Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Book Club: Mikimoto

Japanese pearl company Mikimoto was my first stop in Basel, and as usual, they didn't disappoint. I loved their new Midnight collection, made with black rough tourmaline and baroque pearls--it was extremely fashion forward and another step in the right direction for a company once merely known for gorgeous strands. 

Mikimoto has definitely been pushing the envelope recently, as with its collaboration with fashion designer Yohji Yamamoto (above). Billed as a "nocturnal and subdued collection", the organic shapes represent natural elements like the curve of the moon, the interior of a seashell or the break of a wave. 

As an added bonus, I was given an advance copy of the new book, aptly titled Mikimoto, written by noted biographer Nick Foulkes and published by Assouline. The book features the story of Kokichi Mikimoto--the creator of the cultured pearl--and his amazing ascent from lowly beginnings to founder of one of the world's most respected gem companies. Just out this month, you can place an order right here. Besides a company history, the tome features gorgeous images of historical relevance, including the first stores and vintage jewels. 

I love pearls because they are an instant heirloom. Click right here to see Portero's selection of Mikimoto jewelry available as instant gratification.