New York-based Third Crown is one of our most favorite new finds. We were literally waiting by the mailbox for our jewelry to arrive. Co-founders and super creatives, Kristin and Kofi Essel, are at the helm of the brand and fuse their love of angles and geometric shapes to craft a bold and truly unisex line. The modernity of Third Crown is endlessly wearable and current, but the core of the pieces remains deeply classic. The clever use of arcs, beveling, and substantial links make the jewelry a standout statement.
Things are a little different right now, we’re in an unprecedented time…where are you getting inspiration from and how are you staying motivated these days?
Since the lock down we frequent a lot of blogs, books, and social media to find architecture and visuals that speak to our design aesthetic as opposed to going outside or traveling.
Speaking of, what are you wearing in quarantine? What’s your daily uniform? Are you still accessorizing with your jewelry?
KOFI: I always wear my arc stud earrings as part of my uniform but since I’m home that’s all I wear.
KRISTIN: PJ’s and my initial “G” necklace that I never take off.
You operate as a team, wife and husband specifically, how do you guys manage the day-to-day together? Take us through it!
KOFI: When we’re designing a collection, after we’ve gathered inspiration, we bounce ideas off of each other and gradually come to a focused vision. I work on the CAD for each piece and Kristin works on getting samples and production developed. For the day-to-day we just go with our to-do list. Kristin usually handles the Instagram and I handle Facebook. We kinda take the emails as they come but I’m usually the thesaurus.
Your line is gender neutral, structural and bold, but not austere. It has a warmth to it. How do you maintain that balance?
KOFI: We want our pieces to be worn by everyone so we try to make each piece complement the next. The balance also comes from our signature beveled edges which allows our bold pieces to have a sense of flow and movement.
What is the genesis story around the “Power of the Pair” collection? Do you see people mostly sharing the pieces as a couple, or friends, or keeping it for themselves?
KOFI: POTP is the embedded in the DNA of our brand. Third Crown came from Kristin and I coming together to form a third entity; the brand. At this stage we want to showcase this dynamic through our pieces— pairing our classics together to be shared by all different pairs of people. Honestly, we mostly see people using the POTP collection to stack jewelry for themselves, LOL. Not mad at it though!
We are obsessed with the Prizm Link necklace (we’ve been loving Cuban links too), how do you see it layering into say, an existing collection of daintier fine jewelry necklaces? How would you advise styling it as an everyday piece?
KRISTIN: Layering the Prizm link choker isn’t hard at all. I have a dainty initial “G” necklace that I never take off and I usually layer at least two Prizm link chokers with it, LOL. I like to mix the shiny gold choker with the matte gold one. When styling it as an everyday piece you should do what feels comfortable and comes natural to you.
Who are your style muses?
KRISTIN: Solange Knowles, Molly from Insecure, and my actual friends.
KOFI: Kerby Jean Pierre + Swann / Loic Joachim.
Who was your last Zoom / Facetime with?
Our son has pre-school zoom meetings with his class three times a day so…
What are some of your daily particulars that you always put on (jewelry, accessories…etc.?
KRISTIN: Sunscreen, fill my eyebrows in, and earrings.
KOFI: Earrings, sunglasses, and my new Crocs.
With summer officially here, what’s next on the horizon for you and the brand?
KOFI: We’re aiming to build a better brand community and working towards a new collection once social distancing allows.