Under the Sign of the Lion

So I opened the Wall Street Journal last Thursday and my jaw dropped when I reached the back of section 1. One of the most elaborate pieces of modern jewelry I have ever seen took up the entire page. It is a brooch in the shape of a lion standing on the tail of a shooting star, done in diamonds, hundreds of diamonds of all sizes. The workmanship took my breath away. The piece comes from the “Sous le Signe du Lion” collection by Chanel and I must have spent a good fifteen minutes studying the picture, trying to see how the brooch had been put together.

Here’s a second version of the design:

How much do these cost? No idea, but I suspect they are not covered under my home owner’s and renter’s policy. Actually, I suspect the price starts in the six-figures category, based on some jewelry I’m familiar with. Just the workmanship and design is going to be worth a great deal. I suspect that if the piece is for sale and not just for show, it will go to Asia or the Middle East, perhaps Russia.

It is a work of art, a beautiful creation that someone should be very proud of having made. I’ll never own anything like it, but I’m glad Chanel put the ad in the Journal so I could see that such a thing exists. Do I envy people who have the resources to be able to buy things like that? A little. I love beautiful things and I’m in awe at that level of craftsmanship. I’d love to be able to hold the piece and study it with a loupe.

And I suspect it will kick off a story, something about Leo and stones and magic. That sort of art deserves to be written into a story.

Of course, it is not the House of Chanel that is most closely associated with large felines and fine jewelry:

That’s what my avatar wants to be when she grows up. 🙂