Pyrite and Chains: We Visit Biko Jewelry’s Toronto Studio

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Pyrite and Chains: We Visit Biko Jewelry’s Toronto Studio
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Last week, I had the pleasure of stopping by designer Corrine Anestopoulos‘ light-filled attic studio in downtown Toronto to check out the Fall collection for Biko, her seven-year-old jewelry line. A graduate of the New Media Image Arts program at Ryerson University (also my alma matter), Corrine fell into jewelry-making after falling in love with a pair of earrings on a friend’s fashion shoot. It was a serendipitous moment, which led to the creation of her vintage-inspired (but thoroughly modern) jewelry line.

Read an edited version of our conversation below, and click through to see my photos of Corrine’s workspace, inspiration board and jewelry — all of which you’re sure to fall in love with!

Tell us about your jewelry line.

My new tag line is “Modern Nostalgia,” so I would say it is definitely about storytelling, the use of pieces that have a history. I like to say a little bit of old, a little bit of new and always something with a twist.

Is there a signature piece or has the line evolved a lot in the past seven years?

There have been signature pieces throughout the years. One of my favorite signature pieces is the kaleidoscope [necklace]…a miniature functioning kaleidoscope, a vintage refurbished piece. I was traveling in London, England and came across this amazing little thing and went on a hunt to find someone who could wholesale these…so the original is a vintage refurbished piece and now it’s a vintage reproduction. That piece has been kept in the collection and I wear it as proudly now as I did on Day 1.

What were you inspired by when designing your Fall collection?

The Fall collection was a lot darker than my Spring one.

What was new this season?

I used some more rocks [such as Pyrite, or fool’s gold]…and for the first time I used raw stones and leather as well. I always love to use hardware from hardware stores, and a new thing for me is the use of African brass beads.

Obviously your travels inspired your collection quite a bit. Where are you going next?

New York always inspires me — any excuse to go to New York.!A lot of my suppliers are based in New York too, so I’ll probably be going there next. And Paris as well in the spring, hopefully.

You can find Biko jewelry on the official website, and at stores such as Bond 07 in New York and the Drake General Store in Toronto, Canada.

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Corrine in her studio.

Inspirational photos on the wall.

An organized storage system for all the hardware used!

Chains, chains, chains.

Jewelry on a mannequin.

A great tote, and hook on the studio wall!

More jewels on a judy form.

Biko Fishscale bracelet, $95, at Biko

Biko Modern Friendship bracelet, $85, at Biko

Biko Zora necklace, $155, at Biko

Biko Kaleidoscope necklace, $149, at Biko

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