Hattie Rickards, Jewelry Designer

Who are you Hattie? 

I am British and at the ripe age of 28!  I am a jewelry designer and launched Hattie Rickards Jewelry in November 2010.  HRJ is a British designed and made luxury brand with a focus on sophisticated design and an ethical backbone.

We want to create beautiful and desirable pieces of refined jewelry that tell a story for or about the wearer.   We also look to cater to a growing client base who wants to know that the rings that adorn their fingers are ethically and responsibly produced.

How did you decide to design jewelry and when was “Revealed”, your first collection born?

I’ve always loved jewelry but it wasn’t until my foundation course at Wimbledon Art College and my BA Jewelry Design and Making degree at Central Saint Martins in London that I decided to make a career in the industry.

We took our inspiration for the launch collection ‘Revealed’, introduced in January, from movement. The twelve rings that comprise the collection allude to as well as inspire this movement theme using kinetic assemblies and rough uncut stones as well as vibrant precious stones.  It is currently exclusively stocked at Dover Street Market in London.  The entire Revealed collection is handmade here in the UK out of 18ct Fairtrade Fairmined Ecological certified gold and a variety of precious stones. The clients may personalise their own piece by choosing the own colour-way of stones and metal.

One of your main piece is inspired by a ruby cube, it’s a great ring, tell us about it.

The Rubix is my signature piece which has been a huge success!  I wanted to create a ring that did something, something that one can play with, distract you, something that was different.  Men love the Rubix because they appreciate the concept of a piece of jewelry having a function.

                                                                     You are about to launch “Geo”, your second collection, what was your inspiration?

It’s SO exciting it will be launched in November!

It is a range of necklaces, rings and bracelets – all handmade out of 18ct Fairtrade and Fairmined ecological gold and precious stones.

The inspiration for the collection is ‘connection’; the idea of many becoming one.   Visions of puzzles, tessellating shapes, combining geometrical structures and vibrant stones.

You are also working with MADE, a fair-trade accessories brand based in Kenya, can you give us more details about this collaboration? 

My collaboration with MADE required a very different approach to that of HRJ.   I arrived at the workshops outside Nairobi with a few potential designs in my sketchbook, only to be told my brief was to design 70 pieces in ten days!  Initially I was thrown, but after a couple of hours of absorbing the creative atmosphere, witnessing the incredible speed of production and the hard-working enthusiastic team, I embraced the challenge.  It was a very different time scale to the HRJ luxury brand where I design one annual collection.  MADE, in comparison, produces thousands of pieces of jewelry a year from recycled brass.  I have just completed designing my second collection for them which will be in the shops in Spring 2012.

Ideally, if you had to design a line for a famous designer, which one would it be?

I have always admired the work of Matthew Williamson and would the relish the opportunity of working on a collaboration with them. 

Which celebrities would you be flattered to see wear your designs? 

Livia Firth wore the Bullet Ring to The London Film Critic Awards in February. (click here to see the photo)

Vanity Fair asked Poppy Delevigne what her favourite piece of jewelry was and she replied “My Rubix Ring by Hattie Rickards”.

You are based in London, what is your favorite place in the city?

I am based in Gloucestershire but my studio is in London where I am three days a week. During the weekends I love to walk my favorite markets absorbing all the colours, noises and smells.  Starting off at London Fields, walking through Broadway Market  and grabbing my favorite fajita feast from Toma Mexicano … mmm… YUM!  Along the Canal then down to Columbia road in perfect time find all the salesmen eager to shift their last flowers so all going dirt cheap!  I get so carried away!

A favorite restaurant?

Mildreds in SoHo

A favorite bar?

The Experimental Cocktail Club hidden away in Chinatown.

A favorite shop? 

Millau. They have a stall under the Westway at Portobello.

If you could live anywhere else, where would it be?

In the hills of Spain, Andalucia for a warm, peaceful life but still not too far away from the UK!

What’s next? Any project?

I want to go to the mines in Colombia where I source my Fairtrade Fairmined Ecological Gold from.  I want to meet the miners that extract the gold that I use and to achieve first hand experiences.   It is important that I can pass these experiences on to my clients so that they learn the importance of using ethically and environmentally sound materials for their jewellery.

All the pieces shown in this interview apart from the Rubix ring are part of Hattie’s upcoming collection “GEO”.

Click here to access Hattie’s website.
To see her collaboration with MADE, click here

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