A new collaboration between Athens-based designer Lito and Elad Yifrach, founder of Greenwich Village’s boutique lifestyle and home goods store L’Objet, showcases a whimsical new collection rooted in symbolism, mysticism, and a touch of gold.
L’Objet made its debut in the New York design scene with a new flagship store on Bleecker Street in 2016. Their curated mix of globally-inspired soft goods (pillows, blankets, etc.) and homewares occasionally delve into the realms of romanticism and whimsy, and their latest collection is no exception.
After noticing Lito’s jewelry in a chance encounter on the shores of Mykonos, L’Objet’s founder Elad Yifrach decided to partner up with the jewelry designer to create a new home collection. Rather than focusing on wearable art, they’d pool their talents to design handmade objects made for the home. The result is a symbolic collection featuring a bold eye motif that elegantly bridges the link between Greece and New York, while highlighting ancient tradition and modernism.
Here’s what designer Lito had to say about the collection…
Culture Trip: What personally connects you to the eye motif? What are your associations and real-world experiences with it?
Lito: In the Greek culture, the eye motif is a talisman for protection and good luck. That specific eye feels very real and strong for me. I believe it “speaks” to my soul and reminds me to be present in life, to enjoy every moment of it. I wear it to remind to myself that I am strong, and that as long as I have faith, I can do anything.
CT: What was the collaborative design process like between you and Elad?
Lito: It was [similar] to dancing. Whimsical and harmonious. We both had the same vision so this collection was easy to design.
CT: What were some of your inspirations for this collection?
Lito: The collection was actually inspired by my global travels, as different designs are linked to different cities. The small colored plates with eyes remind me of Studio 54 in New York, where women were wearing extensive eyeliner, barely dressed, and life was all about having fun. The green “Vide Poche,” [on the other hand], is inspired by Mexico’s strong sun: the beams around the eye are like the ones you see on the talismans they make within the Mexican culture.
CT: Why did you decide to launch to collection in New York City?
Lito: Greenwich Village is the flagship store of L’Objet, so launching the collection there was very symbolic. The store means so much to Elad.
CT: Given the spiritual and esoteric connections of the eye motif (related to the all-seeing eye/ evil eye/ warding away evil), how do you think this is connected to the art of letter writing?
Lito: Having an eye on the card, for me, is more about trying to be closer to the receiver of the letter. It’s as if a part of you (physically) is in the card that you send.
CT: Do you think Mykonos, where you first met Elad, played a role in this design?
Lito: I think the paperweight definitely has a Cycladic minimalistic feeling; it’s all white with perfect curves, just like the ones you see in Mykonos.
CT: The idea of a classic stationery set can feel antiquated in our digital age, but do you hope there’s a rekindling of the art of letter writing?
Lito: I really hope that people will start [handwriting letters] again. And that stationery is so beautiful and symbolic, it really invites you and inspires you to write. I have kept all the cards and little notes my parents and sisters have given me, and I have to say, their words are my biggest force and inspiration. Nothing is stronger than words. Even the most luscious gift loses a lot of its value without a card. It’s all in the words.
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