Back in 1975, the acclaimed actress walked into Cartier's Rue de la Paix boutique in Paris with an unusual companion: a baby crocodile.
She asked the shop workers if it would be possible to replicate the crocodile’s face, head, body, legs, and tail in a custom-made necklace that could also be removed from the neck and worn separately as brooches.
The result was one necklace crafted in 18-karat yellow gold and set with more than 1,000 brilliant-cut fancy intense yellow diamonds, and another sculpted in 18-karat white gold. The reptile’s eyes were embedded with rubies in one of the pieces and emeralds in the other.
Today, the original necklace forms part of Cartier’s Collection of exquisite historic jewels, and now Cartier has paid homage by releasing a four-piece jewellery collection containing drop earrings, a bracelet, a ring and a necklace.
The crocodile’s body – made of diamonds and emeralds – wrap around the wrist or finger, while the necklace reflects the original with crocodile tail endings in three strands of emerald beads that the crocodile clutches.
Founded by Louis-François Cartier in Paris in 1847, Cartier has grown to become one of the world’s most illustrious luxury brands.