Rare gems, innovative silverware gleam at Goldsmiths' Fair

Fri Oct 5, 2012 9:29am EDT
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By David Brough

LONDON (Reuters) - Spectacular rare gemstones and innovative silverware designs with a practical edge stood out at the 30th annual edition of Goldsmiths' Fair held in the British capital.

Wealthy customers mingled with designer-makers standing at their booths in the guilded surrounds of the Goldsmiths' Company building beside St. Paul's Cathedral, which showcased jewels set in 18-carat gold and vermeil, and state-of-the-art silverware.

UK designer-makers Catherine Best, David Marshall, James Fairhurst and Ingo Henn presented hand-crafted jewels with stunning colour stones from around the world.

French-born award-winning designer-maker Ornella Iannuzzi showed off statement pieces including a twisted golden cuff with rough emeralds, and chunky rings to emphasise the strong character of the wearer.

Best's blue paraiba tourmaline rings, and a large red spinel ring, attracted strong interest from the public.

Jewellery orders at Goldsmiths' Fair held up well despite the recession in the UK, organisers said.

"Early indications are promising, but we won't know the full picture until after the show ends. The footfall is mainly UK, but we have plenty of international visitors too," said Paul Dyson, longstanding director of promotion at the fair.

Some customers were seeking pieces with less weight in gold because of its soaring cost, and were turning to designer silver rings instead of gold jewels.   Continued...