During Paris Fashion Week, we enjoyed spending the morning in the Ritz and previewing the exclusive Byredo Fine Jewelry collection. The lifestyle brand is deeply connected to a hip-hop lifestyle and South Asia. The 18-karat gold and sterling silver pieces start a new journey for the brand right in time for the holidays.
Byredo is launching fine jewellery, starting with 18-karat gold and sterling silver pieces due at the end of November. The collection is called Virasaat, the Hindi word for “inheritance,” nodding to the Indian heritage of Byredo founder Ben Gorham. Everything is blinged out and vibrant, catering to its existing customer base.
“What’s been really nice — and this has always been the case with Byredo — is we’ve set our own cadence,” said Gorham. “When you have a large part of your business through direct channels and have spent many years engaging with several communities, which we have, you can launch things when and how you want.
Byredo Is Launching Fine Jewellery
“Our process is quite long because not only do we design products, we truly engineer them,” he continued. “That approach, that idea of obsessiveness around perfection, takes time. So simply, we’re done with the jewellery’s first iteration and thought it’d be a good time to let people see it.”
Byredo had officially dabbled in fine jewellery once before. In 2020, it launched a line in collaboration with Charlotte Chesnais. Gorham said the company learns a lot through such partnerships.
“Charlotte, who we worked with in the beginning, was instrumental in opening my mind to what can be done with metals and precious materials,” continued Gorham, adding this new jewellery launch is more personal. “It relates very much to my background, my relationship with that category and those types of products.”
“All the collaborations we have engaged in, the thesis has always been that it needs to be a win-win,” he said. “Both parties need to come away from that with an experience of learning something new or a new approach to things.Byredo Fine Jewellery
Byredo is somewhat autobiographical.
“I’ve always, for many years, just obsessed about memory,” said Gorham. “It’s still an important component in how I create. When I thought about jewellery, it was more about my relationship, memories, and cultural connection to these pieces. That was very much my mother, initially, and my grandmother, and [their being cultural] from India, [where] jewellery really is something that you pass down through generations.”
Another component added to the mix of inspirations was Gorham’s Western upbringing in the U.S. and Canada.
Byredo Is Launching Fine Jewellery
“In the ’90s, my big cultural influence was hip-hop, and hip-hop still has this incredible fascination with jewellery,” said Gorham. “I tried to make something that echoed the sentiment of culture and tradition and simultaneously pushed it into being something highly expressive, kind of unapologetic, and that, for me, represented hip-hop culture.”
There are necklaces, bracelets, rings and earrings made in Italy for this line of pieces with a leitmotif of rounded pearl shapes interlocked with graphic bars. The pieces allow you to stack pieces and we personally love the cuff earrings. Both elements are very ’90s hip-hop and you can tell.
“I was very interested in creating a chain, just kind of fascinated by how I could start in this idea of repetition and then maybe remove components to see if they stood by themselves,” said Gorham. “You could almost say that I started on the wrong end, but it was about designing a chain as the starting point.”
The exclusive prelaunch of Virasaat will take place on Nov. 30 in Byredo’s Paris boutique on Rue Saint-Honoré. That will be followed by the brand’s flagships beginning Jan. 25.
Prices range from $350 for a silver ring to $27,000 for a gold necklace.
“Byredo’s intent is to create products that can stand the test of time,” said Gorham. “Everything is about building upon something and slight tweaks, but ultimately trying to define something genuinely timeless. That’s easier with jewellery than with fragrance or makeup, which are much more fluid in today’s society.
“The way that people buy jewellery and gift jewellery — maybe sometimes because of the price points — there really is this idea that you will have it for a very long time,” said Gorham. “I considered that when designing the collection.”
Working with gems is likely on the horizon. In May 2022, Spanish beauty and fashion company Puig acquired a majority stake in Byredo. Gorham said since the brand’s inception, “the curiosity and cultural exploration continues, and I find that incredible.”
Are you ready for some Byredo Fine Jewelry bling in your life? We find it refreshing to support emerging brands and new names in fine jewellery because today’s consumers have different tastes than in the past and grew up in hip-hop.
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