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Jewellery is a fast way to transform a practical but blah outfit into a knockout one. Whether you’re looking for reasonably priced vintage, simple classics or attainable luxury we’ve made like magpies to bring you an edit of quality jewellery from the best independent boutiques out there.
13 of our favourite jewellery brands
Diamonds may have long been referred to as “a girl’s best friend”, but it’s impossible to ignore the ethics surrounding their production, not to mention the accompanying eye-watering price tag. Setting out to solve both these problems, Lark & Berry launched in 2018, disrupting the traditional market with “cultured diamonds” – ultimately, lab-grown gems that are identical to their mined counterparts. The brand has quickly gained cult status for its gorgeous stacking rings, ear studs and cuffs, which now decorate the lobes and fingers of the in-the-know fashion crowd worldwide. This Valentine’s Day, find them popping up at ME London where for one day only guests who book in with a friend will receive matching half-price piercings, while for the rest of the event you’ll get a free piercing for every jewel purchased. See you there. The pop-up is open 13-18 February 12-8pm from at ME London, 336-337 The Strand, WC2R 1HA.
With their dainty creations, the duo behind the Wald Berlin showcase a softer side to their edgy namesake. With the help of gold-plating and delicately placed crystals, the brand’s iconic seashell trinkets are a refined and elegant update on the puka-shell choker you owned as a teenager. Opt for one statement earring or go all out with their layered necklaces for a look that translates effortlessly from the beaches of Bali to New York City’s concrete jungle.
Making its way from American DIY e-commerce platform, Tictail, to shopping galleries alongside the likes of Gucci, Balenciaga and Ashley Williams, Anita Berisha is a brand you ought to know. The 27-year-old designer behind the eponymous brand handcrafts creations that trace the silhouette of white lilies and daisies in designs that are at once whimsical and contemporary. If you’re searching for an new take on a timeless classic, the brand’s freshwater keshi baroque pearl choke is a good way to go.
Statement earrings that don’t weigh a ton always top our fashion wish list. This New Zealand brand’s playful earrings are the perfect way to add a little oomph to a jumper and jeans kind of day. All set in light-weight resin, Mars’ gold-speckled heart-shaped hoops, pearlescent swirled studs and glitter-drop earrings are as fun to wear as they are to say; “electric squiggle” and “pearly bean studs” are among our favourites. The brand also offers one style of sunglasses, cutting a confident and chic shape – come for the jewellery and stay for the eyewear.
Minimalism may be the trend of the moment but the adage “less is more” definitely does not hold true at Retrouvai. While it’s true that gold and diamonds are timeless, the Canadian brand’s bold colours and fun shapes offer luxury with a contemporary sense of humour; think gumball rings in 14k-yellow gold, polka dotted with lapis gemstone and white diamonds or a mother-of-pearl yin-yang ring so large it doubles as a knuckle duster. No matter how playful, gold and diamonds are still gold and diamonds so these funky designs come at a pretty hefty price tag.
No longer reserved for your grandfather’s pinky finger, the signet ring has made it out of the gentleman’s wardrobe and into the jewellery boxes of the fashion pack. While readily available on every Instagram shop out there, nowhere does this classic signature better than Rebus. Tucked away in Hatton Garden – London’s jewellery quarter – a team of 12 hand engravers and goldsmiths deliver bespoke pieces. As you’d expect, the price tag is a little more than punchy but a Rebus signet ring is an investment, something wholly unique and of a quality that does this historical piece of jewellery justice. Those who still see pinky rings as the domain of the red-trouser brigade can opt for a sleek engraved pendant instead.
This Norwegian-British designer’s eponymous brand has quickly made a name for itself on the competitive London scene. While the entire range is certainly covetable, it’s Tilly’s chunky link chains and T-bar necklaces that we’re adding to our shopping basket in a frenzy. The perfect balance of classic and bold, these identifiable pieces are laid-back luxe but unapologetically eye-catching. Choose from a number of different styles but wear singly; there’s nothing delicate about a chunky chain so let it stand alone as a statement piece – this is a piece of jewellery you’ll always get comments on.
Bagatiba was the first in adult-filmstar-turned-entrepreneur Jessie Andrews’ portfolio of successful businesses, and since its founding the brand has garnered a cult (supermodel) following including Bella Hadid, Emily Ratajkowski, Kendall Jenner and Kaia Gerber. From more trend-driven styles to timeless classics, sparkly creations and work-wear chic, Bagatiba is a one-stop-shop for beautiful, quality jewellery no matter your style – although we’re certainly partial to her newly released gold pearl necklace and two-tone hoops. And if that’s not enough to sell you, all of Jessie’s brands use eco-friendly and sustainable practices in their production.
This boutique Canadian label craft beautiful pieces that perfectly pair with any outfit in any city whatever the occasion. The brand’s dainty engraved pendants and delicate chains are ideal for layering, which is good considering you’ll want to buy them all. Their similarly chic rings and earrings are a perfect way to add that little Parisian “je ne sais quoi” to the blandest of outfits. Plus, the reasonable price and easy-to-wear nature of the jewellery means this is attainable luxury we can get on board with.
The Last Line LA designs fixate on two things: rainbows and diamonds. Their playful, zany earrings are what first caught our attention; sold in singles, they’re designed to mix and match. A far cry from elevating your ear game alone, The Last Line apply a similarly fun perspective to classics like tennis bracelets and pinky rings. Sadly, 14k gold and diamonds always come at a price but this is jewellery worth raiding the piggy bank for.
A brand dedicated to statement earrings, Milk Tooth is not one for the faint-hearted. Their latest collection, Sphere, is inspired by the cosmos and Egyptology, using natural stones to create astrological pieces like their Encounter Statement earrings (complete with tongue-in-cheek winky face emojis) and their UFO Ascension pair. If you’re looking for something a little more earthy but no less bold, Milk Tooth’s collaboration with artists Maria-Ines Gul features organic lines in a sartorial celebration of womanhood which comes in a very millennial palette of pastel pink and navy blue.
The clean lines, strong shapes and deceivingly simple designs of Maria Black definitely reflect her innate Scandi style, but her penchant for twisting beautiful lines in new and unexpected directions gives her brand a daring edge. Working with precious metals, Maria Black’s collections are sophisticated and playful; the interchangeable pieces are sold individually to encourage your creativity and celebrate your originality. The designs work with your ear’s natural contours to produce eye-catching, dramatic shapes that will have friends and strangers asking “what’s the name of the brand?” – but we suggest you this one keep a secret.
While most independent jewellery brands are online only, Felt’s mini corner boutique just off the King’s Road in Chelsea is one of the main reasons it’s on our list. Whether you’re on the hunt for a last-minute gift for that lucky someone or feel like treating yourself, there’s no doubt you’ll spend hours browsing the walls trying to choose between antique costume bling, dainty diamond studs and everything else that sparkles and glints in this cute little boutique. The store, also available online, stocks a beautiful edit of curated brands alongside Felt’s own finds and creations, and with prices starting as reasonably as £15 Felt is a winner in everyone’s books – Poppy Delevingne’s and Laura Bailey’s included.
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