Design Inspiration from our friends at Mildred Jones Fine Jewellery

Susie Jones lead designer of Mildred Jones Fine Jewellery discusses the inspiration behind her work
May 5, 2018
Design Inspiration from our friends at Mildred Jones Fine Jewellery

Tell us how you designed the Celebration Pendant


'I designed the Celebration Pendant because I could not find anything like it in the shops. I wanted something which could be personalised and I didn’t want to compromise on aesthetics, quality or workmanship. Jewellery manufacture often involves cutting corners in order to maximise profits, but I am lucky that my product is more niche, so I am able to control the quality by having the pendants made by hand in London, by people who are passionate about their work, much like artists.'


Tell us more about the aesthetics of the Celebration Pendant


'In terms of aesthetics, the shape of the pendant is key to how luxurious it feels - instead of being flat, it is domed, rather like a smooth golden pebble. This immediately gives it more visual interest, as well as making it very tactile - so many people have told me they love how it feels, and I often find myself playing with mine throughout the day.


Mildred Fine Jewellery Front and Side


It also means the pendant is beautiful from all angles. It’s always a disappointment when you look at the back of a piece of jewellery and find little thought has been put into it. I think of my pendants more like miniature sculptures, so it’s important that they work well in three dimensions. Even the hallmark is positioned as unobtrusively as possible to enhance the aesthetic experience.


Hallmark of fine jewellery


Lastly, I designed the loop at the top of the pendant in a beautiful oval shape, which was inspired by pocket watches. I like this because it harks back to the past, a time when workmanship in goldsmithing was perhaps more valued than it is now when we have CAD and 3D printing and factories. I believe it’s vital to keep these traditional skills alive. My jewellery might be worked on by up to 8 different specialists, such is the level of skill that goes into each element of the process.


The engraving, for example, is done by hand and it is really quite remarkable how the engravers can replicate an image in gold, on a small surface, which is not flat. The level of detail in the engraving is astonishing, and that alone is a miniature work of art.'




How is the Celebration Pendant personalised?


'The beauty of the Celebration Pendant is that is can be personalised front and back with gemstones or engraving. I do have ready to wear designs, but many customers come up with their own ideas, so I also take commissions. It is often a collaborative process between me, my customers, and the workshop. and it is always a joy to bring people’s ideas and memories to life.


I can advise on whether the design will work, and will make suggestions or help brainstorm ideas with the customer. For example, we had a grandmother who called her grandson “Little little heart” as a nickname, so we designed a pendant with that engraved on it and a little ruby heart. The design has to work decoratively, as well as having meaning for the wearer. We came up with several different layouts - it may seem excessive, but it is these small details which really make a difference, and when you are driven to create something, you really care about every aspect of it. I feel fortunate to be able to take the time to get it right.'




What do you think is the appeal of the Celebration Pendant?


'First, from an aesthetic perspective, it’s about how much thought has gone into the design - I’ve given endless consideration not only to the form, but also the function (for example, the pendant rotates, so that the front and back are both visible at different times: I love movement in jewellery, it really makes for a more elevated piece).


Second, it’s the fact that the Celebration Pendant is discreet luxury. Yes, we do make extravagant pieces, but it’s not having a large stone for the sake of having a large stone - it’s more about having meaningful designs on the pendant and having something precious to wear every day.


And that leads onto the third reason, which is why people buy the Celebration Pendant - what does it mean to them? I suppose as with art, we don’t buy these things because we need them, but rather because we love them. They speak to us, we enjoy looking at them, and we love what they represent. We also love the fact that someone has used their creative talent, skills and hands to make them.


Finally, it’s the longevity of the piece which speaks to people: especially in this digital, throwaway era, we find it comforting to buy pieces which we can touch and hold, which will outlast us and form part of our legacy.'


About the author

Leslie Pratt

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