“Pussycat pussycat where have you been?”
“I’ve been to London to visit the Queen obviously”
“Really you never cease to amaze… Ah you mean Kate Middleton’s wedding dress don’t you. Did you see the tiara too?”
“I did. It would have looked sensational on me.”
“Did you know Ladbrokes had 3-1 odds on Vinnie Day designing a modern headpiece?”
“Wow. Next you’re going to tell me you managed to see Vinnie for tea and steal all her Princess secrets…”
Vinnie’s Rock & Roll Necklace for LUX-FIX.com sees Tiffany’s hearts…and raises them.
Q. You grew up in a ranch in Laikipia, northern Kenya. Are there any childhood memories you’d like to share with us?
A. When it used to rain, which didn’t happen very often, my siblings and I would go swimming and naked mud sliding in the dam. The roads, made from mud, would turn into rivers and so the dams would fill up and we (the children) would pretend we were on rafts in a monsoon!
Elephants at Kamogi Ranch
Q. It seems you are very much still drawn back to Kenya as an adult…
A. Although I was born in Ireland and live in London, if somebody asked me where me home is, I would always say Kenya. Once you’ve been taken by Africa it’s in your blood and I will always, always, always want to go back there. Either you get it or you don’t. I go back once a year. I will always want to go back and never want to lose that.
Q. Your leaf collection is inspired by the acacia leaf; what other influences do you take from Kenya?
A. Nature, the natural form, and the shapes that the Samburu tribe wear; which is the main tribe up by us in the Northern area. There are over 40 different tribes in Kenya and they are all incredibly colourful. Initially when I started off my jewellery it was really colourful and bigger, chunkier, but then I ended up refining it to make it more wearable. I get lots of charm ideas from Kenya and put them all together.
Acacia leaf and as one of Vinnie’s signature creations
Q. How did you first become interested in design and jewellery?
A. When I moved from Kenya to my great aunt’s house, in Donaghadee (Northern Ireland), my interest and fondness for jewellery really kicked off. When I first explored the house I discovered a huge array of trunks of jewellery in the attic that my ancestors had brought back from their travels around the world. My ancestors were huge travellers and they picked up loads of stuff from India and Africa, beautiful jewellery and paintings. I kept the jewellery.
Q. LUX FIX is running an exclusive for an elegant, yet a little bit bad-girl, necklace you have designed. Can you explain to us the process behind creating a new piece?
A. Generally the process starts when I’m in India because I sit in workshops immersed in charms and jewellery and silver and colours and beads and then I put them all together and draw pictures of what I want. My collection normally starts with around 5 pieces and it grows into maybe 10 pieces. I experiment. I go to antique markets and get inspired by form, texture, feel and then see what I come up with. But the pistol was just about fun.
LUX FIX / Vinnie Day Limited Edition – Rock and Roll Necklace
Q. Where would you wear the Rock and Roll necklace?
A. I would wear it layered up with other VD jewellery. It would look fantastic layered in amongst other chains. I like the combination of silver and gold and the whole charm feel, so love to layer the two.
Q. Your jewellery is very delicate and feminine, what kind of woman wears Vinnie Day jewellery?
A. She is unique, she is independent, she’s fashionable, but she isn’t obsessed, she’s sophisticated but quite a bit daring. She wouldn’t wear a Tiffany heart, she might have that in her collection …someone probably gave it to her as a gift. She’s just quite like Kate Middleton.
Q. Kate Middleton has often been pictured wearing your jewellery. Which other princess, real or fairy-tale, would you like to dress and why?
A. Oh, Queen Rania of Jordan. She and Kate Middleton have that same beautiful hair and the dark striking look. I love her morals and ethics. I just think she’s amazing.
Another of LUX FIX’s favourite princesses