Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Le Fabuleux Destin des Diamants de Tavernier, L'Ecole des ArtsJoailliers

Two weeks ago I was invited to a fabulous lecture at l'Ecole des Arts Joailliers on.
Jean-Babtiste Tavernier (1605-1689) diamond merchant to the Sun King, Louis XIV, was obsessed with Oriental culture...i.e. The richly embroidered garments and tapestry turban.
Six arduous trips were made to the Mogul Empire of India and Persia by boat and caravan to bring back the finest diamonds never before seen for Louis XIV. The Hope diamond is the only remaining stone among thousands brought back. These 20 different cuts (all facsimiles above) were exceptional for their beauty and hugely influential to the jewelry industry.
The small select exhibition has been on display through January and closes tomorrow. The school and exhibition sponsors, Van Cleef Arpels know well the creme de la creme of gems.
They offer small, short select indepth classes in the jewelry arts for aficionados.
Even the light fixtures look like a string of diamonds.
Always on display sumptuous models of outstanding necklaces and stones.
We were treated to Champagne, foie gras, smoked salmon.
What to wear to a diamond lecture?
Malheuresement I wore my macaron T-shirt whilst a Sonia Rikiel (HM) diamond-covered sweater was lurking in the back of my closet. Will there be another diamond lecture? I hope so.
The lecture was of course in French
Headphones were provided translating the fascinating tales of fearless Tavernier's adventures gathering stones for king Louis in the East.
He kept a journal that is digitized in the exhibition.
While searching in the depths of my closet I found a Bocuse silk scarf from a Bocuse d'Or competition I'd attended.
I'd planned to go to Lyon but the weather predicted chilly rain. We had sun for once in Paris, so I stayed home and painted umbrellas in front of the Paris Opera instead.
Thank you for reading Paris breakfast. If you enjoyed this newsletter, forward to a friend and Gift yourself and your friends Paris letters, maps and watercolors
Bear and I are keeping dry. So far no waders or life preservers.


  1. Anonymous10:17 AM

    Carol, I will speak for all your fans when I say that we have been waiting for a post about the flooding. It looks pretty awful from what we can see on the news. I believe you live right on the River Seine. Your apartment must be OK, though. Will you update all of us who are worrying about you?

  2. Thank you Caterina B
    I do put up Seine videos and photos on my instagram Stories.
    Bear🐻 And I are absolutely fine as is Paris. The news exaggerates or it wouldn't be interesting news. The Seine has not overflowed that I'm aware in a dangerous way. Of course many wine caves are flooded and various other inconveniences, some metros like Notre Dame line4 are closed temporarily. It is not like Houston or New Orleans here. At all.
    No waders, no lifeboats.
    My building is right beside the Seine so I can easily keep watch.
    For sure it is not a good thing for transport or economically.
    I don't plan to post on it unless things change radically.
    I was surprised at all the Parisian gawpers on 'my' bridges out on Sunday.
    Please dont worry!!

  3. I'm writing a novel that has something to do with the hope diamond and I just saw your FAB post. I've been to L'Ecole VCA a few times - isn't it marvelous!! ��

    1. Lucky you to have attended l'Ecole!
      It looks simply divine.

      Luxe, calm, volupté

  4. Barbara11:30 AM

    It is so enjoyable to tag along on your journeys of discovery in a city that is without compare. I eagerly returning to Paris this coming Christmas to drink in the Parisian spirit.

  5. Eugenia2:59 PM

    Your January series about the chefs’ jackets and your adventures in the culinary world was a generous gift during a very dreary month.
    Now the sparkling tale of the jewelry show is a fine finale.
    Your blue diamond does sparkle!

    1. FYI: I cut the blue diamond out of the very nice catalog l'Ecole gave us. Wish I could paint like that!

  6. Those diamonds are beautiful.

  7. GwenEllyn5:12 PM

    Major envy! When I get to Paris next, I'm going to have you show me your haunts. :)

    1. Yes Van Cleef Arpels will be our first stop.

  8. The macaron shirt was perfect! As is your art..when we were in Paris..June 2016..le musée d'Orsay was closed:( les bateaux-mouches..I still look at my photos :( It does not look as bad now as back then.

    1. Too much water under the bridge...
      I can't say I remember the height of the Seine back in June, 2016. 🥂🍾🍒

  9. Catherine5:41 AM

    J'adore son pull de Sonia.

  10. Un très grand merci pour ce magnifique post ! Nous avons été ravis de vous recevoir à L’Ecole des Arts Joailliers et de pouvoir vous faire découvrir « le fabuleux destin des diamants de Tavernier » !

  11. This event sounds fabulous.....diamonds OH LA LA.....I can never say it enough - THANK YOU FOR TAKING US ALONG!


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