Hands on: Alan Crocetti’s knuckle-dusting jewels
The inner ear, the knuckle, the tongue; the body parts explored in Alan Crocetti’s designs subvert the typically erogenous zones explored in jewellery. The Brazil-born, London-based jeweller’s recent Erotica collection includes earrings formed from molten globules of sterling silver which dangle from the ear’s antitragus – the inner ear line just above the lobe – and Zirconia-embellished gothic spikes which pierce the lip.
‘The collection wasn’t actually about over sexualising the body,’ Crocetti explains. ‘It was about fetishisation of the jewellery itself and appreciating it in all its forms.’ Crocetti showcased his debut collection as part of Fashion East’s S/S 2015 menswear presentation after dropping out of Central Saint Martins’ womenswear design degree. Since then, his collections have placed focus on particular areas of the body. A repeated design includes a pair of washer-like stacked hoops which loop through the lobe and inner ear. In Erotica, these are encrusted with pavé Zirconia. ‘They focus on the unexplored area of the body,’ he says. ‘You don’t have to have your inner ear pierced to wear them. I like that illusion.’
In Erotica, the knuckle was another focal point for Crocetti. The collection features chunky orb-like rings which sit on the main knuckle and appear to limit the moveability of the finger’s joints. ‘The pieces came from the idea of embellishing a part of the body which is so functional’ he explains. ‘The rings are about being dominated and in control of the pieces at the same time’.
‘I like that Alan is obsessed with the body, and that certain pieces work ergonomically’ says Damien Paul, head of menswear, at Matchesfashion.com. The retailer, which is proving something of a leader in its savvy contemporary men’s jewellery offering, was an early supporter of the designer. ‘The blurred lines with which he designs for men and women is very modern.’
‘As clichéd as it may sound, I design for the human body, regardless of gender,’ Crocetti says. The spiked details in his Erotica pieces are festooned with crystals, subverting their apparent toughness; his knuckle dusters, too, have a curvy softness. ‘I began showing my collections at men’s fashion week as I was frustrated at pre-established ideas of what masculinity entails. There’s nothing more empowering than self expression. Finding your armour helps you stay in touch with your own self-awareness.’