// Alexandra May Jewellery rss

Changing Colours and Shining Bright!

by Alexandra May | April 11, 2017 | 0 Comments


I have always been surrounded by stimulus. From the colours and atmosphere of Caracas in Venezuela to working within the fashion industry and eventually moving onto my own cornucopia of a shop, my life has been a constant overflow of vibrant light, textures and patterns.

I also appreciate order and felt that ‘Alexandrea May’ had become a bit chaotic and lost its way over the years, bohemian and wonderful as it was.

One of the things about progress is it’s often necessary to take risks to move forward. I explored various options for refurbishment of the shop and at the same time, slowly (and with great difficulty I might add!) I stopped buying stock except, ahem, the most necessary of fabulous jewellery.

I had a sale for several months and after Christmas had cleared out all remnants of the old-look stock, I shut for several months.

Then the shop became a building site. I alternated said building site supervision with a stock take and had many sleepless nights filled with colour swatches and online furniture shopping. I also spent hours organising printing and framing of my holographic factual images of jewellery, while trying to get used to being adornment and make up free and figuring  out a way to remove the ingrained dust from the pleats in my Issey Miyake clothing!

As expected there were delays and dramas but with support of my amazing staff and beloved ever patient husband, I manage to avoid my blood pressure taking the roof of the building off.

The builders were incredible and managed to calmly take down 200 lb mirrors, move them an inch to the left, rehang them, take them down again and move just an inch to the right... until they were perfectly placed.

Fulfilling a vision takes work, there is no two ways about it

Although I was able to purchase cabinets online and had workmen to do many of the necessary tasks, some things I designed and had built bespoke, such as the boxes in the side window. The back of the front window display cabinet I made myself and required many hours of patient measurement, cutting with a blade then carefully sticking the pieces to the frame (only occasionally losing them amidst the empty coffee cups, paint pots, carpet and wood flooring scraps and wrapping paper).

I needed to delay the opening a few times until I realised that I had to let go, take the risk, and welcome in my customers again (rather than have them trying to peer through the cracks of the brown paper that I’d put over the windows to keep the process of change hidden and make the end result even more magical!)

I finally reopened two weeks ago. The shop was decorated with opulent flowers that I had been given, and old customers and new started to drift in.

I’m still tweaking and adjusting, something I suspect will be an ongoing thing, but I’m so, so happy.

Taking risks is frightening but well worth it! 

Now I’m going to have a few weeks recovery time in beautiful Bali, before I return to my jewellery wonderland. 'Alexandra May' is still open though, so do come in and check out my beautiful reimagined and reinvented shop

Posted in bespoke, change, changing colours, colours, cornucopia, fashion, moving forward, patterns, progression, refurbishment, retail reinvention, shapes, shining, spring clean, taking risks, textures, Venezuela, working in fashion

Bohemian Bloomsbury Style

by Alexandra May | April 07, 2017 | 0 Comments

Ayala Bar & Cressida Bell

Now that the dust has settled, the shop refurb completed and Spring weather is finally showing her glory, I can start to look at how the fashion world is celebrating the 2017 change of seasons.

As one gets older it’s easy to feel a tad jaded about the reinvention of some trends but also to welcome the return of others, as you know that they are both flattering and fantastic.

We’ve been stocking Cressida Bell scarves for over three years and her creative colourful interpretation of her family artistic heritage (potter and art historian Duncan Bell was her father and the Bloomsbury Group and Charleston House are part of her family history), education at St Martins (where her contemporaries included the milliner Stephen Jones and designer John Galliano), and her personal genius enable the cross over from art to design, which makes her scarves and shawls a delight to wear.

Cressida Silk scarves

In hand printed silk georgette Cressida’s scarves can tick this season’s trend boxes by being worn as a bohemian belt, turban or trailing choker. The fabulous patterning makes a Dolce and Gabbana type statement when mixed with our Ayala Bar or Heidi Bennett earrings or a more modernist look is created when mixed with the strong mineral stones from our Trousseau range.

Cressida & Trousseau

 As you probably know, scarves are another abiding passion for me. I’ve discovered that using one of our chunky Konplott statement rings as a scarf tie creates a unique and striking statement which demonstrates what fashion should be all about; feeling good, looking great, and enjoying playing with colours, shapes and styles to effect.

 Cressida Scarves

Cressida Scarf with Heidi Bennet Earrings


Posted in Ayala Bar, Bloomsbury, Bohemian, Charleston, choker, costume jewellery, Cressida Bell, Dolce and Gabbana, earrings, ethnic, flattering fashion, fun fashion, headscarf, Heidi Bennet, John Galliano, minerals, Modernist, passion, scarf, silk georgette, Spring, spring style 2017, Spring trends, statement jewellery, style, Trousseau, turban, Vanessa Bell

Midnight in Paris

by Alexandra May | November 16, 2016 | 0 Comments

Jean Louis Blin Kaleidascope

Receiving new stock from Jean-Louis Blin is so exciting - there are no catalogues, no websites, no order forms to create a bespoke list; so the very first time I see the jewellery is when it arrives in the shop. With every shipment, Jean-Louis seems to become more innovative and more experimental; always injecting freshness and creativity into his offbeat vintage-style range.

Jean-Louis Blin Nouveau Floral Eau de Nil Long Clip-on Earrings (JLB6218)

This pair feature a couple of beautiful, upcycled pastel glass stones, rescued from an old piece of jewellery and given a new lease of life in Blin's glamorous gothic mounts. 

Taking influence from the Art Nouveau scene that dominated Western Europe, Blin stays true to the Paris of the past by incorporating curvilinear shapes, Edwardian flourishes and fin-de-siecle butterfly motifs into his handcrafted pieces. These traditional elements are effectively blended with edgier components such as carved beetles, hanging curb-chain curtains and ghostly iridescent crystals.

He doesn't skimp on detail or size, meaning his earrings work perfectly paired with minimal accessories, or no accessories at all.

I adore the work of this truly singular designer: someone who has been honing his craft for over forty years and stayed faithful to his own vision of what makes jewellery beautiful.

Jean-Louis Blin Edwardian Style Honey & Cream Drop Earrings (JLB6931)

Jean Louis Blin Kaleidoscope 2
Enjoy browsing!

Posted in 1920s, 1920s art, 1920s jewellery, art deco, art nouveau earrings, art nouveau jewellery, bath jewellery, bath jewellery shops, bath shops, butterfly earrings, butterfly jewellery, clip-on earrings, collectable jewellery, coloured stones, costume jewellery, dragonfly jewellery, exclusive, handmade jewellery, insect jewellery, jean-louis blin, jewellery trends, jewelry, jewels, made by hand, paris, Paris jewellery, parisian jewellery, uk jewellery shops

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