This mul­ti­tal­ented Lon­don-based Jew­eller is the hy­per-cre­ative rebel rev­o­lu­tion­iz­ing the world of lux­ury jew­ellery. From hand painted gold winged rings for Gem­fields, the world’s top gem firm to jew­ellery in­no­va­tions made in con­junc­tion with world renowne

SHE Canada - - RECIPES - By Alva Gard­ner

At what could be con­sid­ered the worst mo­ment of her life, the mo­ment when her ca­reer in jew­ellery man­u­fac­tur­ing came to an abrupt end, the Jas­mine Alexan­der Jew­ellery line was born. Not un­like the tale of aerospace physi­cist Max Hu­ber, whose great­est tragedy brought the world the iconic skin­care brand, La Mer, Alexan­der’s ca­reer end­ing in­jury (a sev­ered in­dex fin­ger) ar­rived at the same time a for­mer client (with at the time un­known fa­mil­ial con­nec­tions) pre­sented her with the op­por­tu­nity to cre­ate and show her first col­lec­tion. The for­mer client was Bri­tish de­signer Lau­ren Adri­ana and the fam­ily con­nec­tion, was that of the iconic Paul Smith.

This lucky co­in­ci­dence and belief in her tal­ent changed the course Alexan­der’s ca­reer and like the prover­bial Phoenix, her brand rose from the ashes of her per­sonal tragedy to be­come a bea­con of in­no­va­tion within the world of fine jew­ellery. How­ever, what has con­tin­ued to set Alexan­der aside from her con­tem­po­raries is her bal­ance of del­i­cate fem­i­nine pieces with the bold aes­thet­ics in­her­ent in state­ment pieces. Of this she says: “Del­i­cate pieces will con­tinue to dec­o­rate our days but the evening will also com­mand a more the­atri­cal, a more dra­matic sen­si­bil­ity.” The jux­ta­po­si­tion of day and in an un­der­stated way, de­sign­ers like Stephen Web­ster and Shaun Leane have paved the way for fine jew­ellery’s new guard. The latest co­hort of next-gen de­sign­ers in­clude: Jas­mine Alexan­der, Monique Pean and Jack du Rose to name a few. Their tech­ni­cally ad­vanced and op­u­lent state­ment pieces are both aes­thet­i­cally pleas­ing and strong which evoke a more vis­ceral re­ac­tion from the public. Whilst many of the es­tab­lished jew­ellers like Cartier and Bul­gari have built their em­pires by rein­vent­ing the pil­lars of their iconic de­signs be­came a “recluse” forg­ing a deeper con­nec­tion with her­self through soli­tude which she ex­pressed with the writ­ten word in the form of po­etry. Although, she no longer writes po­etry, one catches glimpses of her poetic begin­nings in the works which ac­com­pany her pieces (as can be found on her web­site), as well as in the tech­niques uti­lized in her pieces. Upon close ex­am­i­na­tion, pieces like her fa­mous ‘Word to the Wise’ com­mis­sioned by Gem­fields, stops solely be­ing an ode to winged be­ings, but be­comes an ex­am­ple of artis­tic in­no­va­tion with the un­veil­ing of a unique hand-painted gold lay­er­ing process. One facet in­te­gral in Jas­mine Alexan­der’s ex­pe­ri­ence is her past as a poet. In her 20s the de­signer says that she “de­parted so­ci­ety” and From Alexan­der’s per­spec­tive de­sign saved her: “This throw­ing my­self into a new pro­ject, the col­lec­tion, saved me in a sense as I didn’t, ini­tially, have time to think about how I felt with­out that digit and the loss of that busi­ness due to the ac­ci­dent” she says. This loss also led to the cre­ation of one of the most in­trigu­ing of Alexan­der’s pieces: the ar­tic­u­lated gold fin­ger which she wears on her in­jured ap­pendage. “This piece” she says “is an in­te­gral part of who I am and my work­ing per­sona; I refuse to do a shoot with­out it”.

night, del­i­cate and op­u­lent can be found in pieces like her Pri­mal bracelet, a piece which is mod­elled on the strength and rigid­ity of the hu­man spine. Yet, it ex­hibits the del­i­cacy of cur­va­ture and a touch of the the­atri­cal with its dust­ing of di­a­monds.

Much like her jew­ellery, the de­signer her­self is a mix of soft­ness and edge. Though she is a strong op­po­nent of con­form­ity and “the aus­pi­cious­ness” of the “es­tab­lish­ment”, she is a proud cham­pion of a num­ber of causes, rang­ing from an­i­mal rights to the sup­port of art ed­u­ca­tional pro­grams for disad­van­tage youth. One of these projects in­clude her par­tic­i­pa­tion in the Re-work It Art Ex­hi­bi­tion hosted by the Lon­don based Sel­fridge’s depart­ment store. The ex­hi­bi­tion is run in con­junc­tion with the auc­tion house Pad­dle8 in sup­port of the char­ity The Art Room. The Art Room pro­motes the use of the arts as ther­apy to boost the self-es­teem, con­fi­dence and in­de­pen­dence of at-risk chil­dren in the UK, and is pa­tro­n­ised by HRH the Duchess of Cam­bridge. chair as they see fit.

Af­ter seven years of push­ing the bound­aries of jew­ellery de­sign, one can be for­given in think­ing that Alexan­der is ready to slow down. How­ever, in line with her par­tic­i­pa­tion in Re-work it, the de­signer will be un­veil­ing a new tech­nique for gold lay­er­ing, and will be ex­pand­ing her de­sign realm to fur­ni­ture with the un­veil­ing of her chair Con­scious. The piece fea­tures a mix of gold, sil­ver, di­a­monds, oak and stained glass. Of the piece, the de­signer says its “nar­ra­tive con­sid­ers hu­man­i­ties evo­lu­tion. Our mis­placed im­por­tance placed on mon­e­tary wealth to the detri­ment of noble no­tions.” Alexan­der feels her piece also of­fers “hope, the won­der, the pu­rity, the un­wa­ver­ing hunger for joy and love, found within the child”. This sum­mer, Alexan­der will also be launch­ing her Iconic Col­lec­tion. It is a col­lec­tion which in­cludes some of her most ground-break­ing and iconic work with ev­ery piece mak­ing a state­ment. Alexan­der sur­mises: “Trends and threads do not start and end in one point of space, but in­stead weave through the en­tirety of life’s ta­pes­try.” At the ex­hi­bi­tion, fa­mous names in the world of art and de­sign (in­clud­ing Cara Delev­ingne, Paul Smith, Lulu Guin­ness, Char­lotte Olympia and Hérve Léger) will be of­fer­ing their take on trans­form­ing the Ernest Race BA2

This sum­mer, Alexan­der will also be launch­ing her Iconic Col­lec­tion. It is a col­lec­tion which in­cludes some of her most ground-break­ing and iconic work with ev­ery piece mak­ing a state­ment.

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