I LOVE making bespoke jewellery for people for 2 reasons. First, nothing screams "LUXURY" louder than a piece of bespoke jewellery; something made just for you and no one else. Second, is the smile on the face of someone who has received a pendant, bracelet, ring or earrings that has been designed specifically for them. For me, there is nothing more satisfying than to hear about the receiver's reaction from my client (I very rarely, if ever, get to see that wonderful moment).
I have had the pleasure of creating many bespoke pieces over the years, from unique wedding bands and necklaces marking an anniversary, to brooches celebrating a special birthday; each design individual to the person it is for.
A young couple were looking for a set of wedding rings that would complement their style and have a connection to the North Coast.
They both opted for a simple, unadorned silver band with an oval profile, a matte finish for him and a high shine finish for her:
"Our wedding rings are perfect! Exactly what we wished for and more... beautiful, stylish, comfortable, a perfect fit. Thank you so much Emma, they will be treasured forever"
(Rosie and Chris)
This next customer approached me after spotting my work in a local gift shop in Portstewart. My lava bead and silver necklace had caught his eye as he was looking for something to give his wife as a gift on their 30th wedding anniversary. He loved the texture of the black lava bead and the contrast with the smooth silver, but wanted to have one lava bead to represent each year of their marriage. However, and here was the challenge, he didn't want to increase the length of the necklace. As it is, the design of the necklace in its original form, includes 15 lava beads links, which are alternated with a silver möbius knot. The only way to work in the new lava bead links, without increasing the overall length, was to change the configuration of the necklace. I'm happy to say that after a bit of tinkering, I managed to come up with a design with my customer was very happy with.
“Many thanks Emma for all the work you've done on designing this necklace for me. It was a great price and brilliant knowing that it is one of a kind and designed specifically for one person. Highly recommended."
One of the most fun pieces I have been asked to design was a gift for a customer's aunt who was turning 100. The customer wanted to have a piece of jewellery that would remind her aunt of the North Coast and I could think of few things that are more recognisable as being from the North Coast than our very own Giant's Causeway. After discussing what type of jewellery would best suit her aunt, the customer decided a brooch would be most suitable. Using the unmistakable hexagonal shape of the stones I created the base of the brooch using fine silver clay. Once the silver clay was fired and polished, it was hammered to recreate the effect of rain on a wet surface. The brooch was then embellished with a small spiral in 9 carat gold, a representation of the treasure recovered from the wreck of the Girona. As her aunt's birthday was in September, the customer was keen to include her aunt's birthstone. Instead of using the traditional September birthstone- sapphire, I opted for two beautiful 6mm lapis lazuli cabochons. If you are not familiar with lapis lazuli, this stone comes in a range of beautiful deep blue colours with a smattering of gold flecks, which complemented the gold spiral in the centre of the brooch. Needless to say, the customer was delighted with the brooch when she received it. Even better, it turns out that her aunt owned one of the guesthouses on the North Coast that was home to the team of Belgian divers who worked on the recovery of the wreck of the Girona in 1967/68, a fact I was completely unaware of at the time of designing the brooch.
"Emma has been a great find, she is just what I was looking for and indeed lots more. I can’t speak more highly enough about her and her talent. I posted the brooch last week and my Aunt opened it straight away and is absolutely delighted with it , she loves the story with it being a Causeway Brooch with the gold and blue stones. Thanks again Liz."