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In an interview with LifestyleAsia, MoonTree Jewelry brand founders and sibling team Vera and Sophie discuss where their fascination with jewelry began and more.

When asked how they first got into jewelry design, Vera said, "My dad has been in the jewelry business for as long as I remember; he was a gemologist. I grew up seeing my dad in the business and my mum helping him out with it — from sourcing to polishing gems, and so forth. There was also one point where my dad was even designing the jewelry himself. 

"In short, I grew up with this environment. I remember being young with my sister Sophie, running around our dad’s office (which was a home office) playing around with the pearls and the gemstones in the room. Our dad also encouraged us from a very young age to learn how to earn money for ourselves, so he would order us to cut the gems, to separate the colors of those gems into light to dark. We grew up in that environment, but if you were to ask us why we didn’t do this sooner, I think it was just that feeling of when your family tells you to do something, you don’t want to do it [laughs]."

"Our dad was able to pick up one simple gem, tell a story about that gem, and make it worth tens of millions of baht. He was famous among the industry because of these stories. He would go to these events, and spend hours telling stories about this one simple gem up to the point that everyone there would be willing to purchase it, at whatever cost," added Sophie. "He was a great storyteller, and he didn’t make anything up. Our dad was such a great researcher and storyteller, so we grew up with all these stories he told us, and he also encouraged us to start collecting jewelry, pearls, and gems in a box – we had all kinds of those. These flashbacks and memories are what me and my sister share and have in common, in terms of the sentimental value and meaning behind our jewelry brand. We directly absorbed that from our dad."

When asked what both her and her sister were pursuing before jewelry, Vera said, "My sister and I enrolled in the same program at the the Faculty of Communication Arts at Chulalongkorn University. When I was a freshman, Sophie was the senior, and we basically were just following each others’ footsteps at that point. Then we both went to study abroad for our Master degrees in New York, where our dad was originally from. Our father actually passed away when we were quite young, I was just 16 at the time, and Sophie 18. So everything that we did following that, we always carried our father within us. We wanted to go to New York because that was where he was from and we wanted to see how life was like living there.

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"When I came back [to Bangkok], I went back to advertising at Unilever, Sophie was also back doing the same thing, but she was more focused and proficient in the areas of fashion. Growing up, Sophie loved to design, while I loved to collect fabrics, arts, and so forth – so there’s always been a complementary value in both of our pursuits. Sophie and I really went our separate ways. There was one point where Sophie would start appearing in advertisements, so we were very involved in the advertising industry at one point. We both fell in love with that world also – advertising and marketing."

Information originally sourced from LifestyleAsia.