Located in the heart of Shoreditch, lies the ‘Village Underground’ a ‘club’ which merges ‘street art’ (with its impressive mural on the front side of the building) with the grittiness of an urban music scene, where everyone from the likes of Mabel to Duke Dumont has danced across its intimate stage to an adoring crowd. Part creative community, part arts venue, where better for PANDORA to ‘showcase’ and celebrate the launch of their ‘Reflexions Collection’ than at Village Underground, fostering creativity since 2006? Shedding their previous ‘elegant image’, if the venue at Village Underground (the largest dedicated street art wall in London) is anything to go by, the new PANDORA Reflexions is a confident design inspired by ‘modern femininity’. In fact PANDORA’s creators ‘Francesco Terzo’ and A. Filippo Ficarelli revealed that while their Autumn Renaissance collection explored regality and its connections to female empowerment, the Reflexions bracelet was about ‘reflecting the femininity and personality of its wearer’ through a personal narrative that was entirely ‘personalized to them’. So what better way to create our own ‘personal narratives’ than with jewellery that is fully customizable, which can be as ‘simplistic’ or as maximalist as our heart desires?
Which is why the Reflexions launch at the Village Underground was keen to ‘give us a night to remember’ to celebrate the spirit of creativity, with live performances from Mabel (arguably a symbol of a new kid on the block who has been given the chance to shine), an ice cream crepe station from pan ‘n’ ice, as well as a series of parallel mirrors, an ‘Instagrammable swing’ and various food stations, designed to give us a night that we wouldn’t forget. The food stations were an eclectic blend of ‘Pan Asian cuisine’ with tofu and butternut squash curry, while a Mexican food station offered sweet potato burittos with dashings of jalapeno, and washed down with red wine at the bar. Without a shadow of a doubt though, it was Mabel’s electric performance on stage that showcased the spirit and the essence of the new Reflexions collection, an artist who after her debut in 2015 with ‘Know Me Better’, went on to release Top 10 Hit ‘Finders Keepers (which peaked at number 8) and even toured with ‘Harry Styles’ during the European part of the second leg of his tour (Harry Styles: Live On Tour). The very poster girl for PANDORA’s mission to foster ‘female empowerment’ and a ‘personal narrative’, who else but Mabel would embody the stripped back dynamism of the Reflexions collection, whose rise to fame was won through hard work and dedication?
And boy had PANDORA put on a spread for the senses, as the Village Underground became a pulsating hub of food, drink and electric live music. Without a question of a doubt Mabel was the highlight of the evening, opening up with the lesser known-but nevertheless powerful ‘Begging’ as she waxes lyrical about her ex saying that ‘you’re not even trying baby/ when we touch its not the same/ you’ve been self obsessed for months, to the energetic cult classic ‘Ring Ring’ which had the crowd cheering and dancing the night away, before closing with ‘Finders Keepers’, exploring the multifacetedness of relationships, a spirited sexual liberation and the ability to compromise, a common theme throughout Mabel’s live set. It is without a question a doubt that Mabel’s songs become anthems for PANDORA’s Reflexions collection, centered around ‘female empowerment’ (Finders Keepers), creativity (Talk About Forever), pared back minimalism (Begging) and personal identity ( Bedroom EP), with her citing Lauryn Hill, Amy Winehouse and Skepta as her predominant influences. Comparable to the 90’s sound of the late great Aliyah, PANDORA’s decision to choose Mabel as their headline act at the ‘Reflexions Launch’ was a smart move and boldly signaled a new era for their jewellery range.
While the launch event in London was host to celebrities like Jaime Margaret Winstone (an English Actress best known for roles in the film Kidulthood, playing Kelly in the E4 horror series Dead Set and Lauren in the Sky 1 sitcom After Hours), an even more ‘exclusive event’ at PANDORA’s ‘secret bubble house’, overlooking the French Riveria, was host to models Winnie Harlow, Suki Waterhouse and actors Olivia Culpo and Ashley Benson, who showcased PANDORA Reflexions new bracelet collection, designed for ultimate self-expression.Available in sterling silver, rose gold and ‘shine’, the bracelets are fully customizable, with other assets in the collection including a beautiful gold esque crown clip charm made from cubic Zirconia, tying into the ‘regal essence’ of their autumn renaissance collection, as well as floating safety chains, all collection items that are rather reasonably priced. Ranging from £150-£20, the bracelets start at £55 (for the sterling silver bracelet) , while the charms start at £20, the cheapest of which is the beautiful ‘love clip charm’, although arguably the prettiest is the ‘crown clip charms’ that would make the wearer feel like a queen for a day!
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Please note I was invited to the PANDORA X Mabel Reflexions Event in exchange for this post but all thoughts are my own and not affected by complimentary services. During the event we had an ‘instagrammable swing’, a live set from Mabel at 9 PM, three food stalls and a bar, held at Village Underground, in Shoreditch.