A casual observer of the luxury market in 2007 could be forgiven for thinking that Fabergé, the once fabulous creator of priceless baubles for the Russian nobility, had lost its way.
For decades the brand had been licensed to a plethora of franchisees selling everything from mass market deodorants to novelty jewellery.
Change came with the purchase of the jewellery brand by South African private equity company Pallinghurst Group and their determination to set it once more as an international icon of high Jewellery.
The primary task of the project was to distance the revitalised brand from everything that had gone before whilst projecting a perception of gravitas and authenticity.
Research showed that the once exclusive double headed Russian imperial Eagle was now commonly used on everything from confectionery to Vodka and should best be avoided.
While the historical work of Carl Fabergé provided interesting insights it was his use of patterning using the techniques of enamel over machine engraving or Gioché that proved most interesting.
The creative direction that seemed to resonate most with the design brief was to create a minimalist pared down logotype with a equally restrained colour palette. The foil to this was the creation of a number of linear patterns based on the moiré effect created by fine engraving. These patterns were printed on the reverse of letterheads and business cards in soft tints almost like a watermark.
These techniques were further expressed in three dimensions on watch faces for the newly created Alexei range of men's timepieces