LONDON — Palladium Alliance International is teaming with Dame Vivienne Westwood to launch a collection of jewelry inspired by nature.
This story first appeared in the January 18, 2011 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The limited edition “Get a Life” Palladium Collection will make its debut at London Fashion Week in February, and the designs will be sold exclusively at Westwood’s boutiques in London and Los Angeles starting in the spring, PAI told WWD.
Palladium is a precious metal that comes from the same family as platinum, and is known for its natural whiteness and light weight. Generally, palladium costs less than platinum, although the prices for both metals are set to rise over the next five to 10 years as shortages increase, according to financial analysts.
The pieces in the collection are inspired by nature and by pagan symbols such as the acorn, the oak tree and the heart. The collection will feature pendants, bracelets, earrings and rings for men and women. Prices will range from 275 pounds to 550 pounds, or $435 to $869 at current exchange. Clients will also be able to commission bespoke pieces.
Westwood said she took on the project to highlight her concern for the environment. “‘Get a Life’ is about how we stop climate change and therefore preserve life for the next generation while at that same time get a better life,” the iconoclastic designer said. “My focus at the moment is what one person can do. Stop climate change. Save the planet. The acorn is symbolic of the rainforest, its importance, and how it is our first duty to save it.”
PAI underlined the sustainable, environmentally friendly aspects of palladium: It is naturally white, maintains its color over time, and is lightweight and durable.
John Stark, chairman of PAI, said the organization picked Westwood because of “her continued exploration and reinterpretation of history, combined with a tireless individualism. Her designs will complement our metal,” he said.
PAI is also moving forward on other fronts. In London, Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design has created a design competition among its jewelry students to create a two-piece set of jewelry. The five most inspirational designs will be produced, in a limited edition, using palladium, and the winner will be revealed in March.
In the U.S., students from Fashion Institute of Technology’s jewelry design program will collaborate with fashion and lifestyle bloggers to create a bespoke collection of palladium jewelry that will be unveiled in the spring.