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Jeweller Brent Paye makes playful pendants inspired by basketball and flowerbeds

Brent talks his jewellery line 27mollys, Nigo’s chain, and making rings like LeBron.

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We’ve been watching New Zealand jewellery line 27mollys for a minute now. The brainchild of NZ designer Brent Paye, the brand does fresh, playful silver pieces that riff on basketball and flowerbeds. Brent’s first collection, ‘Slippery’, was all about squiggles and fluid lines. His second collection ‘Love and Basketball’—well, that one kinda explains itself. “The reason I started making jewellery is because couldn’t afford to buy things I liked,” Brent told over the web from Wellington “so instead I made them for myself.”

Every time we’re looking at our feeds and a new 27mollys earring or pendant pops up, we become a little more obsessed. It’s only right we share. Here, we chat with Brent about making jewellery for everyone, his last purchases, and whose jewellery stash he’d raid if given the chance.

Hey Brent. Nice to talk. We really love your work over here. I wanted to start by asking about the last piece of jewellery you bought was. What made you fall in love with it?
The last piece of jewellery I bought was a fake watch from an op-shop. I loved it because it had a bezel all around the face which made it look bossy. Haven’t worn it in a minute because it started discolouring, lol.

So if you could only shop at a few jewellery stores—on and offline—for the rest of your life, which shops would you pick?
I have two off top: Popular Jewellery NYC and Sans Jewellery WGTN. They’re on opposite sides of the world, but they’re both small family run businesses that have been around since the 80s. Shit feels like you’re in a time machine. I fuck with it.

I’ve become really invested in YouTubing videos of stained glass makers and jewellers while they’re soldering. The precision involved is insane to me. Which 27mollys pieces are particularly difficult to create?
Shoutout to YouTube for always holding it down. There are definitely pieces that take longer to make, like the details on the XX Court Ring and the Bball Pendant but people love them. The more I do the faster I go, kinda like LeBron.

I read that hip-hop got you into jewellery. Who do you think has the best chains in modern day hip-hop? Lil Uzi Vert’s Marilyn Manson chain is a work of art…
Tyler the Creator’s jewellery is beautiful. He has a big flower piece. Shit made me cry the first time I saw it on the internet.

What are your top five most recently played artists on Spotify? Do you listen to a lot of music while you create?
Yes, I listen to music all the time while making. It keeps me going. Wizkid, Mr Eazi, Davido… all the good stuff from Africa. Can’t forget the baby making RnB anthems like Jeremih, Chris Brown, Ty$, and Jayla Darden.

If you could raid anyone’s jewellery cabinet, who’s would it be?
Hah! It would have to Nigo, the creator of Bape. Definitely racking the chains and watches. Go Google Nigo’s jewellery, shit’s crazy.

See more from 27mollys on Instagram, and at the webstore.

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