Architecture is about designing and creating buildings from the ground up, but what happens when your foundation is the body? Some of our designers view their craft with an architect’s eye. Some turn the shapes of structures into wearable pieces, while others use the architecture principles to create pieces that interact with the body. In all cases, the results are original and stunning. From scaled-down cityscapes to graphic pieces, learn more about how architecture inspires our designers.
De Anna Kiernan Jewelry
“The body has become my new site to build upon.”
Prior to landing at The Cass to study jewelry design, De Anna Kiernan
completed an architecture degree at Central Saint Martins. For De Anna, the
two practices remain closely related. “The body has become my new site to
build upon.” De Anna approaches jewelry design with an architect’s eye,
considering not simply the wearability of her jewelry, but also the way each
piece interacts with the lines and curves of its context, the body. “The
connection between the jewelry and the body is integral.”
Sarah Angold Studio
“Structures that contain an element
of graduation are a particular favorite [of mine].“
Sarah Angold designs stunning sculptural jewelry with roots in elaborate
cityscapes. “I’m endlessly amazed by the complexity of both modern and
traditional architecture and strive to incorporate intricate sculptural structures
into my own pieces.“ Her Grad bracelet is inspired in part by “geometry
in London’s architecture“ and features undulating acrylic elements that mimic
a tightly packed urban landscape. Sarah admires the works of Thomas
Heatherwick and Hussein Chalayan, a fact that is clear in her work.
“Structures that contain an element of graduation are a particular favorite.“
“I have a long-standing love affair with the Taj Mahal.
It just exudes magic.”
Christina Elleni, the daughter of two architects, spent her childhood armed
with a sketch pad she filled with observations of her surroundings, a practice
which is key to her career as a jewelry designer. “Whenever I go anywhere I
am particularly excited about my structural surroundings,” Christina says.
Christina’s jewelry features elements of beloved cityscapes, but there is one
structure that’s truly captured her heart: “I have a long-standing love affair
with the Taj Mahal. It just exudes magic.”
“Flowing lines and perfect proportions inspire me.”
“Flowing lines and perfect proportions inspire me,” explains Jerome Olivet,
an architect and bag designer. “Each city is characterized by its architecture
and describes a lifestyle.” His sleek, curved bags are designed for the urban
landscape: When worn, they seem to become one with the body. Jerome
applies a similar aesthetic to architecture, as evidenced by his 2008 Jet House.
The curved concept house appears to melt seamlessly into the landscape
and is set for construction in Dubai soon.
“I'm very much inspired by the elaborate
geometrical patterns in Moorish architecture.”
Orno designer Carla Smiley is an architect who started experimenting with jewelry
design as a student. “I was fascinated with working in wood and started carving
patterns into wooden earrings.” She returned to making jewelry after a visit to
Athens’ Benaki Museum, where she was captivated by the collection of Moorish
architecture. “As iconography was prohibited in their buildings, they developed a
beautiful and very intricate means of decorating through these infinite patterns
meant to symbolize the creations of God.”