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In Conversation: Young Frankk

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IN OUR WORDS

When we welcomed Young Frankk into the store last season it felt like we’d always known them. Part of a new wave of modern, accessible jewellery brands, their aesthetic is distinctly intimate. Despite being a literal ocean away over in the US, their relatable, low-fi art direction has propelled them into wide reaching success partly through their social media and the loyal following that they have developed. Follow them for a few weeks and it’ll feel like you’ve known them for years. A creative studio with a focus on handcrafted pieces, Young Frankk was founded in 2012 by artist and turned self-taught jewellery designer Christine Young. With a multidisciplinary approach combining elements of fine art and design, the brand strives to be open to experimentation in order to offer a curated range of immediately covetable, beautiful and modern pieces.

In Christine’s own words, each collection enjoys minimalism and simplicity, whilst still making a statement. This fine balance has resulted in pieces that can be worn everyday but also hold the power to make an impression for an occasion or event. Their respect of nature only serves to compound the brand’s appeal further, with them using recycled metals and locally made materials to minimise environmental impact, and ensuring that all pieces designed and made in Los Angeles. In comes as no surprise that their fresh in store new collection is a winner, a nod to 70’s glam with bold, flat hoops and coin pearl adorned earrings and matching cuff. We’ll take one of everything, please. 

IN HER WORDS

'Growing up I’ve always worked with my hands, whether it was drawing, sewing, photography or crafting. In high school I attended a great art program at a local college and then went off to study Illustration at Parsons School of Design. After graduating I wanted to take a break from drawing and painting so I took up jewellery making as a hobby. It started off with some pretty basic jewellery crafting, which then led me to an internship with a Brooklyn based jewellery designer. From there I started to teach myself through a lot of trial and error with the help of a lot of Google and Youtube!

When it comes to designing for Young Frankk, the process always starts off with a compilation of inspiration for the new collection; whether that be in the form of a drawing, sculpture or interior design, it all serves as a starting point. I think about the overall vibe, who I want the wearer to be, and how I want the pieces to compliment that person. I start sketching and creating samples which is the part where I really get to play, experiment and have fun. Each collection for the brand is created for the effortless, thoughtful and distinctively independent wearer. This means when designing it is important to me to think about what the wearer is feeling when wearing the pieces, I hope confidence and joy.

This season we have been having fun with wax carving again, creating pieces that are bolder and more sophisticated. Moving forward, it is important to me to practice sustainability in every step of our production to presentation so that we are kinder to our environment. I try to make a point of using US produced or recycled materials to minimise our environmental impact and I am proud to say that we have recently upgraded our packaging to be plastic free. Oh, and we have a special release coming up soon that I am excited to share but for now remains a secret!'

GET TO KNOW YOUNG FRANKK

Tell us about your neighbourhood. 

We just moved to LA from Richmond, Virginia so I can’t tell you very much just yet as we are still exploring but we are 10 minutes from the beautiful beach!  

Who are your heroes? 

My heroes are my parents, aunts and uncles who immigrated from Korea to the US without knowing much English yet still built great lives, businesses and families for themselves. I have such a great respect for immigrants, especially for the older generation because they had less resources to rely on. I respect their bravery, resilience and perseverance through many hardships. 

Tell us about the best decision you have made. 

To leave the comforts of Virginia to attend college in NYC, it was a great learning experience that made me appreciate my family back home and nature even more. 

What record always makes you get up and dance? 

“A Message to Rudy” by Grant Phabao, Carlton Livingston and Lone Ranger

What’s your fashion guilty secret? 

I basically live in sweats. 

If you could lend one book you have read to us, what would it be? 

The Alchemist 

What one thing can you always justify spending money on? 

If it is beautiful yet practical and useful, or if I’m still thinking about it a week later. 

What has been your best travel experience to date? 

A favourite childhood memory of mine is when I was probably around 12, my family and I took a road trip in our minivan from our home in Washington State to Los Angeles and camped the whole way down. 

What is the best advice you have ever received? 

Everything happens for a reason and to take every mistake as a learning experience.

Words by Rebecca Field. Shop the new in collection from Young Frankk online and in store.