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Now it’s Bulgari’s turn to shine and shimmer in the sunlight of an anniversary age.  Cartier just passed its 100th U.S.Anniversary celebration and now Bulgari is celebrating its 125th anniversary with, among other things, the opening of a fabulous retrospective at Rome’s Palazzo Delle Exposizioni. 

 

Called “Between History and Eternity, 1884-2009”, the show will contain some 500 Bulgari designs, including a number of new “high-jewelry” pieces.  The show follows Bulgari through a tumultuous time frame, with royal clients, impressive expansion and difficult challenges all driving the firm to the pinnacle of the international jewelry and fashion world. It is a breathtaking journey.

 

Greek expatriate Sotirios Boulgaris originally established the company in the late 1800s as a small silverware store in Rome.  Today, the $2.4 billion Bulgari firm operates 270 stores worldwide and has its main business emphasis on jewelry and watches.

 

The Roman exposition will showcase an 18-karat gold necklace owned by Princess Soraya of Iran, created by Bulgari in the Sixties and made of graceful floral designs with diamonds, rubies, sapphires and emeralds, in some ways mimicking the exquisite and traditional gemstone glory pieces known for centuries in the Middle East.

 

RICH, GEM -ENCRUSTED JEWELRY DESIGNS FROM INDIA THROUGH THE MIDDLE EAST HAVE MESMERIZED NOT JUST BULGARI BUT ALL OF THE WEST FOR CENTURIES. BELIEVE IT OR NOT, YOU CAN GET THE LOOK WITHOUT THE COST WITH TODAY’S SPECTACULAR FASHION JEWELRY:

 

  • Filigree crystal bow brooch offers an exquisite look that is both trendy and timeless.  With lavish Bulgari-like design features, the brooch boasts luxurious clear and red crystals in vintage gunmetal plate settings.

 

 

 

  • Super sized CZ earrings are simply gorgeous.  Lavish, large oval CZs are framed with a classic abundance of smaller stones, as well.  Spectacular sparkle!

 

                                                Rows of Diamonds

 

Among the marvelous Bulgari classics are a number of exquisite vintage floral brooches, made of white and colored diamonds and emeralds, and heavy vine-like gold bracelets filled with rows of large diamonds.  Sophia Loren made a number of Bulgari pieces particularly famous, including an exquisite diamond necklace with large gemstones circling a choker design, worn with classic drop diamond earrings. 

 

   —And, not to be outdone by such illustrious jewelry mavens, is Elizabeth Taylor.  An entire room will be dedicated to the Bulgari pieces owned or worn by the actress.  Accentuating the jewelry will be a series of watercolor paintings showing the design and crafting of the jewelry pieces themselves.

 

YOU CAN APPRECIATE THE CRAFTSMANSHIP OF THIS JEWELRY IN MANY OF TODAY’S FINELY MADE FASHION FAUX GEMSTONE PIECES.  GET THE BULGARI LOOK AT THE SAME TIME!

 

 

 

 

  • Fashion dome ring in heavy gold electroplate with alternating diagonal rows of shimmering pave crystal,

 

                                               On the Web

 

An interesting point made by the firm on its celebratory event is just how radically it has changed over the years.  For example, the company now maintains an imposing presence on the Web, where it sells more than 800 pieces of jewelry, watches, accessory items and even gifts, running from a modest $200 to $38,000. 

 

Person to person sales, however, still lead the firm’s most exclusive business.  As an example, just two years ago, the company opened its most expensive and lavish store ever on the Ginza in Tokyo, the largest market in the world.

 

As for the present economic downturn, Francesco Trapani, Sotirios’ great-grandson, says the firm’s biggest challenge is to cut costs while maintaining the highest quality.  He feels that firms in general must become more competitive by upping service and improving their image.

 

“More than growth,” he contends, “today’s goal is to maintain one’s market share.”

Comments (0) Posted by Mary McGarry on Tuesday, June 16th, 2009


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