Virginie Dreyer takes time out to speak to Behnaz Sanjana about designing jewellery for the soul that speaks both to and of its wearer.
Virginie Dreyer practised law in Paris, till she tagged along with her husband to Bahrain 12 years ago, when her love affair with island life began.
“My kids were still very young, and I did not want to go back to working as a lawyer. Having always been very creative, I took this opportunity to train in graphic design. I began to experiment and have designed bags as well as a children’s clothing line, which did very well in Paris,” says Virginie.
She reached a point where she really wanted to make something in Bahrain. “I was fascinated by the gold souq here, and it would be a shame to not put my creativity to use in the country I love and live in,” she says. And thus was born Tiny Om.
“At that time I was thoroughly inspired by yoga. It seemed magical and I thought, ‘Wow, there is something behind this principle’. I felt amazing after my practice, more grounded and serene. I wanted to create something meaningful and based my first collection of jewellery on the fundamentals of yoga and Hindu philosophies – the Chakra Collection,” she says.
After trying several manufacturers, Virginie established a successful collaboration with Al Zain Jewellery to handcraft her ideas into 18- karat gold and diamond accessories.
Her second line, the Dream Catcher Collection, continues the idea of jewellery with meaning and positive energy that ultimately symbolises dreams coming true.
“The Mother Earth collection is inspired by all the little gifts of nature around us that we forget to look at; the bees, butterflies and leaves. It denotes all the things that make life beautiful and we need to be grateful for,” explains Virginie.
Tiny Om’s Talisman Collection represents auspicious signs and also celebrates the magic number ‘7’. This range also has triangles and circles to depict symbols of strength and eternity, showing its creator’s affinity for universal symbols.
“The latest line is Flower of Life,” says Virginie, who is wearing a brilliant pendant and cuff from the same collection. “This is based on ‘sacred geometry’, through which it is thought to understand the entire universe.” Ten per cent of the brand’s online sales go to a charity in France called l’Association Presence that houses and cares for handicapped children and adults.
Now, as well as selling at various outlets across the island, the designer is having a pop-up shop at Words Bookstore Café on November 2 and 3. “The full collection, including what does not usually sell in Bahrain, will be available,” she says.
And she is also set to open a new shop at the Four Seasons Hotel Bahrain Bay in the coming months.