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How Cartier Became the ‘King of Jewelers’?

Cartier is the symbol of luxury, earned the name ‘jeweller of the kings and the king of jewellers’. Louis-Francois Cartier established the company in the mid-19th century. And since the very beginning, Cartier jewellery has been beloved by virtually everyone from celebrities, fashion icons to royals. This famous jewellery house encourages the world and awes its enthusiasts with elegant, innovative and glamorous creations.

Cartier is one of the most recognised and desirable jewellery houses in the world. Collectors cherished the brand for its magnificent gems of the highest quality, representing the most expert craftsmanship. Let’s find out how this famed jewellery house evolved and attained global recognition, becoming the king of jewellers.

The Inception of the Famed Jewellery House – Cartier

Louis-Francois Cartier established the company ‘Cartier’ at 29 Rue Montorgueil in Paris. However, Louis-Francois initially worked as a probationer to a famous watch manufacturer Adolphe Picard. While he bought Picard’s workshop later in 1847, he jumped on reforming the business.

Interestingly, Louis-Francois got a scope to revolutionise the shop during the 1870’s French Socialist revolution. Heavy restrictions were imposed on the banks at that time. Thus, aristocrats had limited options to access their wealth. However, Cartier turned up with a potential solution to strengthen his business. He decided to buy the jewellery that his customers wanted to sell. It included family jewels, brooches, tiaras and many more.


Eventually, Cartier amassed a pretty vast collection of jewellery to sell. However, it also included some of Cartier’s creations. They redevised the jewels they possessed from their clients, and each jewellery piece reflected a unique style.

However, Louis-Francois Cartier planned to extend his business to London and New York. Thus, his three sons came onboard – Louis, Jacques and Pierre. The company then started to design and sell its in-house creations, besides the redesigned acquired jewellery pieces.

In 1902, Pierre earned the world-renowned flagship Fifth Avenue for two natural pearls’ stands. And this was the inception of Cartier success. Gradually, Cartier cemented its position as the most influential jewellery design Maison internationally.

A Glimpse of the Signature Cartier Collections

Cartier had produced splendid jewels for a king, queen or celebrities throughout the brand’s storied history. Jewellery of the early 2oth century exhibited extravagant designs, embellished fully with diamonds, rubies, emeralds and sapphires. Cartier had always designed jewellery pieces catering to the elites. However, while the middle class raised and the world became more democratic, the brand got hold of another opportunity.

Cartier started to create sophisticated, playful and whimsical pieces. What has always made Cartier unique is its notion – maintaining a balance between societal trends and visionary ideas. So let’s take a look at some of the most famous jewellery creations by Cartier.

Cartier Tutti-Frutti Collection

Pierre Cartier designed a necklace for Great Britain’s Queen Alexandra in 1901. And this jewellery piece later become known as Tutti-Frutti, and it was the first piece of jewellery from the collection. However, Tutti-Frutti jewellery design acquired immense popularity in the 1920s.

Interestingly, the jewellery collections of the Indian Royal Family made Europe fall in love with the bright, rich colours and playful leaf and fruit designs. Socialite Daisy Fellows requested a TuttiFrutti necklace to Cartier in 1936, followed by other royals and elites.

Well, Cartier produces the Tutti-Frutti jewellery to date, utilising a similar luxurious range of colours. Likewise, it pays homage to its original roots.

However, the brand made the biggest ever Tutti-Frutti necklace in 2016. This exquisite necklace acquired the nickname “Rajasthan” and featured a 136.97 carats Colombian emerald.

Cartier’s Tutti-Frutti collection represented social mobility – progress into modernity with boldness and glamour during the Art Deco era. The jewellery items from this collection exhibit an instantly recognisable look of Art Deco. Moreover, even after over a century, the Tutti-Frutti jewellery is yet luxurious and desirable.

Cartier Panthere Collection

People could spot the ‘Panther’ first in an advertisement of Cartier that featured an embroidered woman and a black panther. Soon after this, the Panther motif debuted in the form of a Cartier wristwatch. In 1935, Cartier’s creative director, Jeanne Toussaint, designed the first-ever Panther ring.

Cartier then designed its first three-dimensional Panther that you can see on the famous brooch of the Duchess of Windsor. So the celebrated feline gradually evolved to 3-D versions, boosting its appeal. However, the brand upgraded the Panther design according to the mood of the times.

The feline exhibited its dominating and ferocious look in the 1940s. On the contrary, it appeared playful and tamed in the 1950s and 1960s. However, the popularity of the Cartier Panthere started after the commissioned Panthere brooch of the Duke of Windsor. The jewellery piece stirred up the desire of society’s elites for this bejewelled and seductive cat. However, the Cartier Panthere continues to be one of the most celebrated and popular motifs in precious jewellery. The feline has been an enduring symbol of strength, elegance and glamour.

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