Nathalie (“Nat”) is an Italian transplant in New York City who used jewelry to commemorate places and memories. Her collection of gorgeous sterling silver pieces is made by hand using recycled silver.
Nat, tell us about your love of jewelry.
I’ve always loved jewelry. In fact, it was my way of memorializing certain places and events. When I went on vacation, I was always looking at the local jewels and buying a piece would become a special memory of that place and what I was doing at that moment. I loved that a piece of jewelry could impart value beyond the material value of the piece itself. It was sort of like memorabilia that you could wear and keep forever.
You handmake all your pieces. Did you get technical training at a school?
Back in 2017, my sister gifted me a class - it was a metalsmithing class in Williamsburg. It wasn’t intended to be a career path or anything like that. It was just a great way of using my hands and distracting my brain from every day. At the time, I had a pretty intense corporate job and this was a great creative outlet.
When did you decide to create a collection and your own brand?
I kept adding a piece here and there to my own personal collection. Whenever I would wear my own pieces, I would get a lot of comments and requests. Some artists are super organized and have sketchbooks of a cohesive idea. My process was much more organic. For example, I created a piece that was inspired by crumpled paper. People liked what I created so I started adding more pieces in similar styles and it ultimately became the Accartocciato collection, which literally means crumpled in Italian.
Everything is made by you. What is the spirit and mission behind The Little Things?
I didn’t want to create just “things”. It’s never been about the material product. I wanted each piece to be something that could be a reminder of the little moments in your life.
Each of my pieces is made from 100% sterling silver, never plated. I love the idea that if you ever want to change your piece or just come up with something new, you can melt it down and create something totally different. You re-use to recreate.
Being able to contribute a portion of profits to causes that matter deeply to me is also a very important part of my brand mission. Each collection donates to a different cause and it’s something that’s very close to my heart.
You have very unique concepts behind your collections - the crumpled collection, the Peaks, the Knots. Can you tell us about the inspiration behind each collection?
The crumpled collection is all about reusing and repurposing. I also love the idea of being able to find beauty in imperfection.
The Peaks collection was inspired by mountain tops. I’m from the Alps and the mountains have always been a very rich source of inspiration for me.
The Knots collection is actually referencing the huge variety and complexity of knots in the sailing world. I’m an experienced sailor and I love the elegance and intricacy of the knots.