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On the eve of the opening of her showroom on rue de Seine, Fanny Boucher, co-founder of Gemmyo, welcomes me as her windows are being installed. Straight-backed, with queenly bearing, Fanny is the art director of the undeniably successful online jewellery brand. Gemmyo, the first online jewellery store, is definitely booming, with its collection of customised, elegant and refined jewellery – much like its art director!
Fanny, what is your background?
I did a pre-university course in philosophy in a well-known Parisian lycée. I was unhappy there, but I stayed the course. After three years discussing German philosophy, putting my mind on hold and using my senses, I went for a tour of India with friends and ended up staying there seven years. I literally fell among stones. In Europe, you do seasonal work in skiing, but in India, the place to be is at the Gem Palace, the legendary jewellery emporium of Jaipur. I worked there one winter, then I stayed. I was the “eyes” of creators who get their supplies from India. After that, I established my own brand, Honorine Jewels, and studied gemmology. Then, four years ago, I co-founded Gemmyo. At first I worked only with stones, then last year, my associates asked me to be the creative director. We didn’t have one and we wanted Gemmyo to have a soul.
Where do you find inspiration when you are designing a piece? Do you have a favourite period or era?
With jewellery, I have a weakness for the 1940s – as do you, I think! When I draw, I start with a shape, a contrast or a colour. I think any creative person will tell you the same thing – we are like sponges, in a way; we absorb everything. In my case, perhaps because of my past in the realm of philosophy, I start with an idea. For the Mad Marguerite ring, for example, I wanted to play with the engagement ring that nice, well-behaved girls want, the marguerite. So I gave it crazy colours: fire opal and Tanzanian pink spinel. And then I “mis-matcheded” it: no two stones in the cluster are the same.
What’s your favourite model?
The modern woman: she buys online, she is very well-informed, and she will keep searching until she finds THE ring. She wants a beautifully made piece but cannot find what she likes in the prestige brands on the Place Vendôme. And she knows what she wants but she still wants to be surprised.
Gemmyo, 21 rue de Seine, 75006 Paris
Credits: Constance Gennari @thesocialitefamily