Greek accessories brand Aumorfia instantly grabbed our attention with its minimal presentation, luxurious details and mystical aura. The offerings strike a perfect balance of modern, forward thinking design that also carries a certain spirit that recalls the ancient ghosts of its home country. The project of interior and graphic designer Theano Ravazoula-Potamianou, Aumorfia (a notion invented to convey the “space” between the Greek words “ομορφιά” (beauty) and “αμορφία” (without shape)), uses pure leather to create jewelry that is as architectural as it is spiritual. We have long been impressed with the brand's consistent evolution of materials, concepts and presentation and love the latest collection, "Liberta", the first to fuse leather with noble metals.
As "Liberta" settles upon us, we thought it would be a great time to speak with the designer about this collection, her process, inspiration and more. Please find our Q&A below.
*Photographs by Alexander Papakonstadinou
The Brvtalist: Craftsmanship is pillar of the Aumorfia brand. Talk about your background in leather working and a little bit about your process when creating these beautiful pieces.
Theano Ravazoula-Potamianou: We are absolutely giving special care to the quality of Aumorfia’s items. We are using some traditional and some unorthodox leather processing techniques, too. Due to my interior design background, I have a different aspect on leather trimming. As I am used to work on detailing and functionality when I’m designing for an interior project, my vision was to achieve the same result on my leather items. I prefer sharp cuts, accurate edges and smooth surfaces rather than the usual rounded finishes and textured leathers.
Also, my point is to create pieces with a more minimal approach than the usual S&M appearance which most of leather accessories have. That’s why I don’t use buckles or rivets and I’m choosing materials, such as bookbinding connections, custom made silver parts, fabrics etc. I pay a lot of attention to fitting; how leather embraces different parts of the body and I’m working a lot on the cutout. All my fashion education is coming from my mother, who was an haute couture dressmaker. I used to design and make clothes and accessories from the age of five. I combined all this knowledge with my interior design studies and I ended up with the need to create Aumorfia
TB: We have always loved and have been fascinated by Ancient Greece. How does being based in Greece influence your work? Talk about your relationship with the ancient civilization.
TR: I can’t express with words how much - the fact that you see Acropolis since the day you were born, can affect you. But it’s not only the images, it’s the philosophy too. Every work of ancient Greek civilization is a piece of balance, symmetry and aesthetic quality. That was the meaning of “beauty” (pronounced “omorfia”) for ancient Greeks. That is what I keep on my mind when I design something. That it has to reflect all of these virtues.
TB: Tell us about the latest collection and how does it build on previous offerings?
TR: The latest collection, “Liberta”, is an extroverted move - a growth of our acquired abilities to new fields of craftsmanship. For a long time now, I wanted to join forces with other creators and craftsmen. “Liberta” is the result of the adaption of noble metals to Aumorfia’s basic geometric forms and the collaboration with silversmith Ioanna Eleftheriou. As I noted before, our intent is to expand our knowledge and techniques and with this collection we worked a lot on the hand stitching of metal parts. It’s a technique which fascinates us and we are planning to develop it more and more.
TB: We love your conceptual approach to your collections. From "Shadows" to "Soft" to "Circles" you use a wide range of materials and shapes, while still staying true to the brand. Talk about some of the things that have inspired you and where you normally draw inspiration from?
TR: My inspiration is coming basically from all forms of art. Architecture, music, art, dance, cinematography and fashion, in its dark and contemporary form, is what influences me the most. Of course I cannot resist to the everyday stimulations, like street art, faces, moves, nature, personalities. I draw material from all of these and through a complicated internal process, I translate them into shapes and forms of Aumorfia’s kind of style.
TB: What's next for Aumorfia?
TR: Our next moves are focused on expanding out of Greece and Europe. After our first retailer (Imply) in Hong Kong, a showroom (Greek Style Council) in Sydney and an upcoming pop-up shop (Erebus) in London. We are also preparing our new AW17 collection for our participation in Cube showroom during Paris Fashion Week in March 2017.
We would like to thank Ms. Ravazoula-Potamianou for speaking with us and it's been a great pleasure to hear more about the brand. Our kinship with Aumorfia grows with every collection and we look forward to seeing what's in store. "Liberta" is available now and for more, please visit the Aumorfia e-shop.