Elsa Schiaparelli

Elsa Schiaparelli was born in Italy to a wealthy and highly educated family and was surrounded by art, philosphy, literature and astronomy during her formative years. While she disdained the lifestyle that she was accustomed to, she still used it to make her way in life, living in the US and Paris during adulthood and mixing with the socially elite while starting her businesses. Heavily influenced by the European art community, she is known primarily as a fashion designer, but after making a success in clothing she moved into accessories and perfumes as well. "Shocking" pink (fuchsia) was the color for which she is best known, and her designs were often noted for their use of unusual buttons, zippers, and appliques of unusual figures and themes. She seems to have felt the need to "shock" others with somewhat off-the-wall (for the time period) ideas, but we owe to her a myriad of fashion innovations for which she rarely gets much credit. She and Coco Chanel were great rivals.

How much designing she actually did herself, and how much was done by friends/employees for which she gave her stamp of approval (literally her signature) is unknown, but it is safe to say she was a very intelligent person who became a successful business woman in a time period when this was not common. However, she did not adjust well to the change of fashion climate following World War II and closed her business in 1954.

Particularly noted for her watermelon colored jewelry and use of unusual stones, her jewelry is always excellent quality and would have been expensive for the time period, which is partly why it is not frequently found.

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Description: Schiaparelli Blue Cabochon Necklace - When one hears the name Schiaparelli, we expect quality combined with unique design, which this necklace certainly exemplifies. This stylized floral has glowing deep blue oval and round cabochons that emerge from a center curling leaf of clear pave with light sapphire baguette vein, which is topped by a channel trapezoid set circlet. Side chains are of squared snake chain, ending with an adjustable hook and eye closure that is easy to operate. Goldtone. Center section is 2 3/4" x 2 1/4", entire necklace adjusts up to 17". Excellent condition, with some color variation in the light sapphire baguettes. Schiaparelli necklaces are scarce, probably a reflection of them being expensive when originally produced.

Item: SN4-1115

Price: $495.00 US

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Description: Schiaparelli Necklace, Bracelet and Earrings Set - Schiaparelli pieces are not common; when was the last time you saw a demi-parure? This goldtone set features lots of clear pave in a design that, in the bracelet and earrings at least, looks perhaps like acorns, but regardless of what you think it is, it is intriguing and very wearable. The bracelet in particular is very nice, using a rectangular cobra chain with double dangles, foldover clasp and safety chain. The clip earrings are signed on both the clip mechanism and the earrings themselves, while the necklace and bracelet (see pictures) have Schiaparelli in script on the back of both. The necklace uses a chain of flattened goldtone disks, ending in an adjustable chain and hook. The necklace is adjustable up to 17" (and could be easily added to if needed) with central "acorn" measuring about 1 1/2" Earrings are 1 1/8" in diameter, 7". Excellent condition. Collector's dream set.

Item: SS12-891

Price: $885.00/demi-parure US

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Description: Schiaparelli "Volcano" Earrings - Schiap used a lot of watermelon stones; here is a variation. These stones use olive green with a reddish brown back flash; I believe that this specialty color is referred to as volcano. Goldtone dogtooth setting. Marked Schiaparelli on the clip findings. Minimal wear where ear would touch metal, otherwise excellent condition. 1" in diameter.

Item: SE12-889

Price: $69.50 US

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