Archives for jewellery

British Fashion Council Announces Designer Showrooms Schedule for LFW AW16

The British Fashion Council has announced the designers showcasing in the Designer Showrooms – including ready-to-wear, footwear, jewellery, bags and multi-label showrooms – and the features that will be available at the Brewer Street venue.

ROKH
ROKH by Rok Hwang for AW16

Visitors to the showrooms will be able to familiarise themselves with collections from 45 designers showing for the first time. Imaginative design, the blending of various techniques and exceptional craftsmanship will be presented by the knitwear designers such as Caitlin Charles-Jones (on of  Vogue Talent’s Ones to Watch and a participant in Boden’s Future British scheme in partnership with the BFC), Yakshi Malhotra, Laura Theiss and Sabinna.

TeijaA look by Teija AW16

Further brands such as Teija, ROKH (by Rok Hwang) and designer Samuel Dougal will be showcasing their sharp, detailed tailoring while  NATALIEBCOLEMAN, Tommy Zhong and Leanne Claxton will show pieces that apply that quality with the use of their unique, tailor-made fabrics. No.288 and Ellis White will be presenting their new footwear collections.

Claire BarrowA look by Claire Barrow AW16

Displays at the Showroom will also include an installation by BFC’s talent identification scheme NEWGEN sponsored by Topshop and a pop-up showroom for this season’s NEWGEN designers: Ashley Williams, Claire Barrow, Danielle Romeril, Faustine Steinmetz, Marta Jakubowski, Molly Goddard, Ryan Lo and Sadie Williams as well as this season’s One-To-Watch Roberta Einer.

Roberta EinerLooks from Roberta Einer’s AW16 collection

BFC’s fine jewellery and millinery initiatives will be presenting the finest of accessories design from Emma Yeo, Harvy Santos, Keely Hunter and Sophie Beale – Headonism in a space co-curated by Stephen Jones OBE – Ana De Costa, Beth Gilmour, COMPLETEDWORKS, Jacqueline Cullen, Lily Kamper, Ornella Iannuzzi, Rachel Boston, Ruifier, Shimell and Madden and Yunus & Eliza – Rock Vault in a space co-curated by Stephen Webster MBE.

COMPLETEDWORKSA piece by COMPLETEDWORKS

Camilla Elphick

Shoes by Camilla Elphick AW16

Established brands returning to the showrooms this season include Camilla Elphick as well as Eudon Choi, Fleet Ilya, Fyodor Golan, Georgia Hardinge, Holly Fulton, Loxley England, Phoebe Coleman, Stephen Jones Millinery, William Chambers Millinery and Zoë Jordan.

Harvy Santos
Harvy Santos

Elsewhere Scoop London will be as usual presenting their womenswear trade show at the Saatchi Gallery, Chelsea.

NATALIEBCOLEMANNatalie B Coleman AW16

More pop-ups will be located at Brewer Street Car Park. Accredited guests will be able to visit Sunglass Hut and personalize their House of Holland LFW tote and get a customised sunglass case. The work and lounge spaces available to the visitors include: Press and Buyers Lounge by American Express x The Store, pop – up HIX Café by renowned chef Mark Hix, Maybelline New York Lounge and salon by TONI&GUY with label.m offering instant style refreshers.

by Magda Pirowska

London Fashion Week runs from February 19-23.
Concierge Amex Insiders and Swatch Timeline will be helping the visitors to navigate the space and stay up to date with all shows and schedules.
For the full pop-up schedule visit LFW website

Creative Leaders: Mariam and Dania Sawedeg of Kamushki

ESTABLISHED little over a year ago by Libyan sisters Mariam and Dania Sawedeg, their fine jewellery brand Kamushki, (meaning “precious stones” in Russian) has launched their first collection Wishbone to great acclaim.

Born in Libya and raised in Switzerland and Dubai, the Sawedeg sisters’ jewellery debut reflects their international background. Made of 18-carat gold, diamonds, sapphires and rubies, the Wishbone collection includes pendants, cuffs, earrings and rings and features the central motif of, yes you guessed it, a wishbone which according to Libyan tradition confers good luck and protection against harm and negative energy to the wearer.

This collection features a modern quirky and imaginative take on designs on traditional Libyan imagery Wishbone is designed for the “contemporary, chic, courageous”woman and are already is stocked by the high-end British fashion retailer and e-commerce innovators, Browns.

The Purpose of It interviewed Mariam and Dania recently to find out more about their background, their influences, what inspires them and future plans.

