We had the chance to meet with the designer of Baies d’Erelle, Erelle Bertolini, at the fashion shows of Mode Suisse in 2012 & 2013. The Swiss fashion designers Little Black Dress and Laend Phuengkit featured her jewellery during the shows. This charming young designer was always happy in the showroom and welcomed the visitors with a great smile.
Since Erelle has graduated with a Master in costume design in 2008, she has been making her own jewellery line. She presented this year in Zurich and Geneva already her 9th collection. She designs necklaces, chains, rings, bracelets and collars in brass, copper and silver. The stones she uses for her creations are semi-precious like the aquamarine, nacre, pink quartz, smoky quartz, moonstone or amethyst.
Depending on her mood and the seasons she comes up with different creations, some more casual, romantic, chic or retro than others. With some you may feel like a queen, a Nefertiti, while with others you may feel like a rock star.
For this year’s spring & summer collection she was inspired by the gods Ra, Helios, Képri, and Shamash and the mythology of the Inca Empire, Mesopotamia and Egypt. You will find heavy chains and some scarabs. On the other hand last year’s spring & summer collection had lots of feathers. In other collections she had some flower and heart designs.
Erelle is located in Lausanne. Her jewellery can be bought via her own web-shop, but also in sixteen designer shops in Switzerland, 5 places in France and one in the United States in San Francisco. On her website you can find old collections, but also exclusive models. She also works for private clients in her atelier.
Lately she has created a beautiful children’s jewellery line for the owners of the website Thalia & Bubu, Adriana Danos and Alexia Esteve. The two ladies based in Geneva are selling kids clothing online since 2011. For a long time they had been fan of Erelle’s jewellery line. She created for them unique pieces such as a cute necklace with a bird hanger or a whistle necklace. All models are completely made under the norms required for children’s jewellery.
On a personal note Erelle was born from an Italian father and a mother with French and Swiss origins. As both her parents loved Gaelic first names, they decided to call her Erelle, which sounds exactly like the French word “airelle” meaning cranberry. Her mother used to often call her “ma petite baie acidulée” (my little acid berry). From this came the name of Erelle’s jewellery label, Baies d’Erelle.
No matter what collection it may be, there is always something for every lady to feel good about with Baies d’Erelle’s creations!
Our interview with Baies d’Erelle:
Vivamost: This passion for jewellery, did you always have it?
Baies d’Erelle: No it came later after having been trying to make myself some jewellery as I could not find what I was looking for in shops.
Vivamost: When you were studying for your masters in design, did you know you wanted to design jewellery?
Baies d’Erelle: No, not at all. From the time I was little, I loved history and was attracted by costume. I wanted to be a costume designer. That is what I studied.
Vivamost: How does the inspiration come to you for a collection?
Baies d’Erelle: Everything which is around me and I care for inspires me such as music, films, books and people. My emotions influence me, resulting in my state of mind. I create each collection by drowning myself in a universe which shows well the feminine identity: soft (AH-12), solar (PE-13), lunar (AH-13) and I construct instinctively my themes with this in mind.
Vivamost: Do you work alone on the designs?
Baies d’Erelle: Yes. I create each collection. I do an intense research about my suppliers regarding the stones and my chains so that it corresponds to the universe I love. I create and I construct each piece and each theme.
Vivamost: To make a collection on average how much time does it take? You start a new one only when the last one is out? How does it work?
Baies d’Erelle: I work the same way as the Prèt à porter. I need about 2 to 3 months to create a collection. When done, I present it to shops which order what they need, which takes another 2 months. Then I prepare my production with the suppliers. When the production has started, I can start with a new collection and so on.
Vivamost: You are now teaming up with the fashion designer Laend Phuengkit, why him? How did you come up to team up with him for Mode Suisse in March?
Baies d’Erelle: My collection Fall/Winter 2013/14 is very rock. It is composed of metal spikes, large golden chains and some dark quartz. It is to honour the moon gods through many mythologies. I had to find a designer whose universe can carry my jewellery well, without making them disappear or in the contrary that my jewellery would take the upper hand. And what I liked about Laend Phuengkit it is his ethnic side, a bit off beat which he was able to bring in his compositions. And everything with a very young look and very fresh. With my jewellery the result gave a visual look quite pop and surprising and the least expected. I really liked this combination.
Vivamost: Your jewellery is still at the Little Black Dress shop?
Baies d’Erelle: Yes the collection Spring/Summer 2014 is on sale at Little Black Dress.
Vivamost: You are selling your collections at a shop in San Francisco, is that new?
Baies d’Erelle: No, it has been 2 1/2 half year. I had the chance to have been contacted by a Swiss expat in San Francisco who wanted to open a designer shop with some Swiss and European brands. I joined her project from the beginning.
Vivamost: Is fashion important to you?
Baies d’Erelle: Yes it is a part of my daily life. I love to follow the fashion designers who I care for and the way they change over time. So fashion inspires me every day.
Vivamost: Is there a typical portrait of woman who likes to wear your jewellery?
Baies d’Erelle: Yes I would say that women of all ages like my jewellery. My fine and intimate pieces will seduce those who are looking for a poetical identity while the big pieces will be more worn by women who have a rocky more off-beat side. I have also created a line for children, poetic and playful for Thalia & Bubu.
I think my jewellery is for the women who like to find their identity, a history, an emotion in the jewellery piece. From experience the women who wear my jewels sometimes did not wear any before discovering my label.
Vivamost: What is your favourite jewel in the last collection?
Baies d’Erelle: It is very difficult for me to pick one as one piece among one full collection. But if I had to choose one piece to carry daily in my summer collection, my favourite piece is surely the necklace in brass in two rows and pink quartz called “Helios, the blazing” (169 CHF in the shops).
I like this necklace for its rock side given by the mixture of a large chain bracelet with a thick rolled chain (which reflects well the light), everything softened with 3 drops of pink quartz, my preferred stone. It works well all day on a soft tee-shirt, in the evening on a silky dress with low-neck or even to enhance a casual outfit on a big summer pullover.