On November 26, 2019, Paolo and Philip were absolutely delighted to host a showcase of ‘Loulou de la Falaise Jewellery with Ariel de Ravenel at the showroom in Holbein Place.
Loulou de la Falaise was more than just a muse – she created elaborate jewellery with Yves Saint Laurent for decades. Her renowned line has been relaunched by long-time friend Ariel de Ravenel and captures the eclectic ’70’s spirit that was the designer’s signature.
Born in 1948, she was the only daughter of a French count whose brother married the actresses Gloria Swanson and Constance Bennett, and a socialite mother, Maxime Birley, whose brother founded Annabel’s, the London nightclub and private member’s restaurant.
Between 1972 and 2002, Loulou de la Falaise was an important member of the team behind the French fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent. Slim, elegant and of aristocratic descent, De La Falaise had a penchant for trouser suits, brocade pants and colourful, clanking, chunky jewellery. She bought from London to Paris an ‘It’ girl look that undoubtedly influenced the subsequent creations of Saint Laurent, whom she first met in 1968.
She soon found her niche designing jewellery, hats and other accessories that became as chic and collectable as Saint Laurents’s iconic creations. “Accessories have an important role to play in our stressful lives” she explained. “If you’re going out for dinner and don’t have time to go home and change, you can take your jacket off and add a piece of jewellery to what you’re already wearing. It’s a lot easier than carrying an evening dress on the underground,”
The production of her jewellery designs incorporating colourful, semi-precious stones, enamel, wood and rock crystals was rather labour-intensive and kept a host of small Paris workshops in business for many years. She even designed a line of jewellery to be sold exclusively at the Majorelle Garden in Marrakech, the place where Saint Laurent’s ashes were scattered.
Loulou passed away in 2011 so it is only fitting that her dearest friend, Ariel de Ravenel, continues the legacy with this jewellery collection.
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