Sunday, March 29, 2015

Enchanted with Emerald Green

Tamara de Lempicka’s self-portrait in a Bugatti, 1925. One of my favorite portraits!

I thought maybe it was a St. Patrick’s Day thing, this abiding love for green, but since March 17 is past and I’m still thinking about that color and probably will be for awhile, I decided to do a roundup of things that I think are just gorgeous, all of them featuring that emerald shade. I did a roundup last year too, so this is my 2015 edition, capturing green things that are on my mind right now!

I have loved the 1925 picture Auto-Portrait (Tamara in the Green Bugatti) since I first saw it, when I was in my twenties. Those smoldering eyes! That green Bugatti! The sophistication! The glamour! I read that de Lempicka painted this picture for a German fashion magazine, Die Dame, and that her gloves, hat, and driving outfit were all from Hermès. I am not sure if that last part is 100% true (though I hope it is), but I really enjoy the sense of Tamara’s cool independence and fearlessness in her amazing self-portrait showing her at the wheel of one fabulous green car.

A 1994 Hermès Kelly 32 in Courchevel leather from a Christie’s auction.

This beautiful green 1994 Hermès Kelly 32 in Courchevel leather was part of a large Christie’s online auction last year featuring luxury handbags. I hope it went to a good home because it is stunning. I love that the original owner had her initials embossed in gold on the front of the bag.

A 1954 ball gown of green silk satin from the 2014 Met exhibit Charles James: Beyond Fashion.

I have been lucky enough to see this incredibly glamorous 1954 Charles James ball gown in person twice, once at the Brooklyn Museum in 2010, and again at the Met last year as part of their exhibit Charles James: Beyond Fashion. It never gets old, I tell you, and I really think that on the right body (think Sofia Vergara) it could be worn today.

A Catherine Martin/Miuccia Prada costume from The Great Gatsby, 2013.

I still love this green and black striped sequined dress that was one of the costumes for the film The Great Gatsby. This costume was a collaboration between Catherine Martin, the Oscar-winning costume designer of the film, and Miuccia Prada. The dress was one of many featured in the SoHo Prada store in Spring 2013, displaying costumes from the movie and easily one of the most entertaining and fun exhibits I have ever seen. Sequins and beading and paillettes everywhere, as far as the eye could see! I wanted to move into that store and stay bedazzled!

I weep over this emerald and diamond ring from Cartier, circa 2000. Photo courtesy of Beladora.

So glad someone purchased this gorgeous Cartier emerald and diamond ring that was for sale on Beladora last summer. Every time I saw it on the website I just wanted to whip out the credit card, have an accident, and buy it.

Over the top amazing Cartier London emerald and diamond necklace, circa 1932. Photo by Joyce J.

This gigantic 1932 creation by Cartier London was featured in the exhibit Brilliant: Cartier in the 20th Century that just wrapped at the Denver Art Museum. My new friend Joyce snapped terrific pictures of some of the gems and shared them with me. I am forever grateful to her since I was unable to see this show myself. The necklace was once owned by Countess Granard, née Beatrice Miller Forbes, an American heiress. The emerald is 143.23 carats!

Van Cleef & Arpels Vintage Alhambra necklace in malachite. Le sigh.

If I could own one thing from Van Cleef & Arpels this would be the winner, hands down—a Vintage Alhambra 10-motif necklace in malachite and yellow gold. Princess Grace owned one of these necklaces, only her version was the 20-motif necklace. I got a picture of it at the 2011 show Set in Style: The Jewelry of Van Cleef & Arpels. Glorious!

A 1975 Van Cleef & Arpels Vintage Alhambra 20-motif necklace owned by Princess Grace of Monaco.

I know a lot of you out there love this color too so let me know if there is something I should check out in this shade—a piece of jewelry, a scarf, a painting, a bag, a dress. Any and all emerald green suggestions welcome here!


Estrella said...

I'm head over heels with emerald this year.Always loved green in the abstract sense, but use it sparingly in the wardrobe and for accessories.
This year the Hermès 140cm silk shawl in pattern 'Les Chemins Secrets ' is floating my green boat!

Jill said...

Hi Estrella! Oh I will definitely be checking out that Hermes scarf pattern you mentioned. I am already pre-worried that I will love it! I don't own any H scarves with green in them, but I love Hermes blues so much that I could see they would probably do gorgeous greens as well. Thank you for the suggestion! I'm with you, I love green for accessories, especially since I wear so much black and navy. xx

une femme said...

I adore this color, and it pairs so nicely with navy and other blues. That Van Cleef & Arpels necklace is a beauty.

Josephine Chicatanyage said...

I adore green although green with a slightly bluer tint is my favourite.

Cheryl Tucker said...

Green has always been my very favorite color. I remember the very green pastures of my childhood where I rode my horse and played endlessly. Green is the color of life! Great post! Peace! Cheryl

Pam @ over50feeling40 said...

One of my favorite colors...I recently purchased two green tops to wear with my white pants. Loved the post, Jill!

GSL said...

I have long sung emerald's praises Jill and am pleased to welcome you aboard GSL's bandwagon. At least they got a couple of outfits right on that recent Gatsby.

Catherine Robinson said...

Such beautiful images, Jill...I love Tamara de Lempicka's paintings, one of my favourites is The Sleeper...stunning for the Cartier diamond and emerald ring...I'm weeping too...beyond beautiful.
Thanks for popping by always lovely to hear from you :)

rosie said...

Emerald Green is a favorite color with the women in my family. At my wedding, my mom's gown was the same color as the Charles James gown. Stunning.

My daughter's wedding gown, shoes & veil were traditional ivory. Her earrings were long & emerald green designed by Alexis Bittar.

Emerald green is a flattering color for me & I get compliments when I wear it.