Don’t judge a book by its cover! When you meet with Hélène Prime, her soft voice, elegant posture and classic style confuse you when you take a look at her jewelry collection. With a man’s watch on her wrist and the life choices she made, the Parisian designer isn’t as predictable as she seems to be.
1- How did you come up with a jewelry line?
In 2012, I put everyting into question. I wanted to change the pace of my life, create things myself, develop my taste for jewels which led me to get a degree in jewelry. I learned how to work on wax to make my own mock-ups.. and it all started from there.
2- How do you pick the materials you use in your creations?
I have been collecting bracelets and cuffs for years. I love imposing pieces of jewelry with strong identity. I don’t like to stack up jewelry on top of others. One single piece should be self-sufficient revealing the personnality of the woman wearing it.
I like horn, matte gold and cabochons … always seeking for color associations. I am in the process of imagining cuffs made of horn, leather, metal or wood.
3- What inspires you?
My travels, editors’ fabrics, a detail on a piece of furniture or a door but also old bargained jewelry you negociate in flee markets that I love to reinterpret.I love fabrics so much that I co-created a clutch collection using leather and designed fabrics ornated with a jewel clasp in semi-precious stones under the name Balzarines.
4- With all of these new jewelry designers launching micro-diamonds, micro-paved, micro-jewelry collections, why did you want to stand out?
I did not really have to distinguish myself … I naturally dislike what is thin, small and discreet. I have always loved strong pieces, like a statement on your wrist. Since I was a teenager, I have always looked after original pieces you would not see anywhere. My passion was to transform and customize what I would buy to create pieces of clothing or unique pieces. Make, unmake, remake – I just love it !
5- What type clients would you like to target?
Women sensitives to colors, mix of fabrics who want to distinguish themselves from others. Women able to stand out.
6- How do you see the brand Hélène Prime in the future?
Progressively. I would love to implement the brand in France and later I hope overseas. Early March, I will have a booth at the Salon Première Classe in Paris. I will take advantage of the fair to expose as well the Balzarines Collection.
7- What is your favorite jewelry brand?
I love Bulgari for their work on colors, cabochons but what subjugates me are the odd associations refined with subtle colors associations.
8- A jewelry designer?
Victoire de Castellane for her extraordinary creativity and her eclectic and avant-garde approach on jewelry. She has been creating imposing jewelry pieces that we can identify easily. She developed a style, her style, and her strenght is to mix and match stones, materials and colors. She knows how to take risks and was able to modernize Dior Jewellery for that reason.
9- One piece of jewelry?
The Eva ring by Pomellato. Absolutely superb piece in pink gold with a snake shape cameo.