05/03/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Cartier and America: Vintage Jewelry on Display

cartier and america poster

For those of you traveling to San Francisco this Spring, I have some good news! The Cartier and America exhibition, organized by the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco and Cartier, has been extended until May 9. That leaves plenty of time to witness this spectacular display of more than 300 objects from the private Cartier collection.

The exhibition marks an anniversary of sorts, celebrating Cartier's 100 years in the United States and the exhibition curator, Martin Chapman, declares, "This is a great opportunity to see some of the finest pieces of jewelry, clocks, and works of art by the legendary firm of Cartier--made for Americans or made in America."

vintage cartier tutti frutti necklace

Pieces include Daisy Fellowes's famous Tutti Fruitti necklace from 1936 made of platinum and white gold and weighing in with a whole host of gemstones including:

*** two leaf-shaped carved sapphires, 50.8 and 42.45 carats each
*** thirteen briolette-cut sapphires, 146.9 carats total
*** marquise-, baguette- and round-cut diamonds
*** square-carved emeralds and emerald cabachons

vintage cartier necklace

Or just imagine seeing this breathtaking beauty from 1947 in person! Created for the Duchess of Windsor, it boasts twisted 18-carat and 20-carat gold along with a dazzling display of gems including: *** brilliant- and baguette-cut diamonds *** a heart-shaped faceted amethyst *** twenty-seven emerald cut amethysts *** one oval-faceted amethyst *** turquoise cabachons

vintage cartier crocodile necklace

And don't be fooled. While this more modern necklace from 1975 might not look quite as blingy as the previous ones, it packs a powerful gemstone punch, too. The green of the left crocodile comes from 1,060 individual emeralds weighing in at over 60 carats and his friend gets his sparkle from 1,023 yellow diamonds also weighing in at over 60 carats.

And these are a just a few of the spectacular items on display! Since the exhibition concentrates on items owned by Americans, you can also enjoy bracelets worn by Gloria Swanson in Sunset Boulevard, the personal jewelry of Princess Grace of Monaco (including her 10.47 carat diamond engagement ring) and pieces from the collection of long-time Cartier patron and cereal heiress, Marjorie Merriweather Post.

Of course, not every Cartier fan and collector can hop, skip and jump over to San Francisco to satisfy their craving so the exhibition's catalog is also available at the Museum Store.

What a must-see event for a vintage fashionista!

More information, including hours, location and admission rates, available here.

(Photo Credit: Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco | Used with permission)

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