Earlier this month, we finally got a chance to sit down with Lee Chan, our Chief Fashion & Design Advisor, and interviewed her on the design elements and inspiration behind the Socialite Collection. We compiled the best of her thoughts in Q&A form. Enjoy!
Q: Where and how did you start the design process for the Socialite Collection?
A: We first started out with the basics by fully understanding who the user is, what she truly wants, and what she would gravitate towards in terms of aesthetics, form, and value. Wearing jewelry is a form of self-expression. It can be considered a rather sensual experience because of how close it touches the skin. Bearing this concept in mind, we approached the design process with a strong emphasis on how it would feel to wear the bracelet. Would it be comfortable and versatile enough to wear all day long? Could we create a universal fit that would accommodate the curvature of all wrists? Such an intimate and tactile approach involved a number of steps, including hand sketching, wax casting, 3D printing, and steel mold injection. It was certainly a grueling process of trial and error… we cycled through several iterations before settling on the perfect designs that embodied the right elements of comfort and sophistication.
Q: What inspired the designs of the bracelets?
A: The inspiration for the Socialite Collection spanned from both history and geometric forms. Our infatuation with Italian links and interlocking geometries served as the ultimate foundation for the Calder. We incorporated fun and tasteful elements of symmetry so that the bracelet looks stunning from virtually every angle. The connected links represent unity between beauty and technology, bringing the best of both worlds together into one harmonious piece. The design was inspired to represent community, passion, and balance. The Calder has the most unique geometric form out of the collection. The Duchess was created out of a modern translation of traditional insignia jewelry. There is a long history associated with the insignia ring, often used as a personal signature for rulers & leaders and/or a symbol of family heritage. We were interested in playing around with this concept and eventually translated the ring design into a bracelet. The rectangular flat top served as the perfect face to expose a pop of color. The Duchess serves as a token of remembrance, symbolizing traditional values of love, strength, and promise. This style is perfect for those who seek a blend of modern and traditional detail. And finally, for the Kingston, we reimagined the WiseWear logo, with the intent to symbolize the company’s philosophy of creating beautiful things with true purpose. The design is rather modern and sleek, with the subtlest of details. If you look at the bracelet from a side angle, you will see a deep “W” indentation that replicates the WiseWear logo. It’s also a faint representation of a heartbeat, which symbolizes the generosity of life and wellness. The metal pearls add some texture to its smooth metallic surface, adding a touch of contemporary elegance.
Original design sketch of the Calder
Original design sketch of the Duchess
Original design sketch of the Kingston
Q: Were there any specific design features and requirements that you had to conceptualize around? Any specific objectives you were trying to achieve?
A: We knew that the beauty of the technology could only be concealed and packaged into a beautiful accessory. Therefore, our goal was to create something that was truly beautiful, versatile, comfortable, and luxurious – something that could instantly make a woman feel confident from the moment she put it on. We wanted to design pieces that would be fitting for all kinds of lifestyles and spent a lot of time considering how and when the bracelet would be worn throughout the day. I believe the Socialite Collection has a strong degree of versatility, in the sense that you can wear it to the office, to your son’s soccer game, to a girls’ night out, or to a fancy date night.
Q: Describe how the woman comes into play.
A: I truly believe that when a woman finds a piece of jewelry, it’s an emotional connection with the beauty of the design and how the jewelry makes her feel. We tuned into those feelings throughout the design process and wanted to stay true to the customer’s desire of identifying with something that’s truly wearable. We wanted her to see the collection and immediately imagine herself wearing it in a variety of settings.
Q: How do you feel about the integration of fashion and technology? Where do you see it going?
A: The integration of fashion and technology, aka “fashionology”, is incredibly important because the world needs more products that wear and function well. Offering wearable products that function well, but lack in the comfort and style department quickly defeats the purpose. Once something is worn on the body, it becomes an object of fashion. The language of fashion is one of identity and value; and it’s something that technology is now learning to speak. Although technology may already be fully integrated in the consumer’s everyday life, I am confident that it will become more seamless, especially with a growing focus in fashion and design. The marketplace for fashion-first wearables is bound to skyrocket in the next few years. I look forward to seeing how engineers and designers will collaborate and innovate.
Q: What’s your favorite part about the Socialite Collection?
A: That’s a difficult question to answer… there are many aspects to appreciate. I love that these bracelets combine the best of technology and style. It’s unlike anything else I’ve seen in the market. It’s a true representation of both beauty and brains, which is typically deemed unattainable. Socialite defies those odds and empowers women to have it all. I also love the versatility of the collection, and the fact that all bracelets are interchangeable with one another. Playing on the metaphorical expression, the formation of the bracelet is actually made up of two components – the BEAUTY and the BRAIN. Users have the ability to mix and match different styles with the simple detachment of the top and bottom halves. The bottom half is called the BRAIN, which houses the advanced sensing technology. The top half is called the BEAUTY and is purely jewelry with no technical components. Women have the choice to buy multiple BEAUTYs and can assemble them to the BRAIN in no time with a small screwdriver.