Busy Bee…

It’s a crazy year with all my plans being up ended by work and life but if I’m honest, I am absolutely loving it.

Things have been better than I imagined they would be and it’s great to finally feel like I may be getting somewhere.

Over the last few months, I have cracked soldering, enamelling and many other skills I so desperately wanted to add to my repertoire. Stone setting is my next goal but until then, here are a few pics of what I have been working on, now available in the Etsy storehttp://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/lushnmine

Next time, I’ll share a pic of the stacking charm bangles currently sat half finished on my desk. Until then,

×××

image

image

image

image

image

image

Advertisements

Last-minute Christmas gift guide

Mine’s a huge circle of family and friends so the rule is to buy gifts for the kids only and that makes things a heck of a lot easier. It also means every year, I leave all of my shopping until the week before.

If you, like me, wait until the last minute to get gifts together, our last-minute guide may be just what you need. A great selection of jewellery, accessories and festive decor, you’ll be sure to find some great last-minute gifts and stocking fillers.

And what’s more? We’ve made it easier to shop from the list by creating a dedicated page of gift ideas so you don’t have to flit from page to page, looking for what you want. Sound interesting?

Shop our last-minute gift guide here

last minute guide

From Vietnam to Manchester: The THAM THEU story.

BELOVED tassel necklace

BELOVED tassel necklace

I had just returned from a Christmas trip to Cameroon and we all (we are a group of four women I affectionately call ‘Hulme Mummies’) decided to meet up. It was our first catch up since the holidays and we were keen to find out what everyone had been up to. Several hours of chat, food and drink later, my friend, Lien, owner of HairbowsWonderworld, dug out the goodies she had returned with. Amongst them, some PROPER green tea – Of course, I asked for some – and a beautiful red piece of tapestry.

Lien, like me, had returned home keen to find inspiration for her expanding wedding accessories business. Deep in the mountains of Vietnam, far off the beaten path, lie small but enterprising villages known locally for their master weavers and embroiderers and it was during one of her walks through the mountain villages that an old rug being used as a foot mat caught her eye. Beneath the layers of mud and dust, the unusual design and pristine condition of the piece beckoned to her. After convincing the rug’s owner to part with it, the 80-year-old masterpiece received a thorough wash and boarded a flight to Manchester.

I fell in love instantly. I asked Lien if it would be okay for me to take a few pictures and use the design for my jewellery and she said yes. It was late when we got home but for the first time in a long time, I couldn’t wait for morning to put my designs on paper. It took 48 hours to design the first draft of the entire collection which included other Eastern symbols.

Then it was time to choose what materials would be best for showing off the design and the palette to work with. Originally, I wanted gold-plated jewellery but for some reason, it just didn’t feel right. A little research into metals ended with two standing head and shoulder above the rest.

The THAM THEU collection was a celebration of family, love, hope, wealth and longevity. Underlying these emotions and dreams were two very important factors, health and strength, a fitting continuum to the design series.

Copper, with its warm red glow was a perfect vehicle for transmitting the subliminal passion and warmth of the calm, sure love that exists within the bond of family. Added to this, was copper’s antimicrobial properties which meant the wearer wasn’t just connected to the designs and emotions they celebrated and evoked; there was also a very direct link to the ability to remain present and healthy during this celebration.

Stainless steel is one of the strongest metals we know. It’s ability to withstand abuse is unmatched, and in many ways, humans are the same. It never ceases to amaze me, the human capacity for pain and the resilience to come out on top, against all odds. Steel was therefore another excellent choice of material with which to celebrate strength, one of the core philosophies of the collection.

Once the materials had been chosen, it was time to figure out what designs were best suited to each material and get hunting. It took a few weeks of searching and tweaking the designs to make them suitable for production – ideas are not always cost/technique/material friendly – and then it was all done! Three months from start to finish!

What I love best about this collection is that it is as dynamic as the relationships we have. Having all these loose elements means I can continue to play around with the designs and come up with different uses and combinations. A the collection continues to evolve, you will notice some designs being retired and new ones coming in on the website. Probably not this side of Christmas though… And for those who are interested, attached below is a clip from Lien’s visit (made by her cousin) and list of all my designs and what they mean.

