SABINE GETTY

Whether it’s her WELL-TRAV­ELED LIFE or fine jew­ellery line, the GLAM­OROUS DE­SIGNER be­lieves that every­thing’s bet­ter with a DOSE OF DRAMA.

S/ - - CONTENTS - BY AN­DREA KARR

The jew­ellery de­sign maven talks theatre and the­atri­cal ac­ces­sories

When jew­ellery de­signer and so­cialite Sabine Getty (née Ghanem) mar­ried bil­lion­aire Joseph Getty in 2015, she hosted a flam­boy­ant Les Li­aisons Dan­gereuses cos­tume party in Rome. The next morn­ing, she walked the aisle of Santi Apos­toli basil­ica in a hooded Schi­a­par­elli haute cou­ture cape with an em­broi­dered gold sun stretched across the back. Naturally, the Le­banese/Egyp­tian jew­eller cred­its the theatre as her first love. “I’m ob­sessed, and go to the theatre every night when I’m in Paris, my favourite place in the world by far,” says Getty.

And nowhere is her knack for drama more ap­par­ent than in her jew­ellery de­signs for her epony­mous la­bel, for which she has been cre­at­ing show-stop­ping baubles since her en­roll­ment at New York’s Ge­mo­log­i­cal In­sti­tute of Amer­ica in 2012. “I was very much at­tracted to vin­tage jew­ellery and pieces of my mother’s,” says Getty who grew up be­tween Beirut, Geneva, and the South of France. “I’ve al­ways had that cu­rios­ity.” She took de­sign and di­a­mond grad­ing classes and found that the cre­ative process came eas­ily.

The now Lon­don-based de­signer has two cur­rent col­lec­tions—Mem­phis and its fol­low-up, Baby Mem­phis—with the­atri­cal pieces that were in­spired by The Mem­phis Group, a 1980s Mi­lan-based col­lec­tive of fur­ni­ture and prod­uct de­sign­ers with a pen­chant for the colour­ful and un­con­ven­tional.

Though Getty con­tin­ues to tour Baby Mem­phis with trunk shows around the world, her lat­est role as a new mother—she wel­comed daugh­ter Gene Honor Getty in Fe­bru­ary—has been tak­ing up the bulk of her days. It’s also made her look at work and life in a whole new light. “Chil­dren fo­cus on only one thing at a time, and ex­pe­ri­enc­ing that is amaz­ing,” says Getty. “I have a child­ish spirit and she’s made it stronger.”

When it comes to the fore­see­able fu­ture, Getty plans to breathe in every mo­ment of her daugh­ter’s first year. But more jew­ellery col­lec­tions are sure to come—and per­haps even fur­ni­ture and cloth­ing, too.

ON THE SKILLS THAT MAKE A GREAT DE­SIGNER:

“I think it’s about be­ing ob­ser­vant and look­ing at what’s around you. I’ll take a pic­ture of some­thing I no­tice. It could be art, ar­chi­tec­ture, or cloth­ing. Any­thing that catches my eye could be in­spi­ra­tion for a col­lec­tion. I have 45,000 pic­tures in my phone, but then when I start de­sign­ing, the images come up in my head.”

ON HER IDEAL CUS­TOMER:

“I de­sign pieces that I’d love to wear my­self— maybe an older ver­sion of my­self in my 50s or 60s. I think the more you age, the more you can do state­ment pieces. You can go big and strong and women can han­dle that be­cause you have your char­ac­ter.”

ON THE MEM­PHIS GROUP AS AN IN­SPI­RA­TION:

“I was an ’80s kid, so there was a lot of Mem­phis fur­ni­ture in my home. As I was do­ing the draw­ings for the col­lec­tion, I no­ticed that they had a Mem­phis vibe— the waves, the zigzags, the colours, and the play­ful­ness. So I kept go­ing in that di­rec­tion.”

ON CRE­AT­ING HER CAM­PAIGNS:

“We have a cam­paign for every col­lec­tion and cre­ate the­atri­cal char­ac­ters, the peo­ple that wear my jew­ellery, as if they ex­isted in a play or movie. I choose peo­ple around me that in­spire me: a friend, my hus­band’s young niece. It doesn’t have to be a celebrity..”

ON THE MOST EX­CIT­ING MO­MENT OF HER CA­REER:

“Cé­line Dion bought my jew­ellery, then I bumped into her when she was wear­ing the pieces dur­ing cou­ture week in Paris. Stuff like that is a high­light, when you have a per­son you ad­mire who also likes your work.”

ON THE FU­TURE:

“I’m go­ing to give it a bit of time. I don’t want to do things just to do them. I want to see if I come up with an idea that in­spires me and is strong and then I’ll work on it. But I’m not putting any pres­sure on my­self to de­liver a prod­uct.”

Clock­wise from top left: Carl­ton Book­case Room­di­vider by Et­tore Sottsass for Mem­phis, 1981. Mem­phis Col­lec­tion cam­paign im­age. Baby Mem­phis cam­paign im­age. Mem­phis Col­lec­tion cam­paign im­age.

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