Emerging designer Heidi Bennett's range is a revelation: hand-produced, unconventional and bursting with bold colour. She was one of my top jewellery discoveries of last year, so I was pleased to become one of her first stockists. I've now topped up my Heidi collection with nine new pairs of earrings for Summer 2016.
Every line is made in small batches, and, since the jewellery is stitched and and finished by hand, no two pairs are exactly alike.
Heidi's eclectic range of influences combine to beautiful effect in her work: folk, gypsy, Russian, '60s bohemian and '40s dressing-table-pearl styles can all be found in the collection (sometimes blended together in one pair!)
Since Heidi works alone at every step of the production process, from the initial product sketches to material sourcing to meticulously crafting the pieces, each earring is a showcase for her passion and skill.
Zoom in on the images to examine the perfection!
Lately, I've been on the lookout for examples of wonderful costume and material from East Asia. I've always been drawn to jewellers who, through use of ornately detailed settings and splashes of vivid colour, incorporate an Oriental influence into their work. Shots of stunning embroidery from Japan (among other places) can be found on my Textiles Pinterest board, whilst this collection features pictures of modern Japanese women who've carried the traditional Geisha style into the 21st century, giving it some modern tweaks on the way.
Geishas used their bouffant hairdos as pinboards for ornate decorations. Ricardo Douahi's hairclips are perfect for dressing up a similarly dramatic upsweep hairstyle.
These handmade patchwork pouches, made from pieces of vintage kimono silk, are available in my store. Each design is completely unique in both the layout of the fabric used and the combination of materials. Perfect for keeping your jewellery safe!
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.