Sparrows – they mean trouble! It’s not that I don’t like them, they are cute when they ruffle their feathers, perch on branches, build their nests…trouble is, they drive my dog mad! Just their shadows against the wall, their chirping…anything sparrow related sets him off. Barking, barking and then some more barking.
Thank god for these little fellows from Jana Reinhardt’s collection, cute – and no noise attached, just love them!
Jana, born in East Germany in 1978, is a certified master goldsmith and a graduate of the Zeichenakademie, Hanau, one of the oldest goldsmith training centres in Europe. She has worked as a goldsmith for high-end stores and world famous fashion labels.
Jana Reinhardt is passionate about designing and making jewellery for people who appreciate the lighter side of life. And shiny things. Her Hummingbird collection is gorgeous, delicate, just like the little creature itself.
“Our jewellery is aimed at people who care about quality and like things that are quirky and individual,”, says Jana, and that quirkiness shows in her Sweet Dreams collection: a selection of little creatures that seem to be straight out of Grimm’s fairy tales, children’s dreams or what you come across during a walk in an enchanted forest – owls, hares, ducks, foxes and my personal favourite, the hibernating hedgehog!!
Jana works with her husband and business partner Ross Cutting, also a goldsmith. Jana started the business in 2006, so when Ross, who worked as a freelance goldsmith for 10 years, joined her, he let her keep the name – he’s good like that.
Jana and Ross are based West Sussex, having left the Big Smoke behind in 2012 and achieved their dream of living and working by the sea. Every Jana Reinhardt product is micro-manufactured in their seaside workshop, maybe the view over the sea inspired her Polar Nights collection, featuring polar bears, penguins, whales, seals and wrapped up warm Eskimo.
All of their jewellery is made in Worthing – they have just moved to a bigger workshop – on the south coast of England by a small team of professional goldsmiths, priding themselves that their suppliers and out workers are all based exclusively in the UK.
Jana Reinhardt pieces are about personality and craftsmanship, their jewellery is made entirely by hand. It is refreshing that they don’t jump on the computerised manufacture band waggon, but prefer not to use CAD/CAM(computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing). Instead, they employ the old methods of fabrication and wax carving. Tiny imperfections are embraced. Each piece is unique, just like their customers.
It is amazing – the detail Jana manages to hand-carve into her wax models, a talent that comes to great use when working on commissions.
Along the way, they’ve had their Oscars moments and won some awards (they didn’t cry, since you ask). They have made bespoke pieces for TV series – Jana Reinhardt made a key piece of jewellery for new TV series The Royals. The eagle-eyed among you will spot Ross and Jana’s handiwork twinkling on King Simon’s ring finger.
Jana in her own words:
What inspired you to become a jewellery designer?
Both of us are very creative people so we were always going to be involved in art and design somehow. We love the tiny detail and imperfections of jewellery that make each piece individual and special.
Where do you draw inspiration from?
Everywhere! We love nature and enjoy walks along the beach and the countryside with our daughter and beagle puppy. We often see cute little creatures and plants that inspire us to create a piece or a whole collection.
How would you describe your own work?
Simply sweet, stylish, unique. We like stylised, classic jewellery with clean lines and quirky designs.
If you could choose a famous person (alive or dead), who would you love to design a piece of jewellery for? What would it be?
We’d love Duchess Kate (Middleton) to wear one of our pieces. She’s so classic and chic, we could design her a stunning pair of elegant drop earrings.
If you hadn’t become a jewellery designer/maker, which career would you have chosen? Perhaps Lord and Lady of Leisure. That would be nice! What is your favourite piece of jewellery and why?
I love all our pieces but I do like the Little Sparrow collection, it’s very vintage inspired and so sweet. I have a pair of the drop earrings I wear often; they really brighten up my day!
What are your plans for the future?
We’ve just been shortlisted for two awards (‘Designer of the Year ‘and ‘E-tailor of the Year’) at the UK Jewellery Awards so we’re looking forward to the results of that. We have our new Spring/Summer ‘Bloom’ collection launching soon too, it features tiny stylised flowers in matte or shiny finish and we’re very excited about it!
When Jana and Ross aren’t busy making beautiful jewellery, they enjoy long walks in the country with their two daughters and dog Byron the beagle. Which reminds me…must take photos of my dog for Jana to make me a pendant….now where is he? Aaaaahhh…sparrows!!
Credits With Thanks