Founder Story: Kinks Lab

The Design Journey of Kinks Lab: From Architecture to Unorthodox Jewelry

Before they started their own jewelry brand Kinks Lab, co-founders Andrea Lau and Sam Chan were in a completely different field, going through the motions of designing other physical structures: buildings. But as working architects in a populated city in Hong Kong, they both found the design and construction of multiple skyscrapers monotonous and uninspiring. While they no longer desired to design tall buildings all based on the same prototypes, the duo discovered a passion and a desire to challenge the boundaries of self-adornment, which led them to establishing their jewelry brand in 2021.

“At Kinks Lab, we design the extreme opposite to buildings,” say Lau and Chan. “Every jewelry piece is organic and blobby in shape, which is the fantasy world we pursued, and it represents who we are as designers.”

With their shared architectural background, Lau and Chan use their deep knowledge of spatial design to explore the interplay between form, function, and the human experience at Kinks Lab. Inspired by “blobitecture”, an architectural style characterized by organic, amoeba-like forms, the designers have successfully transitioned from rigid architectural prototypes to jewelry with fluid, organic shapes that epitomize their vision of self-expression.


Kinks Lab

Innovative fusion of tradition and technology

At the heart of Kinks Lab’s innovative approach lies the seamless integration of traditional goldsmith techniques with cutting-edge 3D modeling and technology. And with their experience in creating architectural models, Lau and Chan were able to translate their modeling skills into crating their jewelry designs.

“When we were learning the basics, in particular wax carving, we experienced some limitations in achieving crazy forms that are also strong in dimensionality,” they say. “From there, we use the 3D modeling we practiced everyday in architecture to create jewelry. While we create innovative solutions in enhancing three-dimensionality through digital devices, we still hope to bridge the missing link between technology and traditional craftsmanship.”

Thus, the combination of both is represented in the brand’s name. “‘Kinks’ means the imperfections of traditional craftsmanship, and ‘Lab’ represents the digital and experimental part of the brand.”


Crafting rebellion and embracing unorthodox elegance

Central to Kinks Lab’s design philosophy is the notion of challenging the conventional definition of wearability. “We are inspired by small details that we come across everyday”, say Lau and Chan. “When we design, we try to take the ‘one design, infinite styles’ approach”.

Each piece is meticulously crafted to embody creative wearability, where one design unlocks infinite styling possibilities. Drawing inspiration from surreal utopian drawings and installations, Kinks Lab infuses each creation with unorthodox touches – an invitation to embrace rebellion and self-expression.

“We love to integrate mechanisms and details from different gadgets into jewelry, which always leads to interesting outcomes”, the designers say. “In any case, our design has always stuck around with the brand value of ‘crafting rebellion, wearing unorthodox elegance’”.

How does the design journey at Kinks Lab begin? According to Lau and Chan, often with a deep dive into intriguing subjects and unexplored realms. “Most of the time, we start with a topic that intrigues us, sometimes a substance we had no knowledge about, for instance, a soirée in the Georgian period,” the duo say, which is where the latest collection, Soirée ’24, gets its name.

“In our two previous collections, we based pieces on the Georgian era. We researched the outfits and evening jewelry people wear to attend the event, the setting of a soirée, the ambience and so on,” Lau and Chan say.

“We extract elements to recreate with our contemporary take and infuse our DNA into the design. We then 3D model the pieces and trial test with 3D printing before sample production by our silversmiths,” they continue. “We love to create pieces that are unconventional in shapes, therefore, the testing process usually involves a lot of back-and-forth to fine tune into the finished piece.”


Kinks Lab Soirée ’24   Kinks Lab Soirée ’24


Navigating unique challenges

While the worlds of jewelry and architecture share inherent similarities, the scale presents a unique challenge for Kinks Lab. Yet, amidst the challenges lie opportunities for collaboration, as Kinks Lab eagerly welcomes partnerships with artists and designers across diverse disciplines. Collaborations serve as catalysts for creative exploration, igniting sparks of innovation and pushing the boundaries of artistic expression.

Looking ahead, Kinks Lab envisions a future where creative wearability reigns supreme on international platforms. As sustainability takes center stage in the fashion landscape, Kinks Lab champions a paradigm shift towards a sustainable approach to self-adornment. With aspirations to become synonymous with creative wearability, Kinks Lab aims to spark conversations and inspire aesthetic exploration among its community of patrons.

Fostering community and aesthetic exploration

In fostering a sense of shared aesthetic exploration, Kinks Lab collaborates with stylists to showcase diverse styling potentials of its pieces. By offering glimpses into the design concepts and ethos behind each creation, Kinks Lab invites its community to embark on a journey of aesthetic discovery, forging deeper connections with the brand and its shared aesthetic vision. As Kinks Lab continues to defy conventions, push boundaries, and craft rebellious masterpieces, it invites individuals to join its quest for unorthodox elegance—a journey where creativity knows no bounds, and self-expression reigns supreme.


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