Modern Jewellery Icons #7: Pomellato's Nudo Ring

In our seventh edition of the Modern Jewellery Icons series, we present to you the rise of Milanese jewellery brand Pomellato’s Nudo ring design. Born on the principle of freeing the gemstones from classic solitaire setting, here is everything you need to know about this fine jewellery staple.

Pomellato is an Italian luxury jewellery house that creates elegantly bold designs for the modern jewellery-loving woman. Its pieces are full of colour and unexpected gemstones, which inspire strength and audacity in the women who wear them. In its own words, the Pomellato Nudo ring design is “the Icon of the Pomellato brand”. First created in 2001, this small set of rings has become a design staple for the Maison, constantly reinventing it in new colourways, and even extending it to other types of jewellery. Let’s look back at the birth of this epic piece of jewellery, how it has evolved and what Pomellato has planned for its future.

The three first Pomellato Nudo ring designs

About Pomellato

Milan-based jewellery brand Pomellato was established in 1967 by Italian goldsmith Pino Rabolini and was the first Italian brand to properly introduce ready-to-wear fine jewellery on a larger scale. With an in-house team of gem experts, cutters as well and goldsmiths, this fashion-forward company uses its refined Italian taste and craftsmanship to create boundary-pushing pieces that ooze confidence and power through daring colours and fresh designs. A member of the luxury group Kering since 2013, one of our favourite parts of the Pomellato brand’s ethos is its continued fight for gender equality. The brand has become a pioneering voice in this ongoing struggle, preaching the positive power of diversity and inclusivity through their programme Pomellato For Women – a movement supported by Hollywood A-List celebrities the likes of Jane Fonda, Cate Blanchett and Sinéad Burke, to name a few.

The birth of the Nudo Ring design

It is this passion for female empowerment that fuelled the birth of the Nudo ring. Pomellato launched the design through a series of five colourful rings, in a valiant attempt to rebrand the solitaire engagement ring, a style that is historically the most popular choice for women to show that they are engaged to be married. Pomellato took this classic design and reinvented it into a Pret-a-porter piece for all women who are looking for a colourful and flashy ring. As well as this, Pomellato designed the Nudo ring using a wide variety of coloured gemstones, so that its clients could invest in more than one at a time, creating one of the first-ever stackable fine jewellery rings in history. The Nudo ring marked the beginning of the Maison’s 'New Precious' era, the aim of which was to inject entry-price level jewels into a market full of ostentatious creations.

Model wearing a selection of Pomellato Nudo designs in gold, amethyst and diamond

Alongside transforming the very concept of the engagement jewel into an ironic passe-partout stackable ring, Pomellato also used the Nudo ring to show the world its mastery in stone cutting and setting. The word ‘Nudo’ in Italian means ‘naked’ and is a comedic way of expressing the minimal amount of gold used in setting the large gem at the heart of the design. The daring silhouette leaves the stone completely naked in its splendour, creating the illusion that it is floating in mid-air, thanks to a novel fixing system concealed inside the collet at the base of each stone. As well as this, each stone is softly facetted by hand in an asymmetrical pattern, giving a unique feel to each gem, allowing it to playfully capture the ever-changing light as it is worn seamlessly from day to night.

Model wearing a selection Pomellato Nudo designs in gold, quartz and diamond

The Evolution of the Nudo design

When Pomellato designed those first five Nudo rings over 20 years ago, no one could have predicted their record success, instantly selling out to become one of the most enduring and iconic styles in fine jewellery history. Fast forward to 2023, the design itself is virtually unchanged, attributing its striking simplicity and consistency as the key to its success. One thing that has changed though is the range of Nudo-style pieces Pomellato has on offer. The Nudo product range has extended itself to more than one hundred and fifty items including pavé rings, earrings, bracelets, pendants and necklaces. Throughout these last twenty-two years, Pomellato has kept the clean lines and minimalist setting of the Nudo design and injected it with a limitless colour wheel, using an expansive pallet of precious and semi-precious gems, ones that are often unseen on the luxury fine jewellery market, such as prasiolite, chrysoprase, quartz and carnelian. The brand has also launched the Nudo style in what they call a Nudo Gelé effect, which gives the gem the appearance of being frozen.

What’s more, this year the Nudo aesthetic made the jump from fine jewellery to high jewellery in Pomellato’s Ode to Milan high jewellery collection in the form of four Nudo Triennale rings. As the collection takes us through the urban landscape of the city Pomellato calls home, we are exposed to a new take on the Nudo design. The Nudo Triennale rings comprise a modernized interpretation of the Toi & Moi ring style that has become increasingly trendy. Available in aquamarine, rubellite and green tourmaline, each of these three coloured stones is paired with a matching pavé diamond and gold setting, fashioned in the image of the original hand-faceted Nudo stone. The ‘pièce de resistance’ of this set however is the vivid purple-blue tanzanite version, which is accompanied by a 3-carat princess-cut diamond.

The 20th Anniversary

From its beginnings as an empowering fine jewellery solitaire ring to its evolution into the world of high jewellery, the Nudo ring has been a core part of Pomellato for over 20 years. In honour of its 20 years of global success, the brand launched the Nudo design in new colourways that epitomize the founding pillars of the Nudo aesthetic: colour, design and stackability. In 2021, Pomellato added the Nudo Chocolate collection to its repertoire. To recreate the irresistible, rich and delicious colour of cacao, Pomellato uses brown moonstones and brown diamonds together for the first time in the Nudo colour wheelhouse. The brown moonstones come in three different colours: the darkest hue is a deep opaque brown, resembling dark chocolate, the second is a rare orange moonstone that brings a caramel sweetness, reminiscent of a slab of milk chocolate, and finally, a creamy brown moonstone is used to illustrate the light creamy texture of white chocolate. Delectable and different, these three colourways are available in rings, earrings and matching pendants.

What is next for the Nudo ring

When asked what the future holds for the iconic Nudo ring, Pomellato remains tight-lipped about its creative progression, and yet, there is a twinkle of excitement in the eye of Vincenzo Castaldo, the creative director of Pomellato. He says: “You can find all the Pomellato passions, desires and intuitions in the Nudo ring. It is such an important actor on the Pomellato stage, so extraordinary with its presence and strength, that Nudo is the very essence of Pomellato.”

Pomellato Nudo rings in rose gold with brown and white diamonds

With plans to incorporate new gemstones, styles and colourways into its already vast repertoire, it’s safe to say that the future of the Nudo ring shines brightly at the top of Pomellato’s creative agenda.

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