Whether in home décor, fashion or accessories such as jewellery, materials and components are one of the main consideration for a designer.
They are often the source of inspiration for a collection, or they are researched after a designer has imagined a particular design or collection, picturing the exact fabric, metal, stone, colours and other details. Knowing exactly in his or her mind where each detail will be. What the finished piece will look and feel like. Whether it will be satin, lace, leather for a piece of garment… a rough or faceted stone, a satin or high polish finish for a piece of jewellery…
The wonder resides in the limitless design possibilities! Any combination of colour, material, shape… is possible.
There are however some universal rules of beauty, of balance in size and shape, when designing any piece. Some designs do not work, they do not connect with people, because they are lacking that balance. That “harmony” which brings a piece together. When a design is good and follows those underlying rules, we know it is a good one when we see it, even if we have no particular knowledge of design. It just “speaks” to us, it appeals to our senses even if we cannot explain why. I believe that our subconscious recognises a piece that is well designed, where all the various elements assembled into one piece of design work together in harmony. That, is the challenge of every designer. To bring balance between shape, colour, textures and not forgetting wearability, comfort and practicality.
I love colour. I have always loved it since I was a child. And textures… I would go through my mum’s sewing box and marvel at the buttons, sequins, wools and pieces of fabric of different colours. I still love the feel of different materials and the way some colours attract me so much. Finding myself curious at the way I choose an outfit depending on my mood, or my level of energy. Whether I feel like I need a boost, a little comfort maybe, or I am ready to take on the world!
I absolutely love colours. And yet I wear a lot of black clothes…. I do however wear black with a strong contrasting element such as a contrasting colour, be it a top/cardigan/shoes/belt, and a statement piece of jewellery. And even if the outfit itself is rich in layers and other interesting details, wearing black is a neutral base which allows me to create interest with a contrasting bright colour and a statement piece of jewellery, a necklace in particular. And carry my personality out to the world… A black outfit is quite a strong statement in itself. And combining it with a bright colour and statement piece of jewellery makes the contrast even stronger.
It is this constant research for contrasts which guides my design process… Contrasts in shapes, materials and textures. Mixing precious metal with not just stones and pearls, but also feathers or other materials. Mixing the fluidity and textured feel of chainmaille and the way it moves with the body, with a solid and smooth piece of silver. The solid, rigid and cold feel of silver with the softness, lightness and sensuality of feathers…