UK-based jewellery designer Annoushka Ducas launches her first collection of sustainable bridal jewellery.
Annoushka Ducas’ new Love and Commitment is made from recycled gold and set with conflict-free, GIA-certified diamonds. The bridal line reflects on the evolution of long-term commitment. “The rings combine and stack, they build and evolve, just like a good marriage,” says the founder and creative director of Annoushka fine jewellery. The British jeweller’s offerings include earrings and rings set in a distinctly informal style, with diamonds and coloured stones such as rubellite, tanzanite and morganite.
Her own engagement ring was the first piece of jewellery she designed 31 years ago. “I can honestly say, there hasn’t been a day that I haven’t worn it and I’m now designing a jacket to sit either side, inspired by the new collection,” she adds. So, when Annoushka sat down to design her first bridal collection, she wanted it to consist of pieces that could be worn forever, every day. Compositions in single stones, three stones, five stones and floral motifs echo her design aesthetics. The versatile collection looks modern and will appeal to brides who are looking for alternative engagement rings and eternity bands that can be worn individually or stacked up. “Versatility is intrinsic to the way I design,” says Annoushka of the new line.
The Marguerite series, shares the designer, are inspired by rural British hedgerows in Summer. “The settings are organic and informal, just like the meadows near my home in West Sussex, England. Worn alone, Marguerite feels gorgeously feminine and laid-back, but paired with Crown, it is transformed into something more modern,” the designer adds.
Why did you pick rubellite, tanzanite and morganite for the coloured stone rings?
I didn’t want to design with the obvious choices – emerald, ruby and sapphire. While lovely, there are so many gorgeous gemstones that are lesser known, but just as beautiful. Colour generally leads me when it comes to gemstones, but the ones I chose all have significance too – morganite, which is one of my favourite stones because of its peachy blush colour, is believed to be attuned to the heart and represents promise, while tourmaline is said to open the heart and bring peace, rubellite brings luck and prosperity, and tanzanite is said to symbolise trust and sincerity – all seemed rather lovely sentiments for a collection about commitment.
The Love and Commitment rings can be stacked, interchanged, combined. Is versatility the way forward?
I want my jewellery to work hard and be worn in different ways – one ring, one way forever seems so rudimentary. Why not have a ring that can be playful and in five, 10 or 20 years come back and add another layer, which will sit perfectly alongside it? Love and Commitment sits harmoniously alongside the Crown and Marguerite collections, when you combine them.
Your Marguerite and Crown stacks have evolved into the bridal line. Tell us more.
The beauty is they are ever evolving! Crown was one of my very first collections and remains a best seller. We offer it plain and with diamonds in 18-karat yellow, white and rose gold, and they interlace beautifully and were my first version of stacking rings. Marguerite was launched last Spring and was my very first 18-karat white gold and white diamond collection, which inspired me to design Love and Commitment to sit alongside.
You have designed new product styles like ear pins as well as transformable pieces. What inspired this approach?
Jewellery should be fun and what’s better than the surprise and delight when a piece of jewellery does what you’d least expect and spins or opens, or better still can be transformed entirely. While this collection is marketed as bridal, these pieces are designed to be worn daily; so to be able to wear a stud three ways seems obvious to me.
Love and Commitment is made from 100% recycled gold. Do tell us more about the sustainable business approach.
As a business, we are at the beginning of our sustainability journey with Positive Luxury – up until this point, 70% of our gold has been recycled and we are holding ourselves accountable to reach 100% recycled gold across all collections, as soon as we can. Love and Commitment is the first collection to launch from Annoushka in 100% recycled gold, all new designs thereafter will follow suit.
This is one way we’re attempting to be more circular as a business and align ourselves with the UN Sustainable Development Goal No 12, which is Responsible Consumption and Production. We understand that the issues surrounding gold extraction are complex and we recognise there is no one, single solution to mining, which impacts the environment, local communities, the economy and human and women’s rights. Therefore, we have decided our responsibility is to use gold that has already been mined, to minimise our environmental impact.