Saturday, 12 December 2009

DELFINA DELETTREZ FENDI - It runs in the family...

Delfina Delettrez Fendi's one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces in a Gothic-romantic and slightly disturbing vein are not what they seem at first site. A necklace that, from a distance, looks to be festooned with over sized pearls reveals, upon closer inspection, miniature skulls; and a ring that looks like a tiny tiara turns out to be a frog prince wearing a crown..

Her jewelry is not for the faint of heart or for the delicate souls. "These are not classic pieces, they are for women with a strong character and a sense of humor" she claims. "Not everyone is going to wear a ring with a pig on it."

Delettrez Fendi is a fourth-generation Fendi woman, daughter of Silvia Venturini Fendi, Fendi's accessories director , and the French jeweler Bernard Delettrez.

Although Delfina only recently started to create jewelry, she is scarcely a newcomer to the business. Like colleagues of her age group , she grew up often playing in her father's jewelry workshop. When she finally decided to create her own line of jewelry, it seemed only fitting that the pieces be built at her father's workshop in Rome.

"My father taught me everything I know and he gave me a lot of advice about the stones and metals and what works together," Delettrez Fendi declares.

While her first collection echoed with Gothic resonance, recent works have been tempered by the arrival of a baby daughter."When I started designing there were a lot of skulls; but when I found out I was pregnant I started to make pieces with little animals like pigs and frogs."

She has now opened her first jewelry store in Rome, minutes away from the Piazza Navona: a tiny store with absinthe green display cases and 19th-century pharmacy furnishings, to feel like a witch's house.

"All the drawers are filled with my jewelry pieces, which have snakes and frogs on them, animals that witches like," Delettrez Fendi said.

She takes particular pride in having her pieces handmade, using antique jewelry techniques in Rome, a city deeply linked to her family heritage.

Committed to her brand and hard working, Delfina's attitude comes as second nature to a Fendi. "All the women in my family work. They are all independent and strong," she said with pride. "I get my work ethic from them."

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