Jewellery by Vanya plus Q&As


I have to confess that I adore giraffes-I just think that they are beautifully peaceful animals but never knew that my facination with them could lead me to a jewellery designer named Vanya….

Browsing through one of fashion magazines not so long ago I saw a quaint giraffe necklace that was so endearingly pretty that I just fell in love with it. So I did what I had to do to find it-I googled, found the site called ‘Jewellery by Vanya’ but the necklace was sold out….Not the one to be intimidated by it, I e-mailed the site in the hope to get my hands on one and that’s when I got a reply from Vanya…..

First, let me explain something to you. The name Vanya is the shorter version of Yvan and in Russia, unlike in Europe, it is a boy’s name, like Nikita-don’t listen to Elton John on this one, I urge you (!)-remember the song ‘Nikita’ where Nikita was a….girl soldier? Well, she wasn’t a Russian, that’s for sure .) unlike La Femme Nikita .) I was really curious and ……. Well it turns our that Vanya is a pretty young woman in her 20s and a talented jewellery designer in addition to that.

Vanya Ganderton designs beautiful pieces and has her own vision, not shaped by what’s in fashion but in my opinion, her designs are very current and will remain so as you wear it. I feel that Jewellery by Vanya is very much part of who she is, as each piece tells a little story and has a vintagey feel about it, making you feel girly when wearing it.

I asked Vanya a few questions, to which she graciously replied, so read our Q & A below and I hope you will fall in love with Vanya’s jewellery a little too .)

Qs & As with Vanya Ganderton, jewellery designer:

Please tell me a little about your background? Were your parents very creative ?

VG:From an early age, thanks to the creative gene and encouragement from my mum, I have always made things. Whether it be my first dress made out of bin bags to the full customisation of my first car (a 1970’s mini painted purple and re-upholstered with black fun fur)! It was inevitable that I would end up with a creative career.

Why did you choose to design jewellery and not clothes or shoes for example?

VG: Whilst studying for a fashion design degree at Winchester School of Art, I organised a period of  work experience with an accessories designer in New York. I loved my time there and assisting with the sourcing, design and making of professional jewellery led me to a new passion. I was addicted from then on.

For which jewellers did you work to gain experience? Who among well known brands/jewellery designers influences you?
VG:The internship was with a designer named Christina Caruso and when I first moved to London I worked for the designer Claire Aristides. I love the work of Alex Monroe, Les Nereides and Laura Lee.
How do you come up with designs? How labour intensive is the process? What inspires you?
VG: I’m very much inspired by the girls I see on the street. I love to see individual styles and always think about what kind of jewellery would look good with their outfit. Sometimes I will make sketches and source the materials, other times I find the material first and get inspired by that.
How often you produce a new collection/new pieces?
VG: I release a new collection every season but it’s added to the site gradually. I’m always creating new designs.
Who is your target audience?
VG: Women between the ages of 18-35 predominately but have had customers either side of that age bracket many times. I aim to produce jewellery that is very wearable and affordable.

How do you want your brand to grow? Where do you see yourself in let’s say 5 years time?

VG: I’d love to give my customers more of a visual idea to go with my collections. Creating a fabulous look book is on the agenda for this year. As the business grows it would be great to have my jewellery stocked in more boutiques around the world so people could go and see the pieces in person. Maybe in 5 years I could even have my own boutique.

If you could choose any celebrity to wear your pieces, who would be your ideal match to your pieces and why?
: Hmmm that’s tough, I’m not massively into ‘celebrity’ so don’t know exactly who fits the bill but someone who is elegant yet has a quirk about her, a bit cheeky, someone infectious and warm.

Finally, of all the pieces one can see on line which is your ‘favourite’ or reflective of your personality as a jewellery designer?
: I’m still learning and developing my style as the business and I grow so the most recent collections are always my favourite. The Woodland Scene Necklace, Fallen Feather and Among The Clouds are current favourites.






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