Thursday 20 October 2011

Real Brides: Rachel

Hallo everyone

I'm really excited to introduce the first in a series of interviews featuring some of the beautiful brides who have commissioned pieces from me over the years.

The first bride to be featured on my blog is Rachel. I made a comb for Rachel's wedding, and earrings and hair accessories for her two bridesmaids.

At what stage in the whole wedding planning process did you start thinking about your jewellery and accessories?

I started looking at jewellery and accessories once I bought my wonderful wedding dress.

How did you decide what jewellery and accessories to wear?

My Jenny Packham wedding dress was beautifully designed with lots of beading and crystals which meant that the jewellery and hair accessories needed to be understated. What attracted me to Gioia Mia was that the jewellery was handmade and designed to my personal taste with one to one consultation briefings throughout the process.

Unfortunately Rachel wasn't able to come to my studio in person, as she lived too far away. So we worked entirely by email.

She sent me some really great close-up pictures of the detail of her dress. She also emailed me pictures of her hair trial and described some of the ideas that she had had for her comb.

She posted me a sample of the different beads that were embroidered onto her absolutely beautiful Jenny Packham dress. I was able to match these up with a range of Swarovski crystals and rhinestones that I had samples of, and make a feature of these in her comb.

I studied the detail in her dress very closely, and came up with an Art Deco influenced sunburst design, which complemented her delicate features and worked with the hairstyle that she had chosen.

What did you enjoy most about having your jewellery and accessories designed and made for you?

For me what I enjoyed most was being able to have my wedding hair slide made with the beads and crystals from my wedding dress. After showing Sonia the design of the wedding dress she was able to create a delicate understated hair slide which complemented my dress perfectly. Sonia knew exactly what I liked and was able to create this perfectly.

With regards to the bridesmaids, I sent a sample of the bridesmaid's dresses colour and Sonia was able to create beautiful bespoke hair slides which were both designed for their individual hairstyles (short and long-haired bridesmaids) which complemented them perfectly. I also had earrings made for both bridesmaids that went perfectly with the hair slides and dresses.

The bridesmaid's earrings were dainty clusters of the different colours of Swarovski crystals that I also used in their hair accessories.

For one of the bridesmaids I made a hairpin based on a very simplified version of the sunburst idea I had used for Rachel's comb. For the other bridesmaid I made a comb based on the clusters in the earrings.

Is there any advice about jewellery and accessories that you could give a bride to be?

My advice to a bride to be would be to take your time in deciding your jewellery and accessories. I would highly recommend Gioia Mia to design your jewellery and accessories for your wedding day. Sonia provides a efficient, professional and bespoke service.

Thank you Gioia Mia for your help in making our day so special.


I am really grateful to Jane Jordan for allowing me to use her beautiful images of Rachel's wedding on my blog.

You can see her website here

Saturday 1 October 2011

In the studio

Hallo everyone

I thought I would post a picture of the lovely studio where I work, so you can see where I design and make all my pieces and also where I meet my customers - if they are within travelling distance.

I'm really lucky to work from a fantastic studio space right in the centre of Glasgow, in a community of artists (including designers, painters, photographers, writers and architects).

We're up high, so it's always bright. To the right is a lovely big window. I have my workbench right underneath, and this is where I do all my research, and all my designing and making:

On my wall are framed photographs of brides who have commissioned pieces from me on their wedding day, and a large frame showing just a few of the many pieces I have made over the years.

On the left hand wall are a couple of framed photographs from a photoshoot I worked on with Alan Hutchison.

Underneath are a small selection of thank you cards and some of the books on historical costume that I draw inspiration from:

Feel free to drop me a line if you'd like to make an appointment to come and have a chat, drink some tea and maybe even try on a few sparkly headbands, tiaras, necklaces or earrings!