Spring is nearly here and the first big family gathering in our social diary is Father’s Day, so I thought it would be a good time to highlight the fun, funky and highly desirable cufflinks we have in store.
There are all sorts of handcrafted cufflinks, miniature treasures to give to your Dad as a special present this Father’s Day.
To help you choose, I have put together a list of cufflinks and matched them to the many varied and different personality types of the Dad’s out there. The cuffs are in no particular order but there is a lot of choice to suit your Dad or any of the special men in your life.
Sporty Dad, loves his footy and cooking where there is danger involved (like the BBQ)! Sterling silver Football Cuffs by Felicity Peters, Western Australia
Map Dad, adventurer & explorer. Map Cuffs: Oxidised sterling silver cuffs, with remnants of maps from yesteryear and perspex by Clare Hillerby, Scotland.
Creative Dad, likes to be different and thinks outside of the box. Circle Cuffs: sterling silver, Chiyogami hand pressed paper, Resin by Susan Fleming, U.S.A
Do It Yourself Dad, loves his shed and is a true handyman (just ask him and he will tell you!). Corrugated Cuffs: sterling silver by Felicity Peters, Western Australia.
Current Affairs Dad, loves the news, travelling, ‘TOP GEAR’ and using the GPS. Post and Map Cuffs: Oxidised sterling silver, remnants of maps and postcards from yesteryear, perspex by Clare Hillerby.
Sun, Surf and Sea Dad, loves to sail, windsurf, swim, surf and enjoys hanging at the beach. Sail Cuffs: Sterling silver by Felicity Peters, Western Australia
Collector Dad: loves to scour wine shops for back vintages, car yards, bike shops, antique stores and car yards and collects car magazines. Three Colours Stamp Cuffs: Blue: Oxidised sterling silver, stamps from yesteryear, perspex, by Clare Hillerby, Scotland.
I think I have more than my fair share of ‘collecting’ genes in my DNA, I love calligraphy, and I have a large collection of vintage stamps and postcards from my youth. These items are like a time capsule that transports you back into yesteryear where people relied on the written word and the postal service to communicate, they had beautiful penmanship and maps were hand drawn with pen and ink; a GPS was not even on the horizon!
I discovered Clare Hillerby’s work a couple of years ago and was in awe of how she captured many of my favourite things and transformed them into highly desirable contemporary jewellery. Clare has a passion for ephemera; she collects old papers, handwritten pieces and extracts from postcards, stamps, postal markings and old maps.
Clare says of her work: “handwriting forms the starting point for my work. Old papers featuring handwritten messages by unknown characters are sourced, interesting sections are extracted; messages become ambiguous, they are then combined with new metalwork, and contemporary stories emerge.
Silver is often oxidised for a depth of colour and to allow papers to become the highlight. Details of yellow gold tube riveting are used to construct parts of the work to reference an industrial landscape; our new history being created daily. Semi-precious beads are added for texture and colour.”
Interview with Clare:
Charmaine: What led you to jewellery design?
Clare: When I started studying I first specialised in fashion. Then I noticed in my fashion designs that I was more interested in the details so I decided to change direction, applying to Edinburgh College of Art; the jewellery course was so well respected and such great people were graduating from there. I appreciated the way you design in fashion though, I think I took that with me into jewellery, and I love the creative process of jewellery, from the designing through to making and selling.
Charmaine: Tell us about your passion for postcards and stamps from yesteryear…
Clare: I’m inspired by the everyday, people, the city – perhaps from coming from a small compact town to Edinburgh. The city is full of layers of history merging into the way we use it today, narrow closes and roads beneath roads, I have been really inspired by my time living here.
The postcards I use have been sourced from old bookshops in Edinburgh, while I was studying I collecting them for inspiration. The postcards weren’t really valued or appreciated at that time, which is what I liked, people’s lives intrigued me; little pockets of stories from decades ago, and you can’t help but imagine the lives the writers of the postcards had and that of their intended recipients.
Gradually the postcards became part of my work. I see them as a precious material, more than the silver in some ways as they are so unique. I discovered a shop to buy great postcards which also sold stamps so I gravitated to other forms of ephemera to make some interesting contrasts, I like variety (I get bored very easily!)
Charmaine: How do you source your materials what aesthetic do you look for?
Clare: People used to write so well, there’s a certain time in the mid-20th century were people perhaps stopped taking so much care, condensing their narrative to ‘having a great time/weather is good’ kind of a postcard, I suppose the more ways to communicate and the busier we get, the more watered down they each become.
