Absolutely everyone asks about the ‘engagement story’. Clare, jewellery designer at Via Sollertia in New Regent Street should know. She’s even witnessed a proposal.
The stones and metallics at Clare’s atelier are spectacular. She lights up when talking about cuts of diamond and how a jewel will sit on a hand; matters of size, proportion and reflective qualities… all brilliant designer elements of every bejeweled gift.
Creating bespoke rings and conducting an exciting collaborative design process never ceases to be a joyful thing. “We really do love bringing dreams to life,” Clare attests.
Via Sollertia sources desirable stones in all hues and intensities, and will incorporate any styling, whether heritage-inspired or contemporary. One partner might broadly choose; the other might refine and add to the design. It’s unique to each couple.
“Currently gorgeous soft washed-out pastel stones are in demand, as are diamonds, always. The Princess-cut is just starting to resurge.”
However it happens, the end result is – no one else in the world has the same ring. A bit like the fact no one in the world has exactly the same aesthetic vision… or fiancée.
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Going bespoke is a lovely tribute to a special relationship.
It’s inherently romantic to seek out your own symbolic sparkle mixed with gorgeous gold, silver or platinum. In fact, deciding on an engagement ring, wedding rings, or other special occasion jewellery is one of life’s most delightful times.
A family-owned Christchurch business since 1996, Via Sollertia of New Regent Street is a family of young inspired designers who welcome client input. For those who want to buy on the spot, a tempting display of hand-crafted beauties – both vintage and modern – awaits.
It’s not necessarily more expensive, but definitely more exciting to help in the initial design, stone selection and perfect-fit of your own rings. Via Sollertia Manager Joel says some clients opt to bring them old or inherited pieces for a remodel into something intimate and exclusive, to love now.
Designing has always been what floats Clare’s boat. Training initially as an architect, the Manager of Via Sollertia knew that jewellery design was actually where her heart lay. It still does.
Which is kind of great for someone who collaborates with couples over rings; the symbols of their enduring love.
Clare custom-designs for both locals and clients across the globe, from Via Sollertia’s New Regent Street boutique. Increasingly she’s asked for peachy, pinky, champagne-coloured diamonds in oval, marquise and pear-shaped engagement rings.
The stones and metallics at Clare’s atelier are spectacular. She lights up when talking about cuts of diamond and how a jewel will sit on a hand; matters of size, proportion and reflective qualities… all brilliant designer elements of every bespoke gift.
At Via Sollertia on New Regent Street, Clare and the team are adding sophisticated sparkle – and colour – to their clients’ lives.
Ever-evolving styles are ushering in a new era of striking coloured stones and Via Sollertia is at the forefront, with an exceptional and exquisite selection. “We’re noticing a strong trend of people choosing something with colour versus the traditional white diamond,” Clare explains.
“Sapphires and diamonds are the most common stones used in engagement rings, but I’m not sure everyone would know that sapphires are available in not just blue.”
They also come in green, yellow, orange and pink. Even rarer sapphire colours include the padparadscha sapphire – a deep peachy pink. “Diamonds don’t just come in white either; they come in champagne, chocolate, yellow, pink and even grey/silver!”
Tourmaline is also winning affections as an affordable stone that comes in a range of colours. “They come in varying shades of green, pink/red and blue. The designs you can create around a coloured stone are fun and interesting and you can hand-select a particular stone yourself. We have a large range in store as well as fab suppliers who can send us particular stones for clients to view.”
It feels like a relaxed art gallery space – a place to browse, chat and fall in love with something precious. Via Sollertia Jewellers on New Regent Street sparkles a little differently.
“Many think handmade means out of reach,” says Manager Clare. “In reality, it isn’t.”
The 28-year-old has already been in the industry for 11 years. She’s fun, incredibly inspiring and her craft is her world. Treating every client equally, Via Sollertia creates affordable simplicity through to exquisite high-end.
Clare pushes boundaries by adapting up-to-the-minute trends from America, Asia and Europe – from period styles to contemporary simplicity. She hand-draws all her designs, encouraging client involvement, which are then handcrafted in-house. Display pieces are unique hand makes too.
“We also recreate old into new. Recently, a lady had her grandmother, aunt and mother’s jewels redesigned into a new ring. “There were hugs, tears of joy, laughter and sentiment. It automatically became special. That’s what this is about.”