The LΘVE bracelet was designed by Cartier’s Aldo Cipullo in 1969. He was inspired by the chastity belts worn by women during Medieval times, to protect their virtue and good name.
Similar to a chastity belt, the bracelet locks around the wrist, and can only be removed with a special screwdriver. For a while, Cartier had a policy that no customer could buy a LOVE bracelet for himself or herself – they had to buy it as part of a couple. During the 70s, his-and-hers bracelets were presented to famous couples, like The Duke and Duchess of Windsor, and Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. Many celebrities were photographed wearing the sleek gold band. The LOVE bracelet became an instant hit.
The original LOVE bracelets were gold plated, but as time went on and demand grew, they started creating solid gold bracelets, and in 1979, a diamond-studded version was introduced. Today, Cartier continues to produce this iconic symbol of love, not only in the form of the original bracelet, but also in rings, cuff links, and earrings. Some bracelets don’t even require a screwdriver, but still have the emblematic LΘVE design.
“The Cartier LOVE series represents the permanence and indestructibility of affection,” says PORTERO‘s Creative Director, Nick Marmol. ” Classic and timeless, it is given as a gift for only the most important occasions.”
Although it was first introduced as a symbol of love, today it can be gifted for many reasons: coming-of-age, graduation, or even as a gift to yourself. The LOVE bracelet’s design is recognizable enough to be considered a modern icon, but simple enough to complement all outfits. It can easily be worn on its own, or stacked with bracelets and/or watches. It looks just as appropriate with jeans and a t-shirt, than it does with a designer gown. Its unisex design makes it the ultimate sign of elegance and sophistication.
It’s been more than 40 years since its introduction, but the Cartier LOVE bracelet has remained relevant in the luxury and secondary luxury market. In fact, Cartier is one of the five brands that will hold its value over time. Today, a LOVE bracelet starts at $6,300 and goes to $56,500 for a white gold and diamonds piece. However, at PORTERO you can find Cartier LOVE pieces for about $5,000.
“Love has become too commercial, yet life without love is nothing – a fat zero.” Said Cipullo. “What modern people want are love symbols that look semi-permanent – or, at least, require a trick to remove. After all, love symbols should suggest an everlasting quality.”