When fashion magazines round up what they call “statement pieces,” they generally turn to hefty ornaments of gleaming gems and colorful baubles. Staka, a young design duo, takes a very different approach, shaping leather into bold neck accessories inspired by Iceland’s most well-known saga, Brennu-Njáls, a long tale of blood feuds dating back to the 10th and 11th centuries.
María Kristín Jónsdóttir and Bylgja Rún Svansdóttir, both recent product design grads from the Iceland Academy of the Arts, studied the saga in high school. After revising the story and researching their national heritage, they spun their own narrative about a tribe living in rural Iceland: “We visualized what they looked like, what they wore to identify themselves, and what materials they used and how, they tell Co.Design. “From that vision, we created accessories that they theoretically could have made themselves using material and craftsmanship that existed at the time.”
The unisex pieces are based on an amalgamation of Brennu-Njáls characters, even though some people might be tempted to match them to individual roles. “One of the pleasant reactions to Staka that we didn’t foresee is that people start reviewing the saga and imaging which piece certain characters would have worn and why.” The collection is made in Iceland, mostly by Jónsdóttir’s and Svansdóttir’s own hands.