Her adrenaline-charged designs are refreshingly bold, reflecting the need – among both men and women – for a new kind of jewellery that allows people to assert their personality. Founded in 2007 by Caroline Gaspard, who lives and breathes the brand, Akillis radiates energy in its iconoclastic collections that for almost a decade have stood as a manifesto of independence from the established norms of the 21st century.
Fashioned in the company’s French workshops, each piece reflects the personality of its designer: a free spirit who stands outside convention and dares to live differently. It all began with a love of gemstones inherited from Caroline’s mother, whose passion for precious stones led her to take a gemmology diploma at the age of 61. A friend of the family working in the diamond trade was quick to spot young Caroline’s gift for gems and took her under his wing, teaching her the secrets of precious minerals and metals. She learned to spot whether a stone has been cut too deep, so its light is reflected at the wrong angles, or whether its cut augments the fire and brilliance of the diamond. She immersed herself in Greek, Roman and Scandinavian mythology to discover the deep symbolism of gemstones.
Caroline was already designing her first pieces at 17. But she completed her studies before setting up her own Jewellery Brand, naming it Akillis. The name says it all, combining the valour of its namesake, the Homeric hero Achilles, and the competitive spirit of the brand’s founder, who was only 25 when she unveiled her first Akillis collection in 2007. Christened Bang Bang, this collection of gold bullets set with diamonds stood as an indomitable manifesto of independence. Its instant success and continuing popularity illustrate the hunger for original, daring jewellery design among people who want something different – and Caroline Gaspard is on exactly their wavelength. Her hectic lifestyle is full of travel and new encounters, and with a designer’s unerring instinct and insatiable curiosity, she crystallises this mood in collections of sparkling audacity. Caroline has always relished a challenge.
Akillis has a characteristic unisex appeal, its collections expressing a boundless liberty that transcends gender. This liberty could not exist without Caroline’s capacity to seize life’s opportunities. Despite her cosmopolitan nature, she remains strongly partisan to French jewellery-making expertise. To safeguard the brand’s values, independence and superb quality, Akillis jewellery is produced in its own workshops.
The collections grow steadily, as the designer expresses her dynamic energy through the playfulness of Puzzle, the pulsating vibrancy of Heartbeat’s Paraiba tourmalines, her triangle engagement rings and the snake – like scales of Python exalted in High Jewellery necklaces. Caroline wears all her different mantles – woman, company director, mother – with equal enthusiasm and never fails to charm. Like her jewellery, Caroline Gaspard is irresistibly full of life.