WAIF has been existence for exactly three years, or twenty eight, depending on how you look at it. In 2012 Gisele Human began moonlighting as a jewellery maker, experimenting with simple, geometric pendants in her mother’s workshop (who’s a trained goldsmith). “But really, growing up underneath her characterful bench amongst bottles of gas and oxygen, pliers, tweezers, hammers, mallets and jars of chemicals; I got a taste for metal saw dust as a very young age,” Gisele reflects.
Recently, Gisele quit her day job as a copywriter to focus more of her attention on WAIF and is now able to spend at least fifty percent of her time on the project. For the past three months she’s been crafting away to bring her new Cotyledon Capsule range to life. The collection consists of four simple products – a squiggly hair pin, a twisted barrette, a light, dangly pendant and a pair of unmatched earrings. Each piece is lovingly hand-made, hand cut and made to reflect the shape of the perfect skimming pebble. Gisele says, “Pebbles, seaweed, leaves and roots are really what I looked at when the direction came together. I feel the same way about nature as John Keats does – It’s the best. Rounded corners, non-symmetrical shapes, weird, unshapely shapes, shapes like ears and the outlines of eyes – these are the many shapes of WAIF.”
For now you can find WAIF at The Neighbourgoods Market, Mungo & Jemima on Long and Mungo & Jemima at the V&A Watershed. The pieces will be stocked at some new places in Johannesburg soon – watch this space.
Photographer: Travys Owen / Model: Alexa Corlett