March 26, 2012

Husam El Odeh

It’s not often I get utterly obsessed with a piece of jewellery, but when I fall, I fall hard, and this delicious sterling silver ‘broken stone’ bracelet from Husam El Odeh has stolen my heart. It’s the perfect mix of delicacy and edge - a solid, almost liquid chunk of silver gouged out to expose a roughly hewn cluster of dazzling smoky quartz crystals, set on a fine chain… love.
Speaking of his design processes, the German jeweler admits, “I never actually set out looking for inspiration. I find a lot of things on the street. I collect odd things. I don’t horde them, but they come and go through the studio. The initial process is just thinking with my hands.”
The bracelet comes from the ‘Ephemeral’ collection, inspired by “the decay of treasures” – a design process that began with an image of an old Chicago theatre and “the grandeur of days gone by, left to fall apart yet protected from demolishing”.
Digging deeper, El Odeh re-visited treasures collected from across the British Empire and deposited at the British Musuem - as a child he had visited regularly, so was drawn to ‘the little and everyday’. A child’s gold ring from Roman Spain particularly caught his eye.
Having originally studied painting in Berlin, El Odeh was signed up by a friend for a course in fine metals. “I think I only went three times,” he says in a 2011 interview with New York Magazine’s The Cut, “but I remember thinking, ‘this is something I could do’, later when I became fed up with the self-important fine-art world, I came back to it.”
El Odeh now has an understandable cult following, has designed collections or one-off pieces for the likes of Acne and Marios Schwab and won a BFA award for Emerging Talent that saw a personal email from Anna Wintour arrive in his inbox.
Feel free to buy me this bracelet, you can find it here for now...


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