Sofia Ordaz, the designer of the Mexican jewelry brand Serpentine, focuses her brand on life’s mysticism. Drawing inspiration from the natural and organic elements of life, Ordaz has created a jewelry line that asks more questions than it answers. She told LATINA, “My inspiration has always been magic and the occult. I have a lot of tangible references of art that I like and movements in history that inspire me, but that wasn’t the starting point [for Serpentine]. The starting point was the mystery of life.” Ordaz produces her pieces in Mexico, where she’s from, working closely with artisans to craft micro-batches of her designs.
After a personal health event forced her to pivot from producing ready-made collections to taking exclusively custom orders, Ordaz’s connection to her practice has become even closer. She explained, “The rhythm in my life went from speed to stop. The only things I’m working on right now are customs because they allow me to work at a different pace. Customs allow me to stay creative and work at a more sustainable pace.”
Ordaz has never been keen on large-scale production anyway, as she isn’t interested in promoting over-consumption. To her, jewelry is a precious accessory to life, not a necessity. Her perspective is that you don’t need jewelry, “you get jewelry once everything else in your life is covered.” Serpentine is more concerned with the timelessness of the accessory, and how each piece impacts the person wearing it.
One of Serpentine’s signature pieces is a large beaded necklace made in several variations of rare stones. The construction is striking — large, planetary spheres of afghan lapis lazuli, nephrite, and orange calcite, bound by silver tubing, sitting stoically on the wearer’s collarbone. These pieces carry a subtle weight and cool temperature to them, encouraging calm and body awareness. “People often mention that when they wear a necklace of mine, they become more aware of their posture. I believe that anything that makes you be more aware, at least for a few minutes in your day, will definitely have a positive impact on your life.” Images courtesy of Serpentine.
On the topic of awareness, Ordaz recently collaborated with visual artist and director Ximena Prieto to create a concept film centered on the practice of braiding hair. The film, described as an ode to “the potency and resilience in subtlety,” features custom Serpentine pieces being delicately placed on hair and woven into braids.
Recalling her inspiration for the film, Prieto shared, “Sofía has guided me to see the intimate and often playful relationship between what we seek and what we have yet to find language for. Our conversations brought me to moments when my mother would caress and begin to braid my hair. It was as if she expanded the hour as she braided, unbraided, and braided anew, describing the most specific details of her dream, her grandmother’s childhood memories, or myths from the island where her mother was born.”
Ordaz described the joy of creating this project with Prieto, saying “I think at some point when you are a creator, you sort of get absorbed by the production itself. For me, that’s where I get lost. I have to be grounding myself all the time, walking with my bare feet on the ground, because I need to know where I am. So [making this film together] was another way to ground myself and to remember why I’m doing everything. The intention was to join forces [with Prieto], stop for a minute, and make something beautiful and fun.”
You can watch the full film below.
Trenzando 88, A piece for Serpentine. Written and Directed by Ximena Prieto. Featuring Sofía Ordaz, Lucrezia de Fazio, and Lorenza Clapp wearing Serpentine pieces Lupa, Mundo, Flor No. 1, & Custom Culebras
For inquiries or to order custom pieces, visit Serpentine’s website.