Perfect Imperfections

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This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on August 18, 2016.


Swarovski has been working with couture houses such as Chanel and Dior since its birth in the early 1900s. Many years later, Atelier Swarovski that was launched by Nadja Swarovski in 2007 — as a showcase for creativity, craftsmanship and the art of crystal-cutting and crystal innovations — continues the practice, while widening the range from jewellery and accessories to include home décor items this year.

The endeavour has resulted in partnerships with fashion brand Fendi, designer Karl Lagerfeld, British architect Zaha Hadid, Oscar-winning costume designer Sandy Powell and an array of beautifully designed collections. Atelier Swarovski presents seasonal jewellery and accessories collaborations twice a year during New York, London and Paris fashion weeks alongside its constantly evolving Core collection.

The practice carries on till present day, bringing to life the creative ideas of both well-known designers and emerging talent. Atelier Swarovski collaborates with two new designers each fashion season, one of whom this year is Jean Paul Gaultier. This will be the French haute couture and prêt-à-porter fashion designer’s second collaboration with Swarovski, following the success of his collection for spring/summer earlier this year.

Known for his decadent and sometimes unconventional designs, Gaultier expands the innovative and modern shapes of his first collection for Swarovski with new colourways, finishes and styles. The AW16 Reverse collection pays tribute to the power of contradictions and the concept of perfect imperfections, all of which are highlighted using Gaultier’s ‘kaputt’ cut Swarovski crystals.

Asymmetric styles feature predominantly in the jewellery collection that is crafted in two finishes, a luxurious ruthenium with silver night coloured crystals and a second rhodium-plated metal with clear crystals. The icy colour palette and meteor-like cut and finish of the Kaputt crystal ensure the latest pieces fit perfectly alongside the shooting star and comet inspirations of Swarovski’s wider autumn/winter 2016 Crystal Galaxy theme.

Nadja Swarovski, who is a member of the Swarovski executive board commented: “It is a pleasure to continue our longstanding relationship with Jean Paul Gaultier this season with this Atelier Swarovski collaboration. This contemporary collection of stylish asymmetric pieces is the perfect way to celebrate Jean Paul Gaultier’s vision, and the latest evolution in our creative partnership with him.”

The Reverse collection comes in two executions — an opulent, intricate reworking of Jean Paul Gaultier’s debut collection for the main Atelier Swarovski line, and an additional line designed with every day wear in mind, available to a wider audience in Swarovski stores around the globe.

The Jean Paul Gaultier Reverse collections for Atelier Swarovski will be available in Swarovski stores and online at beginning next month.