Emerging fine jewelry brand Annachich Architectural Jewelry is taking jewelry design to dizzying new heights with new additions of solid gold, rose gold and precious stone to its architecture-inspired jewelry lines. The luxury jewelry brand was born from founder and designer Becky Constantinides‘  love for architecture and her grandmother’s beautiful crocheted creations. Constantinides’ work has been featured in multiple blogs and magazines, notably Harpers’ Bazaar Singapore, New York Post, Where San Fran, Seventeen, and SF Racked.

Constantinides

Becky Constantinides | Founder & Designer © Annachich Jewelry

Annachich Jewelry incorporates real architectural elements in a sophisticated manner. San Francisco and New York City serve as muses for the brand’s collections. Wearing their jewelry serves as a meaningful souvenir because you’re wearing a piece of the city you visited. Becky shares that, “my customers tell me they love wearing our jewelry because it is luxurious and refined, but also comes with a great story”.

“We love a piece of jewelry that can make you feel like superwoman and a historian at the same time” – SF Racked

capsulemodel2

Capsule Collection BTS | Photography © Eric Constantinides

The name ‘Annachich’ derives from her grandmother’s maiden name before it was changed to ‘Annick’ during immigration into the US. As such, Annachich Jewelry is Constantinides’ dedicated ode to her grandmother, who has become the namesake of her brand. All of Annachich’s products are designed and hand-crafted in San Francisco, California, her home for the last 12 years. It was here in San Francisco -a vibrant and free-spirited art community- which allowed Constantinides to explore and develop her creative & entrepreneurial voice.

“Our jewelry is ornate yet minimal, delicate yet bold” -Annachich Architectural Jewelry

Initially studying architecture and graphic design in college, Constantinides realised her passion was in jewelry design and not in building design. However, architecture remained the core inspiration behind all her designs and collections. In 2012, Becky interned under Revere Academy of Jewelry Arts‘ founder and master goldsmith, Alan Revere, during her enrollment in the Jewelry Technician program there. Later the following year, Constantinides’ first full collection, Capsule Collection, was launched. revivaltwoobracelet

Revival 2 Bracelet (Gold) | Skyscraper Collection | © Annachich Jewelry

Solid brass and sterling silver were the main metals Constantinides started working with, due to their ability to provide an “affordable fashion jewelry line focused on preservation”. For those seeking to quench their vintage thirst in the 21st century, the antiqued brass exudes classicism with a modern and simplistic edge. Recently, Annachich Jewelry has extended itself into finer jewelry. The designer’s expansion into the luxury market was her answer to an expanding customer base who were keen to see creations of architecturally inspired fine jewelry made from solid gold.

“I love the idea of creating something with such integrity that it could be found in someone’s jewelry box that hasn’t even been born yet!” – Becky Constantinides

Phelanbuilding

Phelan Building in San Francisco, California

The Capsule Collection is inspired by the historic Phelan Building in San Francisco, California, built in 1907. The building was once the home of the Revere Academy of Jewelry Arts’ before they were unceremoniously evicted. The designer extracts striking elements of Phelan Building such as its marble-lined halls and grand architectural features to create her own version of the building; thus the collection is a tribute to the school.

Capsulemodel

Capsule Collection | Photography by Olga Lacosta

dotscuffhextilenecklacecapsule

Dots Cuff (Gold) | Hex Tile Necklace (Silver) | Capsule Collection

tileandpairofhexcuff

Tiles in the Phelan Building | Pair of Hex Cuff (Silver) | Capsule Collection | © Annachich Jewelry

Becky seeks a juxtaposition in all her inspirations and creations. She looks for contrasts between old and new architecture, whether it be “old buildings re-purposed for modern needs, or seeing a historic building right next to something ultra modern.” Constantinides focuses on early 20th century architecture when she designs, as their abundance of adornments and details means she is able to easily take inspiration from them.

nativesonsbuildingg

Native Sons Building | Photography © Daderot

The Electro Collection was inspired by the Native Sons Building built in 1911, also in San Francisco. Constantinides’ desire to off-set ornate features with minimalism to mirror the juxtaposition of old and new architecture is highly apparent in this collection. The Native Sons Building was a Victorian-era theatre (known as the Cable Car Theatre) characterised with Art Nouveau-style architecture. In 2000, the building was transformed into a modern electronic music nightclub. However, many of the original Art Nouveau interior adornments still remain to this day, making it a unique architectural inspiration and a must visit destination.

6fancuff

6 Fan Cuff  (Gold)| Electro Collection

camandchainsnecklacewithfancychainearrings

Cam and Chains Necklace (Gold) | Fancy Chain Earrings (Gold) | Electro Collection

“By taking cues from architectural craftsmanship of the past, Annachich embodies an unanticipated fusion of ornate architectural design and modern, forward-looking jewelry design.” – Becky Constantinides

woolworthpyramidalearring

Woolworth Building, New York City | Pyramidal Earrings (Gold) | Skyscraper Collection

Inspired by the Neo-Gothic Woolworth Building in New York City, the Skyscraper Collection transforms the ornamental shapes of the building’s 3000 windows into intricate yet simplistically designed geometric patterns. Built in 1913, the Woolworth Building signified an architectural feat; it was 60 stories high, making it the tallest building in the world up till 1930. Additionally, the building had a cruciform-shaped lobby, which Becky borrowed for her designs.

columnnecklacegeogothicstuds

Column Necklace (Gold) | Geo-Gothic Studs (Silver) | Skyscraper Collection

When it comes to her creative process, Becky Constantinides starts raw and fast, filling her notebook with messy notes and scribbles which then expand into more sophisticated forms before being digitally rendered. A 3D model is produced and eventually a piece of jewelry is born into a collection. Becky admits that she spends more time running her business than actually designing jewelry. However, this disparity has allowed her to become more engaged with knowing what her customers want or are interested in. In this way, she is able to push herself creatively and has the opportunity to design more intelligently and effectively for customers.

doublefanringss

Double Fan Rings (Silver and Brass) | Electro Collection

5hexcuffhand

5 Hex Cuff | Capsule Collection | Photography by Becky Constantinides

Constantinides’ crafting angle situates itself in a way which aims to be artistic yet unexpected. She loves experimenting with repetition and working “vertically when the expectation is horizontal”. Annachich‘s best-seller, the 5-Hex Cuff, exemplifies this unique creative philosophy and makes a great addition to your jewelry box. For future collections, Constantinides plans to expand her architectural inspirations to a world-wide setting. By combing through the multitude of architectural styles in global cities, she plans to chose a particular building style from a different city for each collection.

SHOP ANNACHICH

With special thanks to Becky Constantinides for her artistic insights and inspirations.

Written by Alice Pearce

Edited by Sonia Wan

References

Annachich Architectural Jewelry (2016). ABOUT & PROCESS [Online] Available at: https://www.annachich.com/ [Accessed 23/8/2016]