Friday, February 26, 2010

Lanyapi Designs: Repurposed vintage jewelry with a soul

Vintage is inherently immortal. Furniture collectors flock to antique stores to restore weathered centuries-old chairs and armorers. U.S. cities like Reno, Nevada host week-long festivals in honor of the “vintage” car. Fashionistas shop “vintage” stores for original Chanel suits and one-of-a-kind concert tees. Etsy has cornered the repurposed and vintage jewelry market, and among its designers is D.C. resident, Daisy Bandera-Duplantier.

Bandera-Duplantier, 24, launched Lanyapi Designs two years ago when her collection of charms required a new lease on life.

Lanyapi, in reference to the act of giving something extra, honors relics and quarter-size charms such as lockets, a key, or even a tiny harmonica by fashioning them into necklaces, earrings, bracelets and keychains. They are memories worn close to the heart.

You can say that Bandera-Duplantier is a romantic, unlocking personal sentiments experienced in association with a time, person or place.

“I don’t necessarily follow trends when I am making my pieces,” Bandera-Duplantier said. “I love turning something old into new and knowing that a piece is going to evoke an emotion in someone.”

Case in point, I fell in love with the brass-plated cut out of France and attached Eiffel Tower necklace, recalling fond memories of my study abroad there in college.

She approaches each collection with a memory of her own.

“I am inspired by nature and travel so you will find many pieces from places I’ve been to such as India, Peru or Japan, or I develop a theme around love,” she says.

Other sources are from vendors on Web sites like Etsy, fairs, flea markets, and Eastern Market, where a special section is reserved for vintage.

Repurpose your own special token with Bandera-Duplantier’s help by placing a custom order on her Etsy site,

While some humans like to think they are immortal, vintage has found its fountain of youth with a little help from jewelry designers like Bandera-Duplantier.

Lanyapi Designs Trunk Show, Friday, February 26; 5 – 9 p.m. at Nana

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