This season, the Dubai-based designer dives into jewelry with glittering pieces that could have been plucked from the earth.
Acclaimed Filipino designer Michael Cinco is known for his fantastical couture and bridal gowns, often inspired by Old Hollywood glamour and fairy-tale aspirations. Delicate embroidery, intricate hand-embellishments, and voluminous silhouettes make the designer’s signature. Over his decade-long career, he has offered haute couture, bridalwear, and ready-to-wear lines for men and women. As he expands his world to jewelry, the designer pares back and returns to nature.
Cinco tells Vogue Philippines, “We are launching with these kinds of new embroideries which are inspired by nature, so there are a lot of floral inspirations with the designs.”
He decided to start a jewelry line to meet the many demands of his clients. “I met with some of our investors and business partners from Sri Lanka, and they asked me if I was interested in doing a couture jewelry line for a collection,” he recounts. “So I told them, ‘Why not just open a business for jewelry for brides and special occasions?’ So that’s how it all started.”
Inspired by the organic shapes that one might find in nature, each piece in the collection neatly curves over the contours of the body. Cinco uses raw diamonds and special gemstones, including amethysts and emeralds, set in gold and silver metals. Yara Doughman, the brand’s Marketing Manager, tells Vogue Philippines that the designs are kept minimalistic to add flair to any ensemble rather than act as the centerpiece.
“You can have these minimal designs, but, at the same time, you can also have these extravagant gemstones that make you stand out [during] any occasion,” Doughman says. “We’re focusing on having high-end jewelry that you don’t see everywhere. You have these unique stones that are very uniquely crafted.”
Cinco’s star-studded clientele goes as far as Beyoncé, Rihanna, and Naomi Campbell to Indian and Arab royalty, but he and Doughman say their target audience is anyone looking to elevate their look.
“Everything we create, we want women to feel empowered. This is what Michael preaches. In all his collections, he wants to make women feel empowered when they wear a piece. He wants them to feel confident in [the pieces],” Doughman said. “Every piece was created in a way that whoever wears them, they feel empowered and like she can [take on] the whole world.”
Michael adds, laughing, “The woman wearing Michael Cinco wants to look expensive and classy.”
For Cinco, the language of luxury is a mélange of vibrant gemstones set in metals curved to naturalistic forms—effortless, minimal, easy.