24 January 2020
One of the most-Instagrammed visuals during Paris Haute Couture Week was not a fanciful, frothy gown but a minimalist and modern string of pearls by Comme des Garçons. The avant-garde fashion house has unveiled its first fine jewellery collection, created in partnership with Japanese jeweller Mikimoto.
Rei Kawakubo has placed a trademark subversive spin on the traditional pearl, cooly juxtapositioning the iridescent gem alongside silver chains and CdG charms for a typically insouciant contrast. The collection is made up of six striking necklaces, created using White South Sea or rare Akoya Mikimoto pearls.
While wildly different in their ethos and design, Comme des Garçons and Mikimoto are both trailblazers in their field. Kokichi Mikimoto, the son of an udon noodle shop owner, cultivated the world's first cultured pearl in 1893 and established his first Black South Sea pearl farm in 1914, thus transforming the landscape of pearl jewellery forever. Comme des Garçons, founded by Kawakubo in 1969, is known for its incomparably inventive, nonconformist clothing and avant-garde fearlessness.
Reflective of the brand's unisex collections, the jewellery line has been designed "regardless of age or gender," according to Kawakubo. "Recently, I’ve noticed how men also look good when they wear pearls. This was the starting point of the collaboration."
The collection launches in mid-February and will be available to buy at Dover Street Market in London. It sits alongside the retailer's impressive curation of fine jewellery, including fellow pearl innovators including Delfina Delettrez and Sophie Bille Brahe.
These new necklaces mark the first chapter in a two-year collaboration between Comme des Garçons and Mikimoto. Proof, if further proof were needed, that the pearl is officially cool again.
£2,500 to £30,000; Mikimoto Comme des Garçons collection launches 14 February 2020 at Dover Street Market in London and Mikimoto's flagship stores in Japan