When it comes to fashion jewellery, surely a stylish demographic like spunky indie chicks in their early 20s would have plenty of labels to choose from, yes? Not so, according to Fiona Morrison. As she recalls, finding edgy accessories proved challenging during her budget-conscious years at UVic.
“I just kind of noticed as a young female shopper that there weren’t a lot of trendy, sort of badass jewellery brands out there that were also somewhat affordable for a student such as myself,” says Morrison, talking shop with the Straight at her Chinatown studio.
So about halfway through her studies, Morrison started making her own pieces under the umbrella Wolf Circus.
“It was a part-time, fun thing to do on the side while I was in university, and then it grew really fast. Now I’ve just graduated, so I’m still kind of going with it and seeing where it takes me.”
Since turning Wolf Circus into a full-time gig, she has put her degree in business entrepreneurship to work by fine-tuning her company’s focus.
“It’s basically intended to be for the bold, beautiful, brainy, and badass—badass meaning doing what you love to do and doing it ruthlessly,” she explains. “I kind of envision it for the girl who doesn’t wear the pretty heart locket—so each piece has to stand out a little and be a bit of a conversation-starter.”
One design that encapsulates that vision is the Fishbone necklace ($50), which comes either gold-plated, silver-plated, or in black rhodium. This sassy little textured number catches the eye before you even realize the links are in the shape of an aquatic spine, and then—as advertised—it creates dialogue. These beauts come in bracelet form as well ($50).
Morrison has also got more playful pieces in the Wolf Circus collection—which she sells online (wolfcircus.myshopify.com/ ) and at various stores, including Fine Finds (1014 Mainland Street), Sitka (1864 West 4th Avenue), and Lüt Boutique (4219 Main Street). The neon-threaded tassel pendants, for example, come with pyrite stone charms and hang on long shiny black chains ($30)—perfect for the (nongoth) girl wearing all black and looking for a hit of fun colour. These, too, come in bracelet form ($30).
Another cute addition to Wolf Circus is the petite gold Skull Stud Earrings ($24). The unexpected pop of sweetness here is that the hollowed eyes are heart-shaped—adorbs!
In addition to her Wolf Circus line, Morrison recently launched a sister collection called Creatures of Desire, which is carried at Cavalier (217–207 West Hastings Street) and Charlie & Lee (223 Union Street). Everything in this premium collection is more labour-intensive and made with finer materials, using an ancient wax-casting process.
Highlights here include the Bowie ring ($150), a crescent-moon shape that comes in sterling silver and a goldy bronze—a little bit rock ’n’ roll but not in that obvious studded-belt kinda way.
But perhaps Morrison’s quintessentially “badass” piece is her surprisingly elegant, long, triple-spike WC necklace ($55). The pendants here look more like bullets and are flanked by mini bolts—but don’t let the hard-core hardware fool ya.
Morrison explains: “It does look quite pretty on, and from far away, it kind of looks like a nice, neat necklace. So it’s something you could wear to your sister’s wedding, but the reality is you could also shotgun beers in it.”
And if that’s not a telltale sign of a versatile accessory, I don’t know what is.