Friday 5 March 2010

Gioia Mia magazine interview

I'm really delighted to have been interviewed about my work by 'Allezom' magazine in the States!

Here is a transcript of the interview:

Jewelry designer, Sonia Tinagli-Macrae, is the designer and maker behind the label Gioia Mia. She makes all kinds of jewelry and accessories. Most of her work is for the bridal industry, so she makes tiaras, combs, fascinators, hairpins and co-ordinating jewelry. The label, Gioia Mia, has been trading for about four years now. Sonia wanted an unusual name that reflected her Italian heritage and encapsulated what designing and making means to her, as well as the approach she brings to her work. Gioia Mia can mean either my jewel or my joy in Italian.

There has always been a fascination for accessories with Sonia and a love of things that sparkle. It was a natural step to combine all those elements and later turn talent and passion into a business.

When asked who her icons were and if they influenced her personal style, Sonia first gives credit to her Italian grandmother saying, "Some of my strongest childhood memories are of looking through her wardrobe at her clothes and accessories. I remember that she had some tiny black lace shoes that Ferragamo had made especially for her in the 1950s, and an amazing collection of hats from the 1940s. Every time I go and visit her, she will give me another perfectly-preserved piece from her wardrobe that she had made for her. The fabrics and the cut are just stunning. The workmanship is inspirational. I feel much honored to be the custodian of these little pieces of history." Sonia also mentions the likes of Audrey Hepburn and Chanel saying "It's really amazing to look at some of the photographs of Chanel from the 1920s and 1930s she looks so modern. I love Lanvin's designs, Fortuny, Issey Miyake and all those countless hundreds and thousands of unnamed seamstresses that worked with such incredible skill and precision making clothes in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries."

These different elements have influenced Sonia's personal style as she love to mix old and new, to incorporate vintage or antique items into her designs. She tells aspiring designers to follow your heart and go with what excites and interests you. Be true to yourself in essence. Sonia markets and promotes herself through word of mouth. Visit to see more of her designs.