In Russia we have a folktale that used to be really popular among the children in my village, the tale is about a little mouse that, if you treat it with care, could turn things into real gold. I remember how we were all searching for it, how we believed that richness was just hiding somewhere close. Apart from the romantic aspect of the story, and the fact that back then, in the freshly post-soviet Russia, this kind of tale could only be crowd-pleased because of the lack of preciousness in the everyday life, I find the idea of common things becoming precious very appealing.

And Aldo Cipullo must have been of the same opinion, for in the 1970s, shortly after bringing to life it’s iconic Love bracelet, the designer elevated to a fine jewellery icon a nail, thus creating for Cartier the Juste un Clou 18-carat gold bangle. Like a little magical mouse, or as an audacious character fully aware of the sprit of it’s times, he took an everyday household object whose aesthetic is, let’s say it, unglamorous and relatively masculine (fingers crossed no edgy feminists are reading this), and rendered it chic.

Chic and still modern, despite the decades separating us from it’s launch, or at least if I am to judge by the reactions I got while wearing my two Juste un Clou pieces : the Juste un Clou ring and bracelet, both in rose gold. I was surprised by the true amazement shown by those who discover this Cartier creation for the first time, wait, is it a nail?!, shall we talk about the Cipullo effect in 2017? Those who already know this design are, on the other hand, all eager to deploy their knowledge about it’s history and often end up by either showing pictures of their Juste un Clou jewel, or mentioning some acquaintance that also own an item from this line. One thing is clear, this piece certainly leaves no one untouched.

Pictures by Charles Legrand

 Cartier “Juste un Clou” bracelet

Cartier “Love” bracelet

Cartier “Juste un Clou” ring

Vicedomini dress