Friday, March 28, 2014
Do you know which country makes the most jewelry? You probably guessed it right, China. The United States is second and followed by Australia. Surprisingly, Russia is on fourth place. But even more surprisingly, Italy, Spain, and France are off the list in the top ten jewelry-producing countries. These three countries produce one of the most elegant signature collections in the world. So why are they not in the list? One reason is that the jewelers in these countries — for instance, Roberto Coin in Italy — take a lot of time to perfect their skills and craftsmanship. It’s one of the best tips to remember when buying jewelry: if you want the best in artistry and workmanship go for any of these three countries and you’ll be buying rarer kinds of jewelry collection.
Roberto Coin is available at Shreve & Co. on Post Street, San Francisco, Stanford Shopping Center in Palo Alto, and SW Broadway in Portland.
There’s a vibrant, light feel about Mémoire diamond jewelry. Like a Bossa Nova that seeps through a breezy night by the beach, the Mémoire diamond ring expresses a magnetic allure. The heart gravitates to it as the eyes feast on the Mémoire well-crafted piece, a diamond on a perfectly set throng. It may be an illusion, but a Mémoire diamond seems to sparkle brighter, scintillate more colors and produce more light albeit in subtle unison at night against the moonlight. Now imagine you and your loved one sharing a bottle of champagne while the diamond evokes a luxurious sensuality. The exchange of glances and teases, the kisses of the warm sea, these are the memories that a Mémoire diamond ring evokes. Only a Mémoire can convey such a wonderful, romantic night.
Mémoire is available at Shreve & Co. in Post Street, San Francisco.
Roberto Coin is one of the most renowned Italian jewelry signatures today, and its Cento Collection is nothing short of breathtaking in style and workmanship. Cento, meaning, a hundred of everything, reflects the artist’s adherence to the art, rather than the mass production, of jewelry making. Forged in 18k white gold and set with a Cento diamond, each piece is a masterpiece waiting for only a select few. You have a wide array of selection to get a Cento piece. The Tulip Ring showcases the grace of the Cento lines. The C Ring features a clever and bold style. The Bridal Ring is a magnificent solitaire, classic splashed with contemporary flair. The Trilogy Ring is three times the glamour, with a solitaire diamond sandwiched by two smaller stones. Cento is luxury at its peak.
Cento is available at Shreve & Co. in Post Street, San Francisco, Stanford Shopping Center in Palo Alto, and on SW Broadway in Portland.
Gold and silver have been synonymous to luxury and riches. But did you know platinum is even more luxurious than its two more popular precious metal cousins? That’s because platinum is extremely rare, encrusted deep in earth’s crust. It can be found as pure or an alloy combined with other metals or iron. This metal usually occurs near nickel and copper deposits, but platinum was largely undetected in the past because they are often mistaken for silver. Today, platinum is the prized metal for the most luxurious wedding and engagement rings and jewelry, such as Furrer Jacot. The jewelry signature uses premium platinum and craft it with unique designs and strict manufacturing control. Combined with a diamond setting, Furrer Jacot’s platinum jewelry is easily one of the most impressive collections today.
Furrer Jacot is available at Shreve & Co. in Palo Alto, California.
Diamonds have an allure by themselves that other precious stones can’t match. Around the world, more people are buying diamond jewelry driven by the stone’s brilliance and elegance. Forbes has reported that China and India account for the most diamond buyers, two countries with solid heritage ties with luxurious jewelry. In the U.S., diamond jewelry is mostly bought for bridal and engagement, but a few pieces are sold as investment or prized heirloom. In fact, one of the best heirlooms that you can handover to the next generation is a diamond ring like a Harry Kotlar. Nothing is more symbolic than the mother giving her Harry Kotlar wedding ring to her daughter for the latter’s marriage vows. It’s more than luxury, it’s a bond that ties families together onto the next generation.
Harry Kotlar is available at Shreve & Co. in Portland, Oregon, in the Stanford Shopping Center in Palo Alto, and at our Post Street location in San Francisco.
Diamonds are no doubt the height of luxury in jewelry. Brilliant, scintillating, and alluring, they are the prized possessions of many women. They’re likely one of the most expensive jewelry a woman can receive. Surprisingly, women are not really impressed by the price of a diamond. Rather, they find diamonds romantic because they are rare; and the idea that their man will take the effort to buy a diamond ring reflects commitment above adversity. It’s not set in stone, but it is rare that women would cherish a diamond for its own sake. Diamond jewelry like A. Link is an expression of passion and love, and the real value behind the jewelry is the man’s intentions to showcase his emotion through the diamond. Hence, not a few times when the relationship goes awry, a woman can easily toss a diamond out of the window because it’s lost its true luster.
