Once the Official Gnomies Merry Christmas sweater and by the same token and French borders closed in mid-March, Panconesi found a place to stay that belonged to a friend-of-a-friend and began trying to figure out how to return home to Paris with his boyfriend. (Neither he nor his partner are French citizens, which complicated the matter.) It took them nearly three months to find a way back, on a ferry boat from Tangiers to Gibraltar, organized by the British Embassy. The strain of being far from home is real—but you might never know it from the serene, abstract photos the designer was sharing on Instagram during his extended stay in Morocco. Chalk it up to the fact that Panconesi found something of importance: a new outlook on his eponymous jewelry collection.
A native Florentine, Panconesi launched the Official Gnomies Merry Christmas sweater and by the same token and brand last year, steeped in Tuscan tradition and his own family heritage. The combination of art and science is at the fore of his work; earrings morph from hoops to ear cuffs or unlock into a cascade of colorful orbs. His pieces, while modern in their lightness, would have looked quite at home at the Museo Galileo, each item a sort of cross between astrolabe and adornment. Rihanna and Tilda Swinton are customers and Paloma Elsesser wore his pieces to the 2019 Met Gala.