Through the years, we meet a lot of people with different backgrounds who have ended up going for their art-related passions. Case in point: Maribel de Dios, an architecture graduate who ventured into jewelry design, a career born out of pure love for accessories and product design. Read on to know more about her success story and click on the gallery to see Esotico’s latest offering this season.
How long have you been designing jewelry?
I’ve been designing fine jewelry for almost 13 years. I started with fashion accessories and later on shifted to fine jewelry.
Have you always wanted to become a jewelry designer?
No. Actually, my dream job is to be a product designer, more on kitchen wares or household wares. But since my background is architecture, it became an easy transition for me since it’s a flexible course—you can shift into interior design or product design. Fine jewelry is also a product, so I guess it was meant to be.
Tell us about your first big break as a jewelry designer.
The very first piece I designed was for the Filipinas Diamonds Today Design Competition held 10 years ago where I won the Best of Best in the Ethnic Category. Since then, my passion for jewelry design just grew through the years. I was also a finalist in the 1998 Hong Kong Design Contest and won an honorable mention at a design competition in Korea last 2001.
IN HER ELEMENT. It takes Maribel a day to finish a sketch and then two days to put the piece together.
What’s your design aesthetic?
I’m more of classic and experimental. My design inspiration mostly depends on the materials.
What’s so special about the pieces here in Esotico?
Esotico focuses more on ethnic and exotic jewelry. We have a variety of designs inspired by different elements. We use exotic gemstones that come from all over the world.
ARTIST'S TOOLS. Pens, pens, and more pens
Where do you source your materials?
We get the indigenous materials from Cebu, while the others we source them from Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Colombia, among others.
What’s your favorite piece from your collection?
The Rock. I like that it’s raw and looks so natural.
FROM DREAM TO REALITY. Here are some of Maribel's favorite pieces from the collection.
If you were to wear just one piece of jewelry, what would it be?
I’d go for a necklace because that’s where the focus of design really is.
Click on the gallery to see Esotico Jewelry's latest collection.