This Month we bring you Almaz. Initially designed in 2008, the collection has been redesigned and redefined over the years. 10 years on we retrace and recreate Dinny’s personal favourite collection and the highly emotive journey it takes her on. Almaz originates from her sketchbook at a time when she was seeking strength and self-belief, as she searched – she found meaning in her three-dimensional creations. “I utterly lost myself in the process and it proved good healing.”
These asymmetric pieces are designed to be worn by women seeking empowerment, confidence and a desire to pursue their personal dreams. Serving us all with a reminder of the tougher but more formative times in our lives, Almaz is designed for those that resonate with Dinny’s dedication to her business, her designs and her overwhelming desire to succeed against the odds.
Read the exclusive interview with Dinny below.
Why is this collection called Almaz?
Almaz is perhaps the collection closest to my heart because the process of designing it got me through a very hard time.
It was one of those times – many of us experience – when life throws up huge challenges and you honestly wonder how on earth you’ll get through it.
I thought to myself: what is indestructible and beautiful at the same time and of course, diamonds came to mind. But there’s so much more to diamonds than simply the stone. The geometric diamond shape is dynamic and strong and enduring – everything I needed to feel at this time.
The collection is solid sterling silver because I needed to explore meaning through shape with limitless abandonment, as I designed. You only need to take a close look at ancient mosaics to realise just how beautifully decorative diamond shapes can be. I remember repeatedly sketching the shape in all sorts of forms over and over again before making it three-dimensional and adding a little curve here and there. I utterly lost myself in the process and it proved good healing.
The name Almaz comes from an Ancient word meaning diamond. Perfectly fitting at that time, it still resonates with me. It is also a girl’s name and a wonderful song by Randy Crawford.
I love the sound of the word Almaz. Even saying the word makes me feel stronger and more confident.
And why have you redesigned a number of the pieces in this collection?
I’ve always loved refreshing my collections so that they feel as if they’re constantly living and evolving. And we’ve noticed how some of our customers – who have worn our jewellery for years – enjoy building on their favourite pieces, adding something new but also with a common theme. Occasionally, though, a collection such as Almaz will be redesigned from scratch. The meaning remains but the collection is totally reinvented.
I will never run out of ideas for that beautiful diamond shape.
Tell us more about the emotion behind these pieces?
Creativity can support you through sadness or loss and even kick start the healing process. Often the shape may become a talisman and the magical properties take effect as I draw.
For me, Almaz is a lucky collection and I hope to pass this onto others.
When you look at the collection today, how do you feel?
That I could carry on designing pieces for the Almaz collection for a lot longer, in fact forever. It’s mine but I will share it with you!
Do you find that the more challenging times are, the more creative you feel?
Yes, one can hide by being creative. Most creative people are covering up an inner hurt or sensitivity. I try to make the world a happier place in my tiny way by giving people tiny bits of happiness.
Which one piece of Almaz would you single out as key for you?
From the new collection, I’m choosing a pair of Almaz rings for my middle finger. For me, this finger symbolizes balance and responsibility and it’s also about putting your hand up and being counted. We all need to take responsibility for our actions, while also remaining balanced and calm in a crazy world.
Is designing jewellery a type of escapism for you?
I can forget about some things while I am being creative so ‘yes’
How does wearing jewellery tie in with how we feel about ourselves?
Jewellery can bring about a little light on a rainy day. It can also be alluring, sentimental, and exuberant.
What advice would you give a younger version of yourself?
Slow down. Actually I still need the same advice. There’s still so much I want to achieve…
Who would you love to see wearing this collection?
Everyone with an edge – because that means they are drawn to and understand the shape while also feeling its love and strength.
What would you pair/layer the Almaz key pieces with?
Almaz works beautifully with little precious gemstone pieces from the Shuga collection.