Captivated by the glamorous gems on his grandmother's dressing table, designer Anton Heunis’ passion for dramatic costume jewelry started early. After training as a gold- and silversmith, he launched his eponymous label in 2004. Today, he has not only garnered an impressive list of clients, he has also collaborated with some very important designers, including Roberto Cavalli and Emanuel Ungaro—big fans of his boldly colorful ‘modern vintage’ style. Each of Heunis’ opulent creations is handmade with love at his Madrid studio, where we caught up with him to reflect on his ten stellar years in business.
The quality and variety of shapes, sizes and shades make Swarovski crystals a dream material.
When I came to Spain twelve years ago, I never thought I’d end up falling in love with the country the way I have. I’m a native South African, but I’ve adopted Spain with all my heart.
My dream was to create gorgeous objects to make the wearer feel beautiful. I didn’t think in terms of numbers. You can never relax and say, “I’ve made it”. It’s important to look back and enjoy your successes, but always have future goals and projects in mind.
‘Modern Vintage’ is part of my design aesthetic. I don’t consciously think about it that way—it just seems to translate organically into everything I do. Even when I make something totally up to date, there’s always that retro element to my designs.
The head of Fine Arts at university in South Africa told us to go out and absorb every aspect of life. I live by that. I love cinema, cooking, theater, architecture, reading… I try never to get bored and also not to think too much about where inspiration comes from—just act on it when it happens.
When I started working with Swarovski, a whole new world opened up to me—suddenly gemstones in every hue were available, and I could use stones in the way a painter uses color. The quality and variety of shapes, sizes and shades make them a dream material.
With the help of my partner Mirko [Schwarzer] and a wonderful team, we’ve grown the business a lot over the past few years. The idea now is to create different products and expand into challenging markets, like China. The possibilities are endless…
In celebration of his 10th anniversary, Anton Heunis has created a special collection for glamour fans, check it out here!