Insta Eye: THR’s Style Editor Visits Versailles

Marie Antoinette INSET H 2016
Photofest/Salon De L'Abondance

Marie Antoinette's royal digs served as inspiration for Dior's new haute jewels — and here are the snaps to prove it.

Let them wear jewels!

During Paris Couture Week (July 3-7), Dior unveiled a spectacular high jewelry collection inspired by Versailles. The Parisian fashion house has a long-standing history with the gilded palace — Monsieur Dior himself drew inspiration from the palace’s sumptuousness for his debut collection, which was photographed in some of Versailles' most iconic spaces. More recently, Charlize Theron, face of J'adore, strutted through the Hall of Mirrors and ambassador Rihanna posed amid the impeccably manicured gardens in the moonlight.

For the new sparkling gems, Victoire de Castellane, Dior’s artistic director of fine jewelry, zeroed in on ornamental accents found inside the royal residence: glistening crystal chandeliers, ornate mirrors, ribbon swirls, fringe tassels and intricately paneled wood floors. She also used oxidized silver for the settings as a nod to 18th century jewelry-making techniques. Some of the collection’s red-carpet-worthy pieces are pegged to specific rooms, whether you fancy a pair of Salon de Mars chandelier earrings or a multidimensionally cut Hall of Mirrors cocktail ring … mais bien sur!

Moreover, the couture week presentation left us longing to see Marie Antoinette's fashionable digs up close. Here, the designer’s haute joaillerie interspersed with snaps from THR style editor Carol McColgin’s day trip to the Palace of Versailles … both spectacularly over-the-top.

Salon de l’Abondance bracelet and ring. (Photo: Dior)

Carved ribbon details on the doorways and panels in the Salon de l’Abondance

Galerie de Glaces diamond earrings, ring and necklace with oxidized silver accents. (Photo: Dior)

A peek inside the grand Hall of Mirrors.

Salon de Mars Glace earrings with diamonds and emeralds. (Photo: Dior)

The oversized crystal chandeliers in Salon de Mars, which inspired Dior’s statement earrings.

 Boiserie sapphire bracelet and earrings.(Photo: Dior)

Boiserie, a.k.a. “wood paneling,” seen on the floors at Versailles and in Dior's intricate patterns and placement of white diamonds. 

Chambre de la Reine necklace (the queen’s bedchamber). (Photo: Dior)

Elaborate floral tapestry and fringe (and pops of pink) inside the ladies’ apartments at Versailles. 

Floor-to-ceiling fleurs at Versailles.

Fontange pink sapphire and emerald cocktail rings. (Photo: Dior)

Kirsten Dunst in 'Marie Antoinette;' a “fontange” was a tall and elaborate headdress worn by aristocrats in the 17th and 18th centuries. (Photo: PhotoFest)