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RUSSIA ON MY MIND: The relationship between Russia and the West may be rapidly fraying, but not at Harrods, which on Tuesday morning unveiled a major in-store exhibition that salutes the past and present of the Russian heritage brand Fabergé.
“A Fabergé Easter at Harrods” runs until April 21, and spotlights the brand’s high jewelry collections, including an exclusive diamond spiral tassel pendant retailing at 21,000 pounds, or $35,000. There’s also an “egg bar” that sells charms costing upwards of 500 pounds, or $832, that can be engraved.
The Fabergé pop-up space, on Harrods’ ground floor, also features a display of vintage Fabergé objects such as picture frames and cigarette cases, while another room showcases the 1901 Apple Blossom Egg, on display for the first time in the U.K.
Miroslava Duma, the Moscow-based media entrepreneur and founder of the fashion and culture website Büro 24/7, hosted the opening event and also collaborated on Fabergé Cinescope, an interactive, social media-led experience that will enable visitors to try the jewelry via a digital mirror and create a one-of-a-kind animation portrait of themselves that can be shared across social media.
Asked about the tensions between Russia and the West, Duma didn’t hold back: “The world is so connected today; We cannot live without each other, and it is so stupid to fight. [Russian president Vladimir] Putin is not a bad person. He is a very strong person, and he’s protecting the interests of the Russian people. Such a huge, rich, powerful country needs a strong leader.”
Duma added she hoped that doing business would help to counterbalance any negative sentiment between Russia and the West. “We have to all be positive, friendly, and do great things for one another,” said Duma.
Fabergé is the first jeweler to take over Harrods with an in-store event of this size. It has decorated the store’s 20 windows facing Brompton Road with help from set designer Simon Costin, who has worked a fairytale Easter egg theme.
A collection of 40 one-of-a-kind high jewelry pieces designed for Fabergé by the late artist-jeweler Frédéric Zaavy are also part of the ground floor display.
The Fabergé in-store exhibition is one of many themed, multi-week shows that Harrods has done: Past collaborations include Chanel and Dior while the store is preparing for Pradasphere, which will open later this month.
“We’re always looking to work with brands that have a history, heritage and creativity, and it makes a much nicer statement to pick a partner for the month rather than blast our customers with news every week,” said Helen David, fashion director of women’s wear, accessories, fine jewelry and children’s wear at Harrods. “And, generally speaking, the events have a very nice effect on sales.”