Jewellery buying, whether for yourself or for a gift can be tricky, especially when you're after something extra special.
To get some tips, we caught up with Neil Geddes, founder of N. J. Geddes Fine Jewellery Concierge. Neil is an expert in his field and takes great pride in helping people pick the perfect piece of jewellery for every occasion.
Tell us how you got into the fine jewellery business. What’s your background?
I was shopping for an engagement ring for my fianceé about seven years ago and felt very frustrated by the lack of knowledge and attention to detail that I experienced during what I felt should be a special and personal occasion.
I was spurred on to set up my own business to provide a jewellery buying experience akin to that of Saville Row when it came to service levels, but with more achievable price tags.
Establishing yourself in the diamond world isn’t easy though, and there’s a strong “if I don’t know you you’re not coming in” kind of culture. I’ve had to work hard to establish trusted relationships, and also study for professional qualifications from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) including GIA Accredited Jewellery Professional, GIA Diamond Grading Lab and GIA Coloured Stones Lab.
What is it about jewellery that you fell in love with?
I love how special sourcing or creating a piece of jewellery for a client makes them feel. You can see that they are elated by the finished purchase, and that the exquisite stone they have chosen – whether it be ruby, diamond or sapphire – is completely unique to them.
What is the ethos of your business?
The ethos of my business is essentially about creating a truly personalised and luxurious jewellery buying and investment experience that stands for exquisite quality and excellent value, whilst saving time for the discerning and busy clientele.
I also provide a bespoke jewellery design service, and a large proportion of my clients come to me when they want something completely unique designing that nobody else in the world is ever going to have. It’s my job to interpret what they want and work with my designer to turn their vision of luxury jewellery into a reality.
What is your favourite piece of jewellery you have helped a customer design?
We have made some fabulous pieces for clients, from fancy colour diamond necklaces through to classic diamond rings. However, one particular item and ‘feel good story’ which comes to mind was for a lovely lady client of mine who wanted an emerald ring. Her knowledge of Emeralds was quite limited, as she didn’t know what a good emerald was. I took her through a journey of discovery into Emeralds, the different regions of the world where they come from and the history, culminating in the world renowned Colombian Emerald. We sourced her the perfect emerald, complemented with diamonds and made it into her ring. She now tells her friends all about Emeralds.
Why is jewellery the perfect gift for a special occasion?
Fine Jewellery, and in particular diamonds have a close association with timeless love and romance. They offer a reminder that whoever wears the piece is loved and cherished for whatever the special occasion maybe. They make people feel amazing and look stunning, which in turn makes the giver feel delighted in their effort to provide the perfect gift.
What is your best piece of advice for people buying jewellery as gifts?
Understand what the receiver likes to wear? What is their style? Make use of experts to guide you through the process. Finally buy the best quality you can afford not necessarily the biggest.
The Curator's Collection
We called upon Neil to curate a collection of his favourite pieces. Look no further for the best gift inspiration around...
ARABESQUE DIAMOND DROP EARRINGS, JESSICA POOLE
Elegant ‘Ballet’ inspired diamond twist earrings, which offer movement and shine. These would also look fantastic in rose gold, which is a popular choice right now, and would complement the Entwine Pendant.
ENTWINE PENDENT, JESSICA POOLE
COMFY CHAIR STACKING RING, THE GEFFRYE MUSEUM
Quirky dress ring, with a sense of humour.
CREAM ENAMEL SUNFLOWERS BANGLE, THE NATIONAL GALLERY
The cream enamel works so well with the zest orange of the Van Gogh sunflowers and gold plated rims. A great example of craftsmanship and detail.
GOLD & GREEN AGATE PINEAPPLE RING, LEE RENÉE
A cute, dainty everyday ring offering a sense of freshness with crafted pineapples complemented by evergreen notes from the Agate. A lovey suite to wear, alongside the pineapple necklace gives a lush spring feeling.
PINEAPPLE NECKLACE, LEE RENÉE
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