We are well aware that jewels are never “only” or “simple” jewels: they have a value, a meaning, they are the medium of messages and emotions. Without exaggeration, they are almost an extension of our souls as they represent and complete us. When it comes to Voodoo Jewels, this concept is furtherly amplified: with their “raw” shapes, square stones, and bright colors, they are furtherly charged with ideas and feelings. Like love, what Livia Lazzari infuses into every creation, and that you should get very well if you already own one of her rings, is always perceivable, through every detail.
We’ve known Voodoo for a long time, but what we did not know until we met her was Livia’s spontaneity, her desire to experiment, to let herself be carried away by the inputs of the world to give life to new collections and, above all, the great desire to reach every woman with her jewels. A process made of research of materials, self-discovery, contact, and balance. And love for the beauty of imperfection: all without ever being afraid to grow.
Voodoo Jewels items are characterized by unique shapes, vivid colors, exotic and inspirations… What were the steps and the fundamental moments of awareness that have marked this path of yours?
It’s always very hard for me to explain how my creative process happens because everything develops in such a spontaneous and natural way. Every day I try to store inputs that I let sediment in my mind, waiting for my creative spirit to process them, with time. Over the years, I tried to create a style that was at the same time raw and bold in the shapes, also aggressive, if you will, but still with a certain amount of sweetness, elegance, and femininity. The balance between the lines and colors totally reflects the woman I’m addressing. Strong and resolute, but always in touch with her feelings.
“The balance between the lines and colors totally reflects the woman I’m addressing. Strong and resolute, but always in touch with her feelings“.
How does the process of selection of the materials and the making of the jewelry happen?
When the Voodoo Jewels project was born, my goal was to create a piece of jewelry that was precious for its craftsmanship and design value, and not for the economic value of its materials, so I started to experiment with bronze and synthetic stones, also to offer a product that could be accessible to everyone. As time went by and with a lot of research to find suppliers, I understood that my jewels could also evolve in the direction of fine jewelry, that is working with precious stones but still sticking with an “affordable” price range. I want my jewels to live on my women, and not act as mere objects.
Your latest collection, Zuleika, addressed the “rare, unique, and imperfect” beauty of every woman: how did the creative process develop in this case?
Zuleika, my first fine jewelry collection, represents a very important moment for Voodoo Jewels because, when I began thinking about it, I understood that the brand was changing. I understood that I would have talked no more about a world that’s outside of us, like nature, but I would have started telling the world that’s inside every single one of us. I realized that the goal of my jewels, so raw and imperfect, was to explain that the disharmonious ensemble of our flaws makes us harmoniously unique and beautiful. The obsessive research for perfection makes us frustrated and unhappy, while we should learn to love ourselves the way we are, imperfect and charming, like our precious natural stones. Zuleika was born from this awareness.
“I realized that the goal of my jewels, so raw and imperfect, was to explain that the disharmonious ensemble of our flaws makes us harmoniously unique and beautiful. The obsessive research for perfection makes us frustrated and unhappy, while we should learn to love ourselves the way we are, imperfect and charming, like our precious natural stones.”
What’s your favorite creation? And what does it mean to you?
My connection with a creation changes according to my mood and the phase of my life I’m going through. I can’t choose my favorite piece, but I’m generally proud of myself when I can create an object that’s both simple but at the same time impactful, I believe that’s where you see the talent of a designer. You wouldn’t believe it, looking at my jewels, but I believe in the “less is more” philosophy.
Your search for precious stones and inspiration must have made you travel the world. Is there a cultural aspect, or a memory you’re particularly fond of?
There’s a very fascinating side of India, it’s almost magic. When you get there, everything seems impossible, hard, unachievable, and unsolvable, while, in the end, in India, everything is truly possible. It’s something that only those who’ve visited it can understand, but it’s true, whoever has been there can agree. Everything, in the end, incredibly and unexpectedly, works itself out.
What are the 3 iconic jewels that represent Voodoo Jewels?
In this case, as well, it’s hard to tell because it depends on the perception you have of the brand. I think Voodoo Jewels has so many different souls that coexist, you need to understand what aspect touched the soul of the woman wearing it, what was the spark in there.
It’s a kind of jewelry that somehow speaks to that rebel side which, more or less, is part of all of us, and rebellion is often a synonym for freedom. What does this concept represent for you?
Well, I guess it represents everything. Learning to be free, learning to be yourself, finding yourself, and showing yourself for who you really are, is the only way not to live a mediocre life, but a 100% authentic life.
What has your greatest challenge and satisfaction been so far, work-wise?
My teaching experience, I think. This year I started teaching goldsmithing at IED in Rome, the same institute where I studied myself, and I have to admit I really like it. What I like is not really the communication of notions, but the contact that I establish with every single student, the creative process that we all experience together.
“The contact that I establish with every single student, the creative process that we all experience together.”
What does “feeling comfortable in your own skin” mean to you?
It’s a significant goal I haven’t achieved yet, but I’m working on it. To those who know me, it might sound weird, but in the past, I used to be shy and insecure. I’ve already made great strides in this regard, but, sometimes, I’m very self-critic and hard on myself. Which is good, under certain levels.
The book on your nightstand right now?
“Yoga,” by Carrère, although I don’t practice yoga, I’m just a huge fan of the author.
This year, Voodoo Jewels turns 10: a big milestone, but also a starting point, if you will. What does this celebration represent to you, and what expectations for the future do you have?
It’s going to be, first and foremost, a starting point; so many things will change, but I don’t want to spoil anything, I only want to say that, yes, it will first and foremost be a new starting point. An occasion for me to make important steps forward, to grow as a designer and businesswoman, to structure Voodoo Jewels in a more solid way, and give the brand a new shape.