To be bold is to have a sense of adventure. For Roberto Coin, the Italian jewelry designer’s latest collection, dubbed Sauvage Privé, features malachite and black jade mixed with diamonds in mostly rose gold settings.
The semiprecious stones are somber in color and are usually not the first choices in haute jewelry settings. Besides, the Sauvage Privé bangles and rings are more angular than curvy.
But anyone who tries them on is pleasantly surprised to find the pieces are wearable and go well with casual and formal threads.
The rose gold also complements skin tone very well.
A preference for bold
Philip Nicholas Grima, Coin’s sales director for Asia, observed that Filipinos who love jewelry are more interested in “bolder designs, maybe a little more visual pieces.”
Grima points out: “My personal opinion is that your cultural history
—Hispanic and American colonization
—created a taste for jewelry… rather different from the rest of Asia and Southeast Asia. While others would go for more gem-set pieces, here we have more ‘bold gold’ designs, typically Italian types of jewelry.”
Does Grima mean adventurous? “Exactly!” he blurted.
The executive knows jewelry and precious stones. His father Andrew was a pioneer in modern jewelry design and whose pieces wowed royalty. His mother is descended from a line (that counts Pope Paul III as a family member) which has sponsored artists since the Renaissance.
Element of pleasure
Grima is more businessman than artist, but credits “the unnecessariness of jewelry in life” as a lifelong fascination. He trots the globe as managing director of CKC Jewellery Co. Inc., which sources gemstones for Roberto Coin.
“Jewelry is not a fundamental thing we require for our living but for the beautification of the wearer. That gives me pleasure,” he told Lifestyle.
Grima proudly declared that Roberto Coin, which comes up with 500 to 600 new designs every year for 62 countries, has been “a bit of a pioneer in the use of rose gold in the business.”
Rose gold, Grima noted, is “more feminine than yellow gold, which is more traditional.”
Couple the precious metal with Sauvage Privé’s green and black gemstones and it suggests “a private wildness, something more personal,” he added.
This specific collection is considered one of the most avant-garde among Roberto Coin creations, designed with “the woman of the future” in mind.
“Conservative and classic gemstones are not really our strength. We intentionally avoid using what everybody else is using,” Grima stressed.
He added that Coin, as a designer, has always asserted that dressing a woman means she has to look different every time.
“This is the reason Coin creates new designs every year. His aim is that anybody who buys new clothes doesn’t buy the same dress again. So we always look for the possibility of dressing a customer differently every time,” Grima explained.
Roberto Coin has several collections available at Rustan’s.
Apart from Sauvage Privé, the Animalier has whimsical pieces inspired by nature; the Princess Collection has satin finish bracelets; the Princess Flower consists of romantic pieces; the Venetian Princess is more mysterious; the Roman Barocco features delicate gold wire; while the Symphony’s design inspires the wearer to stack several rings and bracelets in one go.
Grima pointed to Roberto Coin’s signature detail—the hidden ruby inside each piece that comes in direct contact with the wearer’s skin. Ancient Egyptians believed rubies had magical powers that bestowed prosperity, happiness and longevity when worn against skin.
“Roberto Coin wants the woman who wears his pieces to enjoy the same beneficial properties,” Grima said.
Roberto Coin is sold exclusively at Rustan’s branches in Makati, Shangri-La Plaza, Cebu and at Newport Mall, Resorts World Manila.