Step inside Yunus & Eliza’s fantasy world to the mystical place where sci-fi minimalism clashes with heroic portraiture
If you take a trip inside the creative minds of jewellery designers Yunus & Eliza, you’ll arrive in a mystical place where sci-fi minimalism clashes with heroic portraiture, in a subversive and fantastical mix of hand-made designs. Inspired by the “monumentality and rebellion of thought,” the duo explain, that their vision is moulded around “Distilling the feeling found in huge sculptures into something that can be worn.”
Exploring the way structure interacts with the body, their signature pieces include super size rings the eye can’t help but notice, tough but with a resilient beauty. “They are light, comfortable and lie low on the skin, in a way you feel like a cyborg wearing one, it is almost part of you,” says Yunus.
With a theatrical and gothic vocabulary, their designs unfold stories which invite you into a world of Goddesses, Dali Puppets and Poseidon. “It could be a classical sculpture, or a story you catch a distant glimpse of in your memory,” says Eliza. “An image from an Ayn Rand novel, a surreal dream, futurist architecture – it all comes out in the mix.”
Their bespoke metal designs come to life via a symbiosis of their signature vision and aesthetic. “Yunus is more patient and fascinated by beauty,” says Eliza. “I am interested in tensions and darker content. We balance and challenge each other”.
Both hailing from an artistic background, their designs have earned them critical acclaim including the BFC / ELLE Talent Launch Pad award, Designer of the Year at London Jewellery Week and LFW’s Rock Vault sponsorship for the past 4 seasons. Their designs have been worn by everyone from Helena Christensen to Coco Sumner and they’ve worked with leading costume designers including Sandy Powell and Joanna Johnston. Hollywood is hot on their tails with a recent showcase at Stephen Webster’s LA boutique. “I would say it works well there” Yunus explains. “It’s rebellious and unashamed – the product is a good fit.”
A bronze and leather cape collaboration with designer Rob Goodwin also adorned the shoulders of Madonna on her 2013 Harper’s Bazaar US cover – although the duo are keen to play down their rising status and celebrity connections. “We kind of don’t care who wears our pieces,” says Eliza. “It’s more about the process, the artistry and the product. We love to see things worn, but really by anybody who’s feeling it. Our clients range from young hipsters who have saved up, to eccentric geriatrics and everything in between, what unites them is the attraction to epic-ness!”
When I push them to choose their ultimate celebrity collaboration though, they both take no time in answering, “Prince. The guy is a genius!”.
The pair plan to open an atelier in the future, but for the meantime they’re absorbed in a top-secret costume collaboration and planning a romantic liaison befitting of their fantasy world – they’re getting hitched this Summer – and yes, they’ll be wearing Yunus & Eliza originals.