Jochen Leën and York Prinz zu Schaumburg-Lippe
Without the simple request for a lighter, the incredible collaboration between jewellery designer to the stars, Jochen Leën and York Prinz zu Schaumburg-Lippe might never have happened. In conversation with LIFE IN STYLE, the two discuss the day they met, their budding friendship and the resulting collaboration.
‘I was invited to an art varnishing day on anestate with lots of horses’, Jochen remembers. ‘Iwent outside to have a cigarette and suddenly avery distinguished man approached me. He askedme if I had a lighter, and that is how we got talkingand ended up discussing each other’s occupations.He told me that he made watches with a link tohis family history. When he heard that I mostly workwith rare, coloured gemstones, he was veryinterested, he started to ask questions and saidthat he wanted to design his own jewellery line.’
That one conversation led to the duo designing a number of rings together with the Y of York as a striking detail. Schaumburg-Lippe explains, ‘Jochen has much expertise in the field of exclusive gemstones and he knows exactly how they have to be set. That immediately appealed to me. On a personal level too, we just clicked.’
Jochen Leën, who famously made a ring for American superstar Alicia Keys, was impressed by his partner’s remarkable watches inspired by his family’s rich history. ‘There will soon be a special display at Domaine La Butte aux Bois showcasing a number of models.’ He explains, ‘He is a man of the world and has an eye for beauty. He lives out of his suitcase, so to speak, and travels just as easily to New York or Hong Kong as to Bonn. His ideas inspire me to create new designs.’
Read the full interview with Jochen Leën and York Prinz zu Schaumburg-Lippe in our latest issue of LIFE IN STYLE.