In a red-carpeted room just off Rome’s Piazza Navoni, surrounded by books, sketches and skulls, Delfina Delettrez concocts gleaming, macabre jewels that wind up at high-end stores such as Opening Ceremony
and Luisa Via Roma
Rome. Fashion is in Delettrez's blood—her father is jeweler Bertrand Delettrez, her mother is Fendi
’s accessories director Silvia Venturini Fendi—and she has proven a prolific force in her own right since launching her accessories line four years ago. “[At one point I] realized I had made 200 pieces in six months,” says the 22-year-old wunderkind. “I couldn’t stop.” She now designs two seasonal collections yearly (alongside past collaborations with Giuseppe Zanotti
), laboriously handcrafted by local artisans who incorporate precious gemstones, marble and metals into a range of pieces, from skull drop earrings with yellow sapphires to armor-like skeletal claw bracelets ($20,000). Though Delettrez clearly likes ghoulish glitter, she cites Da Vinci’s anatomical studies and surrealist paintings by Dalí and Giorgio de Chirico as past references. This season’s “My World” collection was inspired by the Mayan calendar, which pencils in 2012 as the world's rebirth celebration. NOWNESS tapped renowned still-life photographer Dan Tobin Smith
(who shot the cover of Jay-Z
’s latest album, The Blueprint 3
) to immortalize Delettrez’s exquisite talismans.