Jewelry that doubles as a perfume vial, or a perfume vial that doubles as jewelry. Any way you look at it, you’ll find that Monolito’s lightweight geometric pieces are the perfect merger of practicality, style and craftsmanship. The idea dates back to ancient times, when Egyptians developed adornments that incorporated scents. Andrea Vargas Dieppa’s modern take on this custom consists of vials that can be worn as necklaces or rings and which are filled with a bespoke fragrance; when opened, a small applicator allows you to dab it on your skin. The scent was created by master perfumer Barnabé Fillion —who’s also worked with Comme des Garçons, Paul Smith and Aesop— and fuses juniper and jasmine with a base of myrrh and suede.
Dieppa’s square and sphere-shaped sculptures are inspired by the contrasting concepts of the masculine and the feminine, as well as by pre-Columbian depictions of Venus. Crafted by experienced silversmith artisans in Dieppa’s native Colombia, they are also available in regular perfume bottle size —though there’s certainly nothing regular about these miniature works of art. The designer also partners with local carvers and carpenters to develop her homeware line. Because Monolito’s mirrors, tables and stools are handcrafted out of salvaged cedar wood or the native gusanillo tree, every piece is unique and bears the marks of the artisan who developed it.
Monolito celebrates traditional craftsmanship while also creating pieces for a sustainable future. The perfume vials are made from reclaimed materials, mainly alpaca silver, which is a metal alloy composed of copper, zinc and nickel. Alpaca silver is extremely durable, does not rust, and does not need to be coated to protect its silver-grey tone. The Monolito team has also mastered the art of melting down recycled gold to use for the plating of select styles.
For us, even the smallest details count in terms of design and the social and environmental impact each object holds. From manufacturing to packaging, our idea is to leave the smallest footprint.
— Andrea Vargas Dieppa, founder