Simple, Effective, and Sustainable UK-Made Jewellery
Alice Bessey, Owner of Alice Gwyneth Jewellery
My Name is Alice and I’m the owner of Alice Gwyneth Jewellery. Every piece of jewellery is handmade and designed by me in the heart of Manchester UK; a stone's throw away from the vibrant neighbourhood ‘The Northern Quarter.’ Living here is a massive inspiration to my ideas and creativity - the diverse cultures, the mix of the old and the modern, the rawness of industrialisation combined with the eclectic postmodernism. It's all very exciting and that's how I envision my jewellery to be; exciting, bold and harmonious!
I also find a lot of inspiration from Egyptian, Greek, Roman and Art Deco jewellery. I often find myself in museums and art galleries looking over pieces of jewellery from such eras thinking ‘how did you do that?!’ - their ability to make intricate beautiful handmade pieces look raw and full of life even today, that's really inspirational!
I created the brand with the intention of being simple, effective and accessible to men and women who are conscientious about their products and sustainability. This season the collections reflect the individual. Five collections that embody the spirit of the person. Inspired by cultures, colours, gender and textures, each collection is fluid, bold, classical and minimal. The influence of simplicity runs through all five collections making them harmonious, timeless and most importantly unique.
Creativity and art has always been a part of my upbringing and life but I never really acted on it fully. I did an English degree in Leeds then left to go travelling; it was while I was working and living in Wellington, NZ that it all started for me.
About 3 years ago, I was working in a cafe and a woman was wearing some really lovely jewellery. I asked her where it was from and she said she made it. We got talking and she gave me a card with all the details of a jewellery shop that ran jewellery craft classes. I signed up for six, one hour lessons, made my first ring and decided this was what I wanted to do! When I returned back to the UK I set up a space in my bedroom and taught myself various techniques via books and YouTube.
Coming up with the idea for Alice Gwyneth was an easy concept. I’ve always been concerned with politics and the environment so knew that if I was going to have my own brand it had to be ethical, eco, and sustainable. I wanted Alice Gwyneth to reflect my own personal beliefs and it was important for me to show why eco and ethical brands are important to us and our planet.
Due to consumerism turning to ‘fast fashion’ and e-commerce, it was important for me to create a brand that connected with its customers without being face to face. Whilst my customers have the option to buy online, I also promote a unique bespoke service that involves the involvement of the customer, whether that be at my studio or via detailed drawings - it’s important to me that each piece made is unique and personal to the customer which is why I make every creation by hand.
My favourite product right now would be the Ophelia hoops.
I ensure every part of my process is as sustainable and ethical as it can be. Not only is everything handmade but all precious metal used is certified as Eco or recycled. All stones are ethically sourced and all packaging is either recycled or organic. I also make sure that any chemicals used to clean or polish are 100% non - toxic, food grade materials.