I am very excited to share this Sophie Hughes Jewelry with you because not only does she have an amazing design sense, but also she is passionate about using recycled metals! I am fond of her use of texture and the way she mixes metals with ease. The pieces have a simple, organic feel but are also very edgy. As much as I love diamonds and gemstones, I am always more drawn to designs that aren't stone heavy.
Sophie realized jewelry was her passion while still in high school after taking her first jewelry class. She was immediately hooked and had already apprenticed for a local jeweler before she graduated. She went on to Massachusetts College of Art & Design to earn a degree in Metalsmithing. Sophie opened her own studio in 2008and launched her line in 2009. She then spent five years creating and selling to amazing jewelry stores like Love Adorned and Roseark before she opened her store, Ore in Boston. Although she's grown her brand, she and her assistants create the jewelry on site the old fashion way - with hammers, anvils and torches!
About her store, Ore, in Boston: "It's wonderful to be able to create and show the jewelry in the same space. The designs and the decor of the shop are all extensions of myself and my personal aesthetic, and both the jewelry and the line have a distinct unpretentious-yet-special feel to them. I find that clients drawn to my work are sophisticated, grounded women. My jewelry is no-nonsense, and authentic, and so is my clientele. You'll find them wearing all neutrals in sophisticated cuts, and black booties, allowing red lipstick or a piece of gold jewelry to be their pop of color."
The process: "When designing, I do sketch first, but really just as a way for me to record an idea. I'm not sure anyone else could understand my sketches, and even for myself I still need to write out a description so I can decipher the drawing later! Designs really come together for me as I am making them. I need to see it in 3-D, and feel it and try it on --which I do often when creating-- to see how the piece works with the body, and to get the proportions and curves right."
The inspiration: "As a designer, I find inspiration in unexpected places all the time (I'm talking every hour, every day - it can be like a constant ticker). I find myself particularly drawn to old utilitarian metal objects, like tools and hardware. I love the texture of rust, the slight irregularity of hand-wrought forms, and the directness of those designs. When I create, I aim always to strike an unexpected balance between this rough aesthetic and a sense of refinement - with a burnished edge, or a gem, or just the naturally rich, brilliant color of yellow gold."
Her favorite jewelry designer is Atelier Zobel / Peter Schmid. I am also in love with his designs. As Sophie says, "Every piece is unique, and each one is so interesting. I could spend hours looking at his work." Yes.
"I've always especially loved making rings. It's the form of jewelry that the wearer sees the most, so it's not only for the enjoyment of others but themselves as well. It's especially intimate in that way.
Since I opened the store I've been fortunate to have many people come to me to design their engagement rings and wedding bands. I'm deeply enjoying being able to focus so much of my attention and time on creating such personal, significant jewelry, and am excited by the challenges of "marrying" each unique set of needs and desires with my aesthetics. This is a relatively new part of my line which I intend to continue to grow. And you'll definitely be seeing more stones throughout my work, even the everyday pieces."
In Sophie's spare time, which she doesn't have much of, she loves to travel. Turkey is her favorite place to visit - she's been there twice and plans to go back.
Currently playing in her shop? Elvis and all types of Motown! She also enjoys The Walkmen.
See more designs by Sophie here!