6 Things You Don’t Know About Jacquie Aiche
One of Rihanna’s favorite designers shares her secrets.
by Marion Fasel
If you see a gold body chain on a celebrity, chances are the jewel is by Jacquie Aiche. No, check that. If you see a body chain on anybody you can credit Jacquie Aiche and her celebrity fans with igniting the hot jewelry style and keeping it on fire. The most recent sighting was on Beyoncé in her sensational visual album Lemonade. Way back in 2010, Rihanna was the first star to sport one of Jacquie’s body chains and she has continued to do so ever since. Miley Cyrus has rocked the body chains countless times. Kate Hudson likes her Jacquie Aiche body chain so much she even kept it on once for a magazine photo shoot. All this high-profile exposure catapulted the nine-year old jewelry and lifestyle collection to fame ages ago.
Jewelry designer Jacquie Aiche in the outdoor section of her Los Angeles studio.
From the beginning, the sexy nature of Jacquie’s signature style, that includes gold and diamond finger bracelets, belly chains, ankle bracelets as well as product extensions decorated with a Sweet Leaf, gave the designer a rebellious reputation. An image she enhances with campaigns that become more provocative every season. For Spring 2016, actress and Instagram sensation Emily Ratajkowski was the sole model in the look book. In most photos, she was draped in layers of the jewels and very little else.
While Jacquie embodies her #jatribe lifestyle collection completely—I have never seen her wearing shoes in her Los Angeles studio—she cannot be easily pigeon holed. Here are six things I learned about Jacquie Aiche that might just shock you.
- The first time I visited Jacquie in Los Angeles, I was taken aback by the location of her studio. It wasn’t in the hipster Silver Lake area or set in the artistic scene that is Venice Beach. Nope, it’s situated in gilded Beverly Hills, the neighborhood where she grew up and still lives today.
- The second thing that nearly floored me when I crossed the threshold were two young children in formal school uniforms enthusiastically greeting Jacquie in French. As in parlez-ing francais with the designer. These were Jacquie’s children who were students at the Alliance Française de Los Angeles. It was Jacquie’s alma mater. Her father who emigrated to LA by way of Cairo and Paris went to an Alliance Française in the City of Lights and started the family tradition.
- From the looks of the image book you might think Jacquie was an out-on-the-town-every-night party gal. Not at all, she is a self described homebody. “I love to cook for my family,” says the designer. “I do a lot of Moroccan food, Shabbat salads, hamburgers every Thursday.”
Emily Ratajkowski posing in jewelry by Jacquie Aiche.Photo by Naj Jamai
- The crystals in the collection (seen on Ratajkowski in the top image) have a deeply personal meaning beyond the normal good vibes association. Jacquie dates her connection to crystals back to 80s fashion icon and jewelry designer Tina Chow who not only set humongous crystals in her jewels she also bathed in them to energizer herself. “Growing up, Tina’s daughter, China, was one of my best friends,” explains Jacquie. “Learning about crystals from Tina’s passion for them was a gift of inspiration.”
- So many of Jacquie’s signature motifs link back to her family. Her father’s Egyptian heritage is present in the scarabs, wings and triangles as well as the lapis and turquoise. The double horn that can be found repeatedly in the collection is Jacquie’s nod to her mother’s Texan roots. “My grandfather never owned a regular pair of shoes his whole life,” says Jacquie. “It was cowboy boots and bolo ties.”
Jacquie Aiche Wild Child bracelet featuring several of her signature motifs
- While Jacquie doesn’t have any engagement rings in her collection, she has created them on special occasions. “I have done a range of different creative styles and some with an old school twist,” explains the designer. Possibly her most high profile engagement ring is Chrissy Teigen’s platinum and diamond design embellished with traditional engraving and milgrain details. “The engagement rings come from the same place as all my jewelry—I like bringing people joy and making them happy.”
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