Jewellery can make a statement about the wearer, reflecting facets of their individuality just as a natural stone shows its unique characteristics to the beholder. Simone Coste’s designs in furniture, home accessories and jewellery are all centred around stones and are the focal point of her latest jewellery capsule collection: the exclusive Lua Collection at Lane Crawford Hong Kong.
Named after the phases of the moon, the new collection features citrine, onyx, quartz and amethyst among others in which Coste selects each stone individually from Brazilian mines before crafting them into translucent sculptures with 18K gold as their base.
During her first trunk show in Hong Kong, we spoke to the multidisciplinary artist to find out more about the collection, the stones and her inspiration.
This is your first foray in Asia. Why have you chosen Hong Kong as the first stop?
I was invited to Hong Kong for the trunk show and I am very honoured to be here at Lane Crawford. This is my first time in Hong Kong actually, but I have heard great things. I haven’t had any time to explore yet. I love Chinese food, so I will definitely come back and spend seven or eight days just looking around and getting to know the culture. I want to see the old Hong Kong, the traditional side.
Can you tell us more about the collection and your designs?
For this collection, I am working with stones like citrine, because they are very translucent and you can see the different colours of gold underneath — like pink, yellow, white and textures of matte and polish. The jewellery is like a sculpture; I pick a raw stone, and I cut it and craft like a sculpture. Then I put the metal inside, to get this effect. This is not a collection that will disappear, I am going to keep adding pieces to this all the time.
How would you describe your design style?
It’s minimalist, elegant and easy to wear. It’s everyday jewellery — you don’t need a special occasion to wear it. It’s for the present moment: you don’t save it, you wear it today.
Where do you draw your creative inspiration from?
I choose the stones first, and then I look to the stone and decide what the shape will be. I don’t draw the collection and then go after the stone — the stone comes first. And then I do the sculpture. It’s a sculpture of work.
My inspiration comes from my inside universe, everything I experience. I do a lot of meditation and yoga. That’s why everything I do — the jewellery, furniture, art work — they are all connected and they talk to each other. It’s an extension of me. I don’t follow any trends. I don’t know what’s going on in the fashion world actually. I treat my work as art and I like this freedom to work.
What type of woman wears your jewellery?
My 18-year-old daughter likes my jewellery and my grandmother used to as well. So it ranges from a young girl to a more mature woman. But the jewellery will find the right client. I think it’s more about personality because my jewellery is big and it’s a strong look. It has to be a woman with a strong personality. She would buy her own jewellery — an independent woman!
Do you think Hong Kong women relate to your jewellery?
Yes, the reception from Hong Kong has been really good. They really like it and they’re enthusiastic. At first, I was nervous about the difference between cultures and tastes. I didn’t know what would happen. But the world is so well connected and global now, so people know about these different styles.
Do you have a favourite piece from the collection?
I’m an earrings and ring person. I like the bold rings, so they’re my favourite. I don’t like anything on the neck because it interferes so much with the figure of a person.
What about your personal collection, any treasured pieces?
I’m a very detached person actually. I don’t collect anything. I prefer to live in the moment and I’m really minimalist at home. My favourite stone is emerald, because green is my favourite colour.
How do you style your jewellery?
I like the simple and elegant look. I will add one or two accessories to my look – shoes or jewellery, or a big bracelet and that’s it. The simpler, the better.
What’s your vision for the brand?
We will bring in the furniture and jewellery boxes [to Lane Crawford] too. They’re shaped like stones. They’re resin-moulded and then I cut them like stone, in colours like ruby, emerald and aquamarine. It links to the jewellery. They will come in before Christmas.
How do you juggle your work and personal life?
Everything is part of my life. I don’t separate my work. It all comes together. Sometimes, I work on Sunday and I don’t work on Monday, but I work most of the time. I manage it quite well. I do swasthya yoga and it helps me a lot.
Any advice for the modern woman?
Meditate daily. It calms you and you see things in a different way.