Sian has always been involved in the jewellery industry and has had a varied career, from making jewellery and selling in the V&A Museum shop, Dazzle Jewellery exhibitions and Goldsmiths’ Fair, teaching jewellery making skills to young mums from disadvantaged backgrounds. Sian is our jewellery making content creator at Cooksongold and tries out lots of new products and materials, sharing her experiences across Youtube, TikTok and on our blog.

Where did your love of jewellery making stem from?

My first memory of jewellery is helping my mum and godmother sell beaded earrings they had made at a car boot sale in the 1990’s. I remember it as wildly successful but my mum has since said they didn’t sell anything! I made my first piece of silver jewellery at 16 as the Sixth form college I attended offered an A level qualification in jewellery.

Describe your style in 3 words.

Eclectic, modern & simple.

Can you name a few top products in your workshop that you can’t live without?

The new Durston Pickle pot! Definitely an investment piece of equipment, but it’s really neat and well designed (I’ll still have a slow cooker for my pickle as well though because old habits die hard) I’m a big fan of a bench peg (999 083). It is a versatile tool that I can use to easily cut wire and sheet as it has lots of cut outs, plus it’s easy to attach to a work surface.

What materials do you prefer to use when making jewellery?

I love working with yellow gold and I’m lucky enough to have had a fair few commissions for gold. That being said I love mixed material, I’ll make jewellery from anything, some of my favourite projects I’ve made at Cooksongold have been using FIMO (polymer clay). I collect jewellery from other jewellers who use aluminium, resin, acrylic and fabric for example.

What’s your favourite item to make or a piece you’re particularly proud of?

I love making heavily textured gold rings, the more texture the better. I also enjoy making really simple components in mass to make statement necklaces.

Can you give us a sneak peek of what you are working on right now?

There are lots of new wax carving products and tools out now so I’ve had to revive my wax carving skills. There are several members of staff at Cooksongold who are professional wax carvers and they’ve agreed to teach me and share their skills.

Do you experiment with any unique or unconventional materials for your designs?

When I make jewellery projects for Cooksongold I’ll use a wide variety of materials from silver clay to polymer clay. I’ll take inspiration from everything from shibori patterns to ‘The Colour Run’.

Which jewellery projects tend to be most popular?

Cooksongold launched lots of jewellery making kits this year and I love it when I see someone has made the project but put their own spin on it!

The most popular kit was The Argent college feather kits which sold out straight away. As part of their work experience module students from Argent College designed a sterling silver flower, heart and feather themed piece of jewellery for each jewellery making kit and then packed the boxes with all the components needed for Cooksongold customers to buy and make at home. This was a real life opportunity for the young adults involved to develop and bring a product to market. Working with students with special educational needs was a real privilege for me and I’m so proud of this project!

If you could offer someone starting out jewellery making a piece of advice, what would it be?

I think it would be to enjoy the creative freedom and mindfulness that making jewellery can give. There are so many different ways to make jewellery, it’s great to learn classic solid techniques but it’s also ok to make jewellery in the way that supports your own needs.

What has been your favourite commission?

Not a commission but in 2020 I started making a personalised star necklace and donating all the profits to the charity Mummy’s star. Mummy’s Star are a charity providing cancer support in or around pregnancy. Helping families through birth, loss and with the beyond and have helped my own family. I’ve raised over £3000 for the charity and I know every penny will benefit a family directly.

Have you noticed any emerging trends?

I think personalisation, name necklaces and charms are still going to be huge and I can’t wait.

How do you keep your creativity flowing when designing new pieces?

Whenever I design or make anything new, I always go through all emotions in all extremes. I believe the more creative I am on a day-to-day basis the more creative I will become. I must have 10-20 different designs on the go at once in various stages of completion, so perhaps my creativity doesn’t flow but is random and erratic?!

Be sure to check out Sian’s videos and content available on our YouTube channel and our blog. Keep an eye out for more exciting projects to come.

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Author: Natasha Mogul
Written by

Natasha Mogul