Jewels of the Royal World

Guest Post – Cartier & Islamic Art Exhibit in Dallas

Hofdame Note – A very big thank you to Dalloway who visited the Cartier & Islamic Art Exhibit held in Dallas last spring. They graciously thought of the Handbag crew and sent these photos on for our enjoyment. Please remember all photos in the post are the property of Dalloway and should not be reproduced without permission.

Suffice it to say, this is only a fraction of what was there – I was just taking photos for myself and then realized afterward that the Baguettes and Hofdudes would probably enjoy seeing these. We’ll all recognize some of the pieces – but it was amazing to get to see them in person! Anyone who has been lucky enough to spend time in museums knows there’s no substitute for the real thing, and it’s the same with jewels.

Necklaces and Other Items

There are a lot of pieces in here many of us will recognize – the blackened steel “Evil Queen” tiara, the aquamarine Art Deco tiara, Wallis Simpson’s amethyst and turquoise bib necklace, the Elizabeth Taylor rubies – but there are also a lot of really beautiful smaller pieces that explore the impact that Islamic culture had Cartier designs around the turn of the century. Besides the Cartier pieces, there was a Poiret fancy dress costume, as well as a carved rock crystal flask from the museum’s collection that is a thousand years old! The Keir Collection of Islamic Art is held at the Dallas Museum of Art and you can browse it online. 


The color combinations and the use of materials like onyx, jade, and coral coupled with the big three of rubies, sapphires, and emeralds were incredibly striking, and of course there was glitter everywhere. There are some amazing tutti frutti pieces too in some unusual color combos (the bracelet in diamonds, sapphires, and emeralds with the large carved sapphire center was stunning!)  and a brooch that used ruby beads and flat cut diamonds (aka lasques – the Royal Collection has a ruby, pearl and lasque tiara that’s worth a google!) to make a striking and unusual brooch.

Tutti Frutti

Ruby Brooch

Ruby Brooch

My personal favorites are the rock crystal and diamond tiara (so stunning in person) and the small brooch that uses sapphires, turquoise, jade, and pearls. So many stones but all the cool tones together absolutely work!

Small Sapphire Turquoise Jade and Pearl Brooch

Other Brooches



I hope you enjoyed this as much as I enjoyed being there! I would love it if you would spam your own favorite Cartier pieces, too.