Jewel of the Month: Chanel N°5 necklace is an ode to the legendary perfume

In an interview from April 1960, a journalist asked of Marilyn Monroe - one of the great sex symbols of the 20th century - "what do you wear to bed?” In her idiosyncratically sweet voice, she replied simply, “Chanel No. 5”. And now, as Chanel continues to write its own illustrious history, more than 60 years later, the house’s legendary fragrance continues to enamour all who happen to catch the faintest whiff of its scent. In 2021, the Maison is celebrating the centenary of Chanel No.5, and jewellery director Patrice Leguéreau has dedicated a new collection of high jewellery to the fragrance – a first in the brand’s illustrious history.

Gabrielle Chanel is the mastermind behind many of fashion’s revolutionary moments — all linked to three basic principles: luxury, innovation, experimentation. In today’s piece, I would like to focus on just two of these innovations. First, the creation of a “fragrance that smells like a woman from 1921,” which was developed in partnership with Ernest Beaux. From an unusual and extremely contemporary composition to the use of laconic packaging and a mysterious name… this scent was revolutionary for the time! The second event, in 1932, saw the presentation of the first and only collection of precious platinum and diamond jewellery, entitled Bijoux de Diamants. Mademoiselle Chanel broke all the rules of jewellery art that were the status quo in France at the time: the creation of diamond jewellery by a fashion house was, in that moment, an act of almost unheard-of insolence. Furthermore, the pursuit of an organic and innate aspect of feminine charm to direct the design and perception of jewellery was entirely innovative. It is no exaggeration to say that this was a jewellery revolution.

In 2021 and firmly in the spirit of the Mademoiselle, Patrice Leguéreau has combined elements from these two historical events to create something entirely new: the Jewellery Collection N°5: “In the two dissimilar worlds of jewellery and perfumery, Gabrielle Chanel was guided by the same set of bold principles, striving in equal parts for perfection and a sense of independence. In the new collection, I wanted to play with her creativity, and to try and replicate the essence of N°5: from the design of the bottle to the explosive nature of the scent’s composition. Without doubt, the centrepiece of this incredible collection is the necklace adorned with a 55.55 carat diamond. In some respects, this emblematizes the fact that dedicating a jewellery collection to the world's most famous scent is something only CHANEL can afford.”

The 55.55 necklace from the Collection N°5 High Jewellery collection to celebrate Chanel's iconic perfume

All the components of the legendary No.5 fragrance - from the shape of the bottle to the notes of the scent itself - have been considered across 123 stunning pieces of jewellery that form the No.5 collection (such scale and attention to detail is perhaps hard to imagine without seeing it in real life!). In this article, I want to introduce you to the aforementioned centrepiece of the collection: Necklace No.5. Three strands of round diamonds that recall fragrance particles - all floating away in different directions - suspend a central composition of colourless stones, the outlines of which create the silhouette of the cork, the shape of the bottle and the iconic clasp in the shape of the number ‘5’. This is all depicted using a cascade of pear-shaped diamonds - each of different sizes - and a unique central diamond of D colour and flawless clarity (Type IIa) that weighs an astonishing 55.55 carats. This unique necklace somehow manages to do justice to N°5!

“It was a truly unique operation,” Patrice Leguéreau notes. "We had to cut the diamond in such a way that this perfectly octagonal diamond would emerge weighing 55.55 carats - no more and no less."

The No.5 necklace has already become a revolutionary piece of jewellery. This is a new stage in jewellery art and a new event in the long and rich history of the very first CHANEL perfume. The release of this collection also acts as a link between the legendary fragrance and Place Vendôme. It is for this reason that this important necklace will not go on sale but will instead remain a part of CHANEL’s own collection.

Send enquiry about featured jewellery.