The most rare ‘Padparadscha Sapphire’ – Princess Eugenie’s Engagement Ring
(Photo Credit: The Rare Gem, New York)
Moonlight, Rosés and Reds.
Andrew Geoghegan’s South of France studio is nestled in the Languedoc region which produces around a third of the wine made in France. In the seventies, this region of France was renowned more for its cheap plonk than its luxurious reds but in recent years an emergence of niche producers have wowed wine experts with the quality of their product. In a region that produces more wine than the whole of Australia, it can be tricky to separate the proverbial wheat from the chaff with such a competitive market.
World famous Mas de Daumas Gassac is the estate historically responsible for showing the world that Languedoc can produce serious wines. Located to the north-west of Montpellier, the vines grow in an extraordinary micro-climate and are considered the finest terroir in the South of France. The wine here is consistently exceptional and featured recently in the Guardian’s recent’ Wines of the Week’. Wine expert David Williams recommends the ‘elegant’ Mas de Daumas Gassac Rouge, IGP Pays d’Hérault, France 2014 –a red dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon which luxuriously mixes ‘cassis with aniseed and garrigue herb, and built to last for many years’.
In a region saturated with vineyards, producers have to compete to become Languedoc’s finest and brands are seeking out innovative ways to get noticed. Drawn to producers that pursue quality and excellence, Andrew became fascinated by the methods winemakers were using to stand out from the crowd. In an age where environmental concerns are high on the consumer agenda, some savvy makers are tapping into the popularity of the organic market and a select few are going even further by seeking the much coveted ‘Demeter-certifed’ status.
With only 2% of vineyards in the whole France achieving the accolade, this exceptional eco-label is one which the discerning consumer and wine buff uses to seek out something rather special. To achieve the status, the wine has to be produced following strict rules of biodynamic farming. It’s essentially a return to a bygone era when agricultural land was managed intuitively using a holistic approach, following the lunar cycle to determine when to plant and harvest.
The vineyard closest to Andrew Geoghegan’s French retreat and studio, Mas d’Espanet, has achieved the Demeter award and their wines are becoming highly sought after jewels in the Languedoc crown. Their Eolienne Rouge 2014 featured in the best wines of the year in the most recent edition of ‘La Revue du Vin de France’. A cherry red wine, made up predominantly of Grenache, it’s described as ‘claiming serenity from its fresh soil’ and is dominated by aromas of dark berries.
For Andrew, working and designing in an environment that yields such wonderful harvests, brings with it both inspiration and a work ethic that enthuses his own creations. From his studio balcony he has watched the seasonal changes of the vineyard landscape as autumn’s rich, warm hues turned into summer’s abundant verdure. The Clair de Lune collection, initially available in diamond, is currently being adorned in colour, paying homage to the vibrant shades of the Languedoc region and the surrounding beauty.
Find out more about biodynamic wine production here: http://www.biodyvin.com/
‘Slow Fashion’ is Picking Up Pace.
In a world of gross over-consumption there is a growing desire amongst some designers and consumers to move away from items that are churned out to match the season’s latest trend and then discarded when the next fashion hits the catwalk. The so-called ‘Slow Fashion’ movement is one which encourages consumers to purchase items that have real longevity, advocating that purchases invest in real craftsmanship and consider classic designs over passing fads.
It’s all about becoming a conscious consumer by actively choosing brands that appreciate the bigger picture, who are keen to minimize the social and environmental costs of mass production and who are keen to move towards a more sustainable fashion industry.
Andrew Geoghegan has never been tempted down the low cost, high volume model preferring to focus the brand’s attention on jewellery that is impeccably well-made. Our pieces are regarded as investments. It’s true that Slow Fashion brands often come with a higher price tag but it is one that reflects the cost of making classic pieces that are created to stand the test of time. Indeed, Slow Fashion brands, like ours, often offer repair or restyling services to help the consumer keep their pieces beautiful for longer.
Slow Fashion encourages the age-old tradition of passing items of value from one generation to the next and with it the story of who created it and for what purpose. It is a movement that enjoys the personality of pieces and encourages the consumer to seek out designers who can offer bespoke designs to satisfy the needs of creativity, identity and participation in individuals.
Slow Fashion isn’t a passing craze, it’s a movement that harks back to a bygone era where jewellery and clothes weren’t regarded as throwaway items but as something you kept, looked after and valued. It’s a movement supported by designers, industry leaders and a growing number of savvy consumers who want to choose quality over quantity.