So, now you know what was going on in my mind as I designed the collection 🙂
I guess that’s it. Enjoy!

Manyi xx

PS: If you do have any questions or requests, do drop me a line. I’d be more than happy to help.

Shop the Current THAM THEU collection here

Check out Lien’s upcoming range here

Video:

Thu cong from Nam Ngo on Vimeo.

Tham Theu; the story

Tham Theu; the story

Welcome to ViJouX UK

Finally got around to creating an into video for ViJouX’s youtube channel. Very excited and looking forward to creating some full lemgth PRO videos.

Have a gander and please let me know what you think.

🙂 xx

Welcome to ViJouX UK.

Style concept – Hạnh phúc; the Happiness Pendant

HAPPINESS - copper and enamel pendant - Pigeon blue

HAPPINESS – copper and enamel pendant – Pigeon blue

Today’s style concept features the HAPPINESS pendant from the THAM THEU collection.
Made from copper with enamelled etchings, hạnh phúc is inspired by a long standing tradition in a culture where relationships, hopes and dreams are sacred and celebrated, and symbolism is the ultimate expression of oneself.
Wear this pendant as a symbol and reminder that true happiness lies within us.

Pair with just about any style of dress or layer with matching necklaces and sautoirs.

HAPPINESS

HAPPINESS - Copy

The happiness necklace can be purchased via the ViJouX website here

We’re on Poppito.com!!!

DSC00458

Maybe I don’t love myself enough. Maybe I love myself too much…

This morning, my to-do list included finishing up on the zodiac range and a few midi rings – then I got on twitter.
I happened by a tweet from Poppito, whom I have been following for a little while, and that triggered the memory of a promise to check them out sometime.

Only, with the new collection, new website, dodgy health, stores on Folksy, Etsy (shut now), dealing with all the social media accounts, designing, crafting, sending out orders, being a mom… I’m breathless. Are you yet? Needless to say, it never happened.

Next thing I know, their website’s loaded on my phone, the terms are read, and signed up, ViJouX is! Next, took a few pictures of some things I have been working on and BAM!!

Anyhoo, the whole point of this rambling post, like the title says, is that ViJouX can now be found on Poppito.
Why you should go on there, you ask. Well, because most of the pieces will be one-offs and other designs you will not find on the website 🙂

Good? Well, head on down and I’ll see you there!!

😉 xx

Visit the ViJouX @ Poppito shop here.

Downtime and Flash Sales

image

It’s been a miserable week for me as I have struggled to reach any of my targets. It would seem a bug of unknown origin decided to take up residence in my body and intends to stay awhile. Even now, I am confined to the sofa and the joys of typing out a post on my phone’s screen. Not exactly my idea of heaven – if I am going to take a break, I’d rather it be on my terms! Plus, I am backed up on a couple of orders. Not good for what little image I’ve got…

Anyhoo, the upside of a little downtime is the freedom to let creativity flow. Often, when putting together a collection, one is limited by factors such as desirability, cost and so on.
With no such constraints to hold me back, the juices have run a little haywire.

One of the more reasonable ideas to present in this flow is a 24 hour jewellery flash sale; kind of like an online pop up market, on the facebook page. Necklaces, bracelets, anklets, cufflinks, etc. etc. all priced £10 or less – equivalent to a  minimum of a 25% reduction on RRP.

With Christmas coming up, how great would it be to get beautiful, exclusive and handmade jewellery for less than you’d pay for the store bought equivalent? Pretty darn fantastic I’d say.

If you agree, pop over and like ViJouX on facebook and you’ll get an invite once a date has been decided (Most likely the second week in October).

Oooh… and if you didn’t know yet, the Tham Theu collection is now available on the website.

Okaayy. I think that’s it for today.

Have a fabulous week, everyone!

xx

PS: Do forgive any typos, grammatical errors et al. Blame it on the bug; it may be in my brain! 😉