Medals, buttons, embroideries, aiguillettes… Claire Choisne, Creative Director of Maison Boucheron, revisits the couture heritage of Frédéric Boucheron, taking inspiration from ceremonial attire. She takes a new approach to the concept of ceremonial ornaments, metamorphosing them through the ingenious application of rock crystal and diamonds. This precious deconstruction brings to light 24 High Jewelry pieces that open the way to a new vision of couture.
Couture roots: Couture is central to the history of Boucheron. Louis Boucheron, the father of the Maison’s founder, worked as a draper in Paris beginning in 1817. By 1822, he had developed the business and began to specialize in silk, extending to lace – another rare, precious material – in 1837. Born in 1830, Frédéric Boucheron grew up in that setting, and it certainly influenced his approach to jewelry creation. Driven by the same pursuit of a delicate, supple adornment, he worked throughout the 19th century to craft gold and stones into elements inspired by couture. “Bows, knits, grosgrain, pompoms and lace abound in our archives, explains Claire Choisne. For this fourth edition of Histoire de Style, I decided to explore the theme of couture, without the fuss.”
Rethinking ornamentation: To do that, Claire Choisne chose the prism of the ceremonial attire to offer a stylistic interpretation that is both bold and unprecedented. The paradox of this type of uniform appealed to the Maison’s Creative Director. At first sight, a ceremonial attire gives the impression of being stiff and radical. However, when taken piece-by-piece, it reveals an array of sophisticated ornaments. The Creation Studio kept that approach in designing the 24 pieces of this collection. “I decided to deconstruct the symbols of power to reappropriate them,” continues Claire Choisne. “This collection is designed like a precious kit that may be worn in a multitude of ways, choosing among various elements to create an individual style.”
Crystal thread: Far from the flourishes inherent to the genre, The Power of Couture focuses on a uniformity of materials – rock crystal and diamonds –, for a monochrome theme that both tempers the baroque character of traditionally gold-tone decorations and visually lightens up the creations. “The difficulty in crafting this collection was to bring the characteristics of fabric to rigid gold and stones,” notes Claire Choisne. The Boucheron craftsmen managed to transfigure rock crystal and diamonds into jewelry sets as sophisticated and supple as the rarest silk fabrics. With the 24 designs of the The Power of Couture collection, Boucheron writes a new chapter in the history of High Jewelry and clothing, too, in which jewelry breaks free from material limitations to
showcase its substance and to be worn in countless ways.