Another Thing: A Sleek and Sensual Take on a Gucci Classic

Inspired by the brand’s unwitting muse Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Gucci’s Jackie Notte marks the latest chapter of the cult classic carrier.

Article by Victoria Pearson

22_TEN0357_FRANCESC_TENGucci Jackie Notte bag, price on request, Photograph courtesy of Gucci.

The role of the muse in art, design and literature is as fascinating as that of the craftsperson, if not more so. Historically, muses were almost-mystical figures who emboldened the creative’s practice and inspired greatness. The modern muse’s relationship with the maker is sometimes deliberate (a contractual acknowledgement of chemistry) and at other times serendipitous.

The latter dynamic played a pivotal role in the 1970s when the former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis became an unwitting muse for the house of Gucci. The perennial fashion It-girl’s affinity for a slouchy leather tote, originally introduced by Gucci as the G1244 in 1961 and used on occasion by Kennedy Onassis to hide her face from the lenses of the New York paparazzi, garnered so much attention that it earned the nickname “The Jackie” internally (it was officially christened in 2020). The crescent-shaped hobo, initially made in canvas and brown leather, was a welcome departure from the structured bags of the time, and featured Gucci’s signature cylindrical piston closure, alongside an adjustable shoulder strap and trapezoidal base. Enduring through the tenures of Tom Ford and Frida Giannini, the iconic bag saw a renaissance in 2020 under creative director Alessandro Michele. The new Jackie came in “mini”, “small” and “medium” and fresh colourways, appealing to contemporary sensibilities.

This year, creative director Sabato De Sarno introduces the latest chapter: Jackie Notte. Sleek and exuding sensuality, the aptly named Notte serves as the ultimate evening companion, embodying the sartorial confidence of its eponymous muse in a new silhouette, along with subtle details like an innovative snap hook and monogram chain strap. 

This is an extract from an article that appears in print in our seventeenth edition, Page 55 of T Australia with the headline: “Another Thing”

Another Thing: Jewel-Toned Glass Lamps From Hermès

These 25-centimetre-high domed fixtures, in smoky tones of cassis, fern and amber, don’t merely illuminate but smoulder with a volcanic light.

Article by Nancy Hass

Hermes Lights_1Souffle d’Hermès lamps, price on request, Photograph by Amanda Sellem.

When Modernism arrived in Scandinavia in the 1930s, Finnish designers quickly became known for their handblown coloured glass, which was more substantial and elemental than that of their Italian counterparts in Murano. Alvar Aalto, Kaj Franck and Tapio Wirkkala were unconcerned with delicacy, employing richly hued cased glass in geometric dimensions shorn of ornament and taking inspiration from abstract stone sculptors such as Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth. Today, one of their spiritual heirs, the 53-year-old Helsinki-based Harri Koskinen, has electrified that uniquely moody Finnish aesthetic in a series of glass table lamps for Hermès. These 25-centimetre-high domed fixtures, in smoky tones of cassis, fern and amber, don’t merely illuminate but smoulder with a volcanic light. 

This is an extract from an article that appears in print in our eighth edition, Page 57 of T Australia with the headline: “Another Thing”

A Tower of Colombian Emeralds Designed to Catch the Softest Light

A pair of showstopping earrings by Graff serve as enduring inspiration for the London-based house’s audacious style.

Article by Nancy Hass

Esther ChoiGraff emerald-and-diamond earrings. Photograph by Esther Choi.

The story of high jewellery in Europe is often said to have originated more than 100 years ago, when family-run ateliers began opening on Paris’s Place Vendôme. But Laurence Graff, the London-based founder and chairman of Graff, has always revelled in a counternarrative. Now 85, he still celebrates his start as a scrappy East End teen in the mid-1950s, repairing Victorian baubles while planning to become an international diamond entrepreneur — having the stones mined, and then polishing, designing and selling the finished pieces. As his boutiques proliferated, he bought up many of the world’s best-known rough diamonds, including the honey-coloured 299-carat Golden Empress and the 1,109-carat Lesedi La Rona — at the time, the largest discovered in over a century — and cut them into exquisite gems. Such showstoppers serve as enduring inspiration for the house’s audacious style, epitomised by these recent earrings: each tower of giant Colombian emeralds — 26 carats in all — capped by a flamboyant trio of pear-shaped diamonds cut to catch even the softest evening light.

