Tatler Singapore



Tatler talks to the founder and artistic director during her first visit to Hong Kong in six years about how the Parisian jeweller has been challengin­g itself in the contempora­ry jewellery scene since 2005

What originally drew you to jewellery design?

My father [André Messika] is a diamond dealer; I joined him in his business in 2000. After a few years, I discovered that his industry was so stiff [and dramatic]. As a young girl, I [dreamt of creating] jewellery that could be cool and wearable every day. [I didn’t want] the designs to be too complicate­d. [I wanted] to pay tribute to the beauty of the diamonds … I really wanted to express the magic [of jewellery]: that’s why ours is [thin and] very flexible. You can transform a double ring into a single one; you can play with your jewellery, by having ear cuffs or diamonds for your nose or belt. I wanted to tell customers that you can be cool and empowered with jewellery, [and that it’s] not only about engagement rings or something very dramatic or traditiona­l; it can be more effortless and stylish.

What is your favourite gemstone to work with?

I will keep going on [using] diamonds because it’s my roots and heritage. If you want customers to understand that you are a specialist, you need to focus on one stone; and this is our strength. [While many brands] use rubies or emeralds, I only allow myself to have semiprecio­us stones like turquoise but nothing faceted; the only stone that can be faceted [at Messika] is the diamond.

What has been the most enjoyable piece or collection to work on?

Two bangles that I did for my daughters. And the Move collection [seen right; a design containing diamonds in motion that has become a hallmark of the brand], which is [being] constantly reinterpre­ted. It’s what makes Messika a brand—if you don’t have any recognisab­le pieces, you cannot [claim] to be a brand. I always remember when I launched this Egyptian collection that I’m wearing [high jewellery line Beyond the Light], how I succeeded in transformi­ng such simple pieces into a more Egyptian style, but in a very modern way.

What inspires the unconventi­onal Messika high jewellery shows?

My brand exists because of this fashion vibration that I put in my jewellery and my communicat­ion. When I [worked on our] collaborat­ion with Kate Moss, [I realised] it was possible to create a catwalk of jewellery … I kept all the codes of fashion: you can see all the details of the jewellery on big screens while models are walking. It makes a huge difference. I want [Messika pieces] to be worn; I don’t want them to be in a showcase with bodyguards. I want them to be vibrant, to live outside the safe, and be worn by women and men.

What are some of the most memorable celebrity Messika moments?

I feel really blessed with all the celebritie­s we dress, but I will always remember Beyoncé at the Grammys: she wore a diamond tie from my high jewellery collection [in 2015]. She was so powerful, and the way she broadcast the branding on such a level inspired me so much. More recently, my answer would be Rihanna at the Super Bowl in the red. She showed the world her pregnancy; plus the fact that she transmits this [idea] of the power of being a woman also inspires me a lot.

What are the biggest challenges facing the jewellery industry today, and how do you tackle them?

The [main] challenge is that there are brands, much bigger than us, who belong to big groups. But it’s very interestin­g that, when you’re not as big as them, the only button you have to press is creativity. This is what I expect from my team: to not do the same as others, and to invent yourself as a newcomer. It [keeps you] innovative. It’s [important to] always make things different, in terms of jewellery [design] and ways of wearing. Creativity is thinking out of the box, right?

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