05 Aug 2020
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Changing The Way Diamonds are Worn
Valerie Messika
By: Diamond World News Service
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Jul 1 2019 12:37PM
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Reference: 22336  

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Minimalist yet bold, edgy yet eye-catching, contemporary yet classy – these are all characteristics that define Messika. It’s founder Valerie Messika has democratised diamonds and also made them ‘cool’ for young women who prefer wearing jewellery that is not over-the-top but at the same time stylish. From Cardi B to Beyoncé and Lady Gaga, powerful women tend to go for Messika’s creations and Diamond World catches up with Valerie to understand the underlying feminist ethos that makes her brand the most-coveted

Edgy, contemporary and minimalistic are some of the adjectives that aptly describe Parisian jewellery brand Messika. Born into the trade, founder Valerie Messika knew that she was meant for the sparkling world of diamonds from a very young age. Her father, Andre Messika, a well known French diamond trader introduced her to this precious stone, giving her an invaluable predisposition to the art. With her keen eye for detail and modern design aesthetic, Valerie was able to build a coveted brand that rules the runways and the red carpets.

An inevitable foray into diamonds
Valerie’s childhood was rich with memories of her father’s passion for diamonds. She learned the ABC’s or more aptly 4C’s of the trade, thanks to her family’s vast knowledge about the industry. Armed with a degree in communication, she proceeded to join the marketing and communication division of Chanel Jewellery. However, she soon realized that her role as a marketing executive did not align with her career ambitions. She then spent five years under her father’s guidance where she learnt the tricks of the trade. “In the same way that we choose our future partner with the heart, we choose a diamond for the emotion that it creates in us” was her father’s timeless advice that has been her guiding light through this journey.

While working alongside her father, Valerie couldn’t help but feel like something was missing. She longed for a creative outlet where she could set her imagination free and give a tangible conclusion to the ideas running in her head. Turning to jewellery designing was the clear next step. “I started to create my own diamond jewellery pieces. At the beginning, it was just for myself. Some of my girlfriends liked my first creations a lot and insisted that I create more jewellery for them as well. This is how the journey began,” says Valerie. With the gentle encouragement and support of her peers, she was ready to launch her own line: Messika.

With an indisputable love for the Queen of gemtones, most of Messika’s jewellery is crafted using the finest of diamonds. The brand tries to keep the identity of the stone intact and aims to showcase its stunning brilliance through imaginative designs. Valerie allows her ideas to flow until she creates something substantial. Expanding on this she says, “I deliberately start all my creations with a blank page as opposed to the prestigious houses of Place Vendôme that have centuries of rich archives of distinct styles.” She admits that this jump into the void has helped her search the depths of her creativity without boundaries.

Messika’s journey into the creation of a luxury brand has had its own share of roadblocks. Due to the subjective nature of creativity, it becomes challenging for the designer to accurately transcribe her ideas into action and procure the result she had originally envisioned. One of the USPs of the brand is its exceptional designs and in order to bring these quirky and unconventional ideas to life, special cut diamonds such as emerald, pear, and triangle are required. These stones are not easily available and are sourced from different parts of the world.

The millennial generation has a very different perception of diamonds as opposed to previous generations. Valerie reveals, “In 2013 when I founded Messika, there was a real fear and apprehension around diamonds and most women only really wore the stone for their engagement ring or for very traditional evening wear.” A lot of women also thought of it as a stone to wear when they were ‘older’, as they had this notion that it aged them. “I really wanted to change this idea around diamonds and break down any sort of age or style barriers that had been put up for centuries.”

The brand has made impressive strides in a short span of time. With her pieces being worn by famous celebrities to the opening of the brand’s flagship store in Paris, Valerie shares, “One of my greatest accomplishments was the birth of my 2 daughters. My second daughter was born the same day of the opening of my first boutique: it was a big achievement for the brand and the beginning of a new step. After nearly ten years of success and the opening of more than 250 stores in 50 countries; we had to have our own flagship boutique. This opening marked a huge step for our House.”

On Messika’s future, Valerie comments, “Everything is going so fast for Messika. I feel like I am living in a dream! I hope Messika will continue to evolve, we are still a young brand and there are so many things to do. For the future I know for sure that I want to keep working on my High Jewelry collections. And my ultimate dream would be to create a beautiful jewellery watch. I’m a big fan of watches and I would love to add a Messika Joaillerie diamond watch to my collection.”

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