I like the older postcards, where people were more likely to take their time using real ink pens and it was a treat to buy, send and receive a postcard.
Having said that, back then, there were more mail deliveries throughout the day, you do find postcards with a quick one liner ‘meet you at 6’. We do the same now electronically –with our mobiles.
I’ve become more particular with the ephemera I choose over time, searching for interesting, characterful handwriting. The writing has to be quite compact to get a lot into the ovals I cut out for the jewellery; each has to say something about the writer. They always have to feel nice too, although they are trapped between silver and perspex for practical reasons, the feel of the paper is just something special I get to enjoy!
Charmaine: Do you share your work space? How would you describe it?
Clare: I have a studio on my own in a building full of artists and makers. So it’s a completely dedicated studio space to make and design and think. One side of the studio is making and the other is the thinking side with a wall full of pinned ephemera (Charmaine: see image below this wall is like a work of art). It’s a very practical space, brick and concrete which only opens to the public once a year. I’m lucky to have a window which gets lots of sun and a view of roof tops with a million chimneys and a sky that constantly changes; it’s good to look at clouds when you’re trying to think!
Charmaine: I can see where you got your inspiration for the silver lining and rain cloud earrings (see image right and below)!
Charmaine: What tips would you give on how to wear jewellery?
Clare: I like to see people wear my work quite casually and regularly, rather than just for special occasions, and mixing things their own way. Although I do make bracelets to wear with particular earrings for example I think you can mix anything together to your own preferences, postcard necklace with stamp earrings for example work really well. I like the way people pair them up, it’s often in a different way than I imagined. People gravitate to certain materials too, (I sold to a geographer recently who wanted mostly maps!).
Charmaine: If you had an opportunity to meet anyone who would it be and why?
Clare: There are so many well-known and interesting famous people to choose from but I would really prefer to visit a regular someone in a time and place very different to what I take for granted, seeing how they live and work, it would be far more interesting.
Some new pieces from Clare:
In store we have some new pieces by Clare, including several charming cufflinks featuring maps and stamps. In addition, we are stocking some new pieces with the option of customising her necklaces and a bracelet with your choice of semi-precious beads (just check out the options tab under each item).
I have always been a big devotee of Japanese papers, especially the hand silk screened variety – Chiyogami; I believe each piece is a work of art – good enough to frame! So when I discovered Susan Fleming’s collection I was thrilled to see these beautifully made papers framed in sterling silver and ready to wear. Susan has a talent for designing and creating complimentary, gentle, organic shapes that capture the Chiyogami papers and transform them into wearable art.
There is a strong whimsical and almost zen like quality to Susan’s work, which captures your attention and draws you into her pieces. Susan’s work has been very popular at Lobo Luxe and it was great to catch up with her in New York and stock up on some new pieces in her collection.
Susan tells us about her inspiration for her collection:
LL: What led you to jewellery design?
Susan : My initial interest in jewellery making came via an interest in rocks and geology. I kept a rock collection from the age of six which later translated into a love of semiprecious stones and jewellery. My interest continued as I got older and was fueled by some jewellery making courses offered at the high school level. I took all the courses that my school had to offer and finished my senior year with further independent study. After studying political and environmental science in college, I returned to jewellery making the summer following graduation. I apprenticed with Sam Shaw on the Maine coast and it was there that I really honed my skills and began to establish my own body of work. I stayed on with him for seven years and then moved to the Rocky Mountain West area in 2000, and have maintained a jewellery studio ever since.
LL: What inspires/influences you?
Susan: Many, many things: living in the mountains, the vast sky, architecture, simple lines, paper, texture, shadows, Ray and Charles Eames, crafty friends, conversations, things old and new, and more.
LL: How would you describe your collection?
Susan: Modern, organic and colourful. I set hand silk screened paper in sterling silver settings and protect them with a thin waterproof layer of resin. the paper patterns are based on prints that date back to the Edo period but they still have a wide ranging appeal today giving them a classic as well as modern quality.
LL: How do you plan your collection?
Susan: Most often it is the patterns in the paper that drive the design of a piece. Whether it is the scale of a floral pattern or the repetition in a geometric print, it dictates or speaks to a specific shape. For example, I recently acquired a new paper with a large sunflower type print and created a bezel to perfectly frame a specific flower from the paper.
LL: Do you share your work space? How would you describe it?
Susan: I share a workspace with my amazing assistant, although we each have separate work benches. I think I work better in an organised and tidy environment although you would not gather that from looking at my desk. I usually work on multiple projects at once and so my desk often appears to be in a chaotic state, but there is an organisation to it even if only apparent to me.
