The 'meet the jeweller' event at Liberty in London this morning was a chance for me to catch up with some of my favourite designers; Anna Sheffield, Annina Vogel, Brooke Gregson, Ruth Tomlinson, Annoushka, and Emily from Larkspur & Hawk.
The overriding theme of their current collections is colour - rich blues and green from the new coloured diamond pieces at Annoushka, to the bright foil-backed amethysts and topaz at Larkspur & Hawk. Many of the pieces I saw today would make fantastic unusual engagement rings, from the antique selection at Kojis to the bright tourmalines and coloured diamonds at Anna Sheffield.
Opals feature heavily in LA born, London based designer Brooke Gregson's work, as well as her trademark diamond slices, and these stand-out rose gold clad boulder opal earrings were my favourite.
A great chance to discover the inspirations behind the designs, find out where the jewellers source gemstones, or see limited edition pieces or one-offs, I always find it really interesting to meet the heart of the brand, i.e. the person who started it.
The essence of a great jewellery design label will always stem from a great designer, whose taste and influences are central to the credibility and authenticity of the brand. They are often their own muse, consciously or sub-consciously, and those who design for themselves end up with a credibility that can't be replicated. It seeps through to every piece and every part of the brand.
Liberty has such a fantastic selection of jewellery designers, authentic, talented and passionate, whether fine jewellers, fashion, bespoke, one-off or vintage, there is a rich and diverse quality to it all.
Great British retail.