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Is Beyonce the new Carrie Bradshaw?
Last week in the south of France, Mrs. Carter stepped off a yacht wearing a pair of oversized diamond hoop earrings, the right one emblazoned with her name. They were crafted by Messika, which also created a custom version of its diamond “Move Addiction” earrings — a collaboration with Gigi Hadid — that Queen Bey has been wearing onstage during her current OTR II tour.
“It seems we have a special relationship,” says Valerie Messika, jewelry designer and founder of the Paris-based brand. “It really is very spontaneous. This is a woman who could choose anything she wanted, so I’m surprised and touched anytime she wears any of our pieces.”
Nameplate and personalized jewelry has been a favorite among stars and stylish girls since Sarah Jessica Parker sported her iconic “Carrie” necklace on Sex and the City. Gold nameplate chokers were seen in February on Dior’s Fall/Winter 2018 runway, while Bella Hadid and Kaia Gerber also recently have been spotted wearing nameplate necklaces. Jennifer Lopez is also following suit, wearing her first name around her neck on July 31 at MTV.
Unsurprisingly, Beyonce’s hoops are next-level: The one-of-a-kind earrings took five months to craft in Messika’s Paris atelier and feature 4.97 carats of white diamonds set in 18-karat white gold. Look closer to notice the delicate accent over the second E in her name, as well as a trio of floating diamonds in the O: Stones in motion are a signature of Messika and its Move collection, and in this case are meant to represent Blue Ivy, Rumi and Sir, Beyonce and Jay-Z’s three children.
“I wanted to create something that felt special and symbolized motherhood,” Messika explains. “I also love that she wore them with something really casual. That’s exactly what I had in my mind when I launched my brand.”
Beyonce has been a fan of Messika since she fell in love with its diamond Glamazone double ring after spying the design in a vitrine at the Royal Monceau hotel in Paris in 2014; soon after she would Instagram her new acquisition in front of the Mona Lisa at the Louvre Museum. Fast-forward four years, and perhaps it’s no accident that the superstar once again chose Messika for another Mona Lisa moment, the “Apeshit” video also starring Jay-Z, shot at the Louvre in May and currently exceeding 86 million views. This time, Beyonce chose the “Persian Drops” necklace and matching earrings from the brand’s latest high-jewelry collection, a set that features more than 100 carats of white diamonds and is valued at just under $1 million.
“We didn’t know any of the details,” Messika remembers of the overnight shoot. “We weren’t told the reason, just that she wanted this particular set, that the pieces needed to be delivered by 6 p.m., and they could be picked up at 11 a.m. the following morning. And when we received them back, still we were told nothing.” About two weeks later on a Sunday morning, Messika says she woke up to find the WhatsApp on her phone filled with images from the video, accompanied by a flurry of messages from friends and colleagues. “I was shocked,” Messika says. “Beyonce has a good eye, of course, but it’s one of the best things that’s ever happened for me.”
In September, Messika will celebrate the second installment of her collaboration with Gigi Hadid with a launch party during New York Fashion Week. In the meantime, she’s enjoying her summer of Beyonce. Why does Messika think this particular woman responds to her jewels? “She embodies a kind of femininity which is a mix of strength and softness — when you see her onstage, you see someone who’s strong and in control, and I think about those qualities for myself also,” Messika says. “Also, she works with her husband, and I work with my husband; I understand the power of a duet in business. Maybe that’s why she embodies perfectly my vision of a woman.”
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