We were recently introduced to the jewelry of Melanie Georgacopoulos and were immediately struck by its ability to be simultaneously delicate and geometrically composed. It is no surprise than that Melanie has a background in sculpture, which she infuses in every piece. That, and her infatuation with pearls gives every piece of her collection and grace and warmth like no other. We chatted with Melanie to learn a bit more about her design process and what’s next on the horizon for her…
What inspired you to found your eponymous label in 2010?
In 2010 I found myself at crossroads as I was either to continue designing for other brands, as I had done since my RCA graduation in 2007, or I was going to start my own brand. It was during that time that my pieces were bought by Dover Street Market to be sold in their London shop and I also met my then agent Valery Demure who encouraged me to start wholesaling. There was a lot of interest from the outset so I decided it was a great time to start a brand focusing on redefining contemporary pearl jewelry.
Can you tell us a bit about your love for ‘the pearl’ and how it simultaneously influences and drives so much of your designs?
I am fascinated by the fact that pearls are created by mollusks in the sea, so even if they are cultured they still have to be made by a little animal inside an oyster. Also the fact that once they are extracted from the shell, they can be used straight away in jewelry, they don’t need faceting like most of other gemstones. And aside from their obvious and unquestionable beauty, they come in a huge variety of colors, shapes and sizes and compliment women in a wonderful yet subtle way.
How does your background in sculpture influence your current jewelry designs?
I think I view jewelry as pieces which have to comfortably sit on the body but also in their own right in space, much like sculpture. I have always been very hands on and love to work on prototypes myself, feeling the material. I also like to design pieces with jewelry elements such as gold and pearls, where at first glance, people may not quite understand how to wear them (such as the Nacre collection).
Who are you designing for when designing jewelry? Do you imagine a specific woman in your life — or a specific type of woman?
No, over the years, and through working with a huge variety of private clients I have learned to remain openminded about who wears my jewelry but also who I design for. I am always surprised at seeing who wears which piece and how they style it. I could say though that the common thread between all my clients is that they are very confident in their own style and prefer timeless pieces.
What are you most excited about with your latest collection?
Oh there is so much I am excited about! First of all due to Covid, that we managed to produce the pieces, even if it did take much longer! Also, the fact that I am using natural pearls and diamonds or the first time and a new carving technique for the mother of pearl. I love how the pieces look different from what I have done so far, I always aim and hope to surprise people with my work!