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When it comes to design inspiration, Lovett & Co. stick to Audrey Hepburn's adage 'Elegance is the only beauty that never fades'. Their costume and bridal jewellery collection features wonderfully eclectic pieces, appealing to those for whom tasteful opulence, femininity and a pleasing nod to vintage style are de rigueur. Exclusively designed in the UK by Brighton-based Rachel Lovett and Ally Martin, the jewellery brand began through Rachel's frustration at sourcing jewellery for her own wedding. She wanted to find affordable costume jewellery that referenced vintage style, but with a modern twist. As her quest wasn't successful, she decided to design the items herself. Having then noticed a gap in the market, Rachel knew she wanted to make the most of her degree in retail marketing, passion for business and credible fashion background. 'I used to spend hours at home when I was little, filling scrapbooks with shoe and accessories' designs ready for my dad to see when he came in from work. He also worked as a fashion buyer, and used to stroll in with piles of leather and fabric samples from Italian factories. So it seemed inevitable that I'd end up working in fashion.' Rachel says. 'After university, I worked my way up from a buyer's clerk to a fashion buyer for key UK High Street retailers. But I knew at some point that I really wanted to develop my own brand.' Rachel's keen entrepreneurial spirit combined with the High Street’s millennial vintage fashion and accessories Zeitgeist, meant that Lovett & Co was soon up and running. After an initial six months of successful trading, Rachel's former colleague Ally became involved with the business to consult on brand, design and trend forecasting. With a strong interest in vintage styling, and 20 years' experience in the fashion and semi-precious jewellery industries, Ally was the perfect fit for Lovett & Co. Ally says. 'I trained in art and looked to design history as part of my project research - often trawling through my grandmother's buttons and beads collection. I love the provenance that comes with vintage. I like to imagine how every piece was once worn, who wore it and for what glamorous occasion. I then use that as stimuli for design that is relevant today.' Lovett & Co: Design Inspiration Lovett & Co. often focus on a style icon, for example Mae West, Marilyn Monroe or Grace Kelly, or a design era when creating their product. Ally comments, 'We might look at vintage work from Schiaparelli, Chanel or the more modest Sarah Coventry to get a feel for the era. We then consider current trends, creating mood boards and sketches, perhaps deciding to add features such as glass pearls, Czech or Swarovski stones for highlights of colour and sparkle.' Once final designs are completed, each Lovett & Co. bijouterie is created by hand using only the highest quality materials. The vintage bygone ethos even extends to the delicate Lovett & Co. floral tea rose logo, and the decadent jewellery gift boxes, lined with cream-satin and embossed with gold. ***
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