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Brooke Gregson (Est. 2004) is the self-named brand of statement jewelry and wearable art designed and created by Ms. Gregson who is Los Angeles and London based and highly respected in the world of fine, contemporary jewelry. Her original creations and unmistakable use of color and craftsmanship are the hallmarks of her many pieces.
Brooke's passion for fine metals and precious stones was formed early in life. It was influenced by her father's collection of art and fine jewelry and her mother's interest in the healing power and energy of gemstones. The result is a sophisticated and organic sensibility honoring one-of-a-kind gemstones with hand-made craftsmanship of the highest quality. The fine craftsmen who have worked on these collections use techniques that, although incredibly time consuming, are a necessary part in creating jewelry that is an aesthetic and soulful extension of the self.
She started as a textile designer in London and found her breakthrough moment when she moved back to California and began crafting her signature astrology necklaces embedded with the texture of the moon and stars in gold and diamonds.
Growing up with a mother who collected crystals, Gregson came to believe in the mystical power of stones. “We had a terrace full of them,” recalled Gregson in a January 2019 interview with JCK Online. “There was amethyst to protect the home, rose quartz and kunzite to open up the heart and bring love into your life.”
Gregson’s father was a fine jewelry connoisseur who instilled an appreciation for technical virtuosity and time-honored methods in his daughter. His influence is clear in her eponymous line, which is entirely handmade by master craftspeople.
Given her gem-centric upbringing, it’s surprising that Gregson didn’t get into the jewelry business sooner. Although she majored in geology at University of California San Diego, she ultimately opted for a different course after graduation. In the JCK interview, she said, “I thought I wanted to be an artist.”
She sold her car and moved to London to enroll in the Chelsea College of Arts, where she became enthralled with post-impressionism and color theory. Eventually she gravitated toward textile design and got a job at a London firm, rising through the ranks to a director role and working with major fashion labels such as Louis Vuitton, Kenzo, Gap, and Marni. The work was creative and exciting but took a toll. “Not only was I designing, but I was selling and hiring as well,” she said. To relax, she began taking jewelry-making classes. “I used it as a release.”
Soon, Gregson was designing pieces for friends. In 2004 she created a collection of necklaces with diamond-studded renderings of the zodiac constellations. “I used 14 karat brushed gold, which gave them a textural quality. I like using different tactile surfaces in my work, probably because of my textile background.”
When Gregson ultimately moved back to London, she started making her unique hand crocheted and woven textile gemstone bracelets and necklaces. She now collaborates with master craftsman in both Los Angeles and London to create her signature woven gemstone jewelry, raw diamond rings and necklaces as well as one of a kind jewelry collections.
Brooke Gregson’s design approach is based on creating one-of-a-kind pieces that employ time honored techniques and traditional craftsmanship. Her woven silk bracelets and ‘Astrology’ necklaces – each hand-cast with diamond constellations – are highly desirable signature pieces.
In addition to her seasonal Fine Jewelry collections, Brooke’s signature Astrology necklaces with diamond constellations and hand woven Silk Gemstone bracelets with 18k gold or silver chain form the backbone of Brooke's layering style. These classic pieces allow customers to add to their look over time by combining and layering jewelry that reflects their personality.
The Astrology collection, as it became known, was a hit. Trendy L.A. boutique Fred Segal snapped it up. “From the front, it just looks like an abstract cluster of diamonds,” says Gregson of the pendant design, which remains popular today. “It’s only when you flip it over that you see the engraved lines connecting the diamonds to form the zodiac sign.” In other words, the pieces can have a private meaning for their wearer. For Gregson, this was more appealing than anything she felt she could accomplish with textiles. “I realized that jewelry was where it was at for me,” she says, “because it can resonate on a deeper, personal level—whether it’s an astrological sign or a protective symbol or just a feeling.”
On her official website, Brooke writes, “The longer I am in the field of jewelry the more respect I try to offer the stones I work with and cherish the idea of jewelry having so many different meanings and purposes for the wearer. Influenced by my textile background and watercolor paintings my collections are an homage to the different symbols jewelry can hold and the strong women who wear it. I feel like my evolution in the jewelry world is also coinciding with the growing independence of women themselves and how they wear their jewelry.”
It took four years and a move back to London in 2008 to convince Gregson to pursue a jewelry career full-time. “In Europe, I saw there was a market for what I was doing. I had this West Coast vibe, and I was working with a lot of raw diamonds and unique cuts that were still uncommon there.”
It was there that she set up shop, creating pieces like bracelets made of gold chain interwoven with silk ribbon and set with moonstones. Before long, storied London department stores Harvey Nichols and Liberty were coming to her with orders.
The painterly, romantic quality of Gregson’s jewelry pieces stand out for their nuanced palette of stones that catch and play with the light. Brooke says her aim is to respect the stones I work with and cherish the idea that the jewelry has many different meanings and purposes for the person who wears it.
In a November 2018 interview with JCK Insider, she said, “The time to create a piece of jewelry really depends on the piece itself. I have just finished a piece that took months to make because of the involvement of different processes such as hand forging, enameling, and engraving all which required different craftsmen. When casting is involved the process can take less time but most of my one of a kind jewelry is made totally by hand so I would say it takes much longer than you think. We also do commission pieces that can range from a simple set band which sometimes only takes a day up to more elaborate commissions which also can take many hours to create depending on the job.”
Brooke Gregson’s collections are named Enamel, Flora, Talisman, Rivera, Engraved, Planetary, Barragan, Palomino, and Astrology. They often feature Aquamarine, Chrysoprase, Diamond, Emerald, Opal, Moonstone, Sapphire, Ruby, Spinel, Tanzanite, and Tourmaline. Her pre-eminent pieces are rings, earrings, necklaces, and bracelets. She also does hand engraving, silk woven gemstone bracelets, and creates diamond rings.
Most recently she added an enamel expert to her collaborators. “The best enamel work has to be done on pure gold that’s been hand-forged,” she explains. “I can tell with my eyes closed when something’s been cast-made.”
In January 2019 she told JCK Online that she’s working on a collection inspired by nature in general and flowers specifically. “I didn’t like flowers two years ago, and now I’m obsessed with them,” she said.
For research, she’s looking at the work of artist Line Vautrin and photographs by Karl Blossfeldt. She also takes her sketchbook to the Huntington Botanical Gardens in San Marino. “I find myself gravitating toward daisies and flowers that have a mandala shape,” she said referring to the ancient Hindu circular design meant to represent the cosmos.
The new collection, which will incorporate tapered baguettes, unique cabochons, and enamel work came out in February, 2019 just in time for Gregson’s annual trip to Gem Week and her exhibit at the JCK Tucson show.
Brooke continues to work from her studios in both Shoreditch, Nottinghill London and Venice, California creating fine jewelry with the help of master craftsmen. All Brooke Gregson jewelry is made entirely in London and Los Angeles and stocked in fine boutiques internationally.Sell Brooke Gregson All Artists
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