0 comments / Posted by Amanda Mansell

Gem Weekly


Infiltrating the gloom to add a bit of sparkle to your day!
Providing a little distraction from loo roll hunting, endless queues and let's be honest the anxiety of our situation.

Hello, how are you? 

That question kind of just hangs there doesn't it. Usually we'd jovially say something along the lines of "I'm fine thanks, you?"  I'm not really sure how I'm meant to feel I've never lived through a pandemic and extended periods of isolation before. I think I'm fine. I feel fine.

One thing I do know for sure is since turning my living room into my office, with it's nice big windows looking out onto my road, I've become a bit of a curtain twitcher! Nosy? Maybe it's a good kind of nosy, maybe I'm simply inquisitive as I've become more aware of the neighbours living behind those closed doors? Pre - Lockdown Life I'd usually head off to work bleary eyed at 6.30am and wearily return at 8pm and never see a soul. Now we're out there every Thursday evening enthusiastically clapping and banging pots and pans together and waving and smiling at each other! That can only be a good thing, can't it? 

Anyway at the very least I hope you are keeping well, staying safe and hanging on in there!

So with another three weeks of lockdown announced, it's just as well I've moved to the new weekly Gem, otherwise by the end of Lockdown Life your inboxes would have been completely overwhelmed with jewellery news! If you missed any of the Daily Gems, you can catch up with them on my blog.  

It is of course great news that Boris is on the road to recovery, and we can only hope that he's now gained a deeper respect for our immensely valuable and compassionate NHS. Love him or dislike him, any good news story about surviving Covid-19 is welcomed with open arms.  The same open arms I plan to wrap around every human I come into contact with in the not too distant future - hopefully.  After all, hugging myself doesn’t carry quite the same comfort.
So, courtesy of Vanesa Feltz’s Word of the day challenge last week (BBC radio 2, Weekdays, 5.00am – 6.30am), where four of bumbling Boris's favourite words were incorporated into a sentence, the following is written in his honour.  

There is no escaping the hard-painful severity of our situation, and for some the pain is too deep to comprehend. So, the primary reason for these newsletters is not to make light of it, but to provide, at best, a little distraction and positivity as we plan for the future and look beyond Lockdown Life.  They are hopefully not a load of unwelcome bunkum clogging up your inboxes. If they are, then at worst, they can be printed out and used as kindling for the BBQ on the glorious summer days ahead!

My newsletters are also not about direct selling.  Balderdash I hear you cry.  Ok, I confess of course I need to sell some jewellery at some point, after all I have a mortgage and rent on a workshop to pay, and I need to live. I am also one of two million directors of small Limited Companies who fall through a loophole -  as an employee of my own company I can receive 80% of minimum wage if I furlough myself, but if I do that then I can’t continue to work to keep the company going. So, as far as I’m concerned, the governments unprecedented business support package announced five weeks ago is tommyrot.

So yes, more lovely bespoke commissions would be helpful and gratefully received, but until then, I’m valuing taking the time to think about the future of my business. Where I take it, what’s important to me and you - my clients past and present - who I’m also really enjoying reconnecting and engaging with.  And if by doing that it also plants a little seed to consider a future commission then that’s a pretty amazing bonus!

Postponed weddings will be re-scheduled, new weddings will be planned, the romantics among us will propose, anniversaries and milestones will be reached, and birthday’s will be celebrated.  There will be many more special moments to commemorate with a uniquely personal bespoke pieces of jewellery. 

So, fiddlesticks to you Covid-19! We collectively will beat you.  We will walk focused and determined alongside the deeply heart-warming Captain Tom Moore, not only to reach the finish line but to continue through to the other side and beyond. 

The sparkle will return!

Applauding our NHS 

As I continue to join my neighbours on Thursday evenings to applaud our NHS and key workers, I also continue to celebrate them through jewellery.  This week's feature is an engagement ring and wedding rings, designed and made for Andrew and Sonya.

As a respiratory specialist Andrew is at the heart of this crisis at St Thomas's hospital, where our very own Boris was treated and cared for. Sonya also works tirelessly as a GP adapting to the challenges of caring for the community on a day to day basis.

Visit my blog to read more about the design influences behind Sonya's truly unique engagement ring, as well as Andrews marriage proposal, that didn't quite go to plan (which are always the best ones), the design journey behind the wedding rings and their two fabulous weddings that united two cultures and a wonderful couple. 

Thank you Andrew and Sonya x
18ct yellow gold, diamond and green sapphire engagement ring
Thinking about popping the question?
If you know someone who is thinking of popping the question, or maybe you're even thinking of popping it yourself! Then what are you waiting for? Not only will this be a wonderful distraction, it will also be something incredibly exciting to look forward to after Lockdown Life. If you'd like to explore the options of a truly bespoke engagement ring then just ask me a few questions to gently get the ball rolling.  We can chat over the phone, email or even video call.

Remodeling Jewellery commission in progress

Anna came to me last year with this diamond ring she had inherited and her mum's wedding ring. With a 'special' birthday on the horizon in August 2020 she commissioned a new ring that incorporated the diamonds and the yellow gold wedding ring to commemorate the milestone (shhh).   

Rings to be remodeled
Thankfully we begun the remodeling journey to create this bold contemporary ring design last year before Corona spoiled our fun. So although lockdown temporarily bought production to a halt, I will hopefully be back in the workshop in time to compete it by August and join Anna with a little glass of bubbles to celebrate.  Read more on my blog and see the video showing the stage I am at in bringing this design to life!
remodeled ring design

Do you have jewellery you might like to remodel?
Have you inherited jewellery that's incredible precious and valuable to you, and you'd love to wear it but it's not quite your style?  Remodeling allows you to retain that intrinsic value so you can wear it and bring it back to life, which is what Anna has done and many clients before her. Some of those transformations can be seen in the remodeling gallery on my website. I'd be delighted to chat to you about the possibilities via face time or zoom, just let me know and we can arrange a time. 


Diamond is the birthstone of April

Part one ~ overview: These sparkly (and let's be honest pricey) little things come in all shapes, sizes, cuts and colours. If you're tentatively considering dipping your toe into the world of diamonds, maybe for a future marriage proposal then I appreciate researching these fascinating miracles of nature (unless lab grown, but that's a story for another week) can be a bit of minefield.  In this newsletter alone I have featured a cushion shape old cut diamond and round cognac diamonds in Sonya's engagement ring, round bright cut diamonds in Anna's inherited ring, and below, to the left we have industrial diamonds and to the right a marquis shape diamond.
Diamond rings

So where do you start? You can ask me of course! Or you can read more about various cuts, colours and shapes on my website here.  And what on earth are the four C's?  Well you can read my concise guide here along with ethics and sustainable practices. 
More about diamonds next week.
If you'd like to receive my rambles in your inbox, you can sign up to my newsletter by entering your email in the box at the bottom of the homepage. Look forward to chatting to you!


Leave a comment

All blog comments are checked prior to publishing


added to cart success.

added to wishlist success.