Robecca Leyden, designer and blogger from Sans Pareil.
Sans Pareil blogger Robecca Leyden adores crafting and when she couldn’t find the gemstone and crystal jewellery that was her style and budget, she decided to create her own. Now the jewellery is stocked in several boutiques and also sells through her popular blog’s Facebook page, with the hand-made pieces crafted from authentic gemstones and raw stones.
We caught up with Robecca to find out more about her brand, what inspires her and what you would never catch her wearing!
Tell us about your latest collection?
My latest collection is based upon my love of grunge and 90s fashion. I love costume jewellery. Something that looks completely unique and original. I wanted something that had gems and crystals but wasn’t too ‘new age looking’. So I used chokers and small chains. I went for gems that were statement pieces and interesting shapes, I also wanted some cute pastel-esque colours to reflect the strong pastel palette in fashion at the moment – which I love. Amethysts (light purple) and Rose Quartz (Light pink) are two of those colours I use a lot.
What made you become a jewellery designer?
I honestly don’t even feel like I am. It started when I couldn’t find jewellery that I could afford that was my style. Because I make so many of my clothes and am a crafter, I thought I could make stuff I wanted to wear myself. I posted a picture on my blog and I got such positive feedback that I decided to do a line. I think that one photo went a bit viral and got nearly 1000 likes! The rest is history.
What inspires you?
Heaps of stuff! I usually start by gaining an interest in a film or a book or anything really. A few years ago I started watching heaps of Winona Ryder films and fell in love with her aesthetic in the 90s. 1995 Gwen Stefani – when she was in No Doubt and they released that first album – she was the epitome of cool. I’m always attracted to strong women within Pop Culture. I like women who dress for themselves and always have an aesthetic a bit left of centre.
Necklaces from Sans Pareil.
Describe your personal style and how it influences your products and brand?
I would say I’m rags or riches. I am a HUGE thrifter – I love opp-shopping and finding vintage treasure. But if I had a bottomless bank account I would buy out Moschino, Vivienne Westwood and Discount Universe. I’m also a bit of a kawaii lover – anything kitsch or tacky (hence the Moschino ha!) This really influences my designs because I’m the type of person that would wear two gem chokers and bright lipstick – and I make them to work that way. Of course, I know that not everyone shares my taste, so I make them to be worn in a less loud way too.
What is your all-time favourite purchase?
That’s so hard! I’m very bad at deciding I hate items within a few months. Although about 7 years ago (Which is decades in my wardrobe lifespan) I invested in a tailored, nude Karen Walker coat. It was uber expensive, but I still wear it when I am trying to look professional but still chic.
What wardrobe item should every woman invest in?
Currently I think a pair of sneakers that you love the look of – so you can wear them when you want to look a bit stylish but they are so comfortable you can run around in them all day. I recently got some Puma x Fenty Creepers and I live in them. Best accessory to take over the world with!
Do you have a style rule you always obey?
I do actually, before you leave the house, take off one small item or accessory. I get worried sometimes that my outfit looks ‘too much’ so I like to do this. It’s something I read the Coco Chanel said once and it has stayed with me. Also, personally, I think mixing seasonal looks – i.e huge winter coat with jandals, looks very, very, VERY bad.
Necklaces from Sans Pareil.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
I think attending New York Fashion Week was amazing. It was a few years ago now. but just the best experience and so exciting. Also, this sounds a bit cheesy, but you meet so many cool and inspiring people in what I do. I met an awesome girl out one night recently and she runs this cool site called Dogs of Desire, where she makes dog accessories. We are now working on a range of gemstone and crystal dog collars! I’m so excited about that – I’m obsessed with my dog so can’t wait to have him model haha.
What can’t you live without?
My dog Nixon, an internet connection, clothes, coffee and the close people in my life. Oh and cartoons!
Finish this sentence – You would never catch me wearing…
Bootleg jeans. They are so middle of the road and that’s just not me. And they don’t look good with many shoes!