The Seychelles jewelry brand Kreolor may be known for its golden beauties, but it’s the silver anniversary that the company is now celebrating, as the jeweler marks 25 years of distinctive handmade bracelets and necklaces. Unique to the western Indian Ocean archipelago of Seychelles, Kreolor blends expensive gold with attractive but economical local materials to produce a wide variety of necklaces, bracelets, rings, earrings and pendants. The golden Coco de Mer jewelries remain their best seller.
Kreolor was founded in 1990 by a group of investors in partnership with the government. This followed a visit by its founder, Claudio Izzi from Italy in 1981. The Italian saw a lack of artisanal gold craft products on the market. As gold craft was new in Seychelles, local goldsmiths and craftsmen were trained. The company started with six workers producing gold jewelries that recalled the tropical environment of Seychelles. Kreolor now has 40 employees. In 1998, it began producing hand-made artifacts from local timbers and seeds of palm trees endemic to the Seychelles.
“The craft items are not your typical souvenirs. They have practical uses as well. There are home decor, office pieces, and things for the table or bathroom. There are also some other types of jewelry more chunky and ethnic looking,” Louys said this week in an interview at the factory at Le Rocher, on the eastern side of Mahe.
In 2008, Kreolor bought out the 50 percent share the government owned when Seychelles started its economic reforms. The company went into a partnership with Jouel, which is part of Caratco, a diamond retail and wholesale company in South Africa. The rise in the price of gold brought about the introduction of the silver collection in Kreolor. This offered a more economical alternative to clients, Izzi said.
Apart from the iconic 18-karat gold Coco de Mer, Kreolor’s pieces capture the unique fauna and flora of Seychelles, including fish, dolphins, tortoises, palms and flowers. Anyone looking for a souvenir to remember the beauty of Seychelles will find something unique in the shops.
Read more about the exotic Coco de Mer here.