Heirlooms, part-exquisite part-imposing and mostly pulled out of lockers on family occasions, this is how one can sum up precious jewellery in India where weddings resonate with images of chokers, hair accessories and heavy jhumkas studded with diamonds. The traditional practices and investments made in terms of time and money when it comes to jewellery are still considered to be sacrosanct. But with evolving trends, there is a flicker of change in not just the palate of those who appreciate jewellery but the way it is shopped. For Ahmedabad-based Puja and Kunal Shah, life and business partners, it was this change that culminated into their new jewellery label Moi, launched in October this year. They wanted to transform the idea of precious jewellery with a sense of ease; where every piece is just a click away. The fact that each piece is an ode to minimalism and elegance, wearable and effortless, makes it a good choice for those looking for simple fare that they can wear to special occasions.
Think light, contemporary pieces crafted in gold and studded with cultured pearls, uncut diamonds, and kundan. There is an infusion of tradition with an undertone of modernity in every piece of Moi. While Puja and Kunal’s parent brand Aurus is all about customisation and creating wearable art through conscious research of old techniques, material exploration and more, Moi is its prêt subsidiary. Puja, who heads the creative front of the brand wanted to make jewellery shopping fun and wants to create a heartfelt experience.
Moi speaks to the global audience that is on a lookout for practical wardrobe-essentials and pieces that aren’t occasion-bound. Be it earrings crafted in rose quartz with enamel detailing, which is easy to be paired with crisp white shirts or matte gold bands chic enough to be paired with your LBD for a night out. Besides this, there are Hyderabadi chokers, maang tikkas, and tasseled pendants and earrings inspired by Hollywood icons such as Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn.
The introductory collection of the jewellery label comprises of 6 capsule collections. Each has been thoughtfully named to exude an earthy, authentic vibe. There are two curated edits ‘A Sunday Song’ and ‘A Day Out’, which categorise pieces based on one’s mood.
Puja Shah spoke to Lifestyle Asia on what makes her jewellery label Moi fit for millennials, its ethos, and more.
On Moi’s ethos
Moi goes for a more practical and intimate vibe. For Moi, we worked with our instincts and all our past experiences to come up with maximalist-minimal jewellery pieces. My work has always been a celebration of the past and my influences range from architecture, art to heritage jewellery. I always surround myself with great literature on historical jewellery, art, and objects – and my background in working with the MET and Brooklyn Museum of Art helps me channel my learnings into a creative process. I am a purist and I believe that shows in my work; working closely with the karigars and trying my hands at age-old techniques while keeping the soul of the design intact is goal for each piece.
On techniques and materials that make Moi unique
With our new jewellery label Moi, we have tried infusing different styles together – unusual cuts in gemstones, use of silver, and white gold. But our core principle has been to not polish anything to look different than its natural colour. So, no silver in gold polish coming your way. I immersed myself deeply into the lifestyle of my muse and came up with pieces that I think, comprise of any discerning woman’s wardrobe staples – your classics. I have experimented with stone inlay and different coloured natural diamonds.
On Moi’s ultimate muse
Our muse is a discerning, modern woman who looks comfort, convenience, and an authentic story.
On her favorite hero pieces
Some of my favourite pieces are The Revival Necklace, the Nur choker, our pendants, and tassels. All our collections are a result of our curated efforts. Each piece is there for a reason and is thoughtfully designed. It would be really difficult to pick hero pieces – if I were to do so – there were certain pieces that we see our muses and clients style so differently. They’re really versatile and that serves my intentions.
On how millennials should shop for jewellery
I believe that millennials really emphasize on the back story, authenticity, and transparency of a brand as much as on the final product; they value the process, time and product equally. So, my only tip to them would be to buy pieces that speak to them and hold the true sense of value.