Majestic miniatures

Elegant jewellery inspired by a regal V&A exhibition

The diamond jubilee may be long over, but a royal frenzy of a different kind continues at the Victoria & Albert Museum, whose upcoming exhibition Treasures of the Royal Courts showcases personal luxuries of the Tudors, Stuarts and Russian tsars. Inspired by the show’s 150 exhibits, former Hatton Garden craftsman Bill Skinner (who has previously crafted designs for Van Cleef & Arpels and Asprey) has created a range of 10 jewellery pieces for the museum shop – reviving majestic 16th-century style in miniature.

Through objects such as armour, stained glass and jewellery, the exhibition explores the relationship between Britain and Russia in the 500 years since the court of Henry VIII, and will run from Saturday March 9 until Sunday July 14. Meanwhile, the pieces Skinner has created make wonderful giftsfor more personal relations: from enamelled Tudor Rose earrings (third picture, £45) to gold-plated rhodium posy rings that were once given as tokens of love and friendship (£70).


Inspired by the exhibition’s selection of royal portraiture (including paintings after Hans Holbein the Younger and Van Dyck) is a hinged ring that – as its inscription describes – will open pour vous seule (£80), while a resplendent rhodium lace-inspired cuff with a Swarovski-crystal trim (second picture, £250) lends a luxurious twist to the Jacobean collars on display. The Hunsdon Ship necklace given by Queen Elizabeth I to Lord Hunsdon in the late 16th century will also be on show, and has been reimagined by Skinner in a pendant that can transform into a brooch anchored by a bronze faux pearl (first picture, £85).

Putting regality within reach (with a pinch of mystical whimsy in the form of a unicorn seated on a plump red cushion, for £65), the collection will be in-store from Tuesday March 5 and is available to pre-order online now.


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