Anna started out very focused on textiles, making clothes and doing print designs, but started making jewellery in her final year at university; hammers became her new favourite thing and she’s never looked back.
We find out what brought her to London, and all that…
I’ve been here nearly five years now. It was a bit of an impulsive decision – I had been living in Brighton for a few years and loved it there – but I’ve always been a bit nomadic so when a few circumstances / stars aligned I just thought ‘I’m off to London’.
It was mainly career orientated to be honest, but I think it’s a blast to take the chance to live in London if you can, for however long, its such an amazing city!
What has been your career path so far?
Oooh can I say winding and off-piste? I feel like I have such a vastly different view of what is possible now than I did when I first started – I can’t imagine having laid this out as a career path back then!
I am really grateful for how things have moved – it’s been a LOT of hard work, lots of ups and lots of downs, but I can honestly say I’ve never doubted that I’m on the right path and feel very fortunate to be doing what I love everyday.
What are you working on at the moment?
About twenty different things as always! I rebuilt my website last year, and rebranded, so am concentrating on populating that while continuing with my bespoke commissioned pieces.
I have a couple of new collections in the pipeline and I was recently shortlisted for a diamond design award so am creating that piece – its coming together very nicely.
And, I also have a couple of awareness / fund raising projects I’m involved with. Plus, a group of us are planning a really exciting day of seminars and workshops to tie in with Fashion Revolution Week, 18-24th April, focusing on creating a more transparent and sustainable supply chain within the jewellery industry.
That’s going to happen on 19th April – see my social media for details.
Is there a typical day for you?
Dog walk, coffee, emails, workbench, meetings, dog walk, tea, emails, workbench, meetings, red wine – the usual stuff.
What are the tools of your trade?
I absolutely LOVE the tools of my trade – and the fact that, apart from having better flame producing equipment, they haven’t changed for hundreds and hundreds of years.
I can sit at a jeweller’s bench in India, Morrocco, Australia, and find pretty much the same set of tools – a favourite hammer, a multi purpose bit of wood and lots and lots of broken saw blades!
What’s been the highlight of your career so far?
There have been a lot I’m pleased to say but seeing my jewellery on The Oscars‘ red carpet is going to take some beating.
Livia Firth wore a suite I created from the world’s first ever Fairtrade Ecological gold, when Colin Firth won his Oscar in 2011.
As a jeweller, that has to be the ultimate catwalk – and to be featured there for such a special reason was a great feeling and really helped raise awareness of the Fairtrade gold story.
Who else do you admire in your industry and why?
Stylewise, I really like Solange Azagury-Partridge and Victoire De Castellane’ s approach to design – they have so much fun with it and make it seem completely spontaneous.
London is so choc full of mega-talented designers, I have huge admiration for any one who is following their passion no matter what – it’s not an easy business to be in, but as an industry in general it is very supportive and encouraging.
It is a really exciting time right now. There is such a movement towards ethical sourcing and transparency and that wouldn’t have happened without the tireless campaigning of people like Greg Valerio and CRED Jewellery – hats off to them for shouting before anyone else was listening!
Anna’s Top 5 London
To Eat: Wherever there is good company and a good vibe
To Drink: Same as, wherever there is good company and a good vibe
To Party: And again…
To Walk: London has so many fantastic parks but I do really like spending time on the South Bank – there’s just always something going on and I love being by the river
To Shop: I am such a rummager and love a bargain so any flea markets / thrift shops / vintage stalls – I’m there!