We asked John Calleija about his love affair with Italy, and the area from where he draws inspiration in his jewellery design, plus his top 3 recommendations for visiting this beautiful country.
JC: There is something about Europe that continues to inspire me year after year. I have fond memories from my childhood hearing my Maltese father and Italian mother talking about their homelands: their family, friends and life-long memories. I always felt an affinity with Malta and Italy, even though I was born in Australia, and every year try to visit the beautiful hills of Tuscany with my wife Noni and daughter Jade-Monet. When I am in my country of origin, I feel a certain type of ease and happiness, a sense of belonging, and connection to the land and its people.
I find myself constantly inspired by the incredible surroundings so carry my sketchbook with me for those lightbulb moments when a jewellery design spills out onto the paper. The designs usually end up in the hands of our Master Craftsmen in the workshop, just like the Calleija Couture 'Florentine' ring, designed while I was on a family vacation in Italy.
You too will be inspired by this amazing country. My top three recommendations must surely be to immerse yourself into all apsects of Italy, or any country you might be visiting -- particularly the culture, the food and Italian landscape, especially its people -- all elements combined contribute to the essence of Italy.
Buone vacanze (Happy holidays!)
'Florentine' a briliant 3.02ct Oval White Diamond Ring, inspired by the beauty of Italy