Chanel Presents: Flying Cloud

The gentle waves and 1920s nautical high style of the Mediterranean sea were brought to Place Vendôme by Chanel for the presentation of their latest high jewelry collection - Flying Cloud.

Named for the incredibly stylish yacht owned by Hugh Grosvenor, the second Duke of Westminster, this collection pays homage to yet another inspiration in Coco Chanel’s life - her wealthy English lover and their time off the French Riviera.

Classic sailing themes are abound with gem-encrusted ropes, buoys, anchors, epaulettes and even sailor tattoos - rendered in a sharp and restrained color palette of blue, white and gold.

Divided into two chapters, the first celebrates the iconic objects of sailing (Golden Braid, Precious Float), while the second is focused on the lifestyle at sea (Summer Cruise, Yachting Day) for a total of 55 luxurious jewels.

The centerpiece of the collection is a spectacular necklace called ‘Turquoise Waters’, which features white diamond twisted ropes framing mixed cuts of sapphires - centered around a pear-shaped white diamond.

Personal favorites include the ‘Yachting Day’ anchor brooch, ‘Summer Cruise’ epaulette cuff, and ‘Golden Braid’ cuff.

Though their decade-long relationship did not end well, a lasting gift from the Duke was a piece of land in Roquebrune-Cap Martin (near Monte Carlo) that looked out over the sea. In 1929 the designer built La Pausa, a serene and sprawling home where she entertained her inner circle of legendary friends, such as Salvador Dali and Jean Cocteau. In 2015, the company repurchased and restored the home to her specifications, gardens and all, and welcomed guests for the first time earlier this year for an exclusive first peek of the Flying Cloud collection.

Like many sporting activities, today sailing may be more about Gortex and carbon fiber than Breton-stripe sweaters, but this collection beautifully captures a much chicer era on the high seas.