We are featuring William Le-Normand and Dennis Grüner, the two designers and founders of Armilla Norway. Armilla Norway seeks to accessorize “goal-diggers”, people who are ambitious and looking for success in whatever they set their mind to. William had the chance to speak to us about their Elements collection theme, their materials and how a dual-designer team works.
CAN YOU TELL US A BIT MORE ABOUT YOUR BRAND, WHAT’S ARMILLA NORWAY’S STORY AND MEANING? HOW DID ARMILLA NORWAY START, AND HOW IS YOUR BRAND DIFFERENT?
Armilla Norway was founded in 2015 by the designers Le-Normand and Grüner. Before that time, back in 2014 we had a thought; we wanted to create something new, because all bracelets on the market was just so alike and boring. Everyone is selling the same bracelets nowadays. We wanted to stand out from the crowd. We wanted to create something that has never been made efore. Something that matters, something with a meaning. Each bracelet has a meaning behind it, it’s not just another mainstream bracelet. The process wasn’t easy. We had some jewelers working for us, but they did not meet our standards, so we had to change. The process took over a year to fulfill. We are in a collaboration with one of Norway’s top jewelry designers in the business. We want to help people with our bracelets. In the element collection every symbol has a special meaning. If you for example lack confidence, you need ignis, the symbol that means fire in the four elements. Fire represents our personal power source and inner fire with its purifying, masculine energy. Fire can heal and harm, and create new life or destroy the old and worn. Fire is associated with energy and confidence. It’s your task to find the bracelet that suits you and your goals. We want our customers to reach their goals and look good at the same time!
CAN YOU GIVE US A BIT MORE BACKGROUND BETWEEN YOU AND GRÜNER? WHAT WERE YOU TWO DOING BEFORE ARMILLA NORWAY?
Dennis Grüner worked as an electrician before Armilla Norway. William Maxwell Le Normand was in the millitary and worked as designer/seller for a company before and Armilla Norway. We have been friends for like 10 years now. So we are good friends! Some people have a business rule – don’t make business with friends. I think that is [wrong]. Why be successful alone, when you can have success with your friends?
WE PERSONALLY FIND THE ELEMENTS CONCEPT VERY INTERESTING AND UNIQUE. CAN YOU EXPAND A LITTLE MORE ON THE ELEMENTS YOU JUST MENTIONED, AND PERHAPS TALK ABOUT WHAT EACH ELEMENT SIGNIFIES?
Yes! The element collection is “The Four Elements” The symbol on the bracelet is the same symbol of the element. Each element has there own powerful meaning / symbol:
Fire represents your personal power source and inner fire with its purifying, masculine energy. (Fire can heal and harm, and create new life or destroy the old and worn)
Water represent your personal flow and ability to balance all your relationships. Water represent a feminine energy, used for healing, cleansing and purification. Water is associated with passion and emotions.
Earth represents the nurturing, stable, solid firm, full of endurance and strength. Earth represents the [circle] of life, we can [observe] all the aspects of [life] in Earth: birth, life, death and finally rebirth.
Air has a feminine vibe. This bracelet gets you to ease up some of the veils of what is hidden inside. Air/Aer stands for love, empathy, secrets and imaginative mind.
WE LOVE THE WAY YOU PUT ENERGY AND PASSION INTO CREATING THIS THEME FOR YOUR JEWELRY. CAN YOU DESCRIBE YOUR CREATIVE PROCESS?
We are two designers. I think our creative process is a bit different from others. We are constantly looking for new products and new things we can make. I love going to the top of buildings to look down on the whole city, it can really free your mind. Personally, I (Le-Normand) can sit on the subway and suddenly come up with new idea. It’s popping up in my head. For example, I see a broken lamp and get an idea on a new design. Then it’s back on the drawing board with Grüner. It’s literally just like you see in the movies, drawing and tossing the paper in the trash, and a lot of misses, and after your 70th try the whole floor is packed with sketches. But you finally have your ultimate design. The design is mixed with research. Then we have to get approval from our jeweler that the design is makeable, and then we can move on to the jewelry part. [Creating the] form is a very long and hard process. But it’s so fun when we are finished!
COMPLETELY UNDERSTAND, ESPECIALLY WHEN AN IDEA JUST COMES OUT OF NOWHERE! DESIGNERS REALLY NEED A DIVERSE SET OF SKILLS. WHAT WOULD YOU SAY ARE SOME OF THE IMPORTANT CHARACTERISTICS NEEDED TO BE A DESIGNER, AND WHY?
I think the first thing you need to have is a creative and big imagination. Don’t care about what people say, but listen to the feedback. Do something crazy.
THAT’S A VERY AMBITIOUS ATTITUDE, AND WE SEE IT IN THE WORK YOU DO. WHAT’S THE PRODUCT YOU’RE PROUDEST OF, AND WHY?
It has to be the whole Element Collection. It’s all about the design process and the whole meaning behind it. The four elements its fire, water, earth and air. Every single symbol has a story behind it, and it is there to help you reach your goals, no matter what it is. It’s made out of strong premium kernmantle rope and solid .925 sterling silver. This collection isn’t only pure elegance; it can also help you. I personally rock the ignis to have energy and confidence when I walk into a room. Everybody should do the same!
YOU MENTIONED THAT YOU USE PREMIUM KERNMANTLE ROPE AND .925 STERLING SILVER. IS THERE A REASON FOR THESE MATERIALS, AND HAVE YOU TWO THOUGHT ABOUT ANY OTHER MATERIALS FOR YOUR BRAND?
We wanted to try something new, that not so many have used before. We find the kernmantle rope very interesting in quality. We wanted to make something that lasted, something that didn’t get broken when you were in water, sun or anything like that. We are [currently] testing some other cords as we speak.
WE LOOK FORWARD TO YOUR NEW PRODUCTS AND ITERATIONS, AND I’M SURE YOUR FANS WILL TOO! CAN YOU DESCRIBE ARMILLA NORWAY’S FANS, AND WHY YOU THINK THEY LOVE YOUR DESIGNS?
Our audience is the ambitious people who want to reach the top. Those who reach their goals, and are going after their dreams. It can be to nail that job interview, to lift those heavy weights or to get that girl. Everyone has their own goals, and you have to have the element bracelet and the mindset to reach yours. It’s not only the design our costumers love, it’s the whole [package] you get with the bracelets. We get messages daily about how cool the designs are. There is not anything on the market that has what we have to offer.
LASTLY, ANY SNEAK PREVIEWS TO YOUR UPCOMING DESIGNS AND ARMILLA NORWAY IN GENERAL?
Bracelets in the element collection is coming soon in Gold and Rose Gold Edition. We have another collection coming soon as well, but you will have to wait and see. I can say that we are in the middle of the jewelry process of making forms as we speak. You will love the next collection!