I think the piece of fluoro-spiked, skull-bedazzled, pop culture delight above deserves a ‘Hell yeah!’ At the very least, a meaningful gasp. Which is exactly what I did when I saw it for the first time.
These glorious chunky mashups are the product of Fenton, an American jewellery house started by designer Dana Lorenz in 2006. With two painting behind her, Dana entered the fashion industry, first working for Gucci and then Donna Karan. Her pieces were soon featured in American Vogue, and shortly after that, Fenton began to be stocked at major high end retailers like Barneys, Colette and Liberty.
The Fenton website describes the collection as:
‘An elaborate mix of unexpected elements. The aesthetic inspires fantasy, and is always derived from a strong pop culture reference and point of view. The pieces are strong statements and each are little worlds all their own.’
I couldn’t have put it better myself. I am always a sucker for the mixing of pop culture with the classic. The idea of juxtaposing something quite lowbrow like a bubblegummy skull with something typically highbrow like a strand of pearls and some über yuppie gold chain is almos utopian to me. I delight in the weird mishmash of cultural references – Sloane rangers, punk girls and Tiffany’s princesses, all in one. Yeah!
It’s no wonder Dana has collaborated with the likes of Proenza Schouler and Thakoon on their runway collections, and worked with retailers like Opening Ceremony and J.Crew on capsule collections.
I adore every piece in her Summer 2011 collection. Skulls, gilded feathers, intermingled chains, fluoro spikes and tufts of lush fur make for a totemic mix that I find quite hypnotic. Which is, perhaps, the point. Each piece is like its own pagan pop culture charm.