This girl can’t quite remember how she stumbled upon Crane & Fox, although it certainly involved a series of mouse-clicks and one big gasp at the end of it. The gasp came by way of the stunning letterpress designs that the store carries (made by a mother and daughter team in the US), but more gasps were soon emanated at the sight of Crane & Fox’s one-of-a-kind jewellery.
Such gasps don’t go ignored here at Two Girls Times, so we hunted down Crane & Fox’s founder, Joey Yap, to find out more about her ‘handmade curiosities’, the stories behind some of our favourite pieces, and who the Fox might be behind the brand.
Tell us about Crane & Fox. What does the brand represent, and how did the charming name come about?
Crane & Fox came about when I was lying in bed counting sheep. I had already been toying with the idea to create a store with paper goods and handmade jewellery a few months before. ‘Crane’ because it reminds me of paper cranes, which is still relevant to the paper goods in the store, and ‘Fox’ because I’ve always had a soft spot for furry, sleek foxes. The brand is all about being minimal but unusual. I try to keep things simple and non-generic, without missing out on the ‘human’ part.
Is there an actual crane and fox behind the brand?
I’m the only person behind Crane & Fox. It gets a little lonely sometimes at the crafting desk, but my sassy miniature schnauzer, Hailey, pops up from time to time. If there really was a fox behind the brand, it would definitely be her.
You say there’s a story behind every piece on your website. What are the tales behind the following?
The inspiration behind this necklace came from offices and edgy street fashion. It is almost conservative and business-like (just like the office-staple-white-collar-top), if not for the brass spikes (for some reason, they remind me of leather jackets), which I think add a bold flavour to it.
I was aiming to create something raw, but at the same time modern. Geology was the inspiration behind this. (An overdose of National Geographic does that to you!). Most of the time, many of the gems and rocks on jewellery are cut up into shapes, which I find a little too processed for me. This one is about going back to the basics, but still being true to the streamlined modern personality of our society. There is beauty in everything, if we can only see.
This one has got to be my favourite in the tribal series. I love quiet simplicity, and the way the amethyst catches the light and shines is mesmerizing! The amethysts I use come from Brazilian mines, and I know it’s a little odd, but I was inspired by the Philosopher’s Stone in Harry Potter when I was making this necklace. I’m a total Potterhead.
I think this one pretty much speaks for itself. This design was inspired by African tribe jewelry. They are normally so colourful and vibrant, but because I prefer neutral and subdued hues, I chose to make this with transparent quartz jagged bars (again, the rawness of it is very captivating), but I’ve maintained the vibrancy by using turquoise beads.
What is good design to you?
A good design is uncluttered, but speaks volumes.
When someone wears a Crane & Fox piece of jewellery, he/she…
… makes my day, because I’ll know that my creations and thoughts mean something to someone, and that it made a difference to their lives, no matter how minuscule.
Crane & Fox is an all-Malaysian store that was founded by Joey Yap, a creator and problem solver at heart who loves soul music, daydreams, and food. You can get Crane & Fox pieces through its official site or from its Etsy store.