Annahmol offers vintage jewellery and clothing made from heirloom fabrics
Annah Chakola’s obsession with vintage jewellery saw her give up her job in education at a US university and set up her own store in the country. But with not much experience in retail and a host of other obstacles, she was forced to shut shop and work at an art gallery. “But despite this set back, I knew I was onto something. So I returned to India five years ago and launched Boho Gypsy, a store selling vintage jewellery. Later, I renamed it Annahmol and now I create everything from jewellery to garments, accessories and home decor,” says Annah, whose label is named after what she is fondly called at home.
Based in Kochi, Annahmol currently retails online and out of 300 stores in the US. And while her repertoire has expanded beyond vintage jewellery, it continues to be the main draw. “Every time I travel, I hunt down vintage shops and buy vintage pieces in bulk. I then use them to create my own designs,” she says, adding that though she started off sourcing her material from outside India, she is now trying to work with what is locally available. Religious iconography paired with colourful beads is a major theme of her vintage pieces, while tribal-inspired motifs also make an appearance. The Unity pendant, in the shape of the map of India, Three Peas In A Pod (three red ‘peas’ in a golden ‘pod’, and Pinecone (pendants in the shape of pinecones) are some of the most unique offerings from the brand.
When it comes to her other products, they are a result of the people she happens to meet by chance. For instance, her line of garments were created after she connected with a group of ‘gatherers.’ “They are a set of people who travel the length and breadth of the country trying to find old fabrics,” she explains, adding that the clothes she currently retails are all made from old silk saris. Her Natural Frankincense Resin Sticks were conceptualised and created after she ‘met a man outside Kochi who creates incense sticks.’ Likewise, the label’s clutches with quirky beaded motifs such as papaya and banana, were a collaboration with a set of bead makers.
Going forward, Annah aims to work with the crafts of Kerala and contemporise them for her label.
Rs.1,000 upwards. Available online