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Momoko Hatano

Momoko Hatano

From the outside looking in, it seems that every element of Momoko Hatano’s life is worthy of her thorough consideration. The adjectives she uses to describe the work of her contemporaries, the shade of her lipstick, her words of advice – all of these things seem to be the result of even-handed deliberation and care.   

The result is a series of dualities.  Momoko Hatano is elegant yet fierce.  Classic yet badass.  Understated yet somehow unmissable. 

And her work is exactly the same.

Born in Fukushima and raised in Sydney via New York, Momoko Hatano is the rarest breed of artist: a savvy one. 

After graduating from COFA with a major in drawing and painting, Momoko landed a job at one of Australia’s most iconic design houses as a jewellery maker – despite having only dabbled in the medium at art school.  She was hired on the back of her drawing talent, and eventually rose to become head of silver for the jewellery department.

“My jewellery training was really on the job,” explains Momoko. “I had a really great manager / mentor who taught me everything from soldering, polishing, carving and loads of fabrication skills.”

Like all great entrepreneurial stories, her label began because her creativity couldn’t be suppressed.  When she began experimenting, moulding found objects and making statement pieces for fun, people started asking where they could buy her pieces, and Momoko Hatano Jewellery was born.

While her early collections were characterized by conceptual pieces and mini-sculptures (“My first ever collection was all about horses,” Momoko says), her newest collection riffs on the crisp white shirt of the jewellery world: the hoop earring.

“The hoop earring is a very historic form of jewellery - it has a dense cultural background, worn by both men and women from all countries, tribes and religions for centuries,” Momoko explains.

Her modern reinterpretations of the hoop come in the form of bracelets and necklaces made from slender links of sterling silver, rings that appear to float on the hand, fluid drop earrings made from circles encircling circles, and, of course, warped hoop earrings that Dali would be proud of.

Entirely made by hand, her collection champions the jewellery’s mechanics, showcasing links and connections rather than hiding them, as modern convention dictates. 

“I think the most difficult part of this collection is also its strength - the fact that it is hand fabricated,” says Momoko.  “The process is very repetitive so it takes a lot of time and patience.”

While this is a departure from previous, bolder collections, this is by no means an aesthetic that will be forever associated with her label.

“The one thing that I keep re-learning about jewellery is that it is an ancient form of trade. And because of this rich history there are endless possibilities of what you can do and learn. You can live a hundred life times and still not learn everything.”


Momoko Hatano’s Fine Connection collection is available now.