We love secrets.
True to tradition, the Van Cleef & Arpels Le Secret collection celebrates the ingenuity, creativity and artistry of the Maison, and invites us to discover the secrets that its precious treasures hold.
Symbols of love, luck and nature are re-invented, each creation evoking expressions of surprise, playfulness and love when demystified.
Discover the secret unique to each one-of-a-kind masterpiece: is it an engraving of a special message, a hidden mechanism, or a clever transformation that gifts the owner more than the single necklace she thinks it is?
Or simply, rejoice in the beauty of the stones, set in remarkable harmony.
The premise: creation of beauty above all, through mastery of craft.
Next, allow us to walk you through the creation of some exceptional pieces from the collection.
Le Secret Savoir Faire Appreciation:
- Hidden symbol: a miniature figurine in white gold, depicting – a well known creature from Greek mythology – Pegasus, within the central pendant.
- This transformable necklace allows for the wearer to wear the winged horse suspended from a clip, along with two other detachable pendants, or in its original secret place hidden, or revealed.
- Exceptional center stone is an intense “royal blue” 45.10-carat sapphire of old mine crystallisation quality from Sri Lanka, a generous Pierre de Caractère™.
- A masterpiece accomplished by the Mains d’Or over more than 2200 hours at Van Cleef & Arpels’ workshops in Place Vendôme.
Métamorphose du Cygne Clip:
- Inspired by a poem by Alexandre Pouchkine in which a princess is turned into a swan, this clip reinterprets the scene as a dazzling Poetic Theater.
- Hidden symbol: The torso of the young woman disappears when the back of the piece is rotated, replaced by an elegant swan floating on the water. The two tableaux succeed one another in this transformation.
- Various details prolong the enchantment: the finesse of the feminine silhouette, set with a rose-cut diamond, the sapphires’ subtle gradation of shades – from light blue to mauve – and the piece’s generous dimensions all bestow it with a striking presence, like an apparition.
Pétale de papillon clip:
- Hidden symbol: The heart of the corolla nestles a butterfly, created in complementary but vivid hues to those of the flower.
- A concealed mechanism allows for one of the petals to be lowered to liberate the butterfly, which can be worn alone as a clip.
- Meticulous attention to colour detail: Leaves are set with emeralds and tsavorite garnets, while petals adorned with yellow and mauve sapphires. The curved structure of the clip accentuates the articulation, with the stalk of the flower culminating to a pear-shaped diamond.
Message des hirondelles necklace:
- Hidden symbol: The secret is concealed within the jewellery clasp. Where two graceful swallows, one on each side of the knotted ribbon, move aside to reveal an envelope in pink gold, sealed with a heart in red enamel.
- The Message des hirondelles necklace is set with 52 extraordinart mauve sapphires from Madagascar, weighing a total of 142.10 carats.
- The mauve sapphires of different cuts – cushion, orbiform, oval – have varying colour shades and luster, extending a lively and unique character to this creation.
- The gentle harmony of tones also underlines the necklace’s tender meaning: a symbol of hope and rediscovered happiness.
Papillon secret watch:
- Hidden symbol: Beneath the lower wings of one of the butterflies conceal a secret watch of a mother-of-pearl dial.
- Butterflies has been a source of inspiration for the Maison since 1920s.
- This creation features emeralds – to include an exceptional Colombian emerald weighing 14.57 carats -, black spinels and diamonds of various cuts.
Sous son aile clip
- A faithful illustration of the Van Cleef & Arpels style, the Sous son aile clip combines the Maison’s cherished Lovebirds theme with the style of the Mystery Set poppies from the 1950s.
- Hidden symbol: a parrot lovingly protecting its chick, by way of a mechanism to open the wing to reveal the little bird snuggled against its mother.
Images courtesy of Van Cleef & Arpels