“The Coromandel Collection” – Chanel’s Ode to Madame Gabrielle C.

19.03.2019 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Gabrielle Chanel was said to have been one who lived a figurative lacquered box where sailing ships, palaces, flowers and birds plaited in flashes of gold and deep red stood out against the darkness of light. This fantasy landscape meant so much to her that she often wished to always carry this fantasy in a portable form. This was how her love for Coromandel screens was first discovered in 1910 on a journey with her great love Boy Capel. “The first time I saw a coromandel screen, I cried out: It’s so beautiful! I had never said that about any other object,” said Madame Chanel.

The French fashion house which lives in on in her name recently chose to honour their founder’s passion with a high jewellery collection of fifty-nine pieces inspired by coromandel screens. The collection includes twenty-four pieces which are entirely unique with reworked motifs around the themes of floral, noticeably evoking her signature flower, the Camellia; animal, through the bestiary of Coromandel; and mineral, reflecting her love of crystal and gemstones.

The Fleur De Laque Necklace

The designer was undoubtedly greatly inspired by the intricacies of these Chinese Coromandels which often included art of flora and faunas. She would muse upon the screens and attach photographs and drawings to create a sort of moodboard  or theatre in which she would often immerse herself. “When I look at this screen in the evening for example,”she continued, “ I see doors opening and knights setting off on a horseback.”

At the heart of this animal theme, the workshop captures a flock of in flight birds as they appear on some of the designer’s screens in an ornament diamond right that boasts over ten carats. The collection’s gems also calls on the colours of the Coromandel lacquers which includes the greens of the Tsavorite garnet, emeralds and the over thirty-seven carat tourmaline on the “Vibration Minérale” ring; the red spinel on the “Evocation Florale” ring and the ruby beads and deep hypnotic black lacquer transposed onto the onyx. To shop or view the full collection visit CHANEL


The Évocation Florale necklace
Coco Chanel (1883-1971), couturière française. Paris, 1937.

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