Lakoo, the Caspian spirit in the heart of East Vancouver.
On the Caspian Sea in northern Iran there exists a tiny region called Gilan. The land is lush warm and bursting with foliage and flowers. It is known for the vibrant colours and joyful nature of its textiles, and the artful clothing and dresses crafted by the Gilani women. The region is famous for its celebration of life through its music and dance and the strength of the women who live there. To the Persian people the Gilan is a place of calm happiness and beauty in all forms.
This is the home of my family and the inspiration for Lakoo. When I was a child my grandmother called me Lakoo, which means daughter in the language of Gilan. The culture of Gilan is the culture of my brand, it was born from this spirit.
I was raised in Tehran, Iran a city steeped in the cultures of all of the people collected there. It is a bouquet of flowers picked from every corner of the country, with all the hues, and textures and aromas of their origins. In Tehran I took an interest in the art of adornment in jewellery, the gentle details of beauty that women use to express their love, their uniqueness, their creative spirits. In my bedroom I built Lakoo from gems and metal work found in the bustling craftwork alleys of the bazaar, dreaming of bringing these beautiful visions to the world beyond my borders.
In 2007 I began my professional study of gemmology and jewellery design which took me from Tehran to Thailand, the United Kingdom and finally to Montreal, Canada where I opened my first studio where I bench-jewelled my designs and drew inspiration from the vibrant urban styles of the city and its european culture. I saw myself in her, a branch grafted to the garden of the new world.
My studio is in Mount Pleasant, East Vancouver. It is one of the original neighbourhoods of this young city that is now being reborn and reinvented by young creatives and families moving in, while it is a traditional residence for centuries of the First Nations families who continue to live here, gently influencing its environment with art and culture.
Mount Pleasant is a reflection of my home in Iran, that bouquet of cultures, with all of its vibrant contradictions and complimentary energies. That bustling, jostling excitement of life brought together by the palette of many cultures.
The spirit I wish to bring to Lakoo is the spirit of my many homes and the journeys between them, the sun on my cheeks, laughter rippling the cool water, a warm breeze through my hair and dancing leaves in the trees, the riotous colours in a field of wildflowers. These are my roots and the joyful soul of Lakoo.