My jewellery collections are historically inspired, and I strive to make historical jewellery design accessible, educational, fun, and most importantly, wearable for the modern-day. I have worked to identify the best materials for me to produce from, as I want to make gold-coloured jewellery that’s price accessible, durable, and sustainably and ethically made. I use lost-wax-casting to produce my hand-carved designs, and I have researched and compared gold-coloured alloys, and the various UK workshops who can sustainably source and cast these for me. A thorough market analysis has helped me determine where I want to position my brand, and primary research has allowed me to learn what consumers want from the jewellery they wear.
Ruth Bannister – History with Innovation
I’ve long wanted to wear the historical jewels that I, and many other, lust over in the museums. Yet, I don’t want naff replicas, nor to part with the big bucks to own the real deal. These treasures shouldn’t be in private hands, but worn by whatever hands want to connect to, and be adorned by the past. I have started this venture, and I’m currently producing from recycled precious metals, and reclaimed yellow brass and bronze. however, the precious metals are not very accessible, and the base metals unfortunately tarnish and darken very quickly, requiring meticulous aftercare. The jewellery market is fraught with sustainability and ethical issues, and I want to produce clean jewellery, from responsible and traceable materials.so here I am, taking a closer look at the metals and options out there.
I have undertaken thorough desk research to explore the potential alloys and UK manufacturers. I have also contacted many producers to ask more questions when I can’t find all the answers online. This has been an agile research project, and a fluid journey, to narrow down which metals are, or can become, gold-coloured, which can be produced at scale in the UK, and which is a sustainable and ethical resource. I have combined my desk research with primary research from potential and current clients, to learn what consumers want from the jewellery they buy, wear, and treasure.
Many people are enthralled and inspired by history, and the material cultures, and more specifically, the treasures of the past. People want to wear these designs, but they’re also keen to learn about their histories, and not just appropriate the designs of the cultures and times before us. Therefore, my historically inspired collections have education at the heart. I want to make accessible gold jewellery, and whilst I already am, the demi-fine (semi-precious) materials I, and other brands, commonly use, to create imitation gold jewellery, are not very durable are require meticulous aftercare. I want to make the whole user journey fun and a pleasure for my customers, and I want to make jewellery that will deliver a golden lustre long-term. The jewellery market is fraught with sustainability and ethical issues, and I want to produce clean jewellery, from responsible and traceable materials. Therefore, I have explored the options, to inform my design decisions.
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