Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Natural Gems

I would like to introduce you to the very talented jewellery designer Ros Millar and her beautiful creations. I like Ros' pieces because they don't remind me of traditional jewellery. They are very organic in appearance and look like they have been created from their environment. So curiosity took over and I had to know how she created such interesting pieces...What is the inspiration behind your pieces?
I find inspiration in everything I see each day, for example being in the city to being in the country and finding patterns within these. All my collection is organically inspired - trying to balance the idea of growth and decay through textures. I do most of my designing through making and experimenting.What techniques and materials are used to create them?
All of my pieces have at some point used the technique of cuttlebone casting. This is my unique selling point. It leaves an unpredictable texture on the ring and is the stuff birds eat that you can buy in every pet shop!!! Most jewellery pieces that you see in all shops only use the technique of lost wax casting for the pieces to be made which is used by large companies etc. I developed a love for this technique while studying at university. I graduated in June 2009 recently and decided to continue this technique to create my collections.

I always work with gold and silver. My most recent collection I use black oxidised silver and rose gold plate with brown diamonds but can commission to do pure rose gold pieces. I love rose gold - as a precious metal it had gone out of fashion for a while but has been quite popular this year and is on the increase. I believe as a designer I will always continue to work in precious metals.
What is your studio like?
I set up my studio in January 2010. I had no plan to set up my own studio as I had lack of money.

After moving to Essex from my home of Bangor, N.Ireland (so I could be closer to London - The BIG CITY) to stay with my boyfriend who I met at University I had arranged some internships in London. I gained so much experience from these and learnt a lot about running a business in the fashion Industry. My most valuable internship was with Fannie Schiavoni - she is great and she gave me the opportunity to do some freelance work.

So......I always thought I wanted to work within a design house before securing some funding in January for the set up of my Workshop from the Arts Council for the purchase of my tools. I set up temporarily in the countryside of Essex where I was staying and started designing. It was weird at first as there was so much freedom for me to make anything I wanted but I had to have some sort of control and set myself design briefs etc. which was the start of my new most recent collection. Black and Rose - The Growth Series. I have now just found a new studio in London which I will be moving into in the new year. I am very excited. I think it will help me so much more by having my new studio in London.What is the starting point of a collection?
The starting point for me in a collection is to sketch, sketch, sketch and then to get straight into making taking some of my designs and seeing what works. Some things do and something don't........ Once I get one piece I love, for me its all about expanding from their and developing. A lot of pieces I make don't make the cut into the collection. I think its important that I want to wear what I am making and that I do wear what I am making!!!!
Do you have a favorite piece?
I have a different favourite piece everyday. My collection is all about stacking so its great fun making up different combinations. So in that way, the customer can play around collect and depending on their mood or what they are wearing or the occasion can make up a different combination.

Any plans for your next collection?
So excited for next collection. Got some plans - more diamonds and complete change of colour i think. I love colour and think its so important and think the black and rose gold is great for autumn/winter with all those burnt oranges and greens which are in the shop now. So, less of the black oxidised for next season I think.

I personally really like the idea of stacking - not only are the pieces unique by themselves but the wearer can create their own pattern that is individual to them. I am looking forward to the next collection and I really like the Rose Gold it is such a lovely colour. Ros is currently working away at her next collection for the Goldsmiths' Fair in October - keep an eye out for her and check out her website. Ros is also on twitter and is very lovely!!Best Wishes
Fashion Fantasist xx

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