Thursday, March 25, 2010


One of the most significant and impressive structures in Iran is the Falak-ol-Aflak Castle.

At over 1,000 years old, the fortress sits atop a hill alongside the Khoramabad River and is equipped with a natural dehumidifier system. Iran is also the home of featured jewelry designer Iradj Moini.

Based on my research vintage jewelry dates back 170 years to the reign of Queen Victoria who wore baubles of vulcanite, bog oak, and ebonite while mourning the death of her husband Albert.

Once the Industrial Revolution swept over England, however, the ornate style of jewelry was mass-produced for those who were not aristocrats or royalty.

A former architect, and jewelry designer for fashion connoisseur Oscar de la Renta, Moini takes pointed inspiration from the jewelry of the vintage eras, particularly the Art Nouveau (1895 - 1915) Art Deco (1915 - 1935), and Retro (1935 - 1960) eras. However, he does not collect pieces from these eras he creates them.

Similar to Nate Waxman (USA), Moini captures the eras' bold arrangements, stone clusters, and even the subtle distressed quality with uncanny precision.

With a little over two decades immersed in jewelry design, he combines materials such as quartz, turquoise, citrine, pearl, aventurine, emerald, and lapis lazuli creating jewelry that is brazen, over-the-top with an air of gutsy bravado befitting the larger-than-life personas of actors like Joan Crawford or Barbara Stanwyck.

Everything about its proportions is grand, and chunky; it is neither delicate nor demure and was never meant to be. This style of jewelry is not about buoyancy or delicacy it is about attitude. It is about ultra confidence, and daring.

Similar to Justin Giunta's aesthetic, the key to Moini's configurations is excess incorporating gemstones of every size and color.  Moini brings in aspects of the Art Nouveau age with detailed nature-inspired items of dragonflies, birds, apples, flies, bees, flowers, and beetles.

Moini's incredible jewelry is unapologetic in its high glamour. Like Waxman, Moini has undoubtedly ushered in a new vintage era the styles of which have been featured in Allure, Vogue, Elle, and Marie Claire, and worn by such entertainers as Halle Berry, Rachel Weisz, and Beyonce.
Photo 1 (top right): Smoky Quartz, Ruby, and Emerald Ring
Photo 2 (bottom left): Turquoise and Quartz Necklace
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