Sardinia-based, former intellectual property lawyer and eclectic French artist/ jewellery designer Marie-Hélène Polo, talks about ellapolo, her stunning jewellery line inspired by nature.
The exclusive handmade collection features metals, like silver and bronze, softened by satinized finishes and warmed up with yellow, pink, brown and grey gold plating.How did you start and when?
I first started my career as an Intellectual Property Lawyer, thus restricting my artistic inclinations. The resolution to become a designer took time. It happened through passion and commitment. While travelling around the world I decided to convert my artistic flair into something tangible. This is how I came to jewellery design. Why did you pick your brand name?
Ellapolo is a reference to the feminine and personal essence of my jewellery. It identifies with the designer and with women – for ella is the dimintive of my name, Marie-Hélène and a feminine personal pronoun. It refes to the product and the wearer’s femininity and individuality.
Can you talk about your concept of jewellery ELLAPOLO
Design is my concept of jewellery. I search for graphic effects through simple and stylised outines in order to obtain plain and minimal shapes with a modern and striking impact. Far from the perfection and conventional finishes of traditional jewellery, each piece has to become an ornament to the body, more than a precious piece itself.
Could you briefly describe the design-making process?
Inspiration starts with a small detail, raising an idea into a project. A sketch becomes a design and I check its proportions by cutting the model into wax sheets. The metal prototype comes later and gives birth to my idea. After being tested, it is sent for production in a workshop in Tuscany, where all my pieces are handmade to exacting standards.
What inspired you to create your innovative jewellery?
I like the power of simplicity. The strengh of synthesis. Both natural and abstract shapes inspire me. I try to reduce natural shapes into an abstract appearance and refine geometric outlines to a natural and uneven design. I look for clean and simple features, balancing originality with proportion and elegance.
Who are your design and non-design influences?
I like designers who are able to combine innovation and moderation. Since I think that elegance and refinement are grounded in simplicity.
Where do you usually gather inspiration?
Travelling is a good source of inspiration which I gather from modern architecture, landscaping, nature, arts, interior design. Beauty in general. I always try to keep in touch with beauty. And Sardinia, the place where I live, is a great part of it.
What is your first memory of wanting to be a designer?
I spent my life drawing. It is an attitude, an outlet for the spirit. An escape.
Design and creativity for me are an inner need. Perceiving new shades of reality, to raise a new idea through its solutions is a real emotion.
Where do you envision women wearing these pieces? Are they wearing them for themselves or someone else?
Strong enough for a party and simple enough to stay home, my pieces are original and easy at the same time. They are mood-enhancing, perfect for everyday.
No matter what they must be worn for oneself: to feel beautiful and self-confident.
How do you hope these designs make your clients feel?
Ellapolo is for modern, unconventional and cultured woman who like to wear a unique decoration. Free to express and reinvent themselves through a small detail.
By Fabrizio Belluschi @FAMEMAGAZINE.co.uk