Sometime back in July this year, I did a write up on the ASEAN Fashion Designer Showcase Season 2 event which I was invited to attend. Now if you recall one of the designer on my list was a homegrown brand called REZILIENZ and I was lucky to catch up with the Founder, Jeron Teo for a short interview on his latest collection displayed in Paris.
But first, a little need to know about Jeron. He is the founder and the jewelry designer behind REZILIENZ. It started off as a hobby of his, designing jewelries for friends and his love ones and the rest was history. Here’s the interview and hope this allows you to get an insight on his passion for jewelry design.
Q:When did you realized that you wanted to pursue a career as a jewelry designer?
A: I have always desired to become a jewelry designer. In fact, everything started as a hobby since I was 12 years old when I discovered my love for design such as creating pieces as gifts for my beloved mum, relatives and friends. But you know what? As soon as I realized I had only one chance in life, made me realized the need to chase after my dreams and hence the birth of REZILIENZ in 2006.
Q: How did you start your label?
A: I started REZILIENZ in 2006 but relaunched the brand in “3 July 2011” (on my birthday) after almost 3 years of break due to National Service. I started asking myself what should I pursue after I have “ORD” (means completing National Service)? I have never been an elite student and often felt that I never really fitted in the “Singapore Education System”. So what’s next?
It struck my mind that I am good at making jewelry and hence I wanted to do something special (instead of throwing a party to celebrate), I chose to organize a runway in my family humble 4 room HDB flat to celebrate a new chapter of my life. After I started on my 1st job trying to gain as much experience and exposure in retail industry, I saved up as much as I could for the relaunching plans that I had in mind from designs, website to packaging.
Q: How do you decide what you want to create? Where do your ideas evolve from?
A: Most often, I depend on the creator himself, giving him the control on how the designs should work out based on an idea. That idea, that creativity I have often sends fireworks bursting in my head which makes me even more excited of my work. Although sometimes, I do have the tendency to design the pieces straight away while other times, I just pen down my designs.
Q: Tell us more about your recent Paris exhibition. How did the opportunity arises?
A: It was a dream come true as I always thought I will be having the 1st exhibition in Hong Kong Jewelry Trade Show but then I heard a voice inside telling me that I should “Prepare myself to Paris”. Despite all fears of the unknowns and financial bearings, I started to do some market research and the trade show that would suit REZILIENZ. With luck, I found “BIJORHCA PARIS” a trade show in Paris with over 80 years of history. Emails were exchanged and next thing you know, they extended an invitation to REZILIENZ to be part of their show exhibition. REZILIENZ is also their 1st ever Singapore Brand to be showcase in BIJORHCA PARIS which added another great milestone to our company history.
Q: What materials and techniques do you prefer when creating the designs?
A: Wires & Swarovski Crystals are mainly the materials used in my design as wire gives me the freedom to create the wildest shape I can think of and Crystals from Swarovski gives the great sparkles effect on my design and over the years we had developed REZILIENZ’s very own hand-stitched traditional metal weaving technique and has been recognized since as the iconic signature of REZILIENZ.
Q: What is your favorite part about being a designer?
A: To see someone wearing and appreciating my designs.
Q: The most valuable lesson you have learned as a designer?
A: There was a period of time where endless emails were sent out to medias hoping to get a response in promoting the brand but failed. Luckily in 2014, I met Annie, a stylist from Mediacorp and through her, my collections were seen on Zoe Tay, Julia Tan, Kate and other celebrities for StarAwards and Shows.
A piece of advice from her which kept me going, was not to search “high and low for recognition but look at those who are wearing your designs as a form of recognition". Somewhere some place, there will always be someone who would be wearing my design on the Instagram all the way from KL and this kept me going.
Q: What is your vision for REZILIENZ in the next 5 years?
A: Big and crazy one but first I would continue to create one of the kind jewelry and bring the spirit of REZILIENZ to whoever wears my design and to our very own flagship store.
Q: What advice would you offer anyone who wants to build their own jewelry line?
A: #BeREZILIENZ! There’s a Chinese saying: “Starting a business is easy but growing it is difficult”. Find your signature be unique.
Q: Most importantly, at where can we get hold of your designs?
W Store @ W Singapore Sentosa Cove
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
The Gifts Shop @ Shangri La KL
Do stay in touch with us via our social media channel - Instagram: @REZILIENZ
Don't forget to check out some of Jeron's great designs, here are some of my favorite picks. Enjoy!