This months designer interview is with Babette Wasserman. Babette is the designer of the Electra, Amazon and Bamboo collections stocked in store. Each collection is unique and handcrafted to the highest standard. Her status as a designer continues to rise and she was recently shortlisted for the prestigious award of 'Brand of the Year' at this year's UK Jewellery Awards. The awards take place in London this Thursday – goodluck Babette!
What's your background and what inspired you to become a jewellery designer?
BW: I was at Chelsea College of Art and fell in love with sculpture and product design and always had a keen interest in fashion. One of my tutors suggested doing my degree in jewellery which was a logical mix of all the things I loved, so I applied and got a place at Central St Martins School of Art where I did a BA in Jewellery Design.
How would you describe your customers?
BW: Our customers range from designer boutiques to large department stores. From a chic jewellery concession on the fourth floor of Harrods’ Way In, to our large cufflinks offering at Selfridges, passing by Isetan Japan to Bloomingdales in the US and of course our lovely designer jewelers UK-wide such as Nude Jewellery in London’s Mayfair, we are proud to have a wonderfully varied and international client base.
What is your favourite piece of jewellery? (either made or purchased)
BW: It is difficult to choose one particular piece of jewellery. Each season I launch around 40 pieces of new jewellery and the same in cufflinks. One of my longstanding favourites is the Scarf Lariat. I have recently launch its little sister, Ficelle, a thinner elegant version of the knitted sterling silver Scarf that wraps around the neck just like a scarf. This range is available in silver, rose gold vermeil and yellow gold vermeil with matching bracelets.
Which celebrity would you love to wear your jewellery and why?
BW: I would love Angelina Jolie to wear my jewellery – probably the Scarf lariat or multiple Amazon Attraction bracelets stacked in rose gold and yellow gold. I find she has excellent taste, she oozes elegance and glamour effortlessly!
If you hadn’t been successful as a designer what would your plan B have been?
BW: I think I would have gone into sculpture. I have always fancied doing a Masters at the Royal College of Art and I love the idea of creating huge public sculptures made from metal.
What can we expect to see from you in the future?
BW: this year we have been nominated as ‘Brand of the Year’ at the UK Jewellery Awards 2011, this is the second year in a row that we have been shortlisted which is very exciting! We are expanding our sales distribution further and have just started working with some US Agents. We have an Olympic cufflink collection that will be launched in July and am designing the ring for the new ‘Princess Catherine’ (Kate Middleton) wedding doll which will be launched in Harrods and Hamleys in the next couple of months!