Italian born Federica Rettore is a name that radiates star power. Setting her design and creative wheels in motion at an early age, Rettore completed her schooling in plastic art research and set her sights on learning from the best. From there she took jewelry design apprenticeships honing her technical and creative skills in the competitive market with Milan jewelry greats Misani Jewelers and Donatella Pellini. By 1994, Federica was ready to branch out on her own and established her company, Rettore Company and her success and style has yet to be matched. Countless publications such as Elle, Vogue, and W have featured her eclectic work with only the most prestigious of stores (Marissa Collections included) carrying her line. Rettore even spent a few years managing the design team at Gucci while continuing to create pieces and run her own company.
Similar to a fashion atelier, Federica Rettore only presents two collections each year; one more fabulous than the other. Her work is extremely non-traditional and sensitive to the ordinary fashion aesthetic. Her background implies numerous years of rigorous research and hand crafting so her technique is polished and exact. Her designs are a constant juxtaposition; rigor and levity, transparency and opacity, and solid and void - superbly unique and organic. It was our pleasure to speak with Federica about her favorite place, what makes her happiest, and the inspiration behind her jewelry. Check out what she has to say in this exclusive interview.
Marissa Collections: What originally inspired you to design jewelry?
Federica Rettore: I’m a huge fan of Art and Sculpture. As a little girl, I toyed with fabric and buttons to make costume jewelry. This developed into a passion for antique jewelry crafted in India and North America. What inspires my designs most are natural shapes, forms, and colors laying everywhere that all curious eyes may discover, while others may overlook. There is true beauty in rough natural stones.

MC: What is the biggest milestone or proudest moment in your career so far?

FR: Seeing clients excited by the designs of my collection as my proudest moments. And while being the managing director of the Gucci jewelry design team I gained great insight. Recently, I was awarded a first place Couture Design Award. This being from fellow jewelers and clients, was a great honor. It’s wonderful to be recognized by colleagues for one’s work.

MC: Where is your favorite place in the world and why?

FR: My favorite place is my Summer home on Sardegna Island. With it’s broad sweeps of unspoiled fascinating natural scenery; pink rocks deeply carved by wind and water staging against a green blue sea background. The intense perfume of wild grass and flowers give moments of intense emotions.

MC: How do you feel about Marissa Collections as a home for your collection?

FR: Marissa Collections is a wonderful home. This is the way luxury should be presented, in a kind and hospitable environment. Customers should feel they are coming home for a visit. There are very few stores who understand this as well as Marissa Collections. This is very rare air. And because of this, Marissa’s assortments are very focused and exclusive. Marissa, her buyers and sales associates actually go to market selecting specific pieces for specific clients. To know your customers so well, now that’s the sign of a true luxury boutique.
MC: What personal piece of jewelry is most special to you?
FR: It’s a difficult question as many pieces of my personal collection hold great sentimental value to me. I have been creating these pieces all of my life. However, my horn cuffs are very special to me. With my horn cuffs, I feel I mastered an ordinary material into a refined piece of jewelry. Getting there was really challenging. And I like that each piece is unique. Each has it’s own story. And for those who wear these cuffs too. Due to nuances in the natural horn patterns, each piece is one of a kind and so each customer has a piece like no other.
MC: What is your idea of perfect happiness?
FR: To spend cozy time with my family, my husband and my daughter.

MC: What is your favorite journey?

FR: On a catamaran into the Belize Sea, where you land on deserted small islands, only sand and palms, birds singing and dancing lights on a blue sea.

MC: Which talent would you most like to have?

FR: I would like to be good in richly talking about my profession as my designs talk about me.

MC: What do you consider your greatest achievement?

FR: To have a beautiful daughter, a loving husband and a big chubby cat!

MC: What is your most treasured possession?

FR: I sincerely believe that luxury coupled with taste is an enriching splendor; I hope to continue to develop my creative energy and share it with others.

MC: Who are your heroes in real life?
FR: Tony Duquette, for his mixing of materials and the innovative style. Coco Chanel, a woman that always followed her instinct, turning her style into an everlasting icon.
MC: What is your motto?
FR: Jewelry designed as miniature sculpture to wear and never take off.
MC: What is your favorite stone?
FR: Again a very difficult question, I love all stones; however, being asked to pick a few, I single out opals, because of its wealth of changing pale color nuances that remind me of small jellyfish dancing in deep blue water, and rare tanzanite stone for its blue violet or mix blue and green colors.
Come into Marissa Collections Thursday, March 15th through March 17th when we will be hosting a special Federica Rettore Jewelry Trunk Show. Rarely making special appearances and holding shows, Federica Rettore will be here for the three-day event so be sure to stop in and check out all her amazing designs from her latest collection. Gemfully yours,