In lockdown, we’ve become that little bit more autonomous. We’ve baked our own bread, cut our own hair, schooled our own kids. If your sourdough is sublime and your 1,000-piece jigsaw is complete, perhaps now is the moment for a new challenge – why not design your own diamond ring?
At the beginning of June, jewellery brand Ellie Air launched a new website and part of that digital revamp was a section called Create Your Own. In this section, you are invited to select a loose gemstone and match it with a setting of your choice, which will be expertly combined in Ellie Air’s Somerset studio and delivered to you six weeks later.
It’s like Lego, but much more satisfying and only marginally more expensive. A loose Tanzanian Parti-Sapphire will set you back just £250; at the Lego store that same amount would disappear from your wallet only to be replaced with a plastic build-it-yourself version of Manchester United’s Old Trafford stadium. Our advice? Spend it on gems.
“We’ve had such an amazing response, with so many customers picking stones and settings through the website,” says Lauren Rowden, the designer behind the Ellie Air brand.
As such, Ellie Air is kicking it up a notch by partnering with Canadian alternative diamond supplier Misfit Diamonds. You can now find its natural salt ‘n’ pepper diamonds on the Ellie Air website, and should you fall in love with one or three, for a fee of £150 (redeemable against a purchase) you can have the diamonds flown from Canada to the Ellie Air studio in Dorset on England’s Jurassic Coast. Once there, the team will give you a closer view of the gems through videos, photos, design mock ups and virtual meetings.
“The gemstones and diamonds that we have in stock in our studio are much more accessible,” says Rowden. “We can make mock-ups on photoshop and create designs around them quite easily, but with our Misfit Diamonds collaboration it’s harder to do that [as] they’re all the way over in Canada. So, for the past few weeks, we’ve been putting something together and we’re really pleased to announce our newest, jet-setting collaboration.”
Rowden says she’s holding off calling the transatlantic collaboration Misfit Air, but we won’t. Fasten your seatbelts, fold away your tray table and prepare yourself for a brilliant bespoke jewellery journey.