Tag Archive | Christmas

Christmas break

Well what a year it’s been, thank you to all of you who have been reading our blog since it started earlier this year, we’re having a short break while we celebrate the holiday season but will be back with you in January with lots of exciting new posts.  More styling, more interviews and if you make jewellery or are involved in the jewellery industry and would like us to interview you or do a review of your products please do get in touch.

 

In the meantime we hope that your Christmas cracker was full of Asprey cheer!

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Styling post #2 – day to evening LBD

In the run up to Christmas we thought it was time to run another styling post, this time looking at those situations where we want to take an office outfit with us into the evenings.  There are lots of tips and tricks from the beauty bloggers out there about how to adjust make up, but we think that simple jewellery boosts can do the same trick but in a quicker and more effective way…that doesn’t involve leaning over the sinks in the office toilet to get your eyeliner right and soaking your dress from the spillage that your colleagues didn’t clean up…but maybe that’s just the toilets in my office!

Anyway, to this end we have selected a generic black dress with a V neck (below) and we’re going to have a look at a way of taking it from day to night.

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To give you an idea of my normal work attire I would team this with something really classic, as an example we have a ruby set below.  The ring and pendant are very simple and smart (I work in an office in the city) but the earrings (also ruby) are a drop so add some interest.  You could use simple studs (either a ruby or a plain silver/white gold stud) to match with this set for a really professional look, but if, like me, you have some flexibility or leeway in your work “uniform” I think the longer drop add some interest to the very plain outfit.

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The joy of a LBD is the magic that can be worked with the right accessories, for moving onto an evening outfit you can really go crazy!  The current trend for large collar type necklaces won’t really work with a deep V-neck like this, but you can use the opportunity to go really over the top with your bling!

As we’re planning a work do we haven’t gone too far over the top, sticking with a classic silver look we have gone large and chunky to really distinguish the change of accessories.  We’re using a fabulous set from Oliver Bonas by way of example, but there are similar beautiful looks out there both on the high street and in designer boutiques, we’ve listed a couple of our favourites later in the post.

 

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You can see in the picture below that there’s a lot of detail and size in the design without being too fussy – you could get away with something much sparklier depending upon the nature of your evening do.

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Wearing a matching set keeps this formal enough to reflect a slightly smarter occasion, such as a work event, rather than a more casual evening with friends.

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So for alternative suggestions for your evening ‘do’ how about blinging it up with a Swarovski Stardust bracelets, which would go brilliantly with the Swarovski Baron collection from Ernest Jones.  There are also some fab neckwear pieces in Ernest Jones from Adami & Martucci whose mesh pieces would have a really effective look with a plain dress.

A plain dress can happily take something structural such as the artistic designs of Ute Decker.  Even if you want to remain with more daytime jewellery how about topping it up with a statement ring from Tina Engell.  The Cara Tonkin Vesper collection (below) would add real movement to an outfit such as this.

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On the high street this statement necklace from Accessorize would be great for the evening.  We also love Alexis Bittar for fantastic statement pieces, ideal for the party season!  If you’re all about the colour how about the bright and bold Phase Collection by Lynne MacLauchlan.

 

Jewellery events between now and Christmas!

If you’re already panicking because the John Lewis Christmas advert is out but you haven’t bought your gifts and are in need of some scintillating shopping ideas; or maybe you’re sick of twinkling lights and looking for something delightful to distract you from Christmas, here’s a run down of some of the jewellery events coming up in November and December for a little sparkling escape!

 

November

Already running until 9 Nov : Spirit of Christmas, Olympia – but you’ll have to get your skates on!

Already running until 31 Dec : Inspire Exhibition, Walford Mill Crafts in Wimborne has an impressive 300+ makers on show

9th – January 2015 : Dazzle@Oxo are returning for the London Dazzle exhibition at the Oxo Tower Wharf in what promises to be a huge event with a host of talented designers ranging from new graduates to established makers

10th : F&L Designer Guides are hosting a #speeddateadesigner event at the Fable Bar, London, to help you meet talented engagement (and other jewellery!) ring designers to help you create your perfect jewels.  It’s a great opportunity to help you get to know someone who could create one of the most precious items of jewellery you will ever own.  Tickets must be pre-booked so check it out now!

12 – 16th : Country Living Christmas Fair, Islington at the Business Design Centre.  There are three of these in November at different locations and each of them feature some jewellery designers as well as a host of other gift ideas, do check out the exhibitors list for each different location to see if your favourite local jewellery designer will be there.

14 – 16th : Handmade in Britain, Chelsea.  Returning for it’s eighth year to this beautiful location the £7 entry fee should be well worth it – there’s even a private view on 13th for £18 which sounds like a great idea to treat a jewellery lover.  We’re particularly excited by some of the new graduates being showcased this year such as Alexandra Goodrick 

15th : Introduction to Jewellery Making, Newark, 3 hour workshop hosted by Aarticrafts by Fi (a fab blogger we follow) in conjunction with Crafty Betty.  It’s a simple intro to jewellery making but the really exciting part is the sheer number of pieces of jewellery and techniques covered.  It should be a really lovely opportunity to test yourself and your potential jewellering (not a real word I know) skills!

20 – 23rd : Country Living Christmas Fair, Glasgow at the SECC

21 – 23 : Brighton MADE fair, Corn Exchange.  If it’s anything like MADE London this is definitely worth a visit

21 Nov – 24 Dec : ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, the annual Contemporary Applied Arts Seasonal Selling Exhibition in Southwark Street promises to be a fantastic opportunity to see an extravaganza of creative joy.  Details aren’t out at the time of publishing but entry is likely to be free and should be a great way to fill a chilly afternoon

22 Nov – January 2015 : The Devon Guild of Craftsman are holding their annual MAKE fair, Bovey Tracey

22 Nov – January 2015 : Crafted for Christmas, New Brewery Arts Cirencester has a great selection of jewellers featuring, including friend of the blog Emma Swailes

27 – 30th : Country Living Christmas Fair, Harrogate at HIC

27 – 30th : Made in Clerkenwell, presented by Craft Central and spread over three venues, all within walking distance of each other, this growing event is not to be missed for anyone in London as it features over 100 designers (not all jewellers but what an opportunity to do all your Christmas shopping in one place!) and for the single ticket price you get unlimited entry!

