Fashion

Pharrell Williams, Tiffany & Co. Under Fire for Copying Rare Mughal Glasses

A similar design dating back to the 17th century has been up for auction via Sotheby’s.

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Pharrell Williams sat front row at NIGO‘s debut Kenzo show at Paris Fashion Week Men’s to reveal an anticipated collaboration with Tiffany & Co. Described to be an “engagement” between the two, the teardrop-shaped sunglasses marks the beginning of the musician’s secret project with the jeweler. “I can’t give it all away now. I don’t want to go too much into detail, OK, because we’re here today to celebrate my brother NIGO,” the singer told WWD at the fashion show.

However, fashion watchdog Diet Prada pointed out the striking similarities between the new eyewear design with glasses dating back to the 17th century. According to the Instagram account, jewelry expert Annabel Davidson commented, “I think Tiffany & Co. made a mistake in not referencing the pair so many of us saw last year.” The Vanity Fair and Vogue contributor took to Instagram to share a look at two pairs of glasses known to have belonged to Mughal royals.

Sotheby’s official website describes the spectacles to comprise “two flat cut emeralds of drop-shape form set in silver and gold frames mounted with old-cut smaller diamonds and emeralds,” with an estimated price of £1.5 million to £2.5 million GBP (approximately $2 million to $3.4 million USD). Another pair comes with diamond lenses in diamond-mounded frames.

“The lenses of both pairs were cited as 17th century, the frames ‘19th century’ — but some important Indian antique scholars and specialists aren’t so sure they’re not a more recent creation,” Davidson further explained, adding: “Us jewelry nerds may be a weird bunch but we do notice these things.”

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