With her parents purchasing then-watchmaker Chopard in 1963, Caroline Scheufele's upbringing was immersed in the world of horology. She took up the reins of the family firm, becoming co-president along with her brother Karl-Friedrich in 2001, as well as artistic director. In 1985, she introduced the Happy Diamonds jewellery collection, the first jewellery line made by Chopard. She subsequently brought Chopard into the world of haute joallerie and forged a partnership with Cannes Film Festival in 1998, redesigning the Palme D’Or. In 2013, she launched “The Journey to Sustainability” initiative, which puts ethics at the heart of the company.
It must have been an experience growing up around your parents' company. Describe some of your memories.
I have so many beautiful memories. As a child I used to play in the workshops, drawing all kinds of jewellery and funny watches in hundreds of colours that came straight out of my imagination. Sometimes, my mother allowed me to help her in the “stone room”. For me, this was the most magical place in the world, where I could touch and feel all the precious gemstones.
What was the first piece that you owned yourself (and who gave it to you)?
As a teenager, I designed my first piece of jewellery, the “Happy Clown” pendant, which is an articulated clown with moving diamonds and colourful precious stones dancing in its belly. My father manufactured the very first one secretly and gave it to me as a gift. It was a wonderful surprise and I still cherish it — it also propelled me into the creative world. In 1985, it formed the basis for the Happy Diamonds collection and turned out to be the start of jewellery at Chopard.