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Diamond Girl: How Gigi Hadid Incorporated Her Arab Roots into Her New Collaboration

Image courtesy of Messika, photographed by Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott

Supermodel, horse rider and, rumor has it, a great cook. There’s seemingly no end to Gigi Hadid’s talents – and her latest venture with jewelry brand Messika is no exception.

Located in the heart of Paris, Valérie Messika’s design atelier is refreshingly modern. Steering clear of the clichés associated with many jewelry houses, there is a sophisticated, yet youthful, edge. A leather jacket is draped on a mannequin, along with a pair of Beats by Dr Dre headphones. Copper votive candles and vases sit on a futuristic metallic table, juxtaposed with antique- looking statuettes carefully placed across the office space. On the wall hangs a poster with Gigi Hadid’s signature and graffiti artworks of the Gigi Hadid x Messika logo. There’s a rebellious spirit that sets it apart from more classic houses.

“Messika is a high-end jewelry brand that is true to my personal style,” explains Hadid, who first collaborated with Messika in 2017. The partnership was so successful that a second collection, My Soul, is being released this month. Fans of the contemporary luxe pieces include Serena Williams, Dua Lipa, Adwoa Aboah, and Beyoncé. The singer recently wore a custom Messika Diamond XXL Gigi Move Addiction drip earring with the classic diamond Move Addiction earrings on her On The Run 2 tour.

Valérie, daughter of diamond merchant André Messika, has diamonds in her DNA. She often jokes that she grew up playing with gems, not dolls. Her passion for design and the dazzling stones saw her launch Messika in 2005, specializing in “diamond jewelry for everyday.” The newfangled approach saw the brand grow rapidly, assigning its first celebrity ambassador – Hadid – last year.

“I have always loved jewelry that is wearable every day,” explains Hadid, revealing how partnering with Valerie was almost kismet. “If you’re going to invest in jewelry, it should be simple, chic, high-quality pieces that you can wear often and dress up and down for any occasion. I appreciate Messika for the brand’s meticulous attention to detail and craftsmanship.”

The supermodel’s debut collection, Move Addiction, received lofty reviews – particularly the safety pin-shaped pieces – with the campaign shot by Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott. For the second collection, also shot by Mert & Marcus, the Palestinian-American model sought inspiration from her Middle Eastern roots.


Valérie Messika and Gigi Hadid, photographed by Fred Meylan

“There are pieces that I hope will remind people to carry their positive energy and luck with them, and that brings out their free spirit,” Hadid says of the collection, which she spent a long time designing with Valerie on her family farm in Pennsylvania. “It was fun to create the mood board and see the pieces come to life. I enjoy working one-on-one with Valerie. Her passion and love for what she creates is contagious.”

Hadid’s mood board included memories of her trips to Jordan as a child, as well as beauty and art influences like henna. She explains: “This collection reminds me of a great energy, a warmth, a love that I feel when I think about my Middle Eastern heritage.” The new collection is aimed at women of all ages and her mother, Yolanda, and sister Bella are supportive of her work. “What I love about this collection is that it speaks to all age groups,” she shares. “I think my mom will wear the pieces more simply, and Bella will probably stack and mismatch them with other pieces. I can’t wait to see how everyone styles it.”

Beyonce wearing the Gigi Hadid x Messika collection. Image courtesy of Messika

It’s apt that she should turn to her mother for further inspiration – her earliest memory involving jewelry was making a beaded butterfly earring for her mom with a kit she was gifted as a child. “My mom taught me the importance of investing in jewelry that is timeless, that you can wear forever.” A sentiment she has brought with her to Messika.

The My Soul collection is available on Net-A-Porter from September 12 and on and at Messika boutiques from September 29.

Now Read: The Changing Faces of Hijab: Does The Veil Have a Place on the Runways?

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