Van Cleef & Arpels

A Whimsical Gold and Gem Set ‘Chat Malicieux’ Brooch

A characterful winking cat brooch ‘Chat Malicieux’ by Van Cleef & Arpels c.1970, designed as a comical cartoonish cat standing on its hind legs and winking at the viewer, formed in 18ct yellow gold, the body set with an oval polished black onyx cabochon, one eye set with an emerald cabochon and four single cut diamonds whilst the other is formed of a small slit to show it is winking, the nose set with a tiny ruby cabochon, the gold is textured to represent the fur and it has long whiskers and pointed ears, all to a single pin fitting on the reverse. The ‘Chat Malicieux’ or Mischievous Cat design was part of the collection of animal brooches sold in VCA’s La Boutique store at 22 Place Vendôme. It soon became one of the most popular designs, regularly featuring in advertisements and on the cover of the catalogue. According to the brand “…these animal clips were part of new, affordable and easy-to-wear collections created by Van Cleef & Arpels. The Lion Ebouriffé and Chat Malicieux clips became extremely popular.”

Further Details

OriginNew York
Condition ReportVery fine - the clip fitting has been later replaced with a gold pin and catch
Setting18ct yellow gold signed VCA and numbered and with French assay marks
Weight description15 grams
Dimensions5cm / 2" tall and 2.5cm / 1" wide at widest point
Gemstones5 x single cut diamonds
1 x round emerald cabochon
1 x oval black onyx cabochon
1 x ruby cabochon

Directors Notes

In 1954 Van Cleef & Arpels opened a brand new concept, La Boutique, which sold jewels and accessories at a more accessible price point aimed at a younger clientele. Amongst these pieces were a range of charming animal brooches, including Le Chat Malicieux, which proved hugely popular and many clients collected them to form their own personal jewelled menageries.


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SKU: 127348 Categories: , ,

Van Cleef & Arpels

On June 16th 1906 Van Cleef & Arpels opened the doors to their first boutique at number 22, Place Vendôme. Next door to Lalique, opposite the Ritz and a stones throw from Boucheron, this would prove to be the first of many boutiques that the highly successful Maison would open around the world during the 20th Century.

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