I am delighted to announce that my brand new jewellery collection is finally here!
The information that I am going to reveal in this post will be limited. The reason for this is that, I am once again calling on my beloved customers to help me name my new jewellery collection. I really enjoyed the responses and the engagement I got last time round. With so many great entries and recommendations, it was really hard to choose a winner… but choose I did. I am still extremely pleased with and grateful for the beautifully named Eternal Collection.
And so again, I am putting my trust into the hands of my loyal customers and the general public. What I really want to do here is inspire people with my new jewellery collection… and in the process find a perfect name for it that is fitting for its design and what is represents to you!
Made from the finest sterling silver and touched with delicate gold detail, the collection is extremely contemporary in style. Ranging from pendants in three sizes (small , medium and large) to stud and hook earrings, there is definitely something for everyone. The pieces can be worn independantly or together as a matching set.
Without giving much away, the only thing I will say is that nature has a running theme in all my collections. But for those of you who know me, this is not new information. I love the forms, textures and colours that are found in organic structures. This inspiration often shows through in my designs and my work. So, it will be very interesting to see if this collection sparks that same vibe for those who are spectating, analysing, judging and deliberating names through a different set of eyes.
In exchange for your participation, I will be offering you the chance to win a special piece of jewellery from the new collection. Not only will you have the pleasure to be the first to own a piece from the collection, you will also have a little part of you imprinted within the collection… forever!
The winner will be the name that I feel most represents the new collection. Stay tuned for more competition details on our Facebook Page.
For now… all you need to do is feast your eyes on these first few photos of the new jewellery collection, taken straight from my work shop just after they were handmade. I am so excited to be sharing them with you. I hope you enjoy.
Thank you for visiting my blog and good luck.
Welcome to part three of “The making of” series where I will be uncovering the steps involved in the creation of my Magnetic Collection. The purpose of this series is to invite you into my workshop and give you a glimpse into the world of handmade jewellery making. There’s definitely an art (and science) behind it, with many tools being utilised in the process.
In comparison to some of my other collections, there are less steps involved in making my Magnetic Collection. That being said, the process is just as time consuming due to emphasis on precision. The collection includes pure sterling silver pieces, as well as silver and gold pieces, so there is something for everyone.
Step 1 – Cutting Silver Wire
First, I cut silver wire in different lengths. These are the main feature of the Magnetic Collection.
Step 2 – Puk Welding
After cutting, I then puk-weld the pieces of wire together. Each join is individually welded together.
Step 3 – Puk Welding Continues
The process of puk-welding continues until I get to the right shape… This is when I also add in gold pieces to add extra detail to some of the pieces in the Magnetic Collection.
Step 4 – Creating Earrings
For earrings, I repeat the process with the two pieces side by side.
Step 5 – Polishing Jewellery
The welded pieces are then polished to give them a beautiful shine
Step 6 – The Complete Product
Finally they are transformed into pieces of jewellery that are ready to wear!
In terms of my contemporary jewellery designs, I am really enthused by stunning organic structures and nature. This particular collection was inspired by the delicate entanglement of the spikes on a cactus, as demonstrated in the images below. The collection is made up a mixture of silver and silver and gold pendants, stud earrings, hook earrings etc., which can either be worn independently or as a beautiful matching set.
I hope you enjoyed seeing and learning about what work goes into the making of my contemporary jewellery and in particular the Magnetic Collection. All my collections are handmade in a similar way, and because of this no two pieces are ever the same.
Discover more of my contemporary jewellery collections now, or dig deeper into the making of series by visiting previous posts about my Bloom Collection and Kathleen Collection.
Thanks for reading! Stay tuned for more…
My bloom collection, inspired by blossoms and nature, is hand made in my workshop by no other than myself. The process is time consuming and labour intensive, but that is what makes the pieces so special. Each and every item from the collection is unique. In this post, I will be taking you behind-the-scenes and showing you exactly what goes into the making of my Bloom Collection.
Step 1 – Rolling a gold sheet for my Bloom collection. I have to roll the sheet down to 0.7mm.
Step 2 – The Bloom discs are textured, domed and then filed flat.
Step 3 – The gold discs, for the little blooms, are then stamped out. These vary in size.
Step 4 – Doming gold discs and more rolling and drilling of holes.
Step 5 – Adding the gold discs to the silver discs. This is where the Bloom collection really starts to take shape.
Step 6 – All gold is riveted on. Each size (small, medium and large) has a different amount of gold discs.
Step 7 – Silver domed backs are soldered on.
Step 8 – The discs are transformed into wearable pieces including studs, hook earrings, pendants etc.
To see more of my Bloom Collection and other collections, please explore the Jill Graham website where you will find a wide range of handmade earrings, studs, pendants, brooches and more. You will also find some of the unique pieces that I was commissioned to make.
