Friday, 24 October 2014

Designer Spotlight // Jewellery By A Peace Treaty

In my last post I presented you with the beautiful new season jewellery collection from A Peace Treaty, one of the first designers we took on at Apache Rose, and a firm favourite of mine.  This week, I spent some time chatting to Farah Malik, one of the co-founders of A Peace Treaty, to find out a little more about what makes this incredible design duo tick. Here's what she had to say.....

Where do you draw your inspiration for designs from? We draw inspiration from our combined heritages; Dana is North African and Farah is Pakistani so these cultural motifs and production processes play a major part in informing our concepts and design. We first seek out a technique that is at risk of dying out or that isn't much seen in the luxury or contemporary fashion markets. We then design a collection around those techniques and seek out the most talented and skilled makers to hand make the designs (whether through textile techniques or metalsmithing processes). 

We are also inspired by historical (Tin Hinan the matriarchal Taureg Queen) and art movements (Bauhaus weaving workshop; fiber arts from the 1970's; pop and abstract art translated into special resin and enameling or stone cutting techniques) and native cultures and local villages' way of life (berber nomadic people's weaving of tents and blankets; bengali muslin weaving that dates back to the silk road and the trade ships of the Bay of Bengal). 

We also mine libraries in our favorite cities around the world and old historical archives, old markets and our own travel encounters for inspiration. We both hold 3 passports each and speak multiple languages. Farah has lived in eight countries; Dana in five.

How important is it to be ethically minded in today's fashion world?
We don't like to be preachy about buying things that are made with integrity or that honor the makers and provide dignified livelihoods. We personally like making all of our products in this way because we truly believe that trekking to the farthest corners of the earth to find the best talent to make our products is really about the more beautiful way of making these things.

We hope that the ethical way of working will become the default setting and an industry standard. Things really are more beautiful when the maker has put their lives, dreams and hopes into making it and feel rewarded. Things are also more beautiful when they are made to last and in a slow fashion way.

How did you get in to jewellery design?
We started the company making scarf collections and it was an organic progression that we launched into jewelry because we see ourselves as the perfect travel accessory brand. You can bring our scarves, caftans and jewelry with you on your travels while also simultaneously carrying the story of their origin with you so that you are traveling vicariously through the piece as well! Farah also left the human rights world to study ancient roman goldsmithing in Rome and that is what prompted the start of A Peace Treaty as she met Dana there at a wedding.

What does the future hold for A Peace Treaty? We'd like to become the go to brand for the cool girls traveling wardrobe. Our woven baby alpaca and cashmere scarves are oversize and blankety - they are perfect for the plane and for your urban and mountain adventures. Our caftans travel from the city to the sea and can we worn running around the streets of a metropolis as much as lounging poolside. And our jewelry is the perfect compliment to any uniform or classic monotone wardrobe of investment pieces in black, navy, white and grey (as we tend to pack that way for trips) as much as it spunks up prints and more colorful get ups.


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