The clichés are enough to set you dreaming. One of the most ambitious hotel projects of recent years can be glimpsed beneath these...
First and foremost, Aime is Magali’s story. A sunny woman with a zest for life who turns everything she touches to gold. From her time at Les Prairies de Paris, where she was the muse and creator of pieces, to the creation of her own jewellery lines, the charisma of this beautiful Marseillaise has been a big hit. France’s loveliest boutiques are attracted by the emotional link between the collections and their creator. Maybe the fruit of the work of two sets of hands that she carries out with her husband, Hadrien. They are passionate about their art where these two become one, and have plenty of surprises in store for us still. Horn, feathers, wood, shells – all are grist to the jewellery mill and emerge with a second life. 150 per season, to be precise. Because this atypical couple, influenced by history, geography and explosive personalities, is also proactive. Aime, is that too. Impatience…energy… Dreams coloured with rock ‘n’ roll that, on stage, would cry in the umpteenth chorus – “AIME!”.
Aime, 14 rue Beauregard – 75002 Paris
Magali, Hadrien, you’re a couple and you work together. How do you divide up the design tasks?
It’s a two-person job that follows a process that we’ve developed over ten years of working together. We choose a theme that inspires us, which could be historic, geographic or around a strong personality. Then I take care of designing the different pieces of jewellery echoing the particular theme and without imposing any barriers on myself. It all gives rise to a collection with an offering that’s as coherent and relevant as possible. Lastly, Hadrien and the head of our studio lay down the technical parameters for everything relating the final production.
Where do you find the inspiration for your creations?
For our Aime collections, I tend to do research on a very precise theme. I use books and documentation from the web and then I bring my memory and imagination into play. When I’m working with another brand, I get as much inspiration as I can from the materials available to me, but also from moodboards and archives. I go to the studios as often as possible to see the fabrics and materials that are being used so that my jewellery is in harmony with the collection being offered.
Do you have a favourite period of history when it comes to jewellery?
The history of jewellery is intimately linked to that of humanity. It’s always fascinating to see a 7,000-year-old bracelet that looks as if it could have been made yesterday. When you look round a museum you soon see that there’s nothing new under the sun. If I had to choose a single period it would be between 1920 and 1930. It was at the height of Art Deco and Art Nouveau. I love them for their inventiveness, their colours and all their decorations inspired by plants, insects and animals.
Do you have a preference for a particular material or materials?
I’ve always been attracted to natural materials, like horn, feathers, wood and shells. I think it’s because we’re self-taught so we’ve never been limited in our choice of materials. Everything is possible, you just need to acquire the skills to work with an unfamiliar material. And that’s why we love what we do so much.
How would you describe the Aime woman?
She’s a girl like me, of course! I picture a chic, romantic Parisienne… in a nutshell, a modern women who devotes herself to those that she loves! In reality, I’ve realised that our clients are women of every age and from every walk of life. It’s always quite an emotional experience to meet the people who actually wear our creations…
Which is your best-selling piece?
We design 150 pieces per season and we renew the entire offering every year, in seven years with AIME I’ve made more than 2,000 pieces! So yes, some designs have been big hits over time. That’s why we’ve decided to create a “core collection” this year. It will include the brand’s iconic pieces, such as the Corne necklace, the Paradis earrings, the Plume torque, the long Mister T necklace and the Dune necklace.
When you’re not working on Aime, do you work for other brands?
Yes, I have been lucky enough to meet professionals who have enabled me to expand my expertise. Three years ago, Edouard Frojo offered me the chance to literally create a golden brand with him: Charlet. The pieces are handmade in Marseille in the purest tradition of jewellery making. I worked in gold and precious stones, a definite accomplishment! We’re also behind the first Vanessa Bruno jewellery line. It was a stimulating collaboration that required our presence from the design through to the making of the pieces. Otherwise, we make capsule collections throughout the year. Sometimes for our designer friends and sometimes for bigger houses.
What projects do you have in the pipeline?
In terms of collaborations? Or jewellery?
We’re going to open a second place in Paris in 2017, we’ve begun working on a line of cutlery in the spirit of our jewellery and a project (that’s still under wraps) with Delphine Delafon for the autumn. We’ve also been working for several months on the design of a dedicated space for jewellery in Japan… Fingers crossed!
Credits : Constance Gennari @thesocialitefamily