When Tana Chung was in university studying fashion and product design, an era of fortuitous “randomness” when you could still be discovered on the street, she was asked to front a cable TV show. She loved everything about it except that she had to wear sponsored outfits. She thus began designing her own accessories to break free from this straitjacket of imposed style. Encouraged to launch her own brand but saddled with a totally unpronounceable Korean name, she coined the name “Tana” which combines the words for “difference” (tan) and “beauty” (na).
Chung’s jewels are the product of sketching, rather than abstract external references like travel or art. Her aim is to “give people a bright, festive feeling. If my jewelry makes their face more pretty and bright, I feel really happy.” To that end, she sketches a form hundreds of times, cuts it out from her notebook and places it against her face to determine if it is genuinely harmonious. While always keeping true to her goal of creating “fun and differentiated” jewelry, Chung has no interest in the outlandish. Rather, her thoroughly original jewels are vivid sparks of girlish imagination – daring to be different with a scale and piquancy which echo her name – “Difference” plus “Beauty”.
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