MAITHILI KABRE began designing jewellery for family and friends before she decided to pursue it professionally. A decade later, she combines her modernist designs with varied techniques to create jewellery that exemplifies the beauty and strength of a woman.
By Aliya Ladhabhoy
When did you launch your brand? Tell us about your brand USP.
I launched my brand in 2013. Maithili Kabre is a label of handcrafted, luxurious fashion jewellery. Elegance in design is the brand’s core principle, and I believe that our products will enhance the look and personality of the woman who wears Maithili Kabre jewellery – and not overpower the person.
Do you have a background in design?
I graduated with a degree in architecture from Sir J.J. College of Architecture, Mumbai, and later completed my postgraduation in Lifestyle Accessories Design from the National Institute of Design (NID), Ahmedabad.
How did you decide to start a jewellery brand?
About 10 years ago, I started making handmade jewellery as a hobby, and people soon developed interest in it. Stores began to retail it and that’s when a business angle developed. From then on, it has been a journey of learning and refining designs and techniques. With the launch of Maithili Kabre, this is my coming of age as a jewellery designer.
Does your architectural background influence your jewellery in any way?
It most definitely does. Architecture on a larger scale sensitises one to a great combination of aesthetics, functionality and visualisation. As with all contemporary architects, I bend towards minimalism, but in my jewellery I try to lean on the other side of the fence. Balancing modern aesthetics with the opulence of traditional jewellery is something I find challenging.
Tell us more about your collections.
The past collections have been inspired by varied influences of being a woman. Starting with the Heiress line that denotes opulence, to the Midnight collection where I’ve played with tempting sensual tones of the night, and the most recent Power Deco, which translates the power of bold geometry into a state of mind that is powerful to the wearer. The latest collection Zohara is based on a mythical nymph from the classical era. In this collection, I’ve used motifs and symbols from the Indian, Egyptian and Greco-Roman civilisations. The gold-plated jewellery is encrusted with stones that represent the colours of earth, fire and water.
What is the best and most challenging part about creating jewellery?
The moment of inspiration is vital. Once that comes in, it’s a whirlwind of thoughts. The best part is the process of ideating and visualising, and ensuring that the final product is in line with the brand’s vision. As for the challenging bit, I like to explore a new jewellery technique with every collection and that has been a great learning process for me.
Where do you see your brand five years down the line?
Maithili Kabre jewellery will be a well-known luxurious fashion jewellery brand that retails worldwide. I believe our elegant designs and fine craftsmanship will take us a
Architecture on a larger scale sensitises one to a great combination of aesthetics, functionality and visualisation. As with all contemporary architects, I bend towards minimalism, but in my jewellery I try to lean on the other side of the fence.