What's in my name: an interview with jewelry designer Delphine Delettre-Fendi
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Jewelry designer Delphine Delettre Fendi lives and works on the verge of fashion and art.

Cotton shirt, jersey bodysuit, all – Fendi; Earring 360, 18k Gold, Natural Pearl, Delfina Delettrez

The designer of outlandish talisman decorations Dellettre-Fendi Dolphins have a rule. She herself – Delettre-Fendi, but her brand of jewelry called Delfina Delettrez. Was the rejection of the famous family name an act of rebellion? At first, the designer leaves the answer. It is generally not easy to take by surprise. Dolphins have small stature and elegant build – from the back it may seem like a teenager in front of you. But in life she looks wiser and older than her 32 years: there is a special concentration in the eyes of dark eyes, and in speech there are long, ringing pauses, which mean almost more than words.

Silk organza dress, jersey bodysuit, all – Fendi; Detaille Unqiue choker, Domino Dots ring, 18k white gold, white and black diamonds, all – Delfina Delettrez

Surely the Dolphin will not like it if they call her an aristocrat, but she is a bright representative of the Italian aristocracy. At least in the fashion industry. The heiress of the Fendi family, the daughter of creative director of the House of Sylvia Venturini Fendi and jewelry designer Bernard Delettre, she is flesh of great Roman style. Togo, which is inscribed in the history of fashion in two mirror letters FF. Delphine is happy to talk about her childhood, in which the parallel realities mixed up – Rome, with its colossal history and wasteful baroque, and the cheerful Rio de Janeiro, where she lived with her mother as a child. “We, the Romans, are spoiled by beauty,” explains Delettre. – Each layer of history here is brought to aesthetic perfection. Rio is a completely different world: the acidic colors of nature, huge insects everywhere. There I was completely left to myself. The only thing that was required of me was not to return home before sunset. ”

Silk Blouse, Chloé, vintage; Eye Kiss You necklace, 18k white gold, diamonds, rubies, Australian pearls, Delfina Delettrez

Delettre-Fendi's jewelry collections are mixed up on myth, religion, and the game of secret meanings. Everything is not what it seems: natural pearls are balanced at the ends of gold earrings and bracelets, and the rings are arranged to hide the bearing structure on the back of the palm: yellow diamonds and blood rubies line up on the “parade of the planets” along the phalanges of the fingers. Many in her work from the surrealists and the symbolists – the casts of the nose and lips resemble melted objects from the paintings of Salvador Dali. Delettre jewelery lives its own life: bracelets tenaciously “grab” by the wrists, and pendants amulets in the shape of the human eye look around on the sides – at the same time looking after the owner.

"During pregnancy, I tried to get rid of the fear of death with talismans"

The path of Delettre in jewelry design began 13 years ago with a charm ring. “During the first pregnancy, I experienced a strong fear of death – and tried to get rid of him with the help of talismans,” says Delphina. – We have a tradition in our family: to give jewels to a newborn. I wanted to do something special for my daughter — an ornament that would embody my dreams and fears. ” Inspired by the pregnancy and the birth of the first child, Delphine created the Delfina Delettrez debut collection at the age of 19 – and presented it in Paris soon after the birth.

Silk Blouse, Chloé, vintage; woolen monastic dress, leather shoes, nylon panty hoses, everything - Fendi
Silk Blouse, Chloé, vintage; woolen monastic dress, leather shoes, nylon panty hoses, everything - Fendi
Silk Blouse, Chloé, vintage; woolen monastic dress, leather shoes, nylon panty hoses, everything - Fendi
Silk Blouse, Chloé, vintage; woolen monastic dress, leather shoes, nylon panty hoses, everything - Fendi


At the beginning of the journey, Delettre wanted to prove to the world that she could stand firmly on her feet, so she refused the name of Fendi. The most severe critics were not the buyers and not even the press, but the Roman masters, to whom Delphine came to realize her ideas. “I came to their world very young, without any experience with metals and stones,” she recalls. “Jewelery is practically a sect: to become part of it, you have to show what you are capable of.”

"Jewelry becomes a monument of time: they contain molecules of eternity"

A new approach to creating jewelry (instead of family rings – ring-jaws with pearls and diamonds, “pierced” piercing earrings) and their demonstration (in 2013, Delettre presented the collection on levitating plates) provided her with a reputation as one of the main innovators of the industry. In 2009, the Parisian Museum of Decorative Arts in the Louvre included two Delfina Delettrez products in the permanent collection. “The jewelry contains the molecules of eternity,” the designer argues esoterically. – They become monuments of time and can travel through generations. These products are not subject to decay and decomposition, so I perceive them as works of art. "

Flannel shirt, Fendi; Tourbillon bracelet, silver plated with yellow gold, Two in One cuff earring, 18k yellow and white gold, white diamonds, all – Delfina Delettrez

Delphine considers herself an animist – she believes in spirits and the animacy of the forces of nature. But he admits that aesthetics of Catholicism is close to her: “I like to think that death has a downside,” she explains. – If the end is inevitable, then we should try to value life even more and surround ourselves with beauty. The family taught me that. ”

Once in her youth, Delphine began to collect elements of Catholic vestments – and she still wears monastic dresses fitted to her body: "In Rome, there is no escape from religious motives: here churches meet at every corner." Even her house, located on the premises of a former brick factory, rests on a small church. In this house, Dolphin, together with her partner, artist Niko Vaschellari, brings up two twins. Part of the furniture was bought by her at the monastery auctions.

Drops necklace, 18k yellow gold, natural pearl, white diamonds, Delfina Delettrez

The designer is not afraid of the past – yes, the past from her jewelry and does not blow. “I am a jeweler of my generation,” explains Delphine, “therefore I work with plots and codes that are relevant today. I'm interested in irony and punk, tribalism and surrealism. Speaking of surrealism, I mean the language of dreams and the ghostly sense of boundaries that you experience in a dream. So in design: for me there are no restrictions. Everything is equally possible, everything can live and mix with everything, sometimes reaching the point of absurdity. ”

Cotton shirt, jersey bodysuit, all – Fendi; Faceted brooch, 18k yellow gold, agate, black diamonds, Two in One cuff earring, 18k yellow and white gold, white diamonds, all – Delfina Delettrez

The creative freedom of Delettre-Fendi owes education. She says that she grew up "in milk and fashion": watching the relatives and family environment, she comprehended the secrets of the future craft from an early age. “I remember how my mother dressed me in luxurious monochrome outfits — I still love these combinations. I was fascinated by the work scenes – the way my mother prepared the collections and how Karl Lagerfeld made the sketches. They seemed to me to be real alchemists – I was always amazed that you could feel so thin and be ahead of your time. This is about what I am trying to repeat – not only in fashion, but in the design of jewelry. ”

Text: Venya Brykalin

Photo: Luca Anzalone

Hairstyles: Alessandro Rocchi

Makeup: Charlotte Hardy

Location: Villa Laetitia

See also:

High sewing: 4 new collections of jewelry brands

Large earrings – the main purchase of spring

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