Van Cleef & Arpels

French, 1896
Van Cleef & Arpels is a jewelry, watch, and perfume company founded by Alfred Van Cleef and his uncle Salomon Arpels in 1896. Perhaps best known for its luxurious bracelets of red and white diamonds (one of which won the grand prize at the 1925 International Exposition of Modern Industrial and Decorative Arts), Van Cleef & Arpels has blossomed from its lone boutique in Paris, France into a worldwide insititution, currently owning shops in the United Stated, Australia, the Middle East, and Sout East Asia.

Known the world over as one of the leading style and trendsetters in luxury, estate, and vintage jewelry, Van Cleef and Arpels received French Patent No. 764,966 for a proprietary gem setting style known as the "Mystery Setting", a technique wherein each stone is faceted onto gold rails less than two-tenths of a millimeter thick. Often requiring 300 hours of work per piece or more, Van Cleef and Arpels only produce a few of these pieces a year, which have been worn by such style icons as the Duchess of Windsor, Grace Kelly and Elizabeth Taylor. 
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