A. Link is available at Shreve & Co. in Portland, Oregon.
The Wellendorff gold and purple rings have a mystic aura that brings you back to the essence of jewelry. More than just body adornments, jewelry has had a mysterious relationship with men and women since the ancient civilizations, even all the way back to prehistoric times. Cro-Magnons in Africa were known to wear necklaces and bracelets made from bone, teeth, berries, and stones as a form of protection. But the first modern jewelry as we know it today was forged by ancient Egyptians, who had made magnificent pieces out of gold in honor of their gods. The same magical effect would affect later civilizations including the ancient Greeks and Romans. Through the Middle Ages, jewelry would define one’s prestige and status in society. Today, we still measure success and social class, albeit subconsciously, based on these adornments. A Wellendorff ring, for one, means ultimate luxury.
Wellendorff is available at Shreve & Co. in Palo Alto, California and our San Francisco location on Post Street.
Friday, March 21, 2014
Mikimoto makes pearls even more glamorous for the most luxurious night. The Mikimoto Exclusives are rare finds that only a select few will ever wear. The collection carries the signature inner core subtle but alluring luminosity and the unblemished smooth radiance of Mikimoto pearls. The Lure Necklace, a double-strand of White South Sea Baroque cultured pearls, is impressive in platinum, rose gold and water opal flower. Its matching earrings are likewise masterfully crafted to lend a mystic aura. You can also choose the Silhouette earrings with jade set in platinum or the Spring Ring, an interesting piece peppered with pink and purple sapphires, amethysts, and diamonds. These are some of the most exclusive Mikimoto collections that, we’re sure, you’ll be the only one wearing at the party.
Mikimoto is available at Shreve & Co. in Palo Alto, California, our Portland Oregon location on SW Broadway, and at our Post Street location in San Francisco.
You can feel the Spanish fire in Carrera Y Carrera jewelry. The passion is hot, the art is intense; it’s luxury forged in the deepest pit of the artist’s emotions. The signature leans more on intricate patterns reminiscent of Latin royalty that boasts of radiant yellow and white gold and studded with diamonds. The Carrera collections are designed to shout glamour. The Tiger Ring in white gold, smokey quartz and diamonds are so detailed you can feel the cat’s fury. The Bambu Necklace in yellow and white gold is masterfully crafted in subtlety that its leaf design seems to fly with the wind. Likewise, the Snake Pendant in yellow gold is luxurious with its threatening fangs. You can find more intricate designs that showcase Carrera’s mastery of jewelry craft.
Carrera y Carrera is available at Shreve & Co. on Post Street, San Francisco.
The cable coil bracelet by David Yurman has gone a long way from its beatnik heritage. The jeweler with his partner created and exhibited a coiled bracelet in New York City back in the sixties and the style quickly became iconic. Some industry observers even claim it’s one of those generation symbols that survive its own time. The coiled style still exists today, and David Yurman has put elegance and luxury into it. The artist transforms the bracelet’s two ends as a point of indulgence. Both ends can exhibit different precious and semi-precious gems, such as black onyx, turquoise, carnelian, and topaz. A closer look, the stones are not just placed at the end, but they are chiseled with extreme skill to create multi-facets. Some bracelets feature single gems, while for a more energetic feel, some have multiple gems running around the ends.
David Yurman is available at Shreve & Co. on Post Street, San Francisco.
Prenuptial agreements are a great way to set the record straight to avoid future friction between you and your partner. Even before you give her a most lovely Kirk Kara wedding ring, here are a few tips to keep in mind how to tread prenuptial talks. First, talk about it long before the planned wedding. The more time you have, the more chances you can iron out difference, if any. Second, don’t get emotional. State facts objectively (this harder for women); and should either of you fall into the emotional trap, step back and set another day to cool things off. Third, use the tax season as a pretext to discuss the prenuptial deal. People are more in tune to discuss finances during this time. Fourth, establish goals, not future faults. The aim is to protect both of you from untoward events. Fifth, do some research about your state’s marriage laws.
Kirk Kara is available at Shreve & Co. in Palo Alto, California.
