Gienia was born from travel and curiosity, so it is no surprise that some of the our most pivotal moments have happened in far off locales. From sourcing pearls and stones in Southeast Asia to getting a hands-on jewelry making education in Paris, we seek out materials and experiences that breathe life and passion into the pieces we create.
Learning from one of the long established jewelry houses in Place Vendôme, of course, inspired creativity but also gave us the formal introduction we needed. Through this, we found one of our most important stone suppliers. We also learned how crucial it is to build a brand with a unique character that has the capacity to grow and sustain longevity.
We also gleaned some perspective in how we approach making and designing jewelry: all of our pieces need to be rooted in a story that speaks to the person wearing it. Some are intended to be comfortable and worn often, while others are meant to radiate a fantastical essence for special occasions.
We will always spend as much time as possible in Paris for pure inspiration -- every stroll unveils new surprises around the next corner, magical storefronts and book shops, flea markets lead into museums, the music, the history, and, of course, our friends.
It was amazing being able to source pearls and stones from the source, as it were. South sea pearls, cabochon rubies and sapphires were all collected on our trips to Southeast Asia. We also collected a few jadeite pieces by local artisans.
There is something ineffable about going to the source. There is authenticity invested in the pieces when we create them. When you see the water that shaped a pearl or feel the earth from where a stone was mined, an intimacy contours the process of creation that is impossible to generate otherwise. We explore the culture, food, geography and economy. While we have gone to gem shows and know that is an efficient way to see many things from all over the world, our original interest is the place itself informing the stone or object.
Our wanderlust is driven by a desire to explore cultures, people, and objects that inspire our vision. As eager as we are to source sapphires and gold from India, we are even more interested in learning about their rich tradition of ornate marriage jewelry. Our plans to visit Myanmar are equally inspired by lore of the Kinnara dancers and the exquisite rubies we can find there. In Australia, we intend to explore the Outback on the road leading us to their exquisite opals.
Both South and Central America hold a special place in our hearts, and we intend to work there as much as possible in places such as Colombia where their burgeoning art scene attracts us as much as their emeralds. In Peru we will further source textiles and alpaca and vicuña, and in Brazil we will visit the world’s best and largest tourmaline mines to continue our love affair with that stone.