Jewellery for life

Working from her home studio in a leafy lane a short walk from the beach on Hayling Island Charlotte is increasingly inspired by her surroundings. "I am fascinated by shape, texture and contrast as I look through my studio window at the open sky with silhouetted branches, touch the golden lichen encrusted twigs along the old railway track or hear the waves crashing and the gulls crying after a storm. Great jewellery design will reflect our personality, and I love designs that make a statement, expressing a sense of freedom and joy".

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She has no regrets about choosing to study an HND in 3D design specialising in metals, all those years ago. Following 2 years at Art College she experimented with all types of material such as glass and ceramics as well as metals. "I was itching to learn the practical and technical side of designing, making and marketing jewellery. To gain commercial experience I worked in an exclusive County Jewellers in Northampton for a year and then cut my teeth in the world of Jewellery Manufacturing – travelling the UK for 3 years with my company car and what must have been one of the first ‘car phones’! During this time I became more and more disillusioned with the apparent lack of any innovative‘design’ in jewellery outside of London – everything seemed to be a reproduction and was the same wherever I went."

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Charlotte Cornelius shop in Castle Road, Southsea, Hampshire.

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So when Charlotte and her husband produced identical twin girls we realised the travelling days were at an end – and it was the perfect opportunity to start up her own enterprise. Like most families, the ability to work flexibly from home is an ideal scenrio. "That is when I first started advertising one off and individually designed wedding rings. From an ad in the local paper and one or two Wedding Fairs Charlotte Cornelius Jewellery was born and we have grown over the last 18 years as steadily as my twin daughters have grown up"!

Adding her own exclusive collections along the way, and developing the commissions to embrace all forms of jewellery for all occasions, increasingly including remodelling of inherited and significant jewellery. It would be hard to find a more satisfying and heart-warming job. Charlotte is so creative and works closely with individuals and couples to find an understanding of their needs and ideas and forge a trusting relationship which in her experience has lasted for years and even decades! "

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I select and buy all precious metals and gems personally and am helped in the handcrafting of both bespoke and limited edition pieces by our locally based team including a silversmith and a specialist diamond mounter".

Values and more about Charlotte Cornelius We seek to run our business ethically and with integrity. All work is made and hallmarked in England, and all gems bought from UK dealers who are part of the Kimberley Process using conflict-free diamonds only. Ethically mined gems and the introduction of eco and recycled silver and gold are also supported by Charlotte Cornelius Ltd

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I personally believe it is important to give back to the local and wider community. As a qualified Gestalt counsellor I volunteer with a fantastic charity called Off the Record which offers free counselling to young people aged 11-25 years. Charlotte Cornelius Ltd also sponsors a christian based 'micro-finance' charity called Five Talents which gives small loans, mainly to women, in developing countries so that they can set up their own businesses. They are then empowered to support their families, educate their children and the loan gets repaid and recycled to the next budding entrepreneur!

Posted: 28/07/2015 15:49:59


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