Text Preeta Agarwal
What happens when the country’s best wedding jewellers, couturiers and wedding service companies gather under one roof? Dreams of many brides-to-be come true! This is exactly what happens every August in New Delhi, India as India’s finest jewellery designers and fashion marvels gather at Taj Palace for the annual Vogue Wedding Show and showcase their latest collections.
My eyes start twinkling the moment I receive the invite each year, in anticipation of seeing oodles of sparkling jewels from across India. The list of jewellery exhibitors is always an exciting mix of designers from New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Jaipur.
This year, collections from seven jewellers left me totally mesmerized with their designs, craftsmanship and level of innovation.
1. A recent entry in the fine jewellery group of India but backed with a vast legacy; Diacolor’s use of gemstones and coloured diamonds is truly phenomenal. As I entered, staring right at me was a 146 carat Tanzanite, deep inky blue, waiting to be set in someone’s dream jewel. Walking a little ahead, I was struck again by blue jewels. But, this time these were not gemstones but jewels crafted in Titanium metal. Large cocktail rings and brooches that were as light as air. While interacting with Mr. Rishabh Tongya, founder of Diacolor, he showed me a pair identical oval cut orangy-yellow sapphires of 151.15 and 127.68 carats each and left me wondering about the jewel where his creative mind would set these two beauties.
2. My next stop was the Hazoorilal Legacy’s booth that was lined with larger than life kundan-polki necklaces on one side and delicate diamond jewellery on the other. A one-stop shop for brides who are looking for their wedding jewellery, Hazoorilal Legacy offers something for everyone’s taste. From solitaires to trendy ear cuffs and from jhumki earrings to traditional nath and navratna necklaces, they had it all.
3. Another jeweller who is true to its place of origin – Jaipur, is Birdhichand Ghanshyamdas. Creating modern marvels out of traditional Rajasthani jewellery trends, designer Yash Agarwal stood proud, helping clients select jewels. Here I spotted the most elaborate earrings of all times. The one that drop down all the way to your shoulders and also extend high up the hair… one couldn’t wait to try them on. Also fond of brooches himself, Yash was spotted sporting a bird brooch over his colourful elephant kurti and bandh gala jacket ensemble.
4. Jaipur is also home to Amrapali, a jewellery sensation worldwide. On display was their latest collection created in collaboration with ace fashion designer Anamika Khanna for the recently held India Couture Week. Sitting at a confluence of traditional and modern jewellery, the collection instigates a lot of curiosity out of the onlookers. Also on display was their own line of jewels with rubies carved in shape of lotus petals from their logo. The man behind the brand, Tarang Arora, was also spotted with a little ruby studded birdie brooch, adorned on his jacket.
5. Moksh from Mumbai has always been on my jewel radar. Getting to see their jewels up close and personal in New Delhi is a rare chance. Thousands of tiny keshi pearls welcomed as one entered their booth. Wether it is delicate channdbaalis and ear studs from their Taantvi collection or tassel necklaces that flowed gracefully from side to side pearls ruled everywhere. One bracelet in particular caught my fancy- a broad antique gold finish ribbon like, interspersed with keshi pearls along with a gorgeous tassel attached to the clasp that would sway with every movement of your hand.
6. One lady who has been making quite a stir in the Indian jewellery industry is Sunita Shekhawat with her namesake jewellery label. Her use of enamels have always left us wanting more and this time she did have some unique choices of enamel colour on display. Her latest collection ‘Firoza’ literally meaning Turquoise, featured pastel shades of blue in contrast with navy blue especially the grand Firoza reversible necklace that I wish I had seen before my wedding. Other pieces were lined with varied hues of enamel like emerald green, purple, pinks, blues, and even white for contrast.
7. Forevermark, a partner sponsor for the show, gathers various jewellers every year that use Forevermark diamonds in their collections and displays them in unique stand off counters. This time, their display consisted of two new collections- Artemis and Zanyah; created in collaboration with ace couturiers Bibhu Mohapatra and Sabyasachi respectively.
8. Moving a little away from the world fine jewellery, one fashion jewellery house really caught my eye- Ishayra. Amalgamating Indian traditional jewellery and motifs with modern twists, their booth was over crowded with women wanting to get hold of their latest creations. Their use of translucent resin like the French plique-a-jour technique was inspiring and the resultants were almost see-through chaandbaalis, glass like bracelets and ring. The serpent cuff was with translucent resin, looked like if would start crawling any minute on one hand.
Preeta Agarwal is a New Delhi (India) based jewellery specialist, where she dedicates the majority of her time to writing about fine jewellery for her blog Bejewelled Finds (www.preetaagarwal.wordpress.com); magazines like VO+, The Jewellery Editor, Solitaire Singapore, Forbes India and more. A trained jewellery designer and a photographer in her spare time, her expertise in the world of fine jewellery helps her in her other roles as a jewellery stylist and a jewellery consultant specializing in PR, branding and marketing and has worked for leading brand like Tanishq, Ganjam, Mirari, KGK, Entice and Malabar Gold & Diamonds. www.preetaagarwal.com