Owner and co-founder, Sophia Perez, built this business along with her brother, Daniel, out of a long held shared passion of keeping the tradition of hand crafted of jewellery alive. With Sophia's love of modern lines and design combined with Daniel's twenty years of craftsmanship, they create beautiful collections with sustainability at its heart.
How did Sophia Perez Jewellery start and evolve into what it is today?
From a young age I have been fascinated by jewellery. This was born from visiting my father at this jewellery workshop, I would peak over his shoulder at the beautiful art he created with his hands, using fire, pressure and traditional tools. As a child, it was pure magic to see precious metals, diamonds and gemstones made into stunning pieces of jewellery.
My brother was equally awed by this experience. While he was inspired to learn the craft of hand making fine jewellery, I became obsessed with jewellery design. Twenty years later, my brother and I joined forces after creating our own successful paths in the industry. It just felt right.
We now work together in what was our Dad's workshop of 40 years, surrounded by his beautiful traditional tools. Our modern bespoke designs have been picked up by alternative brides, who want their forever ring to really speak to them, reflect their style and their ethics. We are proud to be a small part in keeping small scale hand made jewellery alive and relevant in modern design.
Describe your typical day in the workshop?
My alarm goes off around 6am, I make myself a hot water and lemon and turn on the Today Programme, Radio 4. I find it comforting to hear their voices as I wake up and get ready.
If I have time, I walk into work along the canal which gives me space and time to think of new ideas on our latest collection.
I love to get into the workshop early, usually around 7.30am. It is lovely and quiet when you first get in and gives me a head start on the day and what is coming up. We hold client appointments from as early as 8am, we know people have busy lives so like to give options before people start their working day.
No two days are never the same for me. Each day has a mix of responding to client emails, meeting clients, designing our new collection, taking photographs of our latest work, choosing stones and running about Hatton Garden to our suppliers.
Each day flies by and the evenings after work are usually nice and chilled. If I can, I drop by my local yoga studio to stretch and unwind before heading home for dinner. With such busy days, I try and get early nights so I can rise early again and get ready for another day in the studio.
What is your most treasured piece of jewellery?
My Dad made some beautiful jewellery for my Mum while they were married. Over the years my Mum has kindly passed them down to me. I love the fact that they were hand made and designed by my Dad, it means so much to me to wear them and I make sure they are still loved. My favourite piece is a bombe ring with a round old mine cut diamond at the centre surrounded by Royal blue enamel. It's a stunning show stopper I wear to anything that I can dress up for.
What advice would you give to anyone considering being a jewellery designer?
Learn, learn learn. If you can take a short jewellery making course, it really helps you understand what you are designing and how the jeweller can make the ring. Designing something that looks beautiful but is problematic to make will cause long delays in redesigning it into something that can be made.
Understand all the materials used in jewellery. Understand the different precious metals and what they suit, whether they tarnish with a lot of wear, if the metal is hard or soft, what stones suit the colour of the metal and the cost of these metals. This will help you create a ring bespoke to a person's style, lifestyle and budget.
Understand all the different stones, are they hard or soft, what shapes they are cut in, what colours they come in and, again, their costs per carat.
Find a design course that speaks to you and gets you excited. Then just practise, practise, practise.
What is your favourite time of day?
Early morning is a special time for me. I make time for my favourite meal of the day; breakfast. Which I have in a sunny spot and make sure it is something really delicious. Weekends are lovely to be leisurely, read the papers and listen to the radio. While weekdays start a lot earlier, before many wake, so it is peaceful time before the hectic day starts.
What are you currently reading?
Zadie Smith's On Beauty
Who do you owe the most?
My lovely Dad without a doubt. His support throughout my life has been second to none. He also sparked my passion in jewellery design. This has allowed me to create a business I am proud of and gets me excited each morning for the rest of the day!