Well, that’s it for my Bloom Collection. I hope you enjoyed this sneak peak into my world. Stay tuned for more…
A guide to jewellery making and my Kathleen Collection
Jewellery Making – Step 1
Jewellery Making – Step 2
Jewellery Making – Step 3
Jewellery Making – Step 4
Jewellery Making – Step 5
Jewellery Making – Step 6
Jewellery Making – Step 7
Jewellery Making – Step 8
Jewellery Making – Step 9
A journey into my past, and how I came to be a contemporary jeweller…
I want to give you a better insight into how I became a contemporary jeweller and who the maker behind the jewellery truly is because after all, who I am is reflected in my jewellery designs. I would like to start of by telling you a little about myself, and how I ended up becoming a jewellery designer.
From the beginning…
I was born on 22nd October 1980 in Tyrone, N.Ireland, the youngest of four with three older brothers!
As you can imagine I spent a lot of my childhood playing with tractors and tools. I was a real tom boy! As the only girl I was the little princess in the eyes of my parents. My mum loved putting me in dresses and pretty girly things (I hated it).
My love for art…
As a young child I loved arts and craft, spending my time making pictures, not always on paper! My mum used to go mad at me drawing pictures on the walls. She always knew who the guilty party was as I used to sign my name under all my artwork.
When I reached secondary school I would regularly spend every minute working in the Art room often skipping P.E and lunch to work on my art. I would do my best friends art homework as a swap for them doing my English.
But I had other hobbies too. I loved swimming and I was a real water baby swimming for a local club. I also loved sailing. In fact I was crewing for a family friend many a summers day on his yacht. “There is nothing like being out on the sea on a sunny day with the wind in the sails. It’s one of the best feelings in the world”
Choosing my destiny…
After finishing secondary education I completed a two year foundation course in Art and design. This involved spending time in all the different disciplines including ceramic, print, photography and textile design. During this time I really loved working on textiles and I even got a sewing machine for my 18th birthday. I lugged that around with me everywhere!!
Then I decided I wanted to go to university in England (As a teenager who wanted to get away from parents and brothers!). So I applied to some universities for textile design and headed off with my rucksack for a week of interviews. I was accepted for all my textile courses and while I made this decision I started experimenting by working more with metals and making accessories.
A contemporary jeweller in the making…
One of my lecturers suggested I would be more suited to a degree in Silversmith and jewellery as I was very talented in this area, so with a quick change in course I was on the boat to Loughborough university in England. A career as a contemporary jeweller was in sight!
My time at university was typical of every student, with 3 years of partying and copious amounts of alcohol but I also graduated top of my year in 2002.
While at university I spent my summers working as an apprentice (or as my boss used to call me “slave girl”) for a goldsmith at home in Ireland. I learned valuable skills during this time which has consequently stood me well through my career.
After graduation I moved to Belfast and I lived in a house with 3 mates. Then I got a job in a craft gallery where I learned a lot of essential business skills. After seeing how it was all done I decided I wanted to set up my own business. So I took the plunge in 2003 and set up a small workshop in my parents garage of all places! I started JeGila Design making jewellery with resin, silver and real flowers. While I was working in a school as a technician.
Realising my dream…
In 2005 I give up my job and took an artist and residence post for a year by the sea in the foot of the Mournes in Co. Down and started designing and working silver and gold, before I launched Jill Graham Jewellery, and my dream of being a contemporary jeweller was in sight.
I have since gone from success to success. One of my proudest, and most noteworthy, accomplishments so far was being commissioned to make lapel pins for the world leaders at the G8 summit, held at the Lough Erne Resort in County Fermanagh, Nothern Ireland, in 2013.
The rest, as they say, is history.
This was my third time to be at Showcase as an exhibitor and it was a fantastic occasion.
Here is a taste of the photos we shot recently …..
On 30th November 2014 I give birth to my little new apprentice Alfie Graham Booth and at 11 days old my little bundle of joy joined me in the workshop to get the Christmas orders out. I could not be happier to have a little company in the workshop!!
Last year I was commissioned by 10 Downing Street to make 10 lapel pins for the world leaders at the G8 Summit in the Lough Erin, Fermanagh.
These unique Sterling silver pins have been designed and created by talented contemporary jewellery designer Jill Graham. One of Northern Ireland’s leading talented young designers, Jill who originates from Co Tyrone, studied at Loughborough University, England and currently works from her studio in Co Down.
“As a young contemporary designer in Northern Ireland it is a privilege to be asked to create pieces for such a historical event. I have based my designs around the delicate tracery of the Rowan Leaf representing strength, growth, renewal and a long native tree on our isles it to me was an ideal symbol for this summit.”
The Pearl within collection was make as a one off design for the Exhibition Space in belfast. This collection includes a silver sphere necklace made up of small rings with a Australian South Sea Pearl inside it, beaded with Rhodolite Garnet on five strings with silver beads scattered throw them. If you are in belfast please go and have a look.