If you’ve ever wondered what happens when two artistic souls collide to redefine the boundaries of fashion, look no further than the spellbinding collaboration between Katie Rose Jewellery and model Christina Macpherson.
When a seasoned jeweller, who thrives on blurring the lines between traditional and artistic craftsmanship, joins forces with a model known for her avant-garde style, you know you’re in for a treat.
Join us as we dive deep into the creation, challenges and triumphs of this mesmerising partnership. It’s the kind of story you won’t want to skip.
Hi Katie! Your journey as a jeweller, designer and business owner is truly remarkable. Could you share a bit more about the specific moment or realisation that led you to starting your own brand?
Thank you, it’s been a slow and steady journey but I feel like I am really coming to my own now.
From an early age I always wanted to design, create and make art in a range of mediums. I got introduced into jewellery making through a friend of my sister and went the jewellery direction after leaving school; however creating and designing things my way was my true passion, not so much jewellery itself. I realised whilst I was at Jewellery and Goldsmithing school – I didn’t want to just make traditional jewellery (whilst a beautiful and very technical talent within itself), I wanted to create pieces that were a little different, a little more ‘me’, fluid pieces that evoked emotion which made the wearer feel something or think something. I wanted to blur the lines of traditional jewellery with artistic jewellery; create my own path.
Starting a brand takes a lot of courage…and effort! What were the initial steps or challenges you faced when launching Katie Rose Jewellery? What advice would you offer to aspiring entrepreneurs looking to start their own journey?
I think one of the main initial challenges I faced was getting too ahead of myself; I knew early on I wanted to have my own brand, yet I believe I jumped in too soon – in the beginning I didn’t quite know my true style and I feel my designs weren’t authentically me at that time. Having worked for a few different jewellers I was trying to pull on things; ways and designs I thought I ‘should’ be doing rather than taking the time to figure out my true style. Money was also a big factor, it’s not cheap to set up a jewellery workshop along with the materials to make the pieces, then photoshoots, setting up your website and marketing on top all add up – very quickly.
My advice would be to know your direction, know yourself, your style and stay authentic – align yourself with people within the industry and out (whom you will connect with) who have the same values. Don’t be afraid to ask others for help or guidance, figuring out what you will need to get started and where to spend your money will help a lot – something I wish I did more of in the beginning.
Every business journey is a rollercoaster of moments. Can you recall one of your proudest accomplishments as a business owner? And, on the flip side, have there been any moments of challenge or setback that have shaped your ongoing approach to business?
I think my proudest is my latest collection; collaboration with Christina Macpherson. It really brought me back around to my true self in terms of design and made me really take a leap into the jewellery brand and media world to say ‘I’m here and I’m a reputable brand’ and not just fumble along on my own not quite putting myself out there too much.
A standout setback I jumped into a few years back was signing up to a trade fair purely because I thought that’s what I ‘should’ be doing – really in the end it just cost me a lot of money, it was a bit of a flop and not many people came through at all – one good thing was I met you guys, Flaunter! After doing the trade fair I really had a good look at my business and realised that path really wasn’t for me, I think that’s when I really started to tune into the authentic me.
Your recent collaboration with Christina Machpherson is generating quite the buzz. Could you please share with us the creative process behind this collaboration. What sparked the idea, and how did both of your artistic visions align to bring this collection to life?
Thank you, I am really so happy about the response it has been getting.
Ah, I had previously connected with Christina via instagram a few years earlier, she did a couple of shoots for me with her husband. Since we first connected it was always so easy and such a natural connection, we had kept in touch via instagram – Christina had then been approached by a couple of jewellery brands to do a collab which she said felt didn’t align so got in touch, funnily enough I had been thinking something along the same lines just days before. We started chatting about the collab in 2019; getting ideas together. Life then got in the way, we both had babies, the world had a pandemic! We touched base throughout and whilst our original launch date ideas got pushed out somewhat – I’m quite glad it did as our ideas changed direction and evolved greatly from where we had started.
Designing the collection felt really natural and progressed organically, we would share ideas back and forth, I would sketch some pieces up, we would alter things, drop some pieces – Christina was really hands on throughout which was really lovely to have someone bounce ideas with, I feel like our styles were very aligned and we were easily on the same page. Once I felt like we were on a clear path with ideas I started on the bench making some samples, altering things as we went – which is how I work best, it really ensures the pieces are made with feeling and thought.
All of this was done from afar, so once finished I sent the pieces to Christina who loved them immediately – I think we only altered the Aysha chain to be longer and added in the Maggy ring (an absolute fave!). In all honesty I was expecting there to be more changes but I think it just shows how aligned we were throughout the creative process. It really felt like I was designing with an old friend, nothing formal, just total ease, and fun with absolute respect for each other’s part in the collaboration.
PR seems to be a key element in your brand’s success. Could you elaborate on how PR strategies have contributed to your brand’s growth? What are the core activities within your in-house PR approach that have played a pivotal role in increasing coverage and building brand awareness?
As a hands-on creative in my business, PR was something so foreign to me and it seemed so daunting; connecting with you (Flaunter) has been a constant part of PR for Katie Rose. Social media coverage with influencer partnerships and gifting have also really played a big role in building brand awareness, as well as teaming up with The Lane a few times now for marketing partnerships which have been of great value. I’ve also found teaming up with different photographers has been a really great way in increasing coverage with brand awareness.
Establishing and maintaining relationships is crucial in the world of emerging brands. How do you approach fostering connections that align with your brand’s values?
The best way I have found to approach connections is really organically, I take the time to get to know the person or business to see what their values are and how they work – I find I work a lot through feeling and if I then feel it’s the right fit I’ll take it further. Through this, I’ve been really lucky especially with influencers I have reached out to who can see the value within my work; that it is handmade and at a higher cost and are happy to work with me on gifting terms. I like to keep communication flowing and just being honest and human so there is that personal touch.
As trends evolve, maintaining brand identity becomes paramount. How do you strike a balance between staying authentic to Katie Rose Jewellery’s essence and embracing new styles that resonate with your customer’s desires?
My aim with each of my designs is to create modern yet timeless pieces, albeit often asymmetrical and wabi-sabi in design, I like to infuse a classic feel so they will carry through. Of course I also do a lot of bespoke pieces where I get influence and ideas from my clients, I always sketch the designs which ultimately then brings through my authentic style.
Mornings often set the tone for the day ahead. Could you walk us through your perfect morning routine? What are 3 must-dos to start your day?
My perfect morning would be to get up (wash my face, put on my oils to feel fresh) do some yoga, put on some music to set the tone for the day have a coffee, some brekky – then get to the beach or at least outside with my two boys – of course this doesn’t always happen as I have a 1.5year old and a 3.5 year old so, if we can at least get some good tunes playing to get our bodies moving plus some great coffee brewing then I’m happy with that!
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