Style

When Old Spoons Make Really Great Necklaces

Fashion Week is back in full force, and there’s a lot to see. Blink (or scroll too fast on Instagram) and you’ll miss the details: tiny bags, tall shoes, feathered hats, leather capes and diamond dog collars. So as part of a new series, Wow Moment, we’ll spotlight things we saw on the runways that delighted or mystified us.

PARIS — For environmentally conscious designers, the concept of zero waste is an important one: Let not one scrap of fabric go to the landfill. For Marine Serre, the dynamic young French designer, that rule extends to the cutlery drawer, too.

Her new jewelry designs — part of her spring 2022 collection, presented Monday night in a Parisian courtyard — were made of antique silverware acquired at flea markets, Ms. Serre said. A spoon became a bracelet, curving around the wrist and affixed with single red gem, or an oversize earring with a dangling silver chain.

If the earring used only the bowl of a spoon, the rest was repurposed for other pieces — like a long, tear-shape brooch made from the handle. “Use the whole spoon,” Ms. Serre said, kind of like using the whole animal, but different.

Marine Serre, spring 2022.
Credit…Photographs via Marine Serre

Ms. Serre’s upcycling comes as no surprise. The designer has always reused and remixed, like the tea towels and tablecloths that she turned into clothing to match the collection’s kitchen motif.

Nor does her technique. Silverware has been used to make jewelry for centuries. But vintage cutlery can seem at odds with the post-apocalyptic aesthetic that Ms. Serre has honed since her first runway show in 2018. It’s decorative and delicate, suggestive of quiet domesticity. (Or, less pretentiously, it is cottagecore.)

But Ms. Serre leans into this tension by dramatically mixing metals, toughening up pretty patterns with chains or emphasizing the sharpness of a fork’s points. Several of the finished pieces have an edge to them — asymmetrical or droopy, corrupted into something distinctly her own. In some cases, she accomplished it by embedding her signature crescent moon in the piece, engraving the design or dangling it on a charm.

There’s a gold-plated spoon collar fit for a warrior. There’s an ornate fork body chain made for a witch. Or simply a person who, just for a moment, wants to feel like a warrior or a witch.

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