Joanne Thompson: Jeweller of the Month

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The circle is forever the starting point for each of Joanne’s jewellery designs. Inspired by Ancient chain maille patterns, Joanne experiments with the scale, weight, form and texture of the chains, making necklaces, bracelets and earrings which are voluminous yet light, tactile and extremely durable.

We ask Joanne to answer our lovedazzle questions to find out a bit more…

Describe your work in 3 words?
Tactile, sculptural, durable.

What inspires you/your work?
‘Happy accidents’ while playing directly with the metal. I have stacks of silver jump-links in all sizes which I experiment with. Traditional chain maille patterns are a constant inspiration. I play about with the scale, weight, form and texture of the chains. Often new designs come about while I am making a piece and it somehow transforms into something new.

Video of Elliston Necklace

What made you decide to be a jewellery designer?
I always wanted to be a maker of some sort but wasn’t thinking of jewellery until first year at ECA where I discovered the jewellery department run by Dorothy Hogg. The jewellery studios seemed to have so much energy and organisation, I was hooked straight away. A lot of the pieces I made at ECA were like little metal ‘paintings’, which were translated into brooches, so I didn’t really consider myself a jeweller until I started making pieces that had a real connection to the wearer; the way the jewellery moves with the body, how it feels, the longevity of jewellery, and how we develop such strong attachments to it.

ervine necklace
Ervine Necklace – £499

If you weren’t a jewellery designer what do you think you would be?
In my dreams a ballet dancer! But realistically I think I would be involved with textiles.

What’s the most exciting piece you have ever made?
It was a piece I made recently for a friend, recycling lots of old 22ct gold bracelets into one of my Ervine necklaces, the 22ct gold was a dream to work with.

What tool can you not live without?
I have a set of jump-link mandrels gifted from my friend Gerlinde Huth not long after we graduated from RCA. Every single piece I make involves using them.

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Bay Necklace – £211

What do you love most about being a jeweller?
Sitting down at the bench and making is such a pleasure, I do feel grateful every day. And having such a lot of jewellery to wear is not bad either!

If you could choose anyone to wear your jewellery, who would it be?
Charlotte Gainsbourg

What is your favourite piece on lovedazzle?
The Eldis necklace by Jelka Quintelier is stunning.


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