Model shotA model wearing Kamushki necklaces, ring and ear cuffs

You both spent a lot of time traveling with your mother as children. Where did you go and how did these experiences shape your designs and approach to fashion?
We have been very fortunate to visit many cities around the world during our childhood. Some of the places we have been to include Greece, Italy, Spain, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, China, Hong Kong, Egypt and Morocco.

We enjoy travelling to different countries, meeting people from different cultures and being inspired by them. Hearing their stories and their unique traditions. The whole idea behind the Wishbone collection came from our love of different cultures.

Culture is the core of Kamushki.We are true cultural hybrids, taking influence from a diverse range of continents and cultures and relating to each in a small way by seeing the best out of all of them. Travel has taught us to broaden our mind and this has helped us shape Kamushki.

Untitled design-10Kamushki Kamushki, 18k Rose Gold Ear Cuff

How does your Libyan heritage impact your designs? For instance, what is the significance of the fishbone that appears throughout your jewellery work?
Our Libyan heritage has had a big impact on our designs. Our debut collection centres around the fishbone which we have called the Wishbone collection because it’s lucky! The fish is a very important cultural symbol in Libya which is used in a lot of traditional jewellery.

It is believed that the fish disrupts bad energy and the evil eye and also symbolizes freedom, good-luck and happiness. We have modernised the traditional Libyan fish by turning it into a fishbone so that the symbolism is presented in a fresh, fun, new way.

In turn, how would you describe your design aesthetic? Who is your ideal consumer?
We like to create fun, easy to wear jewellery pieces. Our customer is young, confident, fun-loving and playful.

Kamushki, 18k Yellow Gold Diamond bracelet, £1305, Browns-1Kamushki, 18k Yellow Gold Diamond bracelet, £1305, Browns-1

Your wrap-around rings are beautiful and very unusual. What inspired these designs?
When we wear jewellery, we like to stack them up so we created knuckle rings that can be worn on every finger. The fish is a symbol of protection in Libya so we were inspired by our heritage but also we just wanted to make pieces that are fun and wearable for every occasion. We love the idea that you can wear fine jewellery during the day and it doesn’t have to be something you can only wear for a special occasion.

FISH BONE KNUCKLE RING / Yellow 18 Carat Gold, Sapphire RingKamushki 18k Gold Knuckle Ring £635 Browns

Accessories live a bit of a quiet life behind the main thrust of the fashion world. What are the benefits and challenges of working in the jewellery arena?
Some of the challenges we face is building awareness of our brand and gaining loyal a following. However, the great thing about jewellery is that it never looses its value. It will always be something that people will buy. Jewellery is timeless.

What, if anything, do you think is missing from the world of fashion and/or accessories?
It’s hard to say that something is missing from the world of fashion and jewellery as there is so much out there. It’s just a matter of finding it! We would like to see more jewellery design that has a story behind it.

Untitled design-8

Kamushki, 70s necklace

Who are your favorite designers?
Some of our favourite designers include Fausto Puglisi, Versace, Saint Laurent and Helmut Lang.

On a personal level, from whom do you take inspiration?
Our mother inspires us. As far back as we can remember our mother always had a great love for beautiful jewellery; she has the most incredible vintage jewellery from her travels around the world. It was our mother’s influence that sparked our desire to start a jewellery line.

by Jessica Quillin

Defining Luxury: a Conversation with Amanda Triossi of Bulgari

  • Original sketch of the 1970s Vintage sautoir in yellow gold with coral from Bulgari’s archives

PROVENANCE, THE origins and history of a brand, is often easy to forget in the highly transient, mercurial realm of luxury and fashion where trends come and go and seasons pile on top of seasons. But provenance is nonetheless one of the defining characteristics of luxury and is what sets a truly high-end brand apart from the rest. Indeed, true luxury – that difficult-to-define sense of rarefied beauty, quality, and prestige – does not come from the age, price, or products of a brand; but rather, it comes from a compelling brand story, carefully told, combined with high-quality craftsmanship and exceptional customer service.

Nowhere is provenance more important than in the world of fine jewellery – and few brands do it better than Bulgari. Founded in 1884, Bulgari is one of the most prestigious jewellery houses in the world. The company had humble origins in a small jewellery shop started by a Greek migrant, Sotirios Voulgaris, in Rome, but later expanded greatly under the stewardship of the owner’s two sons, Costantino and Giorgio, and now stands as an iconic jewellery brand.

