LVMH is backing cool jewels

Repossi Robert Mapplethorpe New York Times

An update from the world of fine jewellery. LVMH has quietly taken a majority stake in my favourite cult fine jewellery brand Repossi. According to Business of Fashion (paywall), LVMH (which owns Louis Vuitton, Dior, Chaumet and Bulgari) has upped its stake from 42 percent in 2015, to 69 percent in 2018. I’ve not heard much on the Repossi front lately, but BOF reports that it has been expanding its retail network, with shop-in-shops in Dubai, London and Doha, with New York and Tokyo to come.

I remember the London concession in Selfridges but don’t think it’s in the same spot, so I’m wondering if it’s moved to a smaller position or disappeared altogether. Much as I love the spare aesthetic of creative director Gaia Repossi, I’m wondering if jewellery customers prefer something a bit more decorative at the moment. (Side note: Gucci is launching fine jewellery in July.) Which might be timely for the latest Repossi launch, a collection inspired by Robert Mapplethorpe (above). Launching later this year, Repossi has collaborated with the Mapplethorpe estate on a 24-piece tribute collection that take cues from his trove of home-made talisman jewellery.

In related LVMH news, there’s been a huge media push this week from Francesca Amfitheatrof’s first Louis Vuitton fine jewellery collection.  Formerly of Tiffany (I loved her minimalist Tiffany T collection), her debut line of flower blossom rings and drop earrings is much more genteel and romantic (I’m trying not to use the word ‘feminine’!) than the architectural pieces I expected.

Again, it suggests that maybe market trends are moving in that direction, away from the graphic, modernist pieces that define the ‘gentlewoman’ decade. Business of Fashion reports that the hard luxury market is growing fastest in Asia, whose nascent fine jewellery customers perhaps want to invest in more classic (read: unchallenging) pieces to start with. Just a thought. For me though, it’s all about those chunky chains with the square star-flower pendants…

Louis Vuitton fine Jewellery on model Signe Veiteberg
Louis Vuitton BBlossom fine jewellery Francesca Amfitheatrof
Louis Vuitton fine Jewellery

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: Repossi/New York Times; Louis Vuitton fine jewellery
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