seen above) that can also be worn as a brooch. 
Meant to resemble a feather, it is set with full-cut and rose-cut diamonds in white gold. 

 Related stories will be right here …
Ashley Davisis the senior editor, fashion at National Jeweler, covering all things related to design, style and trends.

The Latest

WatchesMay 23, 2022
Steven Kaiser, Watch Industry Veteran and Beloved Mentor, Dies at 68

Kaiser, whose illustrious career spanned decades, died suddenly on Friday.

IndependentsMay 23, 2022
Long’s Jewelers to Open New Location

The family-owned jeweler is relocating its Braintree, Massachusetts, store to a new space.

IndependentsMay 23, 2022
Luxury Goods Veteran Olivier Stip Joins Chicago Jeweler CD Peacock

He will step into the retailer’s newly created role of chief development officer.

Brought to you by
Dive into GIA’s Pearl Expertise

When it comes to knowing the identity and quality of your pearls, count on GIA as your independent pearl experts.

GradingMay 23, 2022
Gem-A Launches Digital Entry-Level Gemology Course

GemIntro is meant to give a broad introduction to gems and gemology.

Weekly QuizMay 19, 2022
This Week’s Quiz
Test your knowledge of the latest jewelry news with this quick test.
Take the Quiz
Recorded WebinarsMay 20, 2022
Watch: Responsible Sourcing and the Gold Supply Chain

Three industry experts discuss “recycled” gold vs. mined, their challenges and benefits, and how jewelers can navigate the area.

FinancialsMay 20, 2022
Richemont’s 2022 Jewelry Sales in the Americas Nearly Double

Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels, and Buccellati put on stellar performances.

Brought to you by
A.I. Grading is Changing Conversations at the Retail Counter

Advanced technology levels the playing field, helping jewelers give customers what they want.

AuctionsMay 20, 2022
Piece of the Week: ‘Birds in Flight’ by Oscar Heyman

The New York jeweler made this incredible, colorful Art Deco bracelet featuring tropical birds in 1927.

SurveysMay 19, 2022
5 Predictions for Jewelry Retail in the Second Half of 2022

From a slowdown in sales growth to rising costs, Fruchtman Marketing outlines its expectations for the second half of the year.

MajorsMay 19, 2022
As It Nears 75, Here’s How Grandview Klein Stays Competitive

Once a part of Julius Klein Group, the diamond company combines its direct supply and cutting expertise with a keen eye to the future.

SourcingMay 19, 2022
De Beers’ Rough Sales Up 21% So Far This Year

One analyst cited rising diamond prices and the sanctions on Alrosa as contributing factors.

MajorsMay 19, 2022
Jewelers Mutual Adds 2 Industry Veterans to Its Board

John A. Green of retailer Lux Bond & Green and Niveet Nagpal of Omi Privé have joined the board of directors as of May 18.

FinancialsMay 18, 2022
Watches of Switzerland’s Jewelry Sales More Than Doubled in Q4

The retailer also said demand for Rolex, Patek Philippe, and Audemars Piguet watches continues to exceed its supply.

AuctionsMay 18, 2022
Jewels from Bette Midler Are Headed to Bonhams

The auction house’s upcoming sale also includes collections from American heiresses.

IndependentsMay 18, 2022
Jeweler Lewis Baribault Celebrates 50th Work Anniversary

The Connecticut jeweler reflected on five decades in the industry and what the future holds for the family business.

Events & AwardsMay 18, 2022
Visit A Mine in New Jersey With WJA New York Metro

The chapter has organized a day trip to the Sterling Hill Mine and Museum in Ogdensburg on Saturday, May 21.

SourcingMay 17, 2022
A New Source in Tanzania Is Producing Cobalt-Blue Spinel

The stones come from a deposit close to Mahenge and have been on the market for several months.

SourcingMay 17, 2022
‘Pop’ the Question With Stephanie Gottlieb’s New Diamond Cut

The jewelry designer is partnering with popcorn brand Angie’s Boomchickapop on a whimsical diamond cut.

ColumnistsMay 17, 2022
What You Need to Know About the Google Analytics 4 Rollout

In the latest article from The Smart Lab, Emmanuel Raheb outlines the website changes jewelers can expect with this new software.

TechnologyMay 17, 2022
Virtual Diamond Boutique Uncorks the ‘Sales Genie’

The new app allows salespeople to quickly and easily access a lot of inventory.

Events & AwardsMay 17, 2022
‘Cartier and Islamic Art’ Exhibition Opens in Dallas

Following its Paris debut, “Cartier and Islamic Art: In Search of Modernity” has landed at the Dallas Museum of Art.

IndependentsMay 16, 2022
Mejuri Plans to Triple Its Store Count This Year

The fine jewelry brand expects to open 17 new locations, mostly in North America.

IndependentsMay 16, 2022
Karats Jewelers Plans Expansion Into 30,000-Square-Foot Store

The Kansas retailer is aiming for a fall 2023 opening.

MajorsMay 16, 2022
Pandora Announces Plans to Build Third Factory, First Outside Thailand

It will be located in Vietnam’s Binh Duong Province, and construction is slated to start early next year.

IndependentsMay 16, 2022
MJSA Has Released its 2022 Buyer’s Guide

It’s full of hundreds of contacts for jewelry-making supplies and services.

FinancialsMay 13, 2022
Brilliant Earth Reports Strong Q1 But Lowers 2022 Guidance

The company is feeling the impact of the uncertain geopolitical and macroeconomic environment, said CEO Beth Gerstein.


This site uses cookies to give you the best online experience. By continuing to use & browse this site, we assume you agree to our Privacy Policy