You can find out more about the Slow Fashion Movement here: http://slowfashionforward.org/slowfashionvalues
A multi-award winning designer, it is no secret Andrew Geoghegan has long-since been a press favourite. His eternally glamorous designs blending classic with contemporary have becoming renowned for creating a stir with fashion and jewellery editors…
It has, even by AG’s standards, been a particularly glittering few months for the brand, with the cream of the fashion industry accelerating their appreciation of the designer-of-the-moment with a wealth of fashion and jewellery features. Spotted in Harpers Bazaar, the FT ‘How to Spend it’, The Telegraph Luxury and Shortlist magazine as well as outlets favoured by industry authorities including The Jewellery Editor and JewelStreet – AG’s celebrity wearer following has only strengthened the designers grip on the trade and consumer media.
Appearing on the perfectly manicured fingers of Pippa Middleton, Andrew Geoghegan’s designs have also been called in to decorate A-list celebrities in blockbuster films and are frequently requested by celebrity stylists and for high-end fashion shoot purposes.
Autumn/Winter Jewellery Launches
Time nestled away in his South of France design studio has certainly inspired Andrew Geoghegan, and Autumn/Winter 2016 sees the launch of some incredible new pieces to the AG collections. As expected, each new piece is perfectly considered and balanced, with seemingly contrasting elements to create miniature masterpieces. Expect exquisite cocktail rings and captivating engagement and wedding rings alongside new bracelets and earrings
The historic translation of this French word is place for a spectacle or event and this title will be understood on your first glance at the collection. In keeping with the current trend for jewellery with strong geometric form, the hexagon takes centre stage in the Chapiteau to be launched this A/W16 at IJL. This dynamic collection features a decadent and impactful cocktail ring as well as commanding engagement and wedding rings. Whichever of the six-sides you view the pieces from, we guarantee delight.
A long-awaited addition to the brands best-selling collection, the delicate Cannelé Bracelet is astonishingly pretty, featuring the signature Cannelé fluting on the setting and within other elements of the piece. Elegant and timeless, one can purchase an all diamond version or choose from other delightful stones including chocolate diamonds, rubies and sapphires – allowing this piece to be entirely tailored to the wishes of the wearer.
Clair de Lune Earrings
The scintillating diamond-set Clair de Drop Earrings are a natural addition to the AG collection following the successful launch of the Clair de Lune bridal rings in February. Additional elements to the collection are also being worked on and will be launched throughout the year. Eveningwear at its very finest, the earrings play beautifully with the lunar crescent theme and these will be an eagerly anticipated launch at IJL in September.
Clair de Lune Couleur
As with many of AG’s diamond collections, colour soon follows on from the classic diamond-set pieces. The Clair de Lune is proving itself to be the most perfect canvas for colourful additions. A rainbow of glorious luminosity, expect rings setting rich sapphire with aquamarines and seductive rubies with pink sapphires. The entire Clair de Lune Couleur collection will delight and inspire.
Trends for 2016
As Baselworld closed its doors earlier this year, on arguably the biggest jewellery event in Europe, this season’s jewellery trends emerge for us all to regale. Fascinated to see what would be the predominant trends for 2016, Andrew Geoghegan explored what was showcased.
Harpers Bazaar baptized the overwhelming trend for the rise in geometrical shapes and architecturally inspired work as the ‘Industrial Revolution’, emphasized by displays of chain links, buckles and steely metal work. Andrew was delighted to see this as a rising trend as one of his designs in production to be launched at the IJL, is one which marries robust hexagonal form with a strong architectural flavour.
When it came to framing the face, earrings dominated the scene with big, bold styles and explosions of bright, often clashing, primary colours. Maria Doulton, The Telegraph Luxury, noted the predominance of a single statement earring with designers choosing a decidedly asymmetrical look, which certainly draws attention to the individual pieces.
The predominance of 2016 Pantone colours of the year, Rose Quartz and Serenity Blue, were noted by Ruth Faulkner, Retail Jeweller, particularly in the Spring and Summer collections. Belinda Morris, The Jeweller magazine, reported the predominance of green stones with emeralds, tsavorite and green topaz particularly catching her eye.
On the catwalks, it seems that fashion jewellery brands continue to dominate the accessories, but Faulkner, RJ magazine, observed a growing trend for wearing fashion pieces alongside fine jewellery. Indeed, Michelle Graff, National Jeweler magazine, noticed an overwhelming rise in ‘day-to-night’ jewellery wear – pieces which aren’t too ostentatious for the office but still provide the necessary wow factor for an evening at the theatre