While we love all kinds of shopping, there's really nothing better than finding a truly unique piece. When we're on the hunt for just such a piece, we always head straight to Lyppens, one of the most fantastic places for jewellery in the country. Talk about a gem! Whether we're digging for a modern piece or an antique treasure, we rarely leave Lyppens empty-handed. The sparkling owners of Lyppens, Joost & Willemijn, took the time to chat with us about all things jewellery. Keep reading to find out whether all that glitters is really gold or not.
You might have heard the good news: we're having a baby! Well, a book baby, that is. After years of bringing you the best of the best of travel tips on the web, we decided to take pen (or printing press) to page and bring you an amazing, practical, beautiful guidebook to the city that is nearest & dearest to our heart. All with the help of our amazing publisher MENDO. Which city is that, you ask? Why, Amsterdam of course! So now it's time for the countdown to begin.
As our publishing date grows ever closer, we want to give you some sneak peeks into what's to come to get you as excited as we are. Our book is nothing without the incredible shops, restaurants, bars & businesses we love, so it's important to us that you get to know them a bit as well. That's why, until the launch of our book, we are going to be bringing you interviews with the inspiring founders of some of our very favourite spots.
gloobles: Hi Joost! Thanks for chatting with us, particularly during these crazy times. Can you tell us Lyppens' origin story?
Joost: In 1959, my parents opened the shop in the Langebrugsteeg. My father displayed his jewellery collection on orange boxes from the greengrocer across the street. His collection consisted of seven rings. In the 21st century, Lyppens is the largest jewellery store in the country. Not in in square metres, but for sure in its enormous collection of modern, vintage & antique pieces of jewellery!
gloobles: You guys really have just about anything a person could want. Can you walk us through a typical day at Lyppens?
Joost: The store opens at nine o'clock in the morning. The first customers are browsing the collection or bringing their broken jewels for restoration. The staff is busy filling all the windows with the jewels. On a Saturday, it is like waiting at your favourite bakery for your freshly baked loaf of bread. The shop boasts a bustling atmosphere with customers crowding the counter and staff flying up & down the steep, narrow stairs in search of that special something. At 16:45, when the last client has left & all the jewels are back in the safe, the staff takes a seat & enjoys a good glass of wine & a bitterbal - it’s the weekend!
gloobles: A very well-deserved glass of wine, we'd say. We know you took over from your parents & in-laws in 1998. When you did, what were your visions for the shop?
Joost: The shop continues to grow, and the workshop moves one floor up to the former family living room. We are modernising the business but continuing to value the family traditions highly. Also the collection changes. Diamond engagement rings & vintage pieces of signed jewellery are playing a more & more important role.
gloobles: That makes sense. Tastes change, so it's great you guys adapt. Is the neighbourhood significant for you? How about the building?
Joost: The building & the alley are the keystones of the business. All four of my parents' sons were born in the building, and the shop is still a thriving business in the house were it literally all began. The neighbourhood is also called ‘the jewellery quarter’. From the seventeenth century onwards, goldsmiths & jewellery shops were located in this area. Nowadays, it’s the heart of Amsterdam’s city centre with Dam square & the brand new subway on its doorstep.
gloobles: The building is truly your family's. That's really special in this day & age. Describe your favourite piece of jewellery. Why do you love it?
Joost: I don’t have a favourite piece of jewellery, but I do have a favourite style! Belle Epoque jewellery, a very delicate style from around 1900 – 1910 which is characterised by the use of platinum & diamonds, lightweight decorations, garlands, bows & lace patterns.
gloobles: Sounds gorgeous. What do your engagement ring & wedding ring look like?
Joost: Willemijn's engagement ring is a very classical yellow gold solitaire ring with a brilliant cut diamond flanked by two baguette cut diamonds. Our wedding rings are both very traditional yellow gold plain rings
gloobles: You can't go wrong with classic. Who or what inspires you?
Joost: The people who are innovative, experimental & daring in the field of jewellery like the 20th century designers David Webb & Paloma Picasso are people who inspire me.
gloobles: Do you have a favourite brand of jewellery?
Joost: I have two: Buccellati and van Cleef & Arpels