Slow Made Jewellery - Louve
How did you get into jewellery design?
Jewelry has kind of always been, to me, a universe in which I felt comfortable experimenting. I can say I have a very self-taught approach. I haven't studied jewelry or woodworking - nor design. I grew up surrounded by very creative wood lovers and got seduced by the amazing richness of wood. I started my own experimentations around 5 years ago and developed a series that would become Louve.
What inspired the name, Louve?
Louve is the french word for a she-wolf. Which I think represents my line very well; in its (natural) materials, as well as in its aesthetic and energy; feminine yet still fierce and bold. I also feel like it is very related to my process because I first started my experimentations, and then most of my production, in my father's personal woodshop, at a country house around 2 hours North of Montreal. And so I was surrounded by deep forest when I started creating this line. It felt like Louve was reflecting very well that little bubble I started building.
As a designer, what are your major influences?
I studied Art History before jumping into the experimentations that led me to my jewelry line and I think Louve might be inspired by many of what I have seen throughout these studies. I would say my jewelry is the result of a combination of very eclectic inspirations, I couldn’t name all. I have been particularly influenced by the Arte Povera movement, and by the very grandiose and refined aesthetic behind minimalism and american Land Art, and by the sensibility (and strangeness) of relational art practices. I think it all blended in what became to me a very personal series of bold minimalistic handmade pieces, that came out as a jewelry line! I like to see my pieces as hybrids, as the result of these very diverse inspirations.
Apart from that, I am very much inspired by the material itself, by the texture and richness of wood and by the natural warmth of leather. I like to play with the geometry of forms and create simple but singular compositions. My designing process often starts with drawings and sketches, but sometimes it also starts directly in the woodshop, experimenting based on what the material has to offer.
What is your design philosophy?
All my jewelry is made locally and in small quantities. Each piece is handcrafted, one by one, with meticulous attention to detail and respect for the raw material. For both wood and leather, materials are mostly recovered. All of my wood pieces are exclusively made from tree species of Quebec’s forest. I generally work alone in my studio. Each piece is finished and assembled, one by one, most of them by my own hands. It may be a limitation in terms of quantity, but it allows me to keep perfect track of how it's made. I like to keep it at a human scale. No matter how much work could pile up, I always prefer to prioritize quality over quantity. I guess for me, part of collaborating and buying from slow makers is to accept that handmaking takes time.
How would you describe the typical Louve wearer?
I don’t really have a particular type in mind while designing my pieces. I think my jewelry can relate to a very wide variety of persons and personalities. Even though I can’t detach completely from my personal feminine point of view, I like the idea of creating a line that is mostly unisex, and that can be appreciated by very different types of persons. What they might all have in common, may be a love for bold minimalistic handmade jewelry pieces :)
What are you currently working on?
I really just released my very new collection Doux Ardent that you can find on my website (www.louvemontreal.com) and soon in my stockists! I guess I really wanted to step out of my comfort zone with this collection. I wanted to create a series that could be in continuity with my previous collections but I wanted to bring it somewhere else in giving it a bright and playful twist, yet still with a very bold and minimalistic feel. For me, this new collection that I named Doux Ardent, really embodies the feeling of a smooth and glowing energy to put on.
What can we expect from Louve over the next few years?
Apart from this new collection I am also working on a new series of statement wearable art pieces, to be released next spring! I will be focusing on that new line for the next months.