Brooch-Pendant thumbnail 1
Brooch-Pendant thumbnail 2
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images
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Jewellery, Rooms 91, The William and Judith Bollinger Gallery

This object consists of 6 parts, some of which may be located elsewhere.

Brooch-Pendant

ca. 1908 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place of origin

This diamond and platinum brooch-pendant is an outstanding example of a convertible early twentieth-century jewel by Cartier, Paris. It is complete in its original case with two different brooch fittings and a screwdriver to enable it to be used in any one of three ways, as necklace, brooch-pendant or brooch. It was made to be presented in its case as a brooch-pendant, a broche draperie, a brooch with garlands draped from two separate elements. It has all the qualities of flexibility and lightness which made Cartier famous in the early years of the twentieth century when the firm led the way in the use of thin-gauge platinum settings which replaced the heavier silver settings used for diamonds in the 19th century.


Object details
Categories
Object type
Parts
This object consists of 6 parts.

  • Brooch
  • Brooch-Pin
  • Brooch-Pin
  • Clasp
  • Ribbon
  • Ribbon
Materials and techniques
Platinum set with diamonds.
Brief description
Diamond brooch-pendant mounted in platinum, convertible to necklace and small brooch, by Cartier, Paris, ca. 1908
Physical description
Platinum and diamond brooch-pendant, convertible to necklace and pendant. An openwork diamond pendant is composed of symmetrical, pavé-set strapwork with foliate decoration. In the lower section is a substantial collet-set diamond. There are five subsidiary collet and pavé-set articulated pendants. The principal pendant is suspended from two openwork chains of ribbon form, composed of collet and pavé-set diamonds. The terminals at the tops of the chains perhaps show a Persian influence.

The brooch-pendant is complete in its original case with two different brooch fittings and a screwdriver to enable it to be used in any one of three ways, as necklace, brooch-pendant or brooch.

The case (M.13:1-2019) is of red leather with stamped gold decoration. The case leans back slightly so that it can act as a vertical display case standing on its foot. The interior of the doors, which open down the middle, is lined in silk printed with Cartier's name and addresses. The interior of the back of the case is lined in black velvet. The velvet lining lifts to reveal compartments now containing the two brooch fittings: the longer one for use when the jewel is a brooch-pendant, the shorter one when only the pendant is worn. The longer brooch fitting would originally have been screwed in place across the top of the chains, and from it the brooch-pendant would have hung in the case: the velvet lining has a stiff back and is formed to allow for the pin.

Also in the compartments behind the velvet backing are a characteristic Cartier two-pronged screw-driver (M.13:2-2019) and two velvet ribbons with fittings enabling them to be attached to the tops of the diamond chains. The ends of the ribbons have been cut off and these short ends are joined by a spring ring clasp. It seems likely that the ribbons were cut so that the necklace could be adjusted to a shorter length.
Dimensions
  • Top of chain to bottom of pendant height: 162mm
  • Width of top of pendant width: 34mm
  • Depth of pendant measured at position of large, central diamond depth: 6mm
  • Long brooch pin length: 57mm
  • Long brooch pin width: 6mm
  • Long brooch pin depth: 3mm
  • Short brooch pin length: 35mm
  • Short brooch pin width: 9mm
  • Short brooch pin depth: 6mm
  • Clasp plus short velvet ends length: 36mm
  • Clasp plus short velvet ends width: 11mm
  • Clasp plus short velvet ends depth: 3mm
  • Ribbon length: 245mm
  • Ribbon length: 260mm
Marks and inscriptions
French rhinoceros-head mark (Struck on the ring of the catch. For its use on gold and on platinum, see Tardy, Les Poinçons de garantie internationaux pour l'or, le platine et le palladium, 11th. edn, Paris, 1984, pp. 165, and, in the section on platinum, pp. 30-31.)
Gallery label
Brooch-pendant France, Paris, about 1908; Cartier Brilliant-cut diamonds set in platinum The jewel has three alternative forms: attached to ribbon it may be worn as a necklace; with a brooch pin across the top it becomes a brooch-pendant (as here); or the lower section may be detached and worn as a brooch. Cartier supplied the necessary fittings and a screwdriver in the case(2019)
Credit line
Accepted under the Cultural Gifts Scheme by HM Government and allocated to the Victoria and Albert Museum, 2019
Object history
This diamond and platinum brooch-pendant is complete in its original case with two different brooch fittings and a screwdriver to enable it to be used in any one of three ways, as necklace, brooch-pendant or brooch. When sold it was presented in its case as a brooch-pendant, a broche draperie, a brooch hanging from chains draped from two separate elements.

Summary
This diamond and platinum brooch-pendant is an outstanding example of a convertible early twentieth-century jewel by Cartier, Paris. It is complete in its original case with two different brooch fittings and a screwdriver to enable it to be used in any one of three ways, as necklace, brooch-pendant or brooch. It was made to be presented in its case as a brooch-pendant, a broche draperie, a brooch with garlands draped from two separate elements. It has all the qualities of flexibility and lightness which made Cartier famous in the early years of the twentieth century when the firm led the way in the use of thin-gauge platinum settings which replaced the heavier silver settings used for diamonds in the 19th century.
Associated object
Bibliographic reference
Judy Rudoe, Cartier 1900-1939, British Museum, 1997, pp. 96-100: for discussion of the brooch-pendant, broche draperie, 'introduced around 1910'.
Collection
Accession number
M.12:1 to 6-2019

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Record createdAugust 6, 2018
Record URL
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