Origami Jewellery was established by French design friends, Claire Naa and Arnaud Soulignac, to inspire the world with the endless creativity of the Japanese paper art form, origami. Starting with one bird design their unique designs were soon picked up by friends, stores and press, and their collection now boasts over 500 fun and original origami designs.
From rabbits and crabs to elephants and even a triceratops, each piece is first made from paper before being handcrafted in silver. We chat to the duo behind this new innovative jewellery brand.
When did you fall in love with jewellery?
“When I was in London with my friend Arnaud Soulignac, a Japanese friend of ours called Masayuki Muraki showed us how to fold a paper to make an origami. We both fell in love with this art and had the vision to make long-life jewellery with origami. Here starts the story!”
Where did you grow up and has your childhood influenced your designs?
“I was born in Toulouse in France and Arnaud in the small city of Chelles close to Paris. Both of us are very imaginative and I don’t think any childhood memories influenced our work, we both love arts and that helped us to make this artistic collection. The only influence that I could notice from my childhood, is the fact that I loved and had many animals (horse, dog, rabbit, cats etc.) Since I’m now living between Paris and London, I have no space for them anymore but I re-create all them in my collection of jewellery.”
"We both fell in love with this art and had the vision to make long-life jewellery with origami."
How did you both get into the jewellery industry?
“Easily, by chance, and with luck. When we started, Arnaud was a broker in the financial industry and I was a journalist. We launched our first necklace, the bird, and we organised a sale with our friends. They all loved it and we decided to participate in a jewellery contest and we were the winners! We then had a corner on the huge trade fair ‘Who’s Next in Paris’, where the buyers from all around the world come to buy jewels for their stores. We had such a success because we were so different with our jewels.”
What drove you to create a whole jewellery line?
“The enthusiasm of my friends and the first request from shops. We now have more than 500 different designs, from the necklace to the short necklace, bracelet, earrings and pins. We’ve just launched the Origami Homeplace with candles, soaps, mirrors. People enjoy the fact we continue the creation in a different way.”
"When we are happy with our designs, we ask our origamist to fold the origami shape for us."
Where do you feel most inspired to create?
“Inspiration is always, everywhere. I mostly create with Arnaud, when we organise meetings together. We discuss and draw things, and merge good inspiration. When we are happy with our designs, we ask our origamist to fold the origami shape for us. Then, we can start to develop the wax mould and the first real sterling silver piece.”
Values are hugely important to us at Jewelstreet. What are your core brand values?
“Values are also essential for us. We want to bring happiness, smiles and beauty through our jewels.”
Who are the customers you are most proud of?
“I am particularly proud when people come back and they tell me it is the second, third or fourth piece of jewellery that they have bought from our collection. It gives us a reason to continue to create beautiful jewels.”
"We are young, less than 40. We have time to create our masterpiece."
How do you want someone to feel when they wear your designs?
“Different, trendy and comfortable!”
What has been the high point of your careers as designers?
“None. Every day is beautiful, and tomorrow is the next day for everyone. We are young, less than 40. We have time to create our masterpiece.”
What is the next step for Origami Jewellery?
“We’ve been featured in all the most famous magazines, but maybe the next step would be to collaborate with high-end brands such Hermès, Cartier, Dior… our imagination is free. We love to create for people and we are really happy to have so many followers so far!”