Cartier's Art Deco "Tutti Frutti" pieces are characterised by lush arrangements of highly coloured sapphires, emeralds and rubies carved into berry, leaf and blossom shapes, and set in openwork platinum and diamond mountings. The pieces were often accented with accents of black enamel, and the precious gemstones tended to be chosen for their colour rather than their clarity.
2. Cartier platinum and enamel bracelet, c1928, set with carved rubies, emeralds and 8.45 carats of old European and single-cut diamonds
3. Cartier necklace and bracelet demi parure, set with carved emeralds, sapphires, cabochon rubies and brilliant-cut white and yellow diamonds
All Photos © Sothebys
The jewellery displays a rich Indian influence, and combines the vibrant colours and textures of Mughal India with a refined Art Deco style, plus of course the superb craftsmanship that Cartier became famous for. This distinctive style is loved by some and hated by others, but whether you like them or not, these opulent jewels display a sumptuous quality and extraordinary craftsmanship!
Unusually for Cartier's "Tutti Frutti" pieces, this bracelet also features button-shaped pearls. Photos © Sothebys
5. Cartier platinum floral panel bracelet, c1930, featuring a carved emerald, and set with diamonds, emeralds, sapphires, rubies, onyx, and a synthetic ruby
Image 5b also shows a Cartier "Tutti Frutti" carved sapphire, emerald and diamond ring. Photos © Sothebys
6. Cartier platinum clip brooch with double locking clasp, 1935, with carved sapphires, emeralds and rubies surrounded by diamonds
Made for Linda Lee, wife of Cole Porter. Photo © Nick Welsh, Cartiers
Incidentally, the words "Tutti Frutti" are Italian for "all fruits" (or, colloquially, "fruit salad"). Although them term has since been trademarked by Cartier, it is actually believed to derive from the fruit basket headresses worn by Carmen Miranda in the 1940s. Cartier originally described these pieces as being pierres de couleur, which simply means "coloured stones".
See you again next week for some more beautiful heirloom jewellery!