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Monday, November 4, 2013

British Firm Mappin & Webb Reinvents Itself with New Creative Director and Jewelry Collection

The motif of this elaborate 18k white gold cuff from the "Empress" collection is repeated in concentric circles set with 6.15 carats of diamonds and 5.84 carats of round-cut pink gems.

Mappin & Webb is a company that has undergone many changes in its 238-year history but always had Great Britain running through its veins.

Founded in 1775 in Sheffield as a cutlery firm, the company eventually developed a specialty as a metalsmith. It is now primarily known as a jewelry and gift retailer. It has been commissioned by royalty since 1905 and currently holds Royal Warrants (given to tradespeople who supply goods or services to a royal court or certain royal persons) as a silversmith to Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles.

Today, it is undergoing another transformation under the direction of its new creative director, Elizabeth Galton, best known as the creative director of Links of London. This means revitalizing just about everything, from store concept and advertising campaigns through to collections and brand packaging. 

The Fortune Drop Necklace uses the infinity band as a small pendant, suspended from a double-loop 18k yellow gold chain.

"We feel we have a moral duty to return this glorious British brand back to an international stage and it is a journey we feel very passionate about," Galton said.

Galton recently unveiled new collections that reinterpret historic motifs from the company’s archives, making them relevant to a modern audience through contemporary designs.

The “Empress” collection was inspired by a bespoke Mappin & Webb design for the Queen of Siam, commissioned in the 1920s and rediscovered in the jewelry house’s historic archive.

The delicate and decorative circular motif was characteristic of brooches beloved by the Eastern aristocracy of the time. The 24-piece collection of diamond rings, necklaces, bracelets and earrings unite mythical exoticism of the East with a playful, modern spirit. It features modern-18k white, yellow and rose gold set with brilliant round-cut diamonds and, in some cases, pink sapphires.

The Fortune collection includes infinity bands, bracelets, necklaces and earrings pairs gleaming 18k white, yellow or rose gold with strands of sparkling diamonds.

Platinum necklace with Gemfields’ Zambian emeralds, 33.86 carats and diamonds, 7.26 carats.

The company also provided a one-of-kind necklace using emeralds provided by Gemfields, a colored gemstone miner and marketer. It was part of a bespoke jewelry collection created by leading designers with emeralds, rubies and amethysts from Gemfields.

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