Weddings can get emotional and we’re expected to cry a bit during the vows exchange. If you’re the emotional type, crying can be hard to control. Of course, it’s best to just let it be and show your true deep-set emotions. But what of the arduous time you spent for the makeup? Here are some tips on how not to cry when he’s trying to make you. First, don’t listen to what he’s saying. He already said the same thing probably during the engagement. Second, look at his face and just admire his physical features. That should block your mind from his attempt to get you embarrassingly emotional in front of two clans. Third, hum a happy tune in your mind. How about Gangnam-style? But try not to nod along with the silent humming. Fourth, get excited about the luxurious Martin Flyer ring he’s about to put on your finger. You’re not being materialistic; for crying out loud, you’re just protecting the makeup.
Martin Flyer is available at Shreve & Co. in Portland, Oregon.
We have seen numerous trends on diamond rings for engagement and weddings. Recently, the halo has gained traction as the preferred setting style. A few years back, vintage diamond rings were the toast of jewelers and jewelry lovers. Despite these trends, the solitaire diamond ring, the original setting, has never gone out of style. It is classic and timeless that transcends cultures and generations. Still, there’s room to reinvent this style. The A. Jaffe solitaire diamond rings create new elegant versions. In white or rose gold and platinum, these solitaires have graceful twisting bands that embrace the stone delicately, an excellent symbolism for undying love and commitment. The twisting bands also suggest the harmony between two souls, as marriages and engagements should be. The classic setting style is maintained with a little twisting on the side.
A. Jaffe is available at Shreve & Co. in Portland, Oregon, and our Post Street location in San Francisco.
Can’t decide which jewelry style for you? Truth is, no one style fits you; it depends on your clothes and what you’re attending. For a wide array of styles, Penny Preville presents over fifteen luxurious themes, all studded in elegance. The Classic features fine lines with minimum patterns that exude simplicity. On the other hand, the Imperial uses more flair and detailed patterns that suggest royalty. It is only matched by the Byzantine collection in opulence. Meantime, Aquamarine reflects a soothing, steady feel of the deep sea, as opposed to the Midnight’s mystic air. Penny Preville also features pearls and tassels that evoke subtle elegance. For a more playful theme, you have the Leaf and Wings collections to choose from. Other Penny Preville themes include Garland, Deco, Black Tie, Lace, Draped Chains and Shoulder Dusters.
Penny Preville is available at Shreve & Co. on Post Street, San Francisco, and our Palo Alto store in the Stanford Shopping Center.
Friday, March 14, 2014
Today’s high-octane business environment demands that companies perform at their peak levels all the time. Having the resources and a deep pocket help, but it’s the key employees, the brains behind the business, that make or break the business. If you own a business or manage key people, one of the best ways to retain them, secure their loyalty and drive their motivation is to give them incentives. It doesn’t have to be a car plan; sometimes, a token of value says as much about your appreciation. Like a luxury watch. A Baume & Mercier gift package is ideal as a corporate gift (you can also give it for valued clients). The signature is reserved for a select few, in the same way that you’re telling the recipient—your key employee—he or she is elite.
Baume & Mercier is available at Shreve & Co. on Post Street, San Francisco.
Luxury watches are an ultimate symbol of success and the affluence that comes after it. And when we think of luxury watches, the usual suspects come to mind (those brands that start with “O” and “R”). But there’s another luxury brand that only elite buyers know: Corum. How does $347,000 sound like for a watch? It’s the price of a Corum 45 Minute Repeater Tourbillon Red Gold. Made from18k red gold case (45mm), it’s clearly reserved for the top dog. It has sapphire crystal dial with grey PVD coating and a black leather strap with 18k gold tongue buckle. Its hand wound CO 010 movement with minute repeater ensures that time is kept precisely down to the millisecond. The Corum watch also has 72-hour power reserve and is water-resistant up to 30 meters. Of course, you don't buy this watch just to tell time, but to show the world you’re made!
Corum is available at Shreve & Co. in San Francisco, California.
There are successful people who were not born to it, but through hard work and dedication, achieved their success with aplomb. Like the Longines ambassadors. It represents a multiple layers of traits that mold an individual and drive him or her to achieving great heights in a chosen field. None, perhaps, represent Longines better than its ambassadors, a motley crew of famous personalities who stand out in their respective passions. Andre Agassi, the legendary tennis player, lends the brand the aura of power, reminiscent of his tennis strikes and strides. Multi-talented Aaron Kwok, one of Asia’s most famous celebrities, embodies Longines’ elegance and sleek fashion taste with his graceful acting. Likewise, Jane Richard, the multi-awarded Swiss horse rider, represents the brand’s precision movement and poise. The Swiss timepiece (based in Saint-Imier, Switzerland) is one of the most recognizable luxury brands in the world. But the brand goes beyond affluence; rather, it represents hard-earned success.
