Im 21 and presently in my third year studying Classics and French. At the time of composing, Im supposed to be on my year abroad in Paris, but having to stay in the UK due to Covid has in fact been a true blessing in disguise as I have more time to advance with jewellery and my little company. I began silversmithing with a couple of workshops with Kim Thompson throughout my art structure around 3 years earlier, and fell in love with making jewellery the moment I picked up a jewellers saw.
Elizabeth Evans aka Elizabeth FJE Style is a jewellery maker that has a love of modern and classic jewellery, in addition to using silver, gold and pearls in the most beautiful method. Learn more about this months Designer of the Month below
Let us understand a bit about yourself, detailing your background, research study and training in the jewellery making market.
Inform us about your work– are there any particular materials or methods that you favour?
I tend to operate in ecosilver and brass but have started working significantly with gold. I love setting stones as it makes me seem like a appropriate jeweller, however, I still seem like a student of silversmithing and wish to challenge myself with more difficult setting strategies.
Having actually studied sculpture throughout my foundation year, Im extremely thinking about form and procedure, choosing to exercise methods of hand-building complex pieces rather than sculpting and casting. Having the ability to control cold, difficult metal into something fragile and lovely through melting, creating, and soldering is exceptionally empowering.
How would you best describe your design style?
Making the classical modern and bringing the ancient into the everyday.
Where do you like to get your inspiration from for your pieces?
I scour history books, museums and even Pinterest boards to surround myself with as many classical designs as possible. I often consider how these might be equated into contemporary, wearable and available pieces, thinking of how they would have been used in their initial context and what I would alter about them to style them now.
Studying Classics at university, Im consumed with anything classical– especially Greek, Byzantine and roman jewellery and methods. This is hugely influential on all of my designs, whether its directly in the form and feel of the pieces, or through more conceptual ideas.
Do you have a piece that you have made which you favour or are especially pleased with?
Maybe not the most complicated or ideal piece Ive ever made, but this moonstone ring is special. I d chosen this gemstone for its addition as it looked so unique, and then made it into a ring for my mum as a mothers day gift. Aside from it being my first time working with gold, I repurposed one of her older pieces which brings a great deal of meaning, and I made the rest of that repurposed piece into a little gold ring for my 21st birthday. Both pieces have their own sentimentality and story. For me, this is the charm of jewellery.
What is the one product in your jewellery making workshop that you could not live without?
I remember being in a jewellery workshop; we d just been taught how to utilize a drill and as soon as I got home that evening, I rooted through the tools in the garage and was ecstatic to find it. Ive used it on every piece Ive made since.
What approaching patterns do you see being popular soon?
Whilst bespoke fine jewellery will always be a custom, I progressively see individuals of my age looking to buy directly from the designer, and desiring the option to customise their picked piece– typically by having a say on the metal mix, specific gems and so on to make it distinct. Consumers are becoming more aware of customizing their purchases and experiences to being exactly what they picture, and I believe the jewellery market will be one of the principal sectors welcoming this.
More than just a pattern, too, ethical and sustainable metals, studios and gemstones are constantly on the up– and rightly so!
What is the most valuable lesson you have learnt from your time in the jewellery making market?
I suppose this uses to much of life, actually, but the most valuable thing that Ive found out is that mistakes occur, and failure is fine. In fact, a few of my self-developed techniques and preferred designs have actually originated from failure– resulting in concepts that I never ever wouldve had otherwise.
When attempting to solder them (occurred many a time when I was discovering!), it can be something as little as melting bezels, but this taught me how to understand and build a relationship with metal, and observe the minute modifications that occur throughout such a process.
Do you have any particular recommendations that you would offer to up and coming jewellery designers, or someone interested in getting into jewellery making?
Just take the plunge– and do not be afraid to ask for recommendations. I began with an extremely minimal spending plan (around ₤ 80!) and very little equipment, that made me much more resourceful and meant that I needed to be more creative with what little I had. This actually turned out to be an actually good idea. It appears like a lot to get your head around at the start, but take a fast look on The Bench and at some YouTube videos to get an idea of the basics. Whether its basic beading or beginning with simple hand-cut shapes, we all begin someplace.
I d also recommend following and supporting creatives who are where you want to be in a years time. Naturally, everybody has their own workload and trade tricks, but many are more than happy to provide a budding jeweller a little push in the best instructions when needed.
Time for a bit of fun in our quick-fire round!
Colour– Gold!Biscuit– Dark chocolate Leibniz are my weaknessDrink– Lemon & & ginger tea, or an excellent G&T after clocking off.Place– Anywhere with liked ones.Animal– Dogs, specifically greyhounds.Gemstone– Diamonds (my birthstone!), and labradorites make me swoon!Food– My Singaporean grandmother cooks the very best standard Chinese food.Sport– Running, cycling, rowing– a bit of whatever to keep it fun.Film — A difficult watch, but Queen & & Slim is one of the most fantastic movies Ive ever seen. The movie Intouchables constantly makes me laugh and cry in equal measuresCity– Rotterdam or Barcelona– both have that ideal balance of laid-back and buzzy, and fantastic art and culture, too.
Tell us your favourite …
Lots of thanks to Elizabeth for being our Designer of the Month this month and for sharing this info
For more details on Elizabeths work, you can visit her Instagram, Facebook or Etsy page
See Elizabeths How to Create Different Texture Finishes tutorial
Desire to discover the work of other jewellery makers?
Have a look at our interviews with even more Designers of the Month to read more about their designs, inspiration and more.