Meet the designers... Shay
Last week, the LA-based mother-daughter duo behind jewellery label Shay paid Browns South Molton Street a visit, presenting their dazzling collection of diamond-encrusted fine jewellery to an intimate selection of guests. Started in 2002, Shay’s aesthetic combines timeless sophistication with a touch of playful Hollywood glamour. Speaking exclusively to Browns, founders Ladan and Tania Shayan told us about how it all began, what they’re working on now, and how great ideas often arrive in the middle of the night...
Tania (on left) and Ladan Shayan (on right)
On working together…
Tania: It all began when I was in high school at the age of fifteen. I made a chain link bracelet with leather woven through it for myself. It was just for fun, but soon everyone at school started asking about it and my mom suggested we should try and sell it to a store. We headed to a nearby Beverly Hills boutique who bought it and the rest is history.
Ladan: They bought it for all their stores, right there and then!
On creating fine jewellery…
Tania: The transition to fine jewellery started about seven years ago and was a natural progression for us. My mom always loved antique jewellery and it started with us recreating some vintage pieces.
Ladan: If we don’t both love it, we won’t make it. Each piece takes hours to make as every diamond is hand selected and each item is handmade from start to finish.
Tania: We have the same taste and style, it’s scary! We even share clothes and shoes. We’ll work on a design until it is perfect, adding and removing details until it's right. We’re very particular about everything.
Tania: The original link bracelet I created when I was fifteen has now become a hallmark style for us, so that was definitely a huge inspiration for our designs going forward. Also, the antique jewellery me and my mom both love, especially the Art Deco baguette diamonds and architectural pieces.
Ladan: We also love celestial-inspired Victorian pieces like the starbursts and moon style designs.
On the design process…
Tania: It's quite natural for us, we think of something and start sketching out ideas. My mom comes up with some ideas when she can’t sleep and rings me in the middle of the night! We also use notes and voice memos to document any thoughts.
On their favourite pieces…
Ladan: One would have to be our classic link bracelet. I’ll wear a lot stacked on my wrist - I like to mix and match the different styles and colours and combine with our Art Deco style rings.
Tania: I’d say the link bracelet too, but at the moment I’m also loving our mixed diamond choker layered with other necklaces, and the new link choker with the huge teardrop diamond.
On what’s in store for the next year….
Tania: You’ll have to wait and see! But without giving too much away, we’re really excited to share our new collection of watches. Browns has a style arriving next season, and these were such an amazing project for us, as each one is so unique. We select each Rolex and customise them with different faces and precious stones, and then combine those with our classic link bracelet to create something one of a kind.
Date: 11th October 2019