Hi Orly, I am so happy to be speaking with you today! I find your collection to be extremely uplifting and imbued with such an intimate quality. How did your love affair with jewellery begin? and how did Orly Marcel come about?
Thank you so much Valerie, I’m really excited to be part of Ethos of London.
My love affair with Jewelry began when my Father Marcel found his way into the jewelry industry after moving to America from Israel. He and my mom owned a jewelry store where he began selling estate jewelry. I vividly remember going to the store as a young child on weekends and then working there as a teenager trying on all the jewelry! I think it was then I began having a connection to this world both from an emotional and creative perspective. Also before moving to the States, my father was a well-known Tel-Aviv-ian furniture designer/maker in Israel so I’ve always been exposed and had a deep appreciation for hand-crafted and highly-curated design.
I went on to study fine art and textile design at University and explored metalsmithing and jewelry making, whilst also becoming immersed into Eastern Spiritual Practices such as Ashtanga Yoga and Vipassana (Meditation) beginning my love affair with the healing arts.
Several years later, while working as a textile designer in NYC, my father was diagnosed with cancer. I immediately decided to move back to Miami to be with my family. This personal loss deepen my commitment to my spiritual Practice and I have since devoted my life to it, and became a certified yoga instructor and body worker.
Several years ago, while meditating, a vision appeared of beautiful malas made of rubies, emeralds, fine gold and meaningful pendants. I immediately knew I had to actualize my vision! After a time of research and design, I officially launched Orly Marcel as an homage to my father with the intention of creating spiritually inspired fine jewelry imbued with meaning.
Spirituality is very present in your designs, can you talk to us about your source of inspiration and design process?
I am inspired by my daily spiritual practice through the images and intentions showing up for me when I meditate and/or practice yoga. I normally have a notebook next to me allowing me to write or sketch what shows up. My design process begins with deeply-rooted inspiration from that which personally moves me. If I am going to create an object of purpose - it must be grounded in something which inspires me! While beautifully designed jewelry is aesthetically pleasing to me, my pieces must primarily shine spiritually, emanating important mantras, messages, teachings or energies.
Do you have a favourite artist? does music or visual art have an impact on your work?
I love Art and music!! It is a happy place without question. I find inspiration by so many artists and musicians over the years. However, my greatest muses for Orly Marcel are those which tap into my Heart Chakra… and I find it happens more often in sound than visual. Music inspires me greatly whether when practicing my Practice (DJ Drez, Krishna Das, …) or by listening to incredible artists such as Sting and Leonard Cohen. I find music taps into a current and energy beyond the terrestrial!
I myself have a huge fascination for colours and gemstones, and even though you make a subtle use of colors in your collection, I sense that color plays a big part in your jewellery design. Would you agree?
Without question. Yes, I love utilizing gemstones to combine rich colors, textures and patterns to create beautiful pieces of art. I love the way colored stones such as rubies or emeralds reflect against 18K yellow gold. Even more so though - I love the deeper meaning and spiritual qualities of gemstones naturally possess. Their distinct properties can be leveraged by the wearer for clear purposes. I strive to be intentional with the gemstones that I pick for each piece to harness, convey, or channel a distinct property such as patience, calm, compassion, or strength.
How would you define sustainability and ethics in jewellery and how do you personally incorporate it into your practice?
For me, sustainability and ethics in jewelry is minimizing any negative impact, and acting to positively impacting people and planet. I believe it’s important to know where your jewelry is made; insure it is ethically sourced; and that the source materials are conflict free.
Specific to Orly Marcel, we use only recycled gold in all our jewelry pieces and work with manufacturers using fair labor practices. Our Manufacturers are certified members of the Responsible Jewellery Council - the Global authority on responsible, sustainable and ethical practices in the Fine Jewelry industry.