June 08 2011
London’s jewellery glitterati may be gearing up for a week of shows and gem exhibitions, but for many who simply have magpie-like leanings, the jewel in the crown of London Jewellery Week is The Hatton Garden Festival on Saturday June 11: a street party held by more than 500 jewellers and designers, such as Nicholas James, whose modernist platinum and gold designs (first picture) are set with conflict-free diamonds, and Amanda Mansell (example shown in second picture), a Royal College graduate who has produced catwalk jewellery for the likes of Julien Macdonald .
In keeping with the area’s rich heritage (Dickens used the neighbourhood as the setting for Oliver Twist, while its history as an internationally renowned jewellery quarter dates back to 1870), the entertainment is set to be quintessentially English – think Pearly Queens and penny farthing riders – and can be enjoyed from the pop-up Garden Tea Party set in front of the historic Wren House, with cakes from Bea’s of Bloomsbury and champagne and strawberries from Thiénot.
As well as the bustling street market of work by up-and-coming jewellery designers, the artistically inclined will appreciate the double-decker Routemaster bus, specially kitted out with jewellery-making and silver workshops, as well as Saturday’s Guinness World Record attempt, which will see 40 designers attempting to create as many rings as possible from scratch. The rings will be crafted, hallmarked and available to purchase on the same day – all in aid of the NSPCC’s Jewellery for Future Generations campaign.