LL: What are your passions outside jewellery?
Susan: Spending time with my husband Doug, daughter Finna, golden retriever Pema, family and friends, playing in the mountains, especially hiking and skiing, traveling(wherever), baking, eating yummy food and designing interior spaces.
LL: what tips would you give on how to wear jewellery?
Susan: Wear it often!
It sounds like a ripping yarn, a crime thriller or a good episode of your favourite soap opera, but it is in fact a summary of Shauna Mayben’s collection at Lobo Luxe.
Shauna’s collection was just recently launched at Lobo Luxe and I thought it would be great for you to find out more about the artist behind the “Antique Photo”, “He Whispered Sweet Nothings in Her Ear” and the “Money Makes the World Go Round” Collections.
Shauna is based in Hobart, Tasmania and her work is not only beautiful it is also environmentally friendly, she uses reclaimed, recycled and up-cycled materials.
What led you to jewellery design?
Shauna: I have always had a love for the arts as young as I can remember. I dabbled in sculpture, and then moved towards furniture design. It wasn’t until I travelled around Europe at the age of 19 and came back to Australia that I realised the importance of obtaining a fine craft ‘skill’. My Grandfather was a jeweller so I initially worked with him as well as doing my degree. I haven’t stopped learning since.
What inspires / influences you?
Shauna: Antiques; objects with previous lives. Old photographs that have lost their home, books, history and fine arts. I can spend hours lost in time in museums and galleries. I love visiting the heritage houses of Tasmania which are like time capsules. Decorative wallpapers, cabinets filled with scrimshawed whales teeth, handcrafted pipes, boxes with intricate gold and shell inlay. Beautiful handcrafted objects that would take a lifetime to master, the finest skills to construct.
What led you to incorporating sustainability into your design?
Shauna: I found my self in a dilemma. I love to make, to produce beautiful handmade items, but these days it seems a bit selfish when there is already so much out there. It’s also hard for me to know that the jewellery industry is one of the worst polluters in the world, not to mention the questionable ethics that are involved in the trade.
Once I was aware of some of the negative impacts of the craft that I loved I resolved to become an ‘ethical jeweller’ and a teacher who imparts knowledge about the less glamorous aspects of our industry. In doing this I hope to change work practices where the jewellers demand more environmentally sustainable mining and processing of gold and silver. Did you know, for example, that one gold ring generates 20 tons of by-products, leaching toxic metals and acid into soil and water?
So I made a choice to reduce the impact I had, by using salvaged materials and pre-existing materials. Each item is made from 100% recycled silver, up-cycled perspex and found images. I would like to think I can make a change by increasing awareness. (Don’t we all?)
How would you describe your collection?
Shauna: Considered, timeless, vintage inspired and elegant. Designed for the intelligent woman, who loves quality and sophistication, but also knows how to enjoy themselves.
How do you plan your collection, ie how do you decide on themes and does one inform the other – are there links?
Shauna: Most definitely, I do a lot of research before I make a range. Just recently I had an exhibition of works called; “I would rather have roses on my table than diamonds around my neck”. Sometimes it’s nice to be reminded that love is better than material possessions. That a rose garden is more beautiful than any stone dug up from the earth. Money is the oil that lubricates the machinery of life. It is important but it’s not everything. I worry that in today’s society we put money before everything. In doing so, we miss out on the smaller details of life.
Ultimately though all my work inspired and informed by the secret language of objects. Jewellery, photographs, dried flowers, old love letters, movie ticket stubs, we all collects these ‘worthless’ items to reminds us of intimate moments and loved ones.
Do you share your workspace ? How would you describe it?
Shauna: I share a studio called “Five Flights Up” with three other very talented jewelers. My studio is organised chaos. Yes, you may think that a jeweler is meticulous and clean but not me. Picture cut up magazines and books strewn across a table, streams of paper overflowing onto the floor, my jewellery bench, filled with silver wire, tools, small drill bits and bobs. On the wall I have my pictures of inspiration, other jeweller’s work I admire, and a photo of my beloved dog, Hero.
What are your passions outside jewellery?
Shauna: I love to teach and funnily enough I am also a soccer player. You wouldn’t think so if you met me, but there is nothing better than running around with friends playing that beautiful game.
What tips would you give on how to wear jewellery?
Shauna: Dare to be different… and you will be noticed.
