Assael: Multihued pearls and gemstones are inseparable in this 2020 collection

Assael, the biggest manufacturer of pearl jewellery in North America, presented a continuation of its hugely successful collection The Colours at The Couture Show: The Colours 2020. Vibrant shades of precious gemstones in combination with the natural colours of pearls have acquired a new “tone” have clearly won the approval of those who visited Assael at the exhibition. This novel combination is what this article is about.

The initial concept of The Colours was presented last year, a debut that garnered a lot of positive reviews, inspiring the creators to continue the creative experiment.

“Following the huge success and sales of The Colours since our launch in 2018, Assael continues to explore this concept, offering new and interesting colour combinations,” says Peggy Grosz, Vice President of Assael. One of the most intriguing aspects of pearls has always been their gorgeous colourful shades. By combining them with additional gemstone colours, we create a new way to wear pearls that attracts the eye and creates a modern chic style that pushes the boundaries of ephemeral nature.”

All-new jewellery designs that showcase rare gems have already been released under the name The Colours 2020 even though it is still 2019. Peggy Grosz explains this bold step as follows: “The idea behind these pieces will undoubtedly outlive transient trends. Looking back through the history of precious stones, jewellery and accessories, the pendulum swings toward and away from colour, but these periods are never short: they can vary in length from a couple of decades to many, many decades. In our lifetime, we have never seen such an appetite for colour. A sophisticated consumer explores and buys previously obscure stones. This trend will not disappear any time soon.”

Katerina Perez wearing Assael necklace with Sardinian coral, black onyx and briolette diamonds in platinum

Usually, jewellery designers who put this sea mineral together with precious stones are playing with contrast: against the muted twinkling of pearls, any colour is perceived sharper, richer and brighter. Assael designers took the opposite approach, treating these precious stones as the perfect backdrop against which they could realise the pearl’s full colour potential. “Some of these colours are more overt, others less so - the selection of the accompanying gemstone depended on that, amongst other things. For many years, traditional pearl dealers have thought about pearls in terms of white, grey, black and gold. There is so much more to pearls! We love their natural colours, perhaps more so as women.”

Each of the pearl “duets” was very carefully thought through and I was pleasantly surprised by the choice of precious materials. Collectable gemstones were almost entirely dominant in the collection. For example, in a pair of Tahitian pearl earrings, kunzite cut from a rock found by George Frederick Kunz himself. He was the chief gemmologist and stone purchaser of the legendary brand Tiffany & Co., and the first to discover kunzite so the gem was named after him. Another example of rare stones used is garnets which change colour depending on the lighting. They are cut in the shape of delicate beads and strung on threads that are gathered to form a tassel. Hanging from the Tahitian pearls, they sway with each movement and make the stones sparkle attractively.

Assael ‘Sun and Moon’ earrings with golden keshi South Sea pearls, golden beryl and blue sapphires

“What the combination of a precious stone and pearl or coral looks like is more important to us than the value of a precious stone. We also love unique, rare stones and alternative materials because fine jewellery should be special and personal.”

It is safe to say that Assael’s new jewellery perfectly proves the potential of every beautiful marine creation thanks to a wide range of stones and a diverse design. Some of it is more concise, like the flower studs with yellow and green sapphires; other items are bolder like the cuff bracelet with pastel Tahitian pearls, a spinel ruby, diamonds and moonstone. You can also find tanzanite, amethysts, aquamarines, morganites and even jade of various colours in the collection!

Assael earrings with kunzite and Tahitian pearls

Finally, I would like to add that I am personally very pleased to see pearl designs evolving and to observe the various experiments that are carried out with this precious material. For many years, sea minerals were the preserve of classical jewellery designers, but now at last it is time for change and innovative, extraordinary pearl jewellery!

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