I first saw Hannah’s incredible jewellery at IJL – one of the UK’s biggest trade jewellery events – where she’d been selected as a future designer to watch.
I just love how she uses the concept of time in her jewellery – something so precious to us all. And the amount of detail – especially in some of the tiny cogs, is really something to behold!
It seems she and jewellery were always meant to be, seeing that she first started making at the age of 10! Here she tells her story….
How would you describe your jewellery?
Intricate, more than meets the eye and a bit Gothic
What materials do you use?
Silver, gold, precious and semi-precious gems
Where do you create your jewellery?
At my bench.
Your current collection is inspired by time. What is it about the concept of time that you find so interesting?
We only have a limited amount of time on this planet, and I think it’s so easy to forget that, when we get caught up in the day to day. I wanted to create pieces that reminded the wearer to live for the moment. Time and pocket watches are the perfect reminder.
The Memento Mori of the 15th to 17th century reminded people they were going to die so they had to live a good life. I wanted to create similar pieces but with a slightly more upbeat message. More live your best life or live every moment like it is your last.
Who would wear your brand?
I would love Pink to wear my pieces! Or Dita Von Teese, she’s so glamorous. Probably someone who is a bit alternative.
What’s the favourite piece in your jewellery collection?
My skull pendants with the gem set eyes. I have a bit of a thing for skulls. I like how the skulls in the pendant and earrings are smiling. My favourite piece I own from another jeweller is a toss up between my Stephen Webster Gargoyle pendant or my carved mammoth Ivory crow pendant.
What’s the piece you’re most proud of creating?
Definitely my Raven Neckpiece. It’s the piece where I learnt the most – such as how to use a lathe and wax carve. I carved the raven, it took a couple of goes, some of the previous attempts looked more like gremlin toucans.
What’s your favourite part of being a Jewellery Designer?
I like it when people tell me the meanings they attribute to their jewellery. I love it when I create a commission for special occasions or with a special meaning.
What’s your proudest moment of being a Jewellery Designer?
When I was awarded the Stephen Webster scholarship.
Do you work directly with customers? Or sell your work to galleries.
I do a mix of both, I work on private commissions, sell through my website and also sell through galleries.
What’s your design process?
My design process completely depends on the piece I’m making. Some of my designs start life in a sketchbook as I love to draw. Others were born by my messing about on CAD (Computer Aided Design) software.
How important is jewellery design to you?
Incredibly – even after all this time, I absolutely love it!
What do you love about jewellery?
I love how jewellery is imbued with so much meaning – it’s more than the sum of its parts. We use Jewellery to show love and commitment and to mark special occasions. And I love hearing the stories people have behind the pieces.
How did you start creating jewellery?
When I was 10 I did an enamelling course at the local adult education centre and I was hooked from there. In my first job as a shop assistant when I was 16 I was allowed to fix the broken beaded jewellery and in some cases adapt and then sell it.
Why did you fall in love with jewellery design?
I fell in love with jewellery first, I still remember being given my first ‘proper’ piece of jewellery when I turned 10, a silver Celtic ring. Then I fell in love with jewellery design when I realised not only could I own it, but I could create it too!
What are your aspirations for your business?
Total jewellery world domination! Not really (!) I would like to create a brand that people recognise and get more stockists and maybe have some international stockists – that would be lovely.
Where do you feel most inspired?
I don’t think I have a place where I feel most inspired. It’s more that I find inspiration strikes at any point – normally when I’m thinking about something completely different and not jewellery related! Then I have to remember the idea until I can write it down or sketch it.
Who else inspires you?
So many people inspire me – but I love the work of Sanni Falkenberg, Stephen Webster, Shaun Leane, Theo Fennell, William Cheshire and Ingo Henn’s pieces are phenomenal.
What inspires you?
Antiques, pocket watches, natural form, skulls, tattoos and Memento Mori.
How do you juggle all the different aspects of the job?
Sometimes it feels like I am fire fighting! But mainly I write a lot of lists and tick things off – which gives me great satisfaction and normally means I don’t miss things.
What advice would you give to people looking to buy jewellery from independent makers, but who don’t know where to look or how to go about it?
I would tell people to do their research, you can find some fantastic makers on the Goldsmiths directory.
A jeweller has to be very multi-skilled! How do you find that?
Honestly I find it hard, the bit I find the hardest is the PR side of things, but my partner is brilliant at proof-reading and advising me and generally being my cheerleader.
Jewellers often have to work quite flexible hours, how does that fit in with the rest of your life?
At the moment I work full time for another Jeweller, and do freelance CAD on the side. I’m very lucky that I have a bench where I work, and a bench at home. So I utilise my evenings and lunch breaks.