Congés designer, Jasmine Hasmig Penna, describes her curation process in an interview.
Video visual includes Penna seated in a living room and speaking to her interviewer off-camera, and examples of Congés jewelry pieces on models in natural settings.
"My name is Hasmig, which in English means Jasmine so that's what I go by. I am a wife, a mother, an entrepreneur. I have the same hustle and bustle that everybody else does. I am born and raised in Los Angeles, California, and I am proud to say that all my pieces are assembled and made in LA.
"Congés means to be on holiday, to be on vacation, in French. Since I have part French descent I just wanted a name that would create interest, and have a conversation- in fact, a conversational piece.
"What my jewelry does for me is it gives me a space of freedom, an artistic freedom. Where even looking down at my ring I can tell you that there is a story to it- there's a person, a feeling that it reminds me of, and even for that split moment of freedom that I get to have with just a piece of jewelry, I love it, I need it, I feel like we all need it.
"I personally feel that every stone has it's own energy just like people. They have their own personality just like we do, and they all come from a story just like we have our own. I intentionally have not treated my stones in the Signature Collection for this very reason. I wanted to see what people connect with it in the raw.
"I actually love watching people and seeing what stone they're drawn to with which pendant, and in the end you will always find out, it never fails, that they pick the one that they connect with and really turn their lives the most, and that is what my goal was for this collection. It was to strengthen a good feeling or good vibe that you already have, or it was to awaken and activate something that you feel that you're missing in your life. And I genuinely feel that my Signature Collection does that.
"It's a versatile design that you can wear horizontally, vertically, it just depends on your mood. It's easy to layer with, it's unisex, and I actually just made a collection for the kids with that tiny little barrel which is half the size of the original one. And I'm currently using about 19 different stones, available in yellow and rose gold. And I truly believe that stones carry these energies and cosmic properties which is fascinating to me. It's simple, the design, it's interesting, and I think it's beautiful.
"I make an array of pieces in each Ancient Cultures Collection, however within each one of those collections I also have one-of-a-kind pieces as well. I happen to name those that you can't be in this category, where it's a collaboration with specific stones that I have found during my travels. The goal with the Ancient Cultures Collection is to have people gain interest and create a bond and find a deeper attraction in different cultures and histories of the world, showcasing the universal simplicity of it all.
"Regardless of someone's background one might connect with something from another region or another era, and have it be meaningful to them. It happens all over the world in fashion. This takes me to my Third Eye Collection. It was originally meant to be a one-of-a-kind piece, but then I decided to create it's own category with it, where it's an interpretation of my version of an evil eye. Many different cultures believe that your third eye is in the palm of your hand, or others believe that it's in the back of your neck, but the majority of cultures believe that it is in-between your two eyes in the center of your forehead. It's an eye that you can't see, but I feel that it sees you and everything around you.
"My pieces are meant to remind you that you are and should always feel safe, lucky and loved. If you are one and true to yourself, then nature should treat you back the same way. I think everyone should appreciate all that they have around them. Each of our shades are a little different, some of us have been more scuffed up than others, but we all live and breathe the same environment. This makes us all connected and united it as more than just a human race but as a deeper entity with many expansive branches.
"One stone is not any more special than the other, just like I don't think one person is any more special than the other, and there's not one alloy that is more precious either. Every single one is important in a different category. Every person and every stone need to be appreciated for their own values, their own beauty, and their own environment. I truly believe that all is one, and one is all."