London has always been known for producing convention-shattering fashion, so it’s only natural that the city’s jewelry designers have caught up with equally awe-inspiring and unique items. From Bjorg‘s oversized asymmetrical geodes and cast bone metalwork to Katie Rowland’s polished yet bold letterpress pieces and Reid Peppard’s recently launched, taxidermy-based line RP/Encore, this new slew of innovative designers have a larger-than-life, sometimes borderline gritty approach that encompasses a surprising range of materials and aesthetics. But for anyone looking to boost their London accessories IQ, look no further than cult favorites Dominic Jones and Carianne Moore.
Jones, a local hero with a penchant for heavy metal that goes beyond studs and skulls, flirts around the edgy lines of design that are more closely associated with Gareth Pugh or Julien MacDonald. Trained as a fine jeweler at the Sir John Cass School of Art and Design, this four-time British Fashion Council New Gen Award winner brings traditional craftsmanship techniques to his singular take on tribally inspired, tough-chic classics. Featured in the pages of every smart fashion magazine on the stands and worn by everyone from Rihanna to Beyonce, Alexa Chung and Lou Doillon, Jones’ sought-after pieces are now sold at Harvey Nichols, Net-A-Porter, 10 Corso-Como and Isetan.
Taking a similarly toughened approach to jewelry design, East London-based Moore incorporates leather work in the form of belt-like necklaces and bracelets as well as a small capsule collection of womenswear that works accessories right into the clothes via studding and leather adornment. Citing influences as diverse as art nouveau and 16th century “Gloriana,” Moore explains that she and co-designer/lover Mike Harding like to “experiment and modernize different traditional leather and millinery techniques.” Of their hard to define aesthetic, she admits: “We are both sci-fi and fantasy obsessed, and somehow whatever I make ends up looking futuristic.” The two are currently working with an LA production company on a fly-on-the-wall documentary about the brand.
Despite the variety in these and other contemporary designers’ jewelry aesthetics, Moore notes that London living is in some ways the tie that binds. “The struggle to survive here combined with all the creative inspiration everywhere makes you more inventive and determined to create something more innovative than last season.”