Legendary historical creatures carved in gold and linked collectively to type an otherworldly necklace; mismatched emerald studs that look endearingly off-canter, and a grinning Pegasus with old-mine-cut diamonds for eyes, strung on handwrought chains made to resemble paper hyperlinks from a childhood faculty challenge.
These are the work of Los Angeles-based Darius Khonsary, who based her line Darius Jewels a yr in the past as a tangible method to join with parts of the traditional world, in addition to discover her Persian heritage and love of conventional craft.
The gathering, made by grasp jewelers in Los Angeles, is shortly producing buzz for its considerate appeal and concurrently informal and opulent qualities. Items are set with recycled vintage diamonds and Burmese rubies, and observe conventional jewellery making processes from Iran — carved from 18-karat gold and dipped in pure gold for a richer overtone and heat, satin end.
Whereas designs are rooted in historical pre-Persian folks together with Akkadia, Assyrian and Sumeria, in addition they are layered in trendy nuances — one may equally image them at a post-COVID-19 rave, a Nineteen Seventies discotheque in addition to in an historical hammam. “I’m activating historical energies and bringing them into the longer term. I’m attempting to current one thing futuristic and trendy in items which might be primarily historical to current a compression of time. The items themselves, I really feel, exist out of time,” mentioned Khonsary.
The designer slowly constructed her assortment over two and a half years, with cash saved from a decade spent working at an L.A. jewellery boutique. “I used to be simply making one piece at a time as a result of it’s so costly [to start a jewelry line]. As soon as the gathering was all completed final yr, it felt like the correct time to launch it in November, particularly with every thing occurring,” she mentioned.
Certainly one of Khonsary’s totem designs, her Sisters necklace, is a collection of linked historical figures which might be carved in gold — with shapes pulled from an Akkadian cylinder seal from roughly 4,000 years in the past. It was the primary piece that Khonsary designed, and set the tone for the remainder of her assortment — in addition to its connection to her id as a trans lady.
“I really feel like with the Sisters necklace, it’s linked to transgender historical magic and the transformative state [of that time]. It’s one thing I’ve researched rather a lot — how trans folks did exist within the historical world. That’s nearly forgotten and after I discuss bringing historical imagery again into current day, that seems like one thing I’m doing as properly,” mentioned the designer.
In February, her model was given a trunk present with Moda Operandi, the place a lot of her inaugural assortment was offered by way of. Her presence, although, is a vital benchmark in a fine jewelry world that’s usually helmed by white, cis-male executives with product that’s, as a rule, explicitly gendered. And that’s much more notably true within the worth level bracket that Darius Jewels operates inside, with lots of her designs extending into the five-figure vary.
The soft-spoken designer is shy to talk about what her arrival in fine jewelry may imply for the bigger trade. However she has an inkling that it’s the beginning of a brand new chapter. “I really feel like the longer term isn’t so cis-oriented. I really feel like I do know of another trans ladies additionally beginning jewellery manufacturers. I believe rather a lot about how the jewellery trade feels very cis-oriented. It’s not at all times a cushty feeling.”
“I don’t perceive the concept of knickknack or clothes being gendered — it’s for everybody to take pleasure in,” she added. “Even the concept of unisex jewellery doesn’t make sense to me. Jewellery shouldn’t be labeled, it ought to simply exist and have the ability to connect with a person with out these conventions.”
Khonsary’s first look e book, with a follow-up coming quickly, options herself draped in Darius Jewels designs and a sheath costume normal to appear like historical garments. For her, illustration counts. “I do wish to see as many individuals like myself carrying the items. It’s nice to have the jewellery on different trans ladies — it’s one thing that’s actually essential to me.”
https://wwd.com/accessories-news/jewellery/handcrafted-jewelry-brand-darius-jewels-1234900177/ | A New Effective Jewellery Model Impressed by Historical Life and Trans Tradition – WWD