The "Jewel" of Ligneah

03 July 2013

It is almost time for the Ligneah event, in collaboration with AltaRoma, which will be held on 7th and 8th July at the 'Galleria D'Arte Contemporanea De Crescenzo & Viesti' (De Crescenzo & Viesti Contemporary Art Gallery); on the occasion of this important event, I have worked for several weeks on a wonderful project that began with a collaboration with a creative and unique individual called Claudia Chianese (

My father met her in Milan while participating in an event actually created by AltaRoma; he was impressed by her jewels (or, rather, unique pieces of work) that had been made with special types of wood that she collects personally by the sea, then follows their lines and enriches their soul through the addition of metals such as bronze; the idea of collaborating with an artist gave me another incentive to create a unique piece that could combine my creative drive with that of Claudia.

So I began a long search for images that could give me a starting point for the development of the project; in the meantime, there were consultations with Claudia, because our work had to be constant and one of real collaboration. In one of our meetings she showed me the wood that she had chosen in order to give life to the project; it was when I saw that form with those delicate but strong lines, that the idea of a spiral, seen as transformation, came to mind: hard wood that turns into soft wood, a substance that is in continuous evolution and changes over time; (I am very fond of this form, even the first collection that I designed at the IED had been inspired by the spiral).

It took me a long month to bring the project to life, a spiral jewel clutch bag that may give rise to a necklace; in fact, the chain and the decoration attached to one of the quadrants of the clutch bag can be removed, becoming one piece and giving life to a beautiful necklace; I have to admit that it was the project that required the most time and the greatest effort; but it is known that the more difficult something is, the greater the satisfaction when you see it take shape.

Just today I was handed over the clutch bag created by the skilled hands of another Claudia, the modeller / artisan that I thank very much, because she made the realisation of the project possible and solved many of my doubts; in short, an (almost) all-female team; I also thank the blacksmith, Enzo, who made it possible to create the spiral backbone of the clutch bag; I have to say that he took us back in time a little in his shop, which is just a short walk from our house and is immersed in an almost heavenly context; he talked to us about the importance of craft and the Art of Iron, about how we must not lose touch with our artistic tradition and how great it is for him to admire a finished work, even if it is a little piece of twisted iron, and about how when a job is created with passion, anything that is created and takes shape assumes a unique magic of its own.

Even for me, seeing a project come to life is an indescribable feeling, because it will be presented at our event as a single piece, as if it were a piece of work in itself, and even more so because it contains the whole meaning of Ligneah, the substance that is transformed in time through creativity, commitment and passion. At the top there is a draft of the project, but if you want to see the complete creation that we have made in person, we are looking forward to seeing you at our event.

Marta Antonelli

Read on

A dream called Ligneah

21 June 2013

Only a year ago, once I had finished my studies of 'Fashion Accessories and Shoes Design' at the IED, I found myself designing the first collection entirely made of wood, an indescribable feeling, especially because I knew that a dream was becoming reality.

In September 2012, we participated in our first exhibition, So Critical So Fashion in Milan; there we had the confirmation, thanks to the astonished reaction of the people, that our material was something really special; all the people who had approached the "soft wood" for the first time could not believe it, we had been able to break all those clichés that wood, which had been considered as poor material for centuries, had carried for too long; thanks to this event and the magnificent work of all the people who worked there, the press and the TV became aware of us, appraising and appreciating our Made in Italy innovation.

From then on we had the great pleasure of getting in touch with entities such as CATAS Ltd, the largest Italian institute for research and testing in the wood and furniture industry, which is still testing our material (for now the first tests are giving us a lot of satisfaction) and Material Connexion, one of the most important research and consultancy centres on materials and innovative and sustainable production processes, with which we participated, in March / April 2013, in major exhibitions such as La Triennale di Milano and the Salone del Mobile; on the occasion of Salone del Mobile we were present with a different display of our products at the Space Calabiana, an event organised by AI Artisanal Intelligence, a project promoted by AltaRoma.

The most important recognition we have received, a source of great pride for us, was the 'Environmental Enterprise Award' in 2012, which was sponsored by the Ministry of Environment and Protection of Land and Sea and the Chamber of Commerce of Rome - Asset Room, with the patronage of UNIDO.

On Sunday 7th and Monday 8th July we will be presenting, for the first time,  at the Galleria d'Arte Contemporanea 'De Crescenzo & Viesti' in Rome, the products of the S / S 2013 collection, the first prototypes of accessories for men and the projects, made with our own material, of the designers and architects with whom we have collaborated. Soon we will be publishing the invitation that has to be show at the event.

I inaugurate the first post of this blog, thanking all the people who made it possible to create and improve our material, who believed and still believe in the project and all the artisans, research centres, exhibitions, the press, operators in the Laser sector, and the individual supporters who welcomed us and were able to recognise the unique value of our project.


Marta Antonelli

Read on