What do Da Vinci and Joan Crawford have in common? They were both lovers of the Nautilus design. From the Neolithic age to the Greeks and Romans, and into the Modern Era, the Nautilus is the oldest recognized design. This endearing popular design had a renaissance in the 1930s and 1940s in the height of glamour. Celebrities like Joan Crawford adorned themselves in Nautilus inspired jewelry. The most famous designer to incorporate the Nautilus design was Verdura. Verdura was unquestionably one of the most important jewelry designers of the 20th century. Now Sharp Facets Gallery has a perfect example of the 1940s style of Nautilus jewelry. (click here)
So you may be asking, what is the Nautilus?
The Nautilus is a sea creature in a shell that has survived for over 450 million years. The shell is lined with beautiful mother-of-pearl keeps growing throughout its lifetime, thus becoming a symbol for expansion and renewal.
The spiral of the shell is part of sacred geometry because it fits the Golden Ratio. The Golden Ratio, or Fibonacci sequence, is the mathematical solution for harmonic proportion. When a painting or design fits the Golden Ratio, it is just pleasing to look at and people find it beautiful. Artists from Da Vinci to Kandinsky used the Golden Ratio; even Frank Lloyd Wright in his design of the Guggenheim museum shaped the building like the Nautilus Shell. Even the spiral staircase is designed with the shell in mind for strength and stability.
Verdura was one to bring about the renaissance of the Nautilus design into jewelry. His early work was alongside Coco Chanel until opening his own shop in 1939 in the heart of the city of glamour, New York City. Never one to stick to the trends of the time, Verdura designed with bold gemstones and was inspired by natural shapes and forms – for example, the Nautilus. His signature pieces were instant classics and are recreated even today in styles for modern trendsetters.
The enduring Nautilus design is showcased in these estate rings that we at Sharp Facets Gallery have been fortunate enough to acquire. And even as we write this one of the rings has already been sold. The one that is still available for purchase takes inspiration in her design from the Nautilus shell and the harmonic spiral. This is a very finely made ring with high quality design. The heavy bezel around the larger diamond keeps it very secure. The larger diamond is approximately .90ct - at least. The fan of rubies splay across the top with intense color and the four rubies decorate the rose gold. The diamond footer at the base is a gorgeous detail that only enhances the elegant and robust design. This beautiful ring is the perfect example of 1940s jewelry and the every popular Nautilus design.