28 – 30th : Cockpit Arts Open Studio, Holborn is a great chance to buy unique and original gifts, entry from £3 and at two different locations

29 – 30th : Crafty Fox Market, getting you into the Christmas spirit these markets offer much more than simply shopping opportunities

30th : Friend of the blog Genna Designs will be taking part in the WASPS Christmas sale, keep an eye on her website for details

 

December

4th : Brew-dog, Dundee – rumour of an exciting event with music and drinks…and jewellery…we’re keeping an eye on the website to see if anything arises!

5 – 7th : Online Marketplace Etsy is setting up an Etsy House for three days only in December in Covent Garden – we’ll be going so keep an eye out for us!  As well as sellling there will be live crafting and workshops – we recommend following on Twitter to keep fully up to date on this event.

5 – 7th : Cockpit Arts Open Studio, Deptford

6 – 7th : The Crafty Fox Market, Brixton

7th : Tea Green Pop Up Craft Fair, Malmaison  Dundee – no details as yet but a couple of designers are mentioning appearances so keep your eyes peeled!

9 – 10th : Farnham Maltings Christmas Fair returns for its 10th year

14th: Bust Christmas Craftacular at the Islington Metal Works promises DJs, drinking and shopping…plus cake and tea…could there be a better way to buy jewellery?!

 

Have we missed your event out?  Do let us know – we’re always happy to share jewellery related events with our followers and we’d love to hear from you: Twitter @throughtheloupe / http://www.facebook.com/adventuresthroughtheloupe / adventuresthroughtheloupe@outlook.com / Instagram: @adventuresthroughtheloupe

 

 

Goldsmiths’ Fair – 2014

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For over 30 years the magnificent Goldsmiths’ Hall in the heart of London has been showcasing the very best in British design and craftsmanship in the precious metals.  The annual ‘Goldmiths’ Fair’ this year continues the tradition, but with a new approach to the concept and with many new  and exciting exhibitors.  The fair allows the public to purchase pieces direct from the designer-makers over the two week period – in perfect time for Christmas!  The event contains the latest collections from 170 leading designer-makers, each exhibiting for one week, selected by an expert judging panel assembled by the Goldsmiths Company.

The new look fair, feels fresher and more spacious, the clean lines of the white stands clearly define the individual spaces without looking cluttered and tight, the exhibitors are happy to talk about their pieces and to allow you to take a closer look & try things on!

 

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There are plenty of new exhibitors this year, including Clara Breen who’s colourful pieces caught my eye, Clara incorporates paper into her beautifully crafted pieces, including these ‘Fossil’ Earrings with removable part; Oxidised silver, vermeil, citrine and paper. (week one, stand 15)

 

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Other tempting week one exhibitors include Shivani Patel, Melissa Rigby, new exhibitors Amy Keeper  and Tanja Ufer.

 

A new feature of the fair this year has been Goldsmiths’ Fair Revels ‘Zaha Hadid Selects.’  For the first time the fair has invited an iconic figure from the design world to make a selection of her favourite pieces from the 170 exhibitors. The internationally renowned architect has selected 21 pieces of jewellery and silver which have been displayed together at the start of the fair. Her selection is bold and diverse and all are testimonies to cutting edge design and techniques – here are a couple of my favourites from her selection:

 

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Tom Rucker’s Ring GEO. AEGEANA – This artist goldsmith uses state of the art laser welding technology in conjunction with master goldsmith skills to create his unique pieces, skills which are supremely in evidence in this stunning ring, the intricate laser welding of the wire work and the rich combinations of colour, texture and materials makes this ring a work of art and craft. (week one, stand 78)

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Ute Decker’s – ‘In Praise o Shadows’ Earrings – reminiscent of folded pieces of paper these minimalist but tactile earrings are striking and substantial in size but look effortlessly wearable and have a pleasing fluidity to their overall sculptural appearance. (week one, stand 4)

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It’s all change in week two, and I’m looking forward to checking out the work of  Ornella Iannuzzi (week two stand 72) whose distinctive pieces include this stunning ring:

 

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“A l’Ere Glaciaire”

Also Chris Boland, and Charmian Harris who have both used a variety of interesting gemstones in their bold pieces.

‘Monolith rings’

‘Monolith rings’ by Chris Boland

 

Opal bracelet set with 22ct gold & diamonds by Chairman Harris

Opal bracelet set with 22ct gold & diamonds by Charmian Harris

 

As you can imagine with 170 exhibitors there are far too many dazzling pieces to mention here and as this is a jewellery blog I haven’t even began to feature the many outstanding pieces of silversmithing work on show at the fair as well, definitely worth a look if you manage to visit!

Dates for the Fair 2014

Week one Monday 22 September 2014 – Sunday 28 September
Week two Tuesday 30 September – Sunday 5 October
Closed on Monday 29 September for the change-over.

11am – 6.30pm daily
Thursdays open 8.30pm

 

The Goldsmiths’ Company are also offering a series of breakfast talks over the course of the fair – these feature experts from the jewellery world speaking about their area of specialty, there are some really exciting talks scheduled (for example this morning was Edward Johnson – the London Director of the GIA!) but these are booking up quickly so if you’re interested do have a look at the website for booking details.