Learn the Secrets of Jewelry Making the Van Cleef Way

Screenshot of L'École's video.

For all those New Yorkers interested in dabbling in fine jewelry, Van Cleef & Arpels has the program for you. The famed “high jewelry” house is bringing its educational institution, L’École, to New York for the first time. Its temporary stay at the Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum will be taking place from June 4-18.

Originally founded in Paris in February 2012, the school’s mission is to make the secretive world of fine jewelry accessible to the public so participants can develop a deeper understanding and appreciation of the art of jewelry and watch-making.

The company’s three educational categories or “pillars,” are “Savoir Faire,” “The Universe of Gemstones,” and “History of Art.” Under these pillars, the school offers four different courses making the total curriculum 12 classes which cost about $400-800 each. Some classes they offer include, “The Story of Talisman Jewels,” “Gemstones Investigation: Recognizing Stones,” and “Explore & Create: From Design to Mock-Up.”

Lending the school their support are culturally prominent individuals Surface Magazine editor-in-chief Spencer Bailey, W Magazine editor-in-chief Stefano Tonchi, philanthropist Eileen Guggenheim, and Claude Arpel, the grandson of one of the founders of the firm.

“The school is meant for all types of students, from 18 to 80 [years old], it’s not a professional school, it’s a school for the public…Van Cleef & Arpels [has been] a great jewelry house since 1946, and more precisely, the reference for savoir faire in high jewelry,” Marie Vallanet-Delhom, president of L’École, said at a press preview. “This position gives us duties and obligations. We believe that we have the duty to further transmit education in order for people to understand better and better the savoir faire and artistic professions [of high jewelry]. The best way to fulfill this obligation was to create a school.”

Courses are small, capping off at 12 students, to better allow an intimate and personal experience—so sign up early!



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