New Zealand-based jewellery designer Ian Douglas is at the forefront of driving a significant change in the fine jewellery industry with his non-conventional designs.
Douglas, who is also the director of Inspired Jewellery Ltd, shared his experiences as a jeweller of more than three decades and his views on how future jewellery designs will likely take on a simpler yet more creative look that defines the wearer’s artistic side.
JNA: How did you become a jewellery designer?
Ian Douglas: I spent most of my early years training to be in the jewellery manufacturing sector. I then worked for a jewellery manufacturer, and managed a shop. I eventually put up my own business in Wellington in 1981. Since then, I’ve been designing and making jewellery in 18-karat gold or platinum, adorned with diamonds, sapphires, rubies and other coloured gemstones. For me, it’s all about designing and producing jewellery that is different from what most other designers and manufacturers are doing.
JNA: What is your design philosophy? How would you describe your jewellery?
Douglas: I’m heavily influenced by a lot of factors but I always try to make something that is challenging. We don’t follow a certain design aesthetic or style. I think our pieces are quite universal; they appeal to different cultures all over the world. But the main thing is we try to make pieces of the highest quality that challenge the way people would normally accept how a gemstone is held in a piece of jewellery. We explore new ways to mount and showcase the gemstones. We combine different gemstone-setting techniques – channel, classic grain, or claw setting – but we also do tension setting, and we find that these are very challenging pieces. We try to create art through our jewellery collections.
The full story appears in JNA’s November issue. To subscribe, click here.