Delfina Delettrez's creepy new collection | Forum

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diou May 23

how Delfina Delettrez's creepy new collection cured her fear of bugs

Everyone claims to have a phobia these days – whether it’s of heights, confined spaces, or the current favourite, gluten – but jewellery designer Delfina Delettrez’s entomophobia is genuine. Her new Insectmania collection for Dover Street Market, launched last week to coincide with Photo London, consists of three unique brooches, each housing a real taxidermy insect from the Rome-based designer’s personal collection, and it’s part art, part therapy.

“I am currently between desire and repulsion when it comes to insects,” explains Delettrez, who initially couldn’t even be in the same room as the bugs, instead directing her team via video. “I am of the belief that what repels us is truly what attracts us in the end. Making the Insect brooches has really helped with my phobia. For the Insectmania collection I did all of the dissection myself, studying the anatomy of the insects as I went along. The designs have moved on as I let my fears go, and I am not afraid to let the insects go."

Intriguingly displayed under super-strength microscopic lenses at Dover Street Market, the brooches are made in Delettrez’s Roman atelier from either rose, white, or blackened silver, each hyper-realistic bug spanning over 16cm long, and clutching its prize of a baroque pearl, a watery-green quartz, or a darker green tourmaline in its jaws. The actual taxidermy insects are suspended in resin inside the abdomen, like creepy unborn babies.

But there’s real beauty in these pieces, evocative of the surreal – think Isabella Blow in her Philip Treacy lobster hat, or Schiaparelli’s enormous embroidered insects. They could look incredible as a scuttling trio on the lapels of a black smoking jacket, or perched on the rim of a little felt hat.

A limited edition range of earrings, a pendant, and a brooch in the same collection sees insects with fantastically elongated, kinetic legs, the necklace on a chain of freshwater pearls set in blackened silver.

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