Jasmine Alexander – inspired by poetry and eccentricity
By Amanda Grateley
LONDON, December 7, 2009 – Jasmine Alexander is one of Britain’s most exciting young fine jewellery designers, inspired by poetry, eccentricity and luxury.
Jasmine, who some compare to fashion icon Vivienne Westwood because of her stark individuality, says her work has a sense of history, and bravery, and seems to transform dark themes into beautiful objects made from precious materials, such as diamonds, rubies and sapphires.
“There is a sense of the poetic, there is a sense of the eccentric, there is a sense of luxury,” Jasmine said, speaking of her designs, which have recently attracted international press coverage in France, Spain, Germany and the United States, as well as in Britain.
“My work has a sense of history because it celebrates the deepest aspects within us,” she added, speaking to Jewellery Outlook on a recent afternoon in her cluttered studio in east London.
“It’s all about taking something that’s quite dark and tragic, and turning it into something beautiful.
“It’s about being brave enough to put your heart and soul, and every penny in your pocket, to do something you’d die for.”
Jasmine, who was apprenticed as a mounter in London’s Hatton Garden diamond jewellery quarter, creates limited edition pieces and undertakes private commissions. Her pieces typically range from 4,000-13,000 pounds each.
She showed off her work at this year’s International Jewellery London (IJL), featured among a cluster of up-and-coming young British designers
Jasmine talks of how she opted out of society for a few years, “living on a roof” as she put it, in the south of England.
She sought to contemplate the world, and says she wrote prose about the deeper questions – as she puts it, the metaphysical meaning of life.
“I wanted to understand why anger and violence existed, I wanted to understand the universe I existed in” she said.
When Jasmine re-integrated into society, a need to find an avenue for her creativity and continuing poetic inspiration led her back to jewellery, and she decided to make a go of it as an independent jewellery designer.
Highlights of her rise up the ranks of Britain’s talented young stars, included an invitation to show her new collection in fashion designer Paul Smith’s gallery in London’s elegant Mayfair district.
Jasmine is determined to be wholly original in her work, and tries not to be influenced by others.
“I try to isolate myself from other designs,” she said.
She draws solace from music in her work, and from time to time climbs onto the roof above her studio, puts in her ear phones and listens to rock ‘n’ roll.