From an article in Surface Magazine:
Rome has been Bulgari’s home since the company’s founding in 1884. Inside its headquarters, Lucia Silvestri, creative director, designs the house’s jewellery at the famed Gem Table:
“The Gem Table is my comfort zone. It’s full of energy,” she says. “It’s my job to play with stones.” Silvestri arranges the rare emeralds, rubies, sapphires, and more—that are sourced from around the world by a team of six in-house experts who turn them into opulent pieces of jewellery. Often, they present a gem so rare that Silvestri will design a piece around its unique shape and size. From here, her designs are translated into technical sketches and drawings at the high-jewellery workshop where they’re made.
At the high-jewellery workshop, just outside of Rome, a highly specialised team creates Bulgari’s rare and one-of-a-kind wares. They employ the same ancient wax technique as does the Valenza manufacturer, carefully preparing pieces to house the precious stones from Lucia Silvestri’s gem table. Goldsmith’s file and sand the gold before drilling insets for jewels and diamonds. Stones are hand-placed into settings inside a specially lit room before each piece is fully assembled.
Bvlgari’s workshops in cities across Italy and Switzerland tap into the locale’s expertise in watchmaking, leatherwork, and jewellery. Similarly, at the Valenza workshop—the largest jewellery manufacturing facility in Europe—Bvlgari continues to make its famed tubogas pieces, in addition to an expanding collection of Serpenti watches, rings, earrings, and bracelets. The dial workshop in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland (movements are made in Le Sentier) meticulously creates snakehead watch faces.
Still, even with its broad reach and global appeal, Bulgari maintains its sense of self. “We have a strong personality as a brand,” says Lucia Silvestri; “we are manic for details and craftsmanship. It’s an obsession.”