A black dress with an elegant, but some what original designer piece and you are sure to be asked a million envious questions. Have a story to tell about your special piece of jewellery, where it came from, what it means, how it is helping the planet by recycling materials. The same black dress with pearls, or gold earrings, you just won’t get a second glance. So, try it. I have, many times.
Original designer jewellery can become a conversation starter, and who knows where the conversations can lead….
The idea behind my store was to present a range of collections that are unique and not easily accessible to women who are time poor or would need to travel great distances, to find that special something.
Looking through the store I hope you have noticed there is a diversity of design, every designer/jeweller has a different approach to creating pieces to adorn the body.
Adding to the diversity of the store, and the list of great Australian designers at Lobo Luxe, is collection of works by Shauna Mayben. Shauna’s work has a strong narrative behind each piece and she believes that jewellery is more than just a ‘bauble to adorn’.
Shauna tells her story through her pieces: whether it be the impact of money on our lives in the “Money Makes the World Go Round” range; the sentimental connection we have to photographs – in her “Antique Photo” range; the romance in “He Whispered Sweet Nothings in Her Ears” earrings; or in her signature Locket pendants – with a hidden gemstone, these pieces further highlight her skill and craftsmanship, Shauna refers to them as “precious vessels for treasures to reside in”, a contemporary twist on lockets from yesteryear.
Not only is her work beautifully made but it also has a strong sustainable element, and this was recently recognised when she received the Tasmanian Government’s Bricolage Design Prize, for environmentally sustainable products.
Shauna prides herself in using 100% recycled silver, and upcycling industrial off cuts, rescuing abandoned photographs, diverting materials from landfill and making wearable pieces that don’t cost the earth.
I hope you enjoy Shauna’s collection and maybe you will add your story to one of her pieces by making it your own….please see her range at Lobo Luxe
Lobo Luxe Goes Live!
If you’re looking for a piece of unique jewellery, something you won’t find in your usual haunts or being worn by at least two other women you pass on the street or at your next major event or birthday party, then you have come to the right place!
I understand, that your time is already stretched, or perhaps you live too far away to scour boutiques for quirky and eclectic jewellers, designers and artists.
The good news, I have done the hard work for you!
The collection encompasses gold, silver, diamonds and semi-precious stones, as well as funky resin and acrylic pieces.
From Australia I am proud to represent whimsical and romantic pieces from by Flick Pope of the Mornington Peninsula and embellished vibrant necklaces and bangles by Amy Renshaw of Melbourne. If you appreciate the cool pairing of glass and sterling silver, you must venture to the delightful necklaces and earrings by Susan Frisch of Victoria. From Sydney we boast a stylish and feminine range of pearls and resin pieces by Mary Odorcic while Perth’s Felicity Peters has a sublime collection of earrings, necklaces, bangles, brooches and rings.
Not to be outdone, artists from across the Tasman offer bewitching designs, from handmade necklaces and detailed patina pieces by Caroline Bassett of the Kapiti Coast of New Zealand, to richly detailed earrings, rings and necklaces from Louise Douglas of Nelson.
You will also find work from the U.S, from quirky offerings by Joli Jewelery from Brooklyn New York, the stylish minimalism embraced by Rebecca Overmann of San Francisco and exotic pieces by Susan Fleming from Wyoming. The diverse landscape of California sparks an inspiration all its own – among the finest, rich and vibrant designs by Robindira Unsworth and gorgeous adornments from Rings Eclectic, and Elyssa Bass of Georgia introduces an echo of old world luxury and charm in the shape of bangles with semi-precious stones.
North of the U.S, I have handpicked a range from Canadian artists. It includes celestial inspired pieces by Jessie Turner from Vancouver, glass and silver, funky and vibrant pieces by Tank in Toronto and minimalistic to rich in detail works from Gillian Hillerud of Calgary.
Rounding up this stellar group of jewellers and metal-smiths is a talented delegation from the U.K. Take a look at the whimsical and nostalgic postal and postcard range from Scotland’s Claire Hillerby and the organic leaf forms featured in necklaces and earrings by Tracy de Chevron Villette, and you can’t go passed the vibrant, quirky winged brooches by Melanie Tomlinson a veritable hot house/atrium full of butterflies, tiger moths, birds and flowers.
So… take a few minutes with your favourite brew to enjoy browsing our treasures. Allow us to help locate a special treat for yourself or a loved one.
I look forward to helping you locate a special piece that you can make your own which will accentuate whatever you are wearing.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on any aspect of our products or our web presence. Please feel free to get in touch – you can reach me via the Contact page .
I hope this will be your first of many visits at Lobo Luxe.