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    Historical Special Orders


    The coronation set of Empress Farah Pahlavi

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    On the day of her coronation in Teheran, the Empress Farah Pahlavi wore a sumptuous bejeweled crown and emerald necklace created by Van Cleef & Arpels. The Maison also crafted the jewelry sets of the Shah Reza Palhavi’s sisters and daughters. This event marked one of the most prestigious special orders in the Maison’s history.

    The crown was adorned with 1541 stones in total, including 1469 diamonds, 36 emeralds, 34 rubies, 2 spinels, 105 pearls among other stones, but most importantly, a spectacular 150-carat emerald set at the center. It weighed 4.3 pounds.

    This event marked one of the most prestigious special orders in the Maison’s history.

    Model of the crown worn by Empress Farah Pahlavi for her coronation, 1967 - Van Cleef & Arpels
    Model of the crown worn by Empress Farah Pahlavi for her coronation, 1967

    It all started in 1966, when Pierre Arpels learned that out of the fifty proposals for the design of the imperial crown submitted by the greatest jewelers of the time, the Iranian government had chosen a Van Cleef & Arpels' drawing. The crown would be adorned with jewels from the National Treasury located in the Central Bank of Iran, according to Iranian tradition.

    Unable to bring the priceless jewels back to Paris, Pierre Arpels spent days in the Central Bank’s basement passionately selecting each stone that would adorn the imperial crown. With the help of his foreman and designer, he set up a complete workshop in the National Treasury room to achieve, in 6 months and under high security, this historic special order.

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