Text and design: Hélène Lahalle - Photographs: Marine Boutron
From an immaculate Haussmannian flat next to the Eiffel Tower, the Franco-Greek Elise Tsikis, creator of the eponymous jewellery label, has created a welcoming and sunny bubble, in her own image. An elegant cocoon with muted colours where the laughter of her daughter Lyha can be heard.
To establish herself in the Parisian capital, which she admits to being madly in love with, Elise chose the Gros-Caillou district, seduced by its quiet streets and the proximity of the Eiffel Tower: "I wanted a typical Haussmann-style apartment, with creaking parquet floors, mouldings and a fireplace, but also a clear view. Initially, I was looking in the 6th arrondissement, but one day when I was going to visit rue de Grenelle, I crossed the 7th and the pedestrianised rue Cler and fell in love with it. Two days later, I saw an ad for a fourth floor with a view of the Eiffel Tower. I went out of my way to visit this flat and I never left it. Elise quickly made it her own:"The layout was very well thought out, and I immediately saw how I could add my own touch without doing a lot of work, just a bit of painting and a few adjustments. I opened up some doors to open up certain rooms and put some colour on the walls. Elise chose muted colours with a matt finish because of the hint of black they contain, which gives them a vintage feel. She loves the depth of these comforting tones, which make her feel like she's in a warm, enveloping cocoon. "In the kitchen, I put in a credenza and changed the fronts of the doors, to which I added ceramic handles. And finally, I fitted a large dressing room in the bedroom, hidden behind a set of coloured curtains."
Created six years ago, the brand has a boutique and a workshop, from which Elise's jewellery comes out, whose content and texture also have to do with her Greek roots: "I'm not attracted by jewellery that is too smooth. I like them to be grainy, imperfect, asymmetrical, to have rough edges. I think it has something to do with the rough side of Greece, the whitewashed facades, the craftsmanship." For this instinctive woman with a heightened sensitivity, the choice to make jewellery was an obvious one, attracted by the sensory approach inherent in their making. Self-taught, Elise builds and sculpts her collections in an organic and artisanal way without drawing them beforehand, eager to work with materials and colours that she sees evolve before her eyes thanks to the intelligence of the hand.
Emotions as a guide
A hand guided by her multiple inspirations, and by her emotions, always, just like the decoration of her flat: "I like to mix more raw things. I like the contrast between modern things, like the illustrations by Léa Maupetit framed in the kitchen, and older pieces or those brought back from a trip. For objects, I go by my heart and then I keep them for years! I hunt for old things but I can also buy new things, like my little mosaic table that I love. I work on envy." And if this craftswoman of beauty loves decoration, she admits that she doesn't attach too much importance to objects, whose aesthetics she appreciates, but to which she is not attached: "Besides, I'm very clumsy, so I break a lot of things! I attach more importance to people and moments in life than to objects...". On the other hand, she pays a lot of attention to the lighting, which goes hand in hand with the warm atmosphere that is dear to her: " I like people to feel good in my home. I like indirect and corner lights, having several different sources of intensity, and I love string lights for their childlike and joyful side."
And when we finally ask her about the origin of the abstract paintings in the flat, we learn that it is Elise herself who takes up painting I often paint on Sundays, when Lyha is at her father's. I work with matter and shades, volumes and colours. I work with matter and nuances, volumes and light. I start with very light colours to which I add subtle touches of colour. Further proof, if any were needed, that when it comes to creativity, Elise definitely has the touch.