September 22 2011
Taking inspiration from the jewellery of ancient Greece and Rome – and employing Madrid-based artisans skilled in rediscovered ancient techniques – Inés Nieto has produced her first, gorgeous collection of mainly 24ct gold-plated pieces, all in solid silver and all for sale through her website, Inesiene, which launched this year.
Most of the work in Inesiene’s Ariadne collection has timeless yet fresh appeal. The pretty Ivy Leaf Earrings (long version, £200; short, £160) employ ivy, one of the main symbols relating to Dyonisus and Ariadne, which was regularly worn by ancient Greek women. For something more adventurous in the earring department, take a look at the Large Pollen Hoops (£215), which have a “granulated” effect that emulates pollen floating on the wind and follow the Hellenistic fashion of jewellery going up the ear: a detachable flower pendant with sapphire hooks up the back and over the front of the ear to stunning effect.
Usefully, the website displays the jewellery from different angles with a good zoom function, plus shots of how to wear the pieces – not always obvious when it’s, say, the beautiful, head-turning Emerald Rosette Body Chain (first picture, handmade to order, £1,185), worn draped over the body front and back, its hand-“sewn” chains crossing in the middle with an emerald cabochon. It’s one of a range of body chains – Nieto’s signature pieces. A White Rhodium Double Pollen Armlet (second picture, £395) manages to look both ancient (evoking as it does the Greek and Roman fashion of wearing one on each arm) and modern (armlets are on trend) – not to mention sophisticated.
There are rosette-style necklaces (from £560), light and airy hand-sewn chains (from £140) and chokers (from £785), and a good selection of rings (from a very reasonable £80; my favourite is the Emerald Pollen Ring, made to order, £270) and bracelets (top of my list: the Black Spinel and Ruby Rosette Bracelet, £925). Seeking an inexpensive yet meaningful gift for a close friend, I short-listed the simple yet pretty Emerald Aster Necklace (£140). As the site informs me, “The aster is the flower of grace and love, for centuries considered therapeutic and to heal wounded hearts.” Perfect.