Does Not Equal ... hmmm.. well they certainly aren't equal to the usual accessories label. Does Not Equal is an androgynous men's jewellery Melbourne based label ( that doesn't restrict you ladies from it!) that create exclusive pieces that are simple and minimal but unique. They began in 2007 and are now also stocked in exclusive boutiques. Unlike expensive men's jewellery labels which you can seek similar quality, Does Not Equal are made in small productions with high quality stainless steal that is durable.

They have even been used on a Levi's Jeans “Black is Back” campaign... see below for the picture of the necklace on the model.

Personally I'm quite a fan of their jewellery... it's silver and simple but I'm sure people will come up and ask my where i got it from because they would never have seen it before. If I had the money at the moment.. I would go and buy so much of their stuff! that chain bracelet in this post. I Love!. .. aye.. if only i was rich..

I also love their blog! they always take very cool photos of their accessories.. it actually makes me jealous.. Check it out HERE

If you like what you see and you want to check out more of their stuff or buy Click here to go to their website


Designer's name?

Does Not Equal is designed by Charisse Black.

Name of label/s and meaning behind it?
When setting up DNE, it was easier for us to identify with what we didn't want our label to be like than what we did want it to be.

Over priced, mass produced offshore pieces was something we didn't feel comfortable with and felt was happening too much within the industry. So, the name Does Not Equal was born.

Your age?
Born in the 80's

Where are you based?
We're currently based in Melbourne, however that may be shifting soon.

Why jewelery and accessories?
It started to fill a void in the male market. Men's jewellery was hard to find, and we saw the need for a well priced, locally produced, exclusive jewellery label within Australia.

We've also always been obsessed and inspired by designing objects which can be held and worn, pieces that tend to go beyond seasons and are worn year-round.

Where/whats are the materials of your jewelery and accessories used and come from?
Currently we are using predominately stainless steel as our material of choice. It is all sourced from within Australia, as well as produced here.

We work with stainless steel because it's hypoallergenic, and is a hard wearing metal which does not tarnish or discolour with wear.

When and how did you decide jewelery and accessories design as your career?
The first point was choosing design as a career, from there it snowballed and lead into jewellery and accessories. As any designer or creative person knows, there is something extremely rewarding in seeing your idea turn into a physical piece which is then seen worn by someone passing in the street.

Were you always a fashionable person?
For some reason I can't associate with the word fashionable. 'Fashionable' tends to define someone who follows social/world trends and adapts their look, making a statement. I don't know, it seems like too much of a practiced effort to be 'fashionable'.

What was the process/ how did you start beginning your label?
It was a long process. It began slowly in 2007, researching the market, sourcing materials, speaking to other people in the industry. We're still doing all of that now actually, it never ends.

To understand your customers and the needs within the market you really need to stay in touch and not take things for granted. A lot of labels think that their customer remains the same year after year, but they are really constantly evolving and changing.

Tips for aspiring designers, like me?
Understand the business side of things as much as possible. Design only takes up 10% of all of your time.

Did you have any education in jewelery and accessories design? if so, where? if not, how did you learn the technical aspects?
Designer Charisse Black studied a Bachelor of Design at RMIT University, this gave the foundations of designing accessories. The technical aspects were learned along the way, and from a fantastic team of people who we work closely with in production and refining ideas to final pieces.

How do you approach your designs and what inspires you?
Our inspiration comes from every corner. We're constantly sourcing images, products, packaging, colours, books, anything that makes our eyes light up. At some point we find that the pinnacle source of inspiration will hit us in the chest and we'll know that that's what the collection needs to be built around.

What are your aesthetics?
We have a fairly minimal aesthetic. We would always prefer to take something away than add something extra. We admire Scandinavian style, the simple beauty of it.

The fashion industry is so competitive, how do you keep you label sustainable?
It's the competitiveness that keeps everything interesting. The labels that are doing things right are the ones who stick around.

How is your label unique from others in Australia?
Well the most important reason is we're proudly 100% Australian Made. Unfortunately that's unique because majority of the industry takes their business offshore.

Favourite designer/s and why?
Labels like Surface to Air, Acne, Resterods, A.P.C, Fifth Avenue Shoe Repair.
They are the leaders in what they do. They're faultless.

For people who don't know your label, how would you describe it in a sentence?
DNE's the quiet label, it's just waiting for you to discover it for yourself. ≠

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