Longines is available at Shreve & Co. in Portland, Oregon, Palo Alto California, and San Francisco California.
Check in your circle of friends who wear a watch and most likely you’ll notice only a handful do. The advent of smartphones and tablets make little room to actually need a watch these days, when you can simply check the time (and more aside) using your mobile. This trend leads some observers to claim watches are on the demise. They’re right and wrong. Fewer people do wear watch today, but those who do, often, are wearing fashionable brands. In short, generic watches are on the way out; but for “cool” and luxury watch brands, people wear them as a fashion statement or social status. Brands like Bell & Ross, a creative take on a cockpit instrument, are valued for their signature and the extra ego they give to one’s self-esteem.
Bell & Ross is available at Shreve & Co. in Post Street, San Francisco.
Patek Philippe. The name evokes of complications with precision performance. It’s the same brand that set the world record of the most expensive timepiece ever auctioned—the Henry Graves Supercomplication for $11 million—but owning a “Patek” should not intimidate the first-time buyer. The timepiece has simpler watch collections that also resonate elegance and accuracy. The Calatrava embodies the signature’s heritage movement perfection, but in a planer look. Yet it’s no second-rate, rather, it’s a well-crafted watch with a mastery of subtleties. Encased in rose gold and strapped with hand-stitched alligator scales, Calatrava is manually wound with 215 PS Caliber. It has a hobnail-patterned bezel an enamel dial that lends a simple yet elegant feel to this watch. It’s simplicity that hides a complicated engineering marvel under the hood.
Patek Philippe is available at Shreve & Co. in Palo Alto, California, San Francisco, California, and Portland Oregon.
The new Panerai 2014 collection features the elegance and functionality of the signature by highlighting the past, its heritage. Among its latest collections, the Radiomir 1940 brings back to mind the brand’s commitment to meet the Royal Italian Navy’s stringent demands for a watch: it should perform perfectly underwater in extreme conditions (war and cold). To address the tension, the lugs were reinforced and made from the same material as the casing to seal off the movement. The same classic robust look of this model is brought back this year with some tweaks and a more advanced engineering. The Radiomir 1940 Chronograph Oro Bianco has all the celebrated functionality of its ancestor with much flair. It features the Panerai OP XXV caliber, 12 ¾ lignes, 22 jewels, Glucydur balance, and Incabloc anti-shock device, among others. The new becomes better by keeping its old spirit.
Panerai is available at Shreve & Co. in Portland, Oregon, as well as San Francisco, California and Palo Alto, California.
It starts with a tease. The whiteness of its look evokes an innocence that you know hides an unquenchable desire to touch. The flawless curves that move along the casing invite intimacy; they draw you near, at first, for a peek, but you know, soon, the craving will envelope you. The Piaget Limelight Gala watch, one of the most luxurious timepieces (prepare $34,000), is an irresistible lady that stands out in any event. Radiant and seductive, it is unafraid of the spotlight; it embraces it. It features an 18k rose gold casing, 62 brilliant-cut diamonds and the Piaget 690P quartz movement. Only the most glamorous women are born to wear it. Are you one of them (or is your lady one of them)?
Piaget is available at Shreve & Co. in Post Street, San Francisco.
Friday, March 07, 2014
Tired of the common circular watch? Be square.
We don’t have a historical trace how watches turned out to be circular, the preferred shape by most timepiece brands. It’s easy to imagine because the clockwise movement is circular, so the casing should in no way be any different. But the grandfather clock didn’t seem to subscribe to this idea. So do a few timepiece signatures that create square-ish watches like Parmigiani Fleurier. Its Kalpa collection brings the square timepiece to a new level, elegant, suave, modern, and sleek. Featuring power reserve of up to 55 hours and automatic winding, Kalpa proves that a square watch can be fashionable superior to traditional circular shapes. The casing melds with the bracelet in fluid motion that almost mimics a fine jewelry bracelet. It’s time to be square.
Parmigiani Fleurier is available at Shreve & Co. on Post Street, San Francisco.
