It's nearly Black Friday! The date got its peculiar name in early sixties, when U.S. shoppers, heading out in their droves to begin Christmas shopping post-Thanksgiving, brought traffic to a standstill in cities. The phenomenon caught on in Britain in recent years when shops began to offer enormous 24-hour discounts on the last Friday in November. As an independent retailer, I struggle to compete with chain store deals, but as a thank you to my shop customers I'll be offering a saving of 20% on purchases of £50 or more made on the day. We're expecting to be busy, so do make sure to pay us a visit and grab what you want before it's gone!
Those who subscribe to my e-newsletter can also enjoy a special Black Friday discount of 20% off the total of their online shop. This only applies if you're on my newsletter mailing list, so add your email here (the newsletters I send are occasional and revelant, no spam!)
We've been busy decorating the shop with lights and glitter and, with the drop in temperature outside, it now feels like Christmas has arrived at Margaret's Buildings. Have a peek at my Instagram page to see how festive the shop's looking! With Bath's famous Christmas market opening tomorrow for three weeks of madness, we're expecting an influx of customers. Come and join the frenzy! I put up plenty of jewellery here on the site, but there's lots more available in the shop, plus a selection of men's gifts, baubles, stocking fillers and crockery. If you've never been, pay us a visit - the Royal Crescent looks beautiful in winter weather and Bath has a lovely atmosphere during the festive season.
I'm thrilled to announce the arrival of our newest range: a selection of exquisite earrings by up-and-coming British designer Heidi Bennett.
Working from her Sheffield studio, artisan maker Heidi independently designs, prepares and creates each piece of jewellery in her limited-edition range. Unusually, her earrings are embroidered with soutache, a shimmering, metallic silken braid, traditionally used to embellish gowns and decorate military garments in the Victorian era. Rather than sticking to the traditional browns and silvers of that period, however, Heidi uses threads in a beautiful range of colours, from this pretty pale turquoise to the bright crimson of my favourite Oriental-inspired pair.
Every pair includes one or two well-placed pieces of Swarovski crystal in complementary colours to add a hint of sparkle, while a combination of matte and glossy Czech beads provide strong, vivid colour. Since the earrings are so beautifully made - and the designs unlike anything I've seen before - I expected Heidi to have had years of training in jewellery-making. I was, therefore, amazed to discover that her skills are entirely self-taught, sparked by a passion for "creating beautiful objects".
These dramatic earrings will take you through from summer to autumn and beyond - they deserve to be worn all year round.
Ever since Vogue reported that nautical-themed jewellery was set to be big this summer, I've been keeping an eye out for any pieces containing pretty pearls, blue gems and iridescent shells.
Those who want to give a subtle but colourful nod to the sea trend will love the ocean-blue hues that can be found in Philippe Ferrandis's collection, while fans of statement jewellery won't go unnoticed in these offbeat fish pendant earrings from my long-time favourite, Ayala Bar. Madrid-based designer, Ricardo Douahi, features sea colours in these nature-inspired, hand-embroidered earrings that recall beautiful ocean flora.
Need something more flamboyant? I was pleased to discover that my latest delivery of Askew London jewellery contained a number of marine inspired pieces, each one replete with the usual Askew sparkle, detail and decoration. While Sue Askew's work is admired by designer jewellery fans worldwide, each of these pieces is part of a very limited run, making them perfect for those who want something that's both high-fashion and one-of-a-kind. These three are fit for a mermaid princess:
To browse the full Askew range, click here.