Alice Waese: A Fine Idea

06.05.2016 | Fashion | BY:

Alice Waese is not your typical fine jewellery designer. Despite founding an eponymous cult jewellery line that ranges in price from £1,900 to £6,500 – she has received critical acclaim from numerous fashion magazines including Vogue and Interview and exhibited her work at Frieze London 2015 – Alice’s propulsion of fine jewellery leaves it’s mark by revelling in the subversion and whim of all-that-glitters-isn’t gold cocktail sparkle. Her unisex gold and silver pieces, which are hand crafted in limited editions of 90, are subjects of her diverse research stimuli: birds, trees, roots, skulls, rock formations and limbs.

“The glowing and vivid palette os my Spring Summer 2016 collection is based on a series of paintings I created, they explore the visual intensity and subsequent symbolism of various stones. Alchemists consider the emerald as a symbol of hope, wisdom and as a preservation of love. The ruby is believed to be the most powerful jewel, and is associated with passion, vitality and courage—I incorporate them all in this collection,” she said.

Alice Waese

At 20, Alice Waese moved to New York, her current base, to intern for the jeweller Maria Cornejo and was later hired as a design assistant there. She then moved to London where she studied Fine Art at Goldsmith’s College before turning to jewellery full time. Alice describes her interest in fine jewellery as in fact a fascination with “artifacts and heirlooms, the weight of an object with intrinsic value. I consider what happens to an item that is loved, given away, passed on and worn daily. I am inspired also by the materials themselves, the transformation from wax to gold is something really satisfying both on an aesthetic level and a tactile, physical level. I also work from my drawings, an internal world of fantasy and narrative”.


Drawing from life is the basis of Alice’s work, as she truly believes that knowing the dimensions and details of objects and space are key to later constructing something fine and precious out of that which was once mundane. In conjunction with research of the fine jewellery field, Alice eagerly sketches and has published her surrealist watercolour drawings in a series of hand printed hardbound books, each containing a single piece of jewellery hidden in the cutout.

For Spring Summer 2016, Alice Waese’s launches a fine jewellery and ready-to-wear collection that is available exclusively at Hostem. //

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New New York : Alice Waese. David Michael.

12.02.2013 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Emotion, observation, and handwork all describe the process of two designers that have people talking. Early in the morning, far from the hustle bustle of Manhattan, I explored two Brooklyn studio-apartments and found creations buzzing and glowing with otherworldly charm. With their name on the line, Alice Waese and David Michael are creating pieces you want to live in and there is nothing basic about them.

The Toronto native Alice Waese moved to New York after studying at the International Academy of Art and Design in Toronto and working for Jeremy Laing. In NY, she became Maria Cornejo’s right hand for several years before later settling across the pond in London. She is now back in hasty NY — a change of pace that has helped develop the collection through mere conversation, an exchange that introduced the idea of expanding her brand to include knitwear. Her work, a combination of “processes, research and intuition”, has fueled her latest endeavor which includes her sense of accessory and design. “The jewelry is more objective then ever before, while there are still organic and abstract shapes, the focus of the collection for me was more on a direct narrative — carved skulls and bodies like voodoo and worry dolls. It is a more obvious and emotional collection, more direct. The knits are a combination of hand and machine knits, a lot of color and texture.”

Tell Me More :

“I start the day off with 7 toed cat paws in my face. Strong coffee and drawing or emailing.

My wardrobe consists mostly of antique white men’s shirts collected in London, lots of Zero Maria Cornejo, white Arts & Science night gown / silk dresses, black leather Guidi boots.

Everyday jewelry includes full hands of rings, my tall bark ring cast from tree bark, multiple double rings cast from leather, stacked raw black diamonds.

Current studio playlist sounds like Chances with Wolves Radio via East Village Radio and lots of Bill Callahan, always. Austra, Will Oldham, Jennifer Castle, Jessica Pratt, Dylan, Kendrick Lamar, Yo Yo Ma, Timbre Timber, Joanna Newsome.

Home is a good place to make a mess.”

David Michael Hershberger, the intelligent, laidback designer from California launched David Michael last fall. His immaculate understanding of garment construction has also lead him to tailoring gigs with the likes of Dior, Chloe, Alexander Wang, and John Varvatos. His fresh women’s collection has a “neo-romantic” energy reminiscent of his earlier line Endovanera (co-founded in LA circa 2007). This time around the pieces are truly made to grace a female figure. “New Jack City” was this season’s inspiration, a 1991 American crime film that took place in New York City. “Everything is made in Manhattan, so I can be close to the process.”

Tell Me More :

“I start the day off with E 3 Live, playing music and the hope to get out at some point during daylight.

My wardrobe consists mostly of pleated trousers I get when I go back to LA. And trench coats so that I have the creep vibe going on.

Everyday jewelry includes my gold teeth.

Current studio playlist sounds like Frank Zappa’s Muffin Man — thanks Clay Webster for all the heavy cruisin’ jams. Jeffertities Nile, Baby Vampire Cape, Ariel Pink, Greatest Hits, Zak Mering, Raw Thrills.

Home is cruisin’. Just got a car, now I can explore the east coast.”


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