Blending strong goldsmithing craftsmanship with art, jewellery from TREOKAI is unique with no two pieces ever being identical. There is always something in the TREOKAI sculptural collections that beckons your interest. Every piece from Treokai is handmade and sustainably created in precious metals and gemstones with the intent to make them last for generations.
If you are looking for very personal jewellery or wanting to customise heirlooms into new pieces that will blend your story with generations past, then look no further than TREOKAI.
The face behind TREOKAI
Mai is a trained designer from the Academy of Fine Arts' Design School in Copenhagen. Although her main pursuit in design school was Goldsmithing, she also tried out glass designing. Having interned with seasoned goldsmiths and metal craftsmen during her years of study and later, Mai did everything she could to absorb the knowledge she acquired from them.
Mai thoroughly enjoys the freedom and spontaneity of working with molten metals, while being seriously challenged by the meticulous craft of goldsmithing. The influence of glassblowing techniques and the love for working in workshops with fire and living materials, using ancient crafts is very evident in her approach to working with metal today.
The name Treokai & the design process
What you didn't know…
Mai Johannessen wanted her jewellery brand to stand apart from her as she believes that her works should be strong and in focus. The brand name is a combination of ‘trio’ for Mai’s preference for odd numbers and asymmetry in her designs and ‘Kai’ the name by which her sister called her when they were little.
The jewellery making process for Mai often begins with experimenting with materials or out of a particular theme she is completely engrossed in. Often the process is very much guided by experimentation when it is the material or technique that is in focus. And when it is more theme-oriented, Mai starts with research for which she finds inspiration in ancient crafts and materials, historical tales and cultures, the sky, travel, and mysteries.
“TREOKAI jewellery is created as sculptural objects that are both interesting standing alone and when interacting with the body.”
Mai believes that it is important to think about your production process and your product as a jewellery designer. For her it is important to keep the production small and local, so she makes all her jewellery in her workshop, choosing to outsource certain parts of the process to other Copenhagen-based expert craftsmen.
Quality in relation to durable materials and designs is also fundamental to Mai. To achieve this, TREOKAI uses only recycled gold and silver for new jewellery and the majority of special or bespoke orders are made from customers' old heritage jewellery which is melted down into new jewellery with a very special history.
“I love that: that through recyclable materials you can bring stories forward and give them new life.”
Why we love it
TREOKAI creates works of meaning that customers value so that they can be handed down through many generations. We are impressed and respect Mai’s ethos of making sustainable jewellery using ethically sourced materials; the vast majority of this brand’s jewellery is unique or made-to-order to avoid waste.
We love the idea that there is only one of each piece of jewellery from TREOKAI and that customers can help to put their own stamp on the jewellery; which makes it all the more beloved.