Hide and seek: inside the intricate world of Parisian jeweller Elie Top
What makes Elie Top’s eponymous jewellery designs so compelling is their secret nature. It’s an age-old fine jeweller’s delight to include hidden elements in special pieces, giving the wearer a unique sense of knowing something about their jewellery that only they know and that others can’t see.
To that effect, Top’s bracelets, earrings and necklaces contain an intricately worked element. But the covert nature of his articulated designs is not subtly secret. More in keeping with the horologist’s craft, once discovered, they take the wearer and the viewer in a new direction, suggesting a story that neither could possibly know.
As Vincent Darré, designer of Top’s Rue St Honore salon, featured in our September issue (W*198) , says: ’To capture the mood of Elie’s jewellery is to realise that it has an almost metaphysical nature – like the sign of your horoscope,’ he explains. ’Planets and stars and the mechanical narrative make his designs not like jewellery but often more like horology. It’ a real universe.’