Wednesday, September 1, 2010


We travel to Baden-Württemberg, Germany taking in the scenery of the dense expanse of pine and fir trees located in the Black Forest.

Home to such wildlife as eagles, owls and the giant earthworm, the surrounding area of the forest encompasses such tourist attractions as souvenir stores and a historical route known as the German Clock Road. Germany is also home to featured jewelry designer Brigitte Adolph.

Germany has enjoyed a long, distinguished history as a leader of well-produced handicrafts that include nutcrackers, music boxes, beer steins, glass sculptures and of course jewelry.

So far I have talked about eclectic German jewelry styles that range from the abstract, conceptual renderings of Constanze Schreiber to the exquisite pearl necklaces of the Gellner brand.

Adolph’s incredible design aesthetic is yet another fine example of innovative jewelry making.

The award-wining graduate of the University of Pforzheim creates jaw-dropping semblances of embroidered textiles fashioned from 18-karat yellow and white gold as well as sterling and patinated silver.

It is amazing jewelry; perfect replications of complex twine patterns reminiscent of the textile collections by designers Shirley Ephraim (Africa) and Dori Csengeri (Israel). “I have a long-time passion for old handiwork, especially embroidery and lace,” says Adolph.

“Inspired by memories of my homeland, my Spitzen-Schmuck Collection appears to be finely crafted textiles but they are actually pure precious metal. The illusion of a textile material dissolves only when touching the piece of jewelry.”

The designer adds splendid final touches of champagne diamonds, rubies, white and grey freshwater pearls, as well as white South Sea and black Tahitian pearls to superbly crafted earrings, pendant necklaces, brooches, and choker necklaces.

Overall the pieces possess a Victorian regality; elegant, romantic and ultra-feminine. The pearl accents especially heighten this grand, Old World design style.

Her gorgeous Pique Dame Rings, inspired by a Tchaikovsky opera, are beautiful renderings resembling an enclosed Roman wreath headband holding a single Tahitian or South Sea pearl.

The 16-year veteran also calls upon her broad educational base--spanning schools in Denmark, Switzerland, and Spain--to produce her understated yet inventive Loop Collection.

Though more subtle in design than her embroidery-inspired jewelry, her Loop Collection carries the same theme of threads, stitching and sewing.

In this collection, Adolph puts her spin on the classic pearl strand necklace using a string of pearls that appear to be stitched and looped through sterling silver discs.

“This piece—the thread-stitched pearl necklace—is a modern execution of the traditional pearl necklace,” says Adolph. “Instead of using the pearl cord only as an invisible support, I emphasized it as an independent design element.”

I thoroughly enjoy seeing this kind of exploration where one art form is combined with another creating a stunning hybrid. Truly amazing work!
Photo 1 (top right): Sterling Silver Figaro Necklace from Spitzen-Schmuck Collection
Photo 2 (center): 18-Karat White and Yellow Gold Pique Dame Ring with Tahitian and South Sea Pearls from Spitzen-Schmuck Collection
Photo 3 (bottom left): 18-Karat Yellow Gold Spitzen-Schmuck Earrings with Yellow Quartz and Champagne Diamonds
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