Melissa James

My process for creating and designing jewellery begins with an idea. That idea comes from either the shape, colour or markings on stones I am working with. Placing them in different configurations can create the outline for a piece and when I am happy with the result I will put it together. It is then I might decide what else to add – maybe a hammered metal shape, or a series of shapes, or possibly an antique brooch or artefact. There is always the delightful surprise when serendipity occurs.

Picking up stones started on beaches in Cornwall.  On my travels over the years I have picked up stones and artefacts where ever I go which requires doing a cull of my finds before returning to base. So I suppose it is a natural progression to being a jewellery designer.

Making jewellery started over 20 years ago in a small way but quickly grew, taking over as a business from painting murals, marbling, wood-graining, etc.

It has been a happy progression and one that changes and grows all the time. Ideas can come from collaborations with customers, which I might then adopt in a different form to make other pieces. This is why I like interaction as it creates new and interesting pieces. A collaborative process is always enriching, taking me and my designs forward.