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The secrets of metals and gems October 5, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Fashion & Style, Lifestyle, Shopping.
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Gold-plated silver necklace, among other, designed by Mini Dougeni, the creative force behind Arcana, a boutique with handmade, original jewelry by mostly Greek designers are on display.

The secrets and hidden language of gems and metals: This is the idea behind the name Arcana, an attractive, inviting boutique with handmade jewelry by mostly Greek designers. Owners Evi Dougeni and her sister Mini, herself a jewelry designer who has been trained in jewelry-making techniques, opened the business a year ago, with the objective of offering the public unusual designs, well-crafted jewelry and customized service.

Large, impressive pieces made of mostly semi-precious stones and silver are typical of the jewelry to be found here. Necklaces made of aquamarine, amethyst, lava, onyx, are interesting both for their form and color. Some are combined with metal: in a necklace designed by Mini Dougeni, a silver yin-and-yang shape embraces each side of the necklace’s rounded, white onyx stones.

The philosophy is that jewelry should not go unnoticed. Evi and Mini Dougeni believe that what is chic should not be neutral but should have a distinctive personality. More than anything, a piece of jewelry should bring out the individuality of the wearer. Avoiding ostentation is another principle in Arcana’s jewelry. Mini Dougeni, for example, prefers the modesty and “esoteric” symbolism of silver over the value of gold. Her specialty is working with different metals and techniques.

An example is a Mexican lamination technique which Dougeni has used to produce striations of bronze metal on silver. Her style employs mostly geometric, minimal forms but also evokes surrealism and art nouveau. Each designer represented at Arcana works in a different style.

Angelos Koutsouveris combines 18-carat gold with brilliantly cut diamonds. Black lava spheres enveloped in a web-like structure of gold wires form a set of pendant earrings. Marina Zahou’s creations appear light and airy. Figurines made of silver or 18K white gold are a recurring motif in her work. German designer Petra Meiren works with large metal surfaces and makes pendants of gold-plated motifs and chains from PVC.

Diverse materials such as feathers, beads, metal and stones are combined in other jewelry. At a time of mass production and standardization, Arcana is a haven of jewelry with distinctive personality. The friendly and customized service complements Arcana’s philosophy and adds to the rarity.

Arcana Boutique, 10 Alopekis Street, Kolonaki, Athens, tel 210 7238546.

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