Some timepieces are designed to function with precision; some are meant to be aesthetically impressive. Jaeger Lecoultre wants to be both. And nothing perhaps embodies a Jaeger Lecoultre more than the Master Grande Tradition à Quantième Perpétuel 8 jours SQ. It’s a mouthful of a name but one that fits its physical appearance: an intricate work of engineering that features minute pieces functioning seamlessly in a perfectly symmetric casing. Its skeleton movement is hand-designed and covered with translucent blue enamel. The result is nothing short of spectacular both in motion and look. Impressively, its perpetual calendar is mechanically designed to function up to the year 2100. The Master Grande is a truly elegant timepiece for the most elegant parties you’ll ever attend. When you wear a Jaeger Lecoultre, you’re wearing beauty and precision in one piece.
Jaeger Lecoultre is available at Shreve & Co. in Portland, Oregon and San Francisco, California.
Chanel has recently staged a fashion show right inside the supermarket to espouse a chic and classy ready-to-wear trend. Chanel's Fall-Winter 2014 collection was a talk-of-town topic and had gotten good reviews — with some even tagging it as the best season ever. Some have been surprised though. One thing for sure, there is something catchy and everything to love about clothes that look so accessible yet distinctive. Chanel shows the way on how to look extraordinary in an ordinary day when you simply want to shop, stroll, and have fun; just something light and easy. Other than clothes, bags, fragrance and makeup, Chanel also has a line of fine jewelry and exquisite watches. Chanel always offers something novel, the reason why over the years it has become a household name in the world of fashion.
Chanel is available at Shreve & Co. in San Francisco, California.
Have you watched the recent 84th Academy Awards? There was House of Cards star Kevin Spacey presenting the Oscars in one of the categories. He was neatly dressed with midnight blue Burberry tuxedo. And a perfect match to it was a damn good-looking watch. Spacey was wearing a limited edition IWC Portuguese Yacht Club Chronograph with a coordinating dark blue dial. The Portuguese Yacht Club is a powerhouse collection. The watches under this brood have all the precision of a nautical instrument. They are water resistant with 68-hour power reserve. The watches also demonstrate superb sporting qualities with a fly-back function and an additional flange with quarter-second calibration for recording short periods of time. Longer stop times can be read off like a second time on a separate analog sub-dial. With all these features, certainly, the IWC doesn't only look red-carpet worthy. It is a must-have for its practical value.
IWC is available at Shreve & Co. in Portland, Oregon.
With its mantra, "accuracy under adverse conditions," Ball sees to it that it produces only the sturdiest and superior watches that endure whatever environment. Ball watches are best worn for adventures by people who love to explore and conquer the world at all cost--people who are living life to its fullest. One of Ball's pioneer collections is the Official Railroad Watch. The designs are actually sleek and simple but the devil is in the details. Under these collections are watches that speak their value for themselves like Power Reserve, 60 Seconds, 21st Century, Flying Scotsman, Big Boy, and GCT. Ball has been in the timepiece industry since 1891 and since then, it has been faithful to its mission of creating high-performance watches that could weather the test of time under all conditions.
Ball watches are available at Shreve & Co. in Portland, Oregon.
One thing stylish men should have is watches. A good-looking watch always completes a man's stature. If there's something about wearing a watch, it conveys an aura of productivity and being in control. But what are the kinds of watches men should buy?
There is the weekend watch. It is durable, rugged and utilitarian. Something he could wear with jeans, loafers, and sunglasses. There is also the so-called third watch. Something that is distinctive, timeless, and moderately elegant. It can be worn with anything from T-Shirts to coats. And there is also the so-called fourth watch. These are the pricey watches but are unique and luxurious. They can be worn with a three-piece suit, formal shoes, and tie. Looking for elegance and quality? Try A. Lange & Sohne's wide array of stylish watches.
A. Lange & Sohne is available at Shreve & Co. on Post Street, San Francisco.
There are two words that define professional watches: style and performance. And that is what Breitling watches are all about. Breitling has been making instruments for professionals since 1984. As a matter of fact, Breitling played a crucial role in the development of the wrist chronograph. It is the world's only major watch brand to equip its models with chronometer-certified movements. It also produces its own mechanical chronograph movement, which is rare in the industry. This is how passionate Breitling is in producing top-of-the-line timepieces. No surprise, it has become the official supplier to world aviation. Breitling watches do no only look sturdy but they are actually made to last. They are reliable and high-performance instruments. Because of its excellent reputation, Breitling watches will never be out of trend. They are not just fads that wear away in season.
Breitling is available at Shreve & Co. in San Francisco, California.