Jewellery seems to have gotten bigger and brighter in the last year or so, but, while I do love a chunky statement necklace, delicate pieces in precious metals seem to be my thing at the moment. While costume jewellery is fun, it can have a limited lifespan and tarnish quickly, especially if it is worn frequently (and is of the cheaper variety!), whereas a sterling silver or gold ring can be kept forever if you look after it properly. Obviously bigger brands such as Pandora and Monica Vinader offer some beautiful things, but there are also plenty of great lesser-known designers out there waiting to be discovered. Here are three of my favourites.
Nikki Stark’s jewellery is understated and wonderfully delicate and her designs are made to last – she works only with sterling silver, 9ct gold or 18ct gold by special order. As every piece is made to order, each is individual and unique. There isn’t an item on her site that I wouldn’t wear – I particularly like her range of dainty wishbone rings and the Sally midi rings. I also love the Ria design featuring a random arrangement of tiny circles that remind me of little pebbles on a beach – in fact, I’ve just ordered myself one in sterling silver and can’t wait until it arrives. This will be the first of many orders I’m sure.
Minetta’s minimal jewellery can be worn every day and, as much of it can be personalised, would make a fabulous gift. Designer Sarah Holtom’s designs are pretty, contemporary and low-key, and would look equally stylish with a casual slouchy jumper as a smart work outfit. Channel Carrie Bradshaw with a personalised nameplate necklace, keep it simple with a sweet silver bracelet, or indulge your love for colour with a subtle gemstone necklace. The little heart studs and geometric ring are personal favourites too.
I promise I didn’t include Bloody Mary Metal in this list just because it has one of the best brand names ever (although it certainly helps) – its stand-out designs won me over instantly. Lucy Wilson started the company because she wanted to create jewellery she couldn’t find in the shops, and her collections reflect the move she made from hectic London to tranquil Cornwall at the beginning of her jewellery-making career; her first collections were edgy, reflecting her love of the London music scene, while her more recent ones are inspired by Cornwall, its history and the glittering treasures pirates once sought along the area’s coastline. My particularly like the arrow and droplet stacker rings and antler necklace.