Meet the Maker | Armando, La Tribe's Spanish Jeweller

The La Tribe philosophy is anchored in quality construction using superior textiles, whilst offering the wearer a luxurious take on subtle sophistication.

Since its launch in 2015, the brand’s sleek but discerning offering is mainly grounded in footwear, however accessories have always been a meaningful mainstay.

Carefully handcrafted on the island of Mallorca in Spain by thoughtful and experienced jewellers, the designs are modern yet delicately balanced. Using a mix of styles and textures, each piece is made using recycled 925 solid sterling silver (silver styles) which has been plated using 24k yellow gold (gold styles).

We spoke to our artisan jewellery maker, Armando to find out more about his approach to creating these special pieces...

Tell us a little bit about yourself and where you live?

We have lived in Mallorca for almost 30 years since I remember. I have been interested in design, photography, light and volume, texture and colour, also in techniques and materials to reach a result.

My whole working life has been linked to the design / manufacture, and selling fashion accessories.

What are the everyday rituals you love most about living in Mallorca?

It is not determined by where I am; it could be Mallorca, Mexico, or Jaipur, but I like to start the day in a space with clear views, even if it is an industrial area or the sea and prefer to be in open spaces.

What I like most in my daily routine are the first 3 hours of the day, the moment I prepare breakfast, and start the day with silence, a pencil, blank paper, and a laptop. This is when you have the most open mind to the observe the details and new relationships between ideas and issues that you are elaborating on.

After 11 am, my "creative day" is over and I get started with the day. Another comforting task I like to do to get into the day is by doing something repetitive, like a production task. It is from refining these repetitive tasks that ideas and concepts start to emerge. This really helps to improve my design and technical process.

When in Mallorca what is your favourite local dish?

Tumbet ´( Ratatouille in France) and the Pá amb Oli that although it is very simple enjoyed by being something shared, it is not only about the meal but those in which you share it.

Best spot to visit when holidaying in Mallorca?

My favourite area is the Pollensa´s Bay and Cape Formentor I sit in a timeless space.

What made you decide to become a jeweller?

Since I was a child, I did things with my hands, my mother was handicraft teacher, and I also spent many hours in a family metal workshop, observing what they did, machines, and processes. But when I was older, I had some friends with a shop of crafts in which I spent hours talking about music, design, cinema, or other topics; There was a product that a supplier could no longer make in the store, so I suggested to start making brass and leather chokers. I had never really though of doing it as a profession but I just continued making from there.

What do you love most about making jewellery?

The experimentation and exploration through materials and techniques.To be able to capture in a piece visual games, textures and symbolisms that surprise or excite me, try somehow to connect with the buyer, an unwritten language of communication. 

What do you find most challenging about making jewellery?
The challenge is to be simple, universal, and, at the same time, different.

La Tribe’s jewellery collection for 2023 will be available in New Zealand from Friday 10 March, 2023. 
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