Brooke Persich, 24 // Jewellery designer
Now, you know I’ve got a thing for rings. And skulls. Hellz, there was even a SKULL RING at the top of my Christmas wish-list last year.
Australian designer Brooke Persich created her jewellery label of the same name in February 2012, inspired by her own love of crystals and antique gems. She uses semi-precious stones to create bold statement pieces with the aim of ‘returning sacredness and grandeur to contemporary fashion jewellery’.
With a clear aethesthic inspired by the beautiful and mythical, her crystal skull rings have already become her trademark piece and she has a whole host of edgy celebrity fans like Rita Ora, Kimbra, Florence Welsh and Cara Delevingne. How cool?
Yup. Brooke Persich, we sure do want your joooooo-oooobbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbb!
When people ask you what you do for a living, what do you say?
I’d probably say I am in fashion/design or say I have a jewellery label, I get really shy talking about it or what I do.
Did you always want to be a jewellery designer? What was Plan B?
I didn’t know what I wanted to be, to be honest it just sort of happened by working really hard at something I was completely engrossed in. I firmly believe that success is working hard. I think I purposely never gave myself a Plan B, I don’t want to know there’s an option to fall back on, it was all or nothing, so I focused purely on how to make the label work.
So, you were born in Australia. But moved to London – with an eye on new York, right?
I was born in Australia yes, I grew up in the beautiful but quiet town of Perth. I started traveling and seeing Europe and USA in my teenager years and from then I realised I wanted to be apart of that. I love big cities, I love how they develop and challenges you as a person. I love the diversity and variety of people you get to experience. I like jumping around, I get bored easily so I constantly seek new stimulating places and experiences. I am currently in love with New York and am working to hopefully set up a studio there this year. It’s in the works!
Do you have a fashion background?
I have always loved and been involved in fashion and I think it’s a really great platform to bring together a lot of other creative disciplines such as photography, film and design. I have worked for designers and fashion magazines before realizing I wanted to start something of my own.
Where do you get your design inspo from?
Everything, my design influences are really diverse. To design I will get into a particular mood or atmosphere by listening to certain music or reading, so I may start with looking at some illustrations by some of my favorite artists such as Vania Zouravliov, Aubrey Beardsley or Harry Clarke.
Music I love to listen to includes Sigur Ros, James Blake, Coco Rosie anything easy-listening but ambient and beautiful. Once I get into that space, I can usually start putting together a mood board from which the collection develops.
Why crystals? Why skulls? What’s next?
I love crystals. I used to rummage the new age stores for them. I used to be really interested in their metaphysical properties and purposes. I like to believe in a little bit of magic, I think it’s healthy and good for you. I started making jewellery because I wanted to wear some of my favorite crystals (which includes clear quartz, my birthstone).
I have always been intrigued by skulls and darker things since I was a teenager. The label was perfect timing, turns out that everyone was obviously feeling the same thing because suddenly there was a huge burst of crystals and skulls in fashion – I think that’s great! I want to keep working with crystals in new forms, a lot of my crystals I use are cut and shaped, I would love to start working with gemstones in their natural, raw form. I want to juxtapose this natural, asymmetrical form with strong geometric design.
What do you know now that you wish you knew in the formative years of your career?
I think I learnt what I needed to and acted with the best intention and knowledge I had at each stage. If anything I wish I believed in myself more earlier on, it’s the fearlessness that pushes you to take opportunities that in hindsight you realised you backed away from.
Career highlight so far?
I have so many. I love working on the shoots and campaigns. I get the most joy out of sharing the experience with other people. I love watching people work and working in a team. I am always blown away by the support I am given by my stockists such as Harvey Nichols and some of my favorite musicians such as Kimbra and Rita Ora who wear my stuff.
How do you spend your time when you’re not designing jewellery?
I like spending time with my friends or loved ones. I love reading books and hanging out in coffee shops. I write a lot, I draw or photograph or make music. I love to go to markets and finding weird things to buy myself or my friends. I love to eat so I love going to the food markets on the weekend such as Broadway markets in London or Smorgasbord in Brooklyn on a Saturday – that place is heaven.
Do you have any tattoos?
I don’t have any tattoos no! I keep thinking about getting one but I change my mind too much. I don’t really know why but lately I have really wanted to get two circles on either wrist. Maybe I will have them by the time this is published…
Cheese, chocolate or chips?
This is the most difficult question in the whole interview… I’d have to say chips! They have been my favorite food since I can remember. When I was about five or six my mom took me to the doctor because I would refuse to eat anything but chips and Vegemite* sandwiches. I’m still alive so I guess it wasn’t too bad.
*Vegemite is a black yeast based Australian spread that unfortunately no one outside of Australia likes…
Where did all the unicorns go?
I ask myself the same question every time I watch Fantasia. If I knew I’d be there. ?100%
Song that best describes your life?
I guess ‘I Feel Just Like A Child’ by Devendra Banhart. It’s just a fun song. I know first-hand life can be heavy but at the end of the day I think it’s important to never lose your childlike bewilderment with the world.
What would you like to do before you die?
When I really think about it… it’s nothing ambitious or any huge sentiment or legacy. I just want to be authentically me which I think is the hardest thing to do.