“Fine bespoke jewellery is often quite traditional,” says Christopher James, co-founder of London-based jeweller Pascale James, which has quietly established itself as a firm favourite of the style cognoscenti, including fashion writer and author Leandra Medine. “We wanted to build a service that is more creative, incorporating texture, intriguing silhouettes and interesting lines.”
These three elements draw upon the brand’s organic, nature-inspired ready-to-wear jewellery, another of hallmark of which is the use of recycled precious metals. The first collection, Orogenesis, involved putting gold and silver through extremes of temperature to create bold lava-like textures on cuffs (from £535), coral-shaped drop earrings (from £280) and Moon pendants (from £185). Texture is equally prevalent in the duo’s Re-imagine series, which features strips of orange peel (gold vermeil earrings, £315), figs (22ct gold vermeil pendant, from £390) and slices of lemon (sterling silver bangle, £260).
But creating entirely bespoke pieces (from $1,500) is something new to James and Antonia Pascale. To date, the most arresting commission is an elegant diamond ring with a contemporary twist created for a client’s 10th wedding anniversary. Crafted in 18ct recycled gold and topped with a 1.1ct marquise Canadian diamond, it pairs the signature Pascale James aesthetic with a more classic jewel. The duo are currently in the process of creating two stacking diamond bands to sit alongside a more traditional engagement ring, as well as an organic engagement ring with intertwining curls.
“It is an exciting journey translating a client’s vague ideas into different design options and then working on a final piece,” says James of the commissioning process, which typically takes two to three months. “A bespoke piece of jewellery is so full of emotion. It’s a great responsibility to create something that will become an heirloom and hold so many memories for years to come.”