If you notice a glint in your lover’s eye these days, it might not just be a twinkle of desire. It could also be the reflection from your dazzling, jewel-adorned undies. Lucky girl!
This season’s offerings from couture lingerie brands have included plenty of bling, as designers test the upper reaches of the market with garments that are as hefty as their price tags.
And we’re not just talking about the $2.5 million Victoria’s Secret fantasy bra — a prop that is rarely worn and never sold.
Back in the real world, luxury lingerie labels are finding more subtle and tasteful ways to decorate their goodies with a bit — or a lot — of sparkle. From Nichole de Carle‘s beautifully understated Diamond collection to I.D. Sarrieri‘s collaborations with Swarovski Elements to the new jewel embellishments from Damaris, you’ll find plenty of ways to add some shine to your boudoir wardrobe this year.
Of course you can go overboard with these platinum-card temptations, too. Agent Provocateur‘s near-mythical Swarovski Playsuit weighed in with a retail price of $25,000, while Harlette‘s diamond-encrusted suspender clasps aren’t far behind at $15K.
Here’s a look at some of the most eye-popping embellished lingerie designs available today; you’ll find plenty more if you shop around. And if you find one of these gems in your stocking on Christmas morning, you’ll know the recession is over!
The Australian label embraced ornamentation in a big way this year, and their exceptional creations will drive trends in this area next year. Both the PS Couture and White Label collections in the second half of 2011 embraced the theme of ‘Luminescent Treasures‘, with many style ranges incorporating jewels or crystal embellishments. That’s the jewel-trimmed Tiara babydoll below (left) and the Black Diamond corset (right) with tiny Swarovski teardrops.
As if that weren’t enough, Pleasure State created a limited edition holiday set called Crown Jewel (above and main photo), featuring an intricate weave of Swarovski Elements. Alas, it was an exclusive for Aussie retailer Myer.
The high-flying UK designer label threw down the gauntlet, so to speak, with its affordable diamond knickers collection this fall. Each of NDC’s graphic briefs in this collection feature a .10-carat certified Coster diamond on a metallic charm, placed modestly on the rear band. The diamond charm is detachable and can be added to a matching bracelet.
The first issue of this collector’s edition was a Selfridge’s exclusive and featured the White Diamond set above, with the charm in front. Watch for a new edition in January. Seven knicker styles available and — best news — it comes in at a (relatively) bargain-priced £232.
AP’s over-the-top Swarovski Playsuit was featured in the label’s funny Fleurs du Mal video this fall and was the crown jewel in its semi-new Soiree premium lingerie range. At about $25,000, this little number is targeted at the very narrow market that includes Gaga, Rihanna and the TOWIE girls. Unless you’re a Harrods employee — the only place you can buy it — this is as close as you’ll ever get.
The Italian luxury line from Cotton Club knows a thing or two about opulent adornment, as this stunning set, called Kalamity, shows. The satin-and-tulle triangle bra has a decorative series of Swarovski-trimmed cross-straps, all for a reasonable €236. But you’ll want the matching thong and suspender belt, both of which have the crystal trim too.
Here’s the only endorsement you need for the UK label’s new Chiacchiere line: designer Damaris Evans says this is her favorite design in 10 years of creating nouveau Parisienne pretties for adoring English girls. The range combines black silk tulle and fuschia satin trim, with multi-colored Swarovski jewels framing the cleavage. A masterpiece priced at £240.
La Perla’s Crystal Limited Collection is a late-season arrival that caps a brilliant year for both the Italian lingerie brand and Swarovski, which provided the crystal elements. Delicately understated, the crystals are embedded in the tulle triangle bra (£500) and g-string (£200). Watch for this set to arrive on the U.S. webshop soon.
The perfect gift for women who aren’t impressed by glass jewels, Harlette’s $15,000 suspender clasps have a heart-shaped platinum base set with 135 diamonds. Harlette partnered with Aussie jeweler Eskae in 2009 to create these alluring gems, and also offers a bespoke service that will customize them for special orders.
Renowned for its sumptuous creations for Secret Diary of a Call Girl, Harlette this year also unveiled its Couture Glamour gown (above) and matching lingerie in a shimmering metallic fabric. It’s a custom order beginning at £5000, depending on the amount of jewel embellishments you choose.
The gifted Spanish corset maker wowed the audience at the Cibeles Madrid Fashion Week this fall with the showstopper from her new Knotted collection — the Crystal Corset. A collarboration with Swarovski, it features 6,000 crystals in various sizes that took more than 100 hours to add. We haven’t found this on sale anywhere yet; maybe Maya’s team is just too tired.
Ready to be really dazzled? We saved the best for last with this selection from the 2011 collections by the exceptional Romanian designer. Sarrieri uses Swarovski crystals sparingly and strategically in a handful of style ranges to create very, very dramatic effects. From the top: the one-shoulder silk satin Addicted To Fashion body; the satin Black Temptation line; and the champagne-hued Diamonds Forever set (although those aren’t real diamonds!). You may now swoon.