This is an extract from an article that appears inside out fourteenth edition’s Watches and Jewellery Lift-Out, with the headline: “Another Thing”

A Trio of Rings that Celebrate the Interplay of Light and Dark

The rose gold rings, designed by Pierre Hardy, form part of Hermès’s Les Jeux de l’Ombre collection.

Article by Nancy Hass

Another Thing_HermesHermès Les Jeux de l’Ombre rings, Photography by Florent Tanet.

Hermès’s polymathic shoe and jewellery designer, Pierre Hardy, has been responsible for the brand’s haute joaillerie line since it was introduced in 2010, creating pieces defined by a supple, swooping sense of abstraction that evokes the work of Cy Twombly. These rose gold rings, part of the Les Jeux de l’Ombre collection, reflect Hardy’s current fascination with the relationship between light and dark. Large faceted gems in classic configurations seem to cast shadows realised in the form of mirror-polished black jade, irregularly shaped like rain puddles. Hardy chose the stones — pinkish-brown and green tourmalines, an orangey imperial topaz — for their saturated lustre; paired with diamonds, the colours burst from the ebony surface. “The paradox is that without light you have no shadow,” he says. “And when you emerge from the shadow, everything seems more alive.”

This is an extract from an article that appears in print in our twelfth edition, Page 43 of T Australia with the headline: “Another Thing”

A Gold Necklace Fit for a Pharaoh

Van Cleef & Arpels’s new collar embodies an ancient regality in its design.

Article by Nancy Hass

ANOTHER THING_VCAVan Cleef & Arpels Legend of Diamonds Nuée de Diamants necklace, Photography by Pauline Caranton.

The gold collar is an ancient form of adornment; around the third millennium BCE, the Egyptian hieroglyph for the word “gold” itself took the form of a necklace that was bold, broad and suited for a pharaoh. Designers at the Parisian haute jeweller Van Cleef & Arpels, which has been headquartered in the same space onPlace Vendôme since 1906, became fascinated with such antiquities after the British archaeologist Howard Carter unearthed King Tutankhamen’s tomb in 1922. In the years since, the house has produced many Egyptian revival works, including 1947’s thick gold Wave necklace punctuated with small diamonds. This newest homage, featuring an asymmetrical spray of stones that seem to defy gravity as they cling to the necklace’s convex surface, is made with a proprietary tool developed in the 1960s to create a textured relief on each articulated section. While modern techniques may render a monumental piece of this nature both more delicate and more comfortable to wear than those the pharaohs coveted, the impression remains one of supreme elegance.

Another Thing: The Lady Dior Bag

Since its 1995 debut in Paris, the Lady Dior bag (renamed for Lady Diana) has been an enduring expression of the house’s savoir faire.

Article by Victoria Pearson

Lady Dior BagDior 30 Montaigne Lady Dior bag, Photography courtesy Christian Dior.

Since its 1995 debut in Paris — when France’s first lady, Bernadette Chirac, gifted it to Diana, Princess of Wales — the Lady Dior bag (renamed for Lady Diana) has been an enduring expression of the house’s savoir faire. The original stitched-leather Cannage design was inspired by a set of Napoleon III chairs that Christian Dior selected for his first show, held in 1947. In recent years, Lady Dior’s architectural form and D.i.o.r charms have been artfully interpreted by a long list of global creatives, including Gisela Colón, Hong Hao and Genieve Figgis.

This new incarnation, crafted exclusively for the 30 Montaigne boutique in Paris, takes inspiration from the iconic store. Sketches of the exterior adorn the bag, a design conceived by the house’s creative director, Maria Grazia Chiuri, and the Roman artist Pietro Ruffo. The hand-mounted handle, hardware eyelets, rivets and interior zip pocket echo the design’s origins, while a streamlined palette allows the intricate illustrations to sing. A nostalgic celebration of the brand’s storied past, the new lady of the house is a timeless treasure for the next generation of devotees.

This is an extract from an article that appears in print in our eighth edition, Page 53 of T Australia with the headline: “Another Thing”