Communicate the heritage

Bulgari, like many brands, is proud of its history and is now working to preserve and communicate that heritage, thanks to the efforts of one woman, Amanda Triossi, who holds the somewhat unusual job as the Bulgari official curator. Educated in Classics and History of Art at Cambridge, Ms Triossi obtained a gemmological diploma at the Gemmological Association of Great Britain in 1988. She subsequently worked for Sotheby’s as a gemmological expert and auctioneer for 14 years.

Amanda first became associated with Bulgari in 1996 when she co-authored a monograph on Bulgari with Daniela Mascetti. From 1999 to 2003, Amanda collaborated with VBH Luxury on a high-end jewellery line. Since 1997, she has worked with Bulgari, first spearheading the creation of the Bulgari Corporate Historical Archives in Rome and now as Curator, working closely with the Bulgari family on the Bulgari Vintage Collection and curating major exhibitions for the brand around the globe.

The history of jewellery and jewellery design is a highly specialist profession. How did you get your start? What inspired you to enter this field?
I’m not exactly sure where I first got the idea. But I have always been interested in jewellery. In 1967, my mother gave me a copy of Italian Hello that had pictures of the coronation of the Shah of Iran, which contained photos of the most beautiful jewellery I had ever seen.

In Italy, jewellery is usually a family thing, inherited from generation to generation. But, this is was not the case for my family. While I was born in Italy, my mother was an actress and my father an architect and both were on rather indifferent to jewellery. That said, my father at one point had wanted to become a geologist, so perhaps some influence came from him.

You worked with Sotheby’s for many years as a historian and auctioneer. What was it like to work in this environment as both an expert and auction professional?
Sotheby’s was instrumental in leading me to where I am. When you’re dealing with art, working in an auction house gives you access to a wide range of jewellery and affiliated art much more so than any jewellery apprenticeship could. At Sotheby’s, I got to work all over the continent and to learn about a wide variety of art.

The most exciting collection I witnessed was the sale of the Duchess of Windsor’s jewels in 1987. It really was the most exciting collection on market in the past 150 years, even including Elizabeth Taylor’s collection that was recently sold. The Duchess was a connoisseur of jewellery in a way that few people these days are.

Through Sotheby’s, I gained access to a variety of opportunities, including valuations and lecturing on the history of jewellery and jewellery making. In due course, this teaching work led me to Bulgari.

Bulgari has a long and storied heritage dating back to the 1880s. What role does history play in the modern practice of jewellery making?
For high jewellery, the art of jewellery making has not changed much since the 18th and 19th centuries, though the cost of labour is very different. But, these handmade pieces are still created with the same types of tools, particularly for high art collections. It is, of course, a very different situation for the mass market, as machinery has made all the difference for large-scale production.

Interestingly, attitudes towards jewellery have changed significantly. In the 18th century, it was very common to have jewels remounted and restyle to keep up with current trends, whereas now that’s almost inconceivable given the cost involved.

One of the things I have tried to convey through my work and teaching is that jewellery is transcultural and transsocial: everyone at every level has interest in jewellery in one form or another.

What are some highlights of your career with Bulgari?
I came to Bulgari as co-author of its company history in 1994, which was challenging as the archives were not complete. After that project, I then proposed to Bulgari that I work with them to set up and maintain their archives. I eventually came to work with them to buy back significant pieces in the company’s history as part of an effort to build a physical archive in addition to the digital cataloguing that we already had been doing.

In 2009, Bulgari held a major retrospective exhibition for its 125th anniversary in Rome and Paris featuring major artifacts from its history. It was a really impressive show – so much so that it toured around the world, including China in 2011 and San Francisco earlier this year.

Much of Western aesthetics has been based upon the conception that art reveals the depth of our humanity. Jewellery, as personal decoration, is, like clothing, one of the most ancient forms of art. In your opinion, are people still affected by the concept of jewellery as art?
The vast majority of people do not perceive jewellery as art. Indeed, a lot of people that like art don’t really contemplate liking jewellery. For many people, jewellery takes the form of a diamond engagement ring but they don’t see how fun, interesting, and diverse jewellery can be. It is perhaps a bit stigmatised in this way.

For example, most publications do not make much space for jewellery and treat it as at best a supporter to the larger category of clothing. For me, I think that dress should be dictated by jewellery, rather than the opposite, to make a real statement.

I feel that jewellery is an essential art form. In reality, jewellery is very accessible, not as wildly expensive as expensive cars and infinitely more wearable and collectable. The history of jewellery is in no small way the history of society: jewellery and jewellery making are closely linked to economic history, the history of mining and materials, the history of technology, and, obviously, the history of culture itself. In this way, the objects that we wear and collect reveal a lot about who we are and what we believe.

by Jessica Quillin