Artisanal jewellery makers Hill to Street (HTS) collaborate with Malaysian personality, model, and yoga teacher, Anuja Ananthan, to create Embrace the Goddess in You – a Deepavali & Christmas Collection that celebrates the indomitable spirit of the feminine.
“We designed these pieces with an essence of the tribal, ethnic and vintage feel in mind. While being occasion worthy, Embrace the Goddess in You is jewellery for souls who are looking to grace their casual everyday streetwear or traditional outfits with statement pieces,” shares Hill to Street founder, Tiffany Teoh.
The collection pays tribute to ancient Indian times, during the era of Rajput royalty, famed for its magnificent golden forts, red sands, and tribal jewellery. The dramatic beauty and ecological diversity of the Sahara Desert in Morocco also inspire, with its old imperial cities of red clay walls and blue mosaic buildings captured in each thoughtfully articulated creation.
The handmade, sterling silver collection comprises eight pieces which range from funky hoops, elegant studs and festive drops to a glamorous choker necklace and cuff bracelet. For the first time, HTS has also incorporated semi-precious stones, cubic zirconia and ralton with sterling silver which lends a vibrant and festive spirit that suits the holiday season. By oxidating the silver with a matte finish, the collection carries a true vintage look.
As a former corporate and investment banker and model, Anuja traded in fast-paced living to pursue teaching yoga. Her yoga journey was the result of a life-changing trip to an ashram in the Himalayas, which eventually led to her completing training with the Manasa Yoga school, which presents the system of yoga she now teaches. Anuja seeks to empower others to embrace their unique gifts through their movement and lifestyle, with her new collaboration with Hill to Street encouraging women to be anything they want to be – however seemingly opposite.
Naturally, Anuja feels a strong sense of passion for sharing her Indian heritage, and graciously shares her journey in the design and execution of the bold collaboration with Hill to Street:
Q: How did you come to collaborate with Hill to Street?
A: Hill to Street was the first client that I worked with, before Tiffany and I became friends through this collaboration. I fell in love with Tiffany’s vision and talent in creating designs that reminded me so much of my love for silver ethnic tribal wear. As we progressed through this collaboration, we discovered that we work very well together!
Q: Before the collaboration, did you have any experience in jewellery design and how did having this opportunity make you feel?
A: Nada, none. I learned so much from Tiffany about handmade jewellery, from the personal attention and love that makers and artisans infuse into their work to come up with the masterpieces that they create. The effort is extensive, from texturing and precision to other fine details needing extra scrutiny when working with differing weights of stones and silver. The opportunity to be a part of this process made me appreciate the craft of jewellery-making so much more, and I feel so proud to now have a collection in my name!
Q: Your pieces celebrate femininity and invite the wearer to Embrace the Goddess within them – why is this theme important to you?
A: The whole collection pays tribute to the essence of femininity, otherwise known as ‘Shakti’ which translates to “energy” in Sanskrit. Each piece offers a different feel in terms of energy, and that is how we named them.
We are essentially beings of energy – our thoughts, our emotions, our actions are always in a natural state of flux and manifestation, giving us life. HTS x Anuja is a collection that celebrates the many facets and qualities we learn through the process of living. From friendship and bravery to learning to be grounded (which inspires the name of some of our pieces).
Q: Rajasthan, India is known for its prestigious royalty, and tribal jewellery served as the inspiration behind the ethnic collection. Do any of the pieces tell a story that references this rich source, and would you share your favourite tale with us?
A: Our Virya drop earrings have a story. ‘Virya’ in Sanskrit denotes willpower and courage. The mesmerizing Forts and Palaces of Rajasthan proudly tell of the might of the Rajput warrior-like Kings and Chiefs of the bygone era. Those Rajput Kings were not only known for their courage and high esteem, but also their art and culture (including silver tribal jewellery).
The greatest king of the Rajput era was Maharana Sangram Singh.
After hearing his story, I gave Virya its name. He was a fierce Rajput king known for his courage and tenacity. He was also the last ruler of medieval India, standing to unite several Rajput states, fighting against the foreign invaders despite losing one arm, one eye and sustaining close to 80 wounds on his body!
Q: How does this newest range capture the essence of who you are?
A: I believe everyone has a purpose in this Universe. We are all called to serve in some capacity – that is our power. I choose to play many roles in my life as a daughter, wife, mother, yoga teacher and friend. These roles require me to be strong yet delicate, creative yet strategic, outspoken yet understanding.
Now, I choose to combine my love for silver jewellery with my knowledge of Hindu philosophy to reflect these multi-faceted traits into each piece so that it brings much meaning and history to its wearer – however they choose to wear it.
To browse the full collection, visit hilltostreet.com.