So, the four of you may remember my “Opulence” post and my delightful introduction to NYC jewelry designer Chris Habana (he’s having a sale right now, btw). I decided he needs to be a staple here. So I worked out a little interview to share.
Strangers Have the Best Candy: In another post I said that your designs “reminded me of the Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch/when-Queen-Latifah-was-a-rapper era, without looking like a played-out 90s re-creation.” But your work has also been described as gothic? Do you think there’s a particular era/style that you channel? Or does it depend on what’s inspiring you at the moment?
Chris Habana: You we’re totally dead on when you referenced the early 90’s. The 80’s/early 90’s are constant sources of inspiration. The particular collection you referred to was def. more aligned with the Boy London craze. However, the line is generally a little darker and more goth but filtered through a pop lens.
SHBC:Tell me a bit about your process, from concept, to getting materials to creation.
CH: I’m not formally trained so I make my jewelry through whatever means best suits the particular piece I’m making. I find different ways to make a piece whether it be hand carving it out of clay, routing in CAD or collaging and casting found objects.
SHBC: Are there any milestones or goals you had when you first started that you’re now pretty close to reaching?
CH: One of our biggest accomplishments was having a presentation at fashion week, which we did with our SS2011 collection at MILK Studios. It’s still rare for jewelry designers to show alongside clothing so it was huge honor.
SHBC:If you could choose a celebrity to be “the face” of Chris Habana, who would it be?
I don’t really gear our collection towards celebrities. I’m really inspired by New York youth and street style and those are the same people I hope get into the collection. Of course, it’s always flattering whenever celebrities do pick up our pieces. Some celebrities that have worn CHRISHABANA include; Drew Barrymore, Bjork, Kelis, the Scissor Sisters and Nicki Minaj just wore one our new cuffs for a tv appearance.
SHBC: When you’re not wearing your own designs, who do you wear?
CH: I think it would be impossible to catch me not wearing at least one of my own accessories, and I like to pile them on, but I also wear leather pieces by my friend Zana Bayne.
And there you have it folks. My name is Strangers Have the Best Candy. And I approve this message.