THE NEW BAROQUE
Reimagine what pearl jewellery can be with Australian designer Margot McKinney’s “sumptuous confections” in playful candybright colours.
You could never mistake a Margot McKinney piece for anything else. With its vibrant colours and bold use of oversized pearls, the fourth-generation Australian jeweller has made her name creating one-of-a-kind designs that push the boundaries of what fine jewellery can be.
“Wearable art” is how her avid collectors would describe the dramatic statement pieces, sometimes mixing styles and colours – as in Toi & Moi-style mismatched earrings – or layering for a look of abundance. Each one honours the natural riches of Australia, including the opal and the lustrous South Sea pearl. Margot has fond memories resonating from when her mother wore them every day, and she has gone on to become an ambassador for the Australian pearl, even visiting a farm in the Northern Territory to source pearls straight from the oyster.
Her latest collection is a celebration of the baroque pearl and its swirling, irregular form. Just like the woman who adorns herself with a Margot McKinney piece, each of these pearls is bursting with personality and individuality. Their organic shapes are the antithesis of a traditional strand of traditionally prized perfectly spherical gemstone-quality pearls. Each piece tells a story about Australia and the incredible voyage of a South Sea pearl from oyster to gemstone. Paired with vivid coloured gems inspired by Margot’s love of travel, family holidays by the beach and exotic adventures abroad, the result is glamour with a playful edge.
This air of effortlessness and lightness (often in spite of the bold scale) has made Margot McKinney pieces soughtafter both at home and overseas, as well as seeing Margot awarded the Prix de Marie Claire for best Fine Jewellery Designer and the International Opal Jewellery Design Award.
Her flagship store in Brisbane’s The Emporium is a candy store of glittering necklaces, earrings and bracelets, and discerning collectors will also find her jewellery stocked in Neiman Marcus and independent retailers across the USA. www.margotmckinney.com
Bliss 18yg diamond-set lariat necklace with baroque Australian South Sea pearls and pink, yellow and orange sapphires Cerise 18yg Rubellite petal (36.12ct) earrings with coloured gemstones and detachable baroque golden South Sea pearls