Ice cool: meet your essential heatwave accessory

Pile on some serious ice in this playful necklace from Laila El Mehelmy and Golem

Ice cool: meet your essential heatwave accessory
(Image credit: Guillaume Blondiau)

Stay cool, in all senses of the word, with a necklace made from graphic facets of ice. The ‘ooOoooOoooOh la l’ice’ necklace, which comes with its own custom-made silicone tray, can be frozen when the mood takes you or simply worn as a silver beaded necklace.

The brainchild of Amsterdam-based art jeweller Laila El Mehelmy and architecture, art and design studio Golem, the necklace can be enjoyed for half an hour before returning to its liquid state, making it the perfect accessory for a hot and sticky night out on the tiles.

Ice necklace by Laila El Mehelmy and Golem

(Image credit: Guillaume Blondiau )

‘The idea came to us during a hot 24-hour party in Club Der Visionaere, Berlin, during one of the hottest heat waves Germany has ever experienced,’ Mehelmy says. ‘In some kind of survival move, party people started to grab ice cubes from the freezers and rub each other with them. At a time when water sources are being privatised and water scarcity is striking all countries across the globe, water is turning from an overlooked commodity into one of the most sought-after luxury goods. That’s how we got the idea to make a piece of jewellery with solid water gems instead of what rappers call “ice”: diamonds.’

The prototype for the tray began as a 3D concept, with Ariel Claudet of Golem sending his designs from Paris to Mehelmy in Amsterdam, who would digitally laser-cut and cast the moulds. The playful result gives wearers a sense of control usually lacking in jewellery.

Ice cool: meet your essential heatwave accessory

(Image credit: Guillaume Blondiau )

‘There is a choreography to it,’ Mehelmy adds. ‘We like the idea of the wearer appropriating the piece. As designers, we are very happy to put something out there and see its potential grow with what people make of it, from a techno party to a fancy dinner. It adds different dimensions to the work, and that’s what makes it exciting for us.’

With or without ice, the necklace makes for a fun accessory. ‘When worn as a simple solid silver necklace, the larger beads mark where a water gem once stood and where a new one will one day solidify again. It was important to us that when not frozen it is still a beautiful piece. The modularity of the piece. introduced by the fact that the clasp is smaller than the large beads, allows one to choose how to wear it.’

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Hannah Silver joined Wallpaper* in 2019 to work on watches and jewellery. Now, as well as her role as watches and jewellery editor, she writes widely across all areas including on art, architecture, fashion and design. As well as offbeat design trends and in-depth profiles, Hannah is interested in the quirks of what makes for a digital success story.

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