Seeing different jewellery creations is something we get really passionate about here at Kernowcraft, especially when the jewellers are customers of ours!
This May we were lucky enough to be able to once again sponsor an award at the Truro College art and designers annual exhibition. This is an exciting event that showcases the talents from students from an array of creative courses.
Our award was for the foundation degree in Silversmithing and Jewellery. After attending the event we were very impressed by all of the students work. We love to see the new and exciting designs pushing boundaries and taking inspiration from so many different and interesting things.
This years winner was the very talented Cornish jeweller Monique Jeffrey Jones, who works under her jewellery brand - Monique J-Jones Jewellery.
Whilst creating an array of different designs Monique has a distinct style. In this blog we talk to Monique about her winning designs, finding inspiration and any advice she has for fellow jewellers.
Monique has been making jewellery for several years now, starting with a series of evening courses at Truro College. She has just completed an FdA in Silversmithing and Jewellery, also at Truro College, where she received a distinction for her work. Monique is going to complete the top up degree to a BA honours level in September.
As you can see from our picture of Monique's winning collection, her designs were very interesting pieces, with unusual shapes and splashes of colour. These designs certainly create intrigue.
We asked Monique about the inspiration behind her winning collection...
"Inspiration for this collection of work stemmed from the Cheesewring on Bodmin Moor and the surrounding rock formations, as well as my attraction to medieval jewellery."
"The Cheesewring is a precarious balance of rocks that have been shaped and eroded over many years. Through my studies I became drawn to the top heavy stone shapes and fractures within them. I began to concentrate on these features and through sketches and model making I developed the Moorland Brooch. This in turn led to the creation of my Moorland Collection. This collection incorporates enamel as well as various stone setting techniques".
Monique said that the patterns and textures of the landscape around her are almost always the inspiration behind all of her designs, with dots and circles being re-occurring themes, as well as spheres and the idea of movement.
"I become totally absorbed when designing and making jewellery and find that if I’m not physically constructing a piece, I’m thinking or outlining on paper my next idea. I enjoy the design process of initial sketch to final piece and the challenges that new commissions or projects bring."
"The art of silversmithing and jewellery making is an ongoing series of experiments, patience and practice. Some pieces are a success, others require more work! If I were to give any advice on jewellery making techniques it would be to persevere and not give up. When setting stones take your time, measure and measure again! Always use the best tools you can afford and don’t be afraid to adapt a tool to suit a particular job. Never take the short cut approach, it will always cost you more time in the finishing!"