Unique handcrafted jewellery is more in demand now than it has ever been. Whether it’s small and quirky pieces or bold head-turning ones, consumers are turning away from mass-produced run-of-the-mill items in search of more eclectic designs.
Here are our five favourite alternative jewellery labels for you to swoon over…
Having featured in Sunday Times, woman&home and VOGUE magazine, eclectic jewellery brand Toolally are quickly making a name for themselves in the design world. While they do have several necklace designs, earrings are really their centrepiece, with a stunning range inspired by influential designers and artistic styles of the past. From the straight lines and pastel shades of the Art Deco era and the rounded forms of the Swinging Sixties to Coco Chanel’s classic silhouettes, each design is bold yet highly-wearable and carefully conceived for the modern-day woman. Their LBD Collection offers a touch of glamour, with a range of smart eye-catching pieces providing the perfect finishing touch to your favourite little black number. Each piece is handcrafted in Toolally’s Yorkshire studio using acrylic, which allows for the extensive colour palette and a wonderfully lightweight piece, with fastenings in sterling silver or 22 carat gold.
Our pick: HRH Earrings in Arctic Blue, £45
Jewellery and accessories label Anisha Parmar celebrates cultural diversity and bold design through a breath-taking range of necklaces, earrings, rings and bracelets handmade in their London studio. Recognised for their elaborate forms and distinct couture edge, their pieces have appeared on the pages of Elle and VOGUE magazine, as well as being stocked by one of the world’s leading art & design museums, the V&A. Influenced by cultures from around the world including African and Mayan tribes as well as colonial styles from the British Raj, each accessory is fused with a contemporary urban aesthetic - a stunning homage to style and heritage. Designs are enhanced by the use of materials such as wood, mirror and marble acrylic as well as exotic touches of gold leaf and mother of pearl, which add exquisite depth and detail to each design. With such unique and exciting collections under their belt, we can’t wait to see what’s next for this exciting brand.
Our pick: Maharani Earrings Black Marble, £120.00
Immerse yourself in a world of miniature tea parties, disco raves and whimsical farmyard scenes with the charming jewellery range from Birmingham designer Ellie, aka BUG. Inspired by the small details of daily life that put a smile on your face, BUG’s delightful selection of sterling silver necklaces, bracelets, rings, earrings and cufflinks capture some of the quirkier sides of British life, from our obsession with marmite to the finely honed art of making tea. BUG currently has four collections, each based on a special time in the designer’s life, and featuring mini cassette tapes, frolicking sheep and fairytale books, handmade from Ellie’s workshop in the city’s thriving jewellery quarter. BUG also offer a bespoke jewellery-making service, so whether you’re looking for a specific charm for your bracelet or even a wedding ring, they’ll turn your unique idea into a reality and can also add personalised details to their existing pieces.
Our pick: Afternoon Tea Bracelet, £110
Launched in 2013, edgy brand Ola is reshaping the face of accessory design with their stylish collection of 3D printed jewellery. This cutting edge technology involves layers of powdered polyamide nylon or steel gradually built up and fused together by a powerful laser, before being plated to prevent oxidation. The process results in a precise shape and intriguing surface finish, allowing founder and designer Ina Suffeleers to create unique and imaginative pieces to her exact specifications. Designs are beautifully minimal, inspired by modern architecture and artistic schools of thought such as Bauhaus, which favours simple, geometric forms that direct focus to the material and craftsmanship of the piece. From petite cubed earrings to elongated pendants, Ola’s range is understated yet highly distinctive, with many designs available in several colours depending on the type of material or plated finish you require.
Our pick: Unified Ring in Black, from €35
Channelling the vibrant nature of their Brighton base, jewellery label Tiki houses a striking array of pieces including pendants, bracelets, earrings and brooches, guaranteed to turn heads. Founded in 2012 by self-taught designer Cecile Gilbert, Tiki’s range is inspired by Bakelite jewellery and styles from the 20s, 30s and 40s, with three collections drawing on artistic movements from Art Deco to Parisian subculture. Cecile’s predominant medium is polyester resin allowing for her characteristically chunky style and refreshing colour palette. Combinations such as jet black with zesty lime and cherry red with teal result in a bold and contemporary selection, perfectly suited to the block shapes and glossy finish of the designs, while the cutting and casting process is carried out entirely by hand, resulting in one-of-a-kind items with a personal touch.
All images courtesy of designers. Prices correct at time of writing but may be subject to change.