Manifest – Meet the Designer – Shelby Fitzpatrick

Manifest is a touring exhibition of jewellery by the Designer Jewellers Group to celebrate its fortieth anniversary. The Manifest exhibition showcases the work of 20 jewellers from around the world in a unique display, which is open to the public at Barbican Art Centre, London.

Designer Jewellers Group

29 May 2016 – 30 June 2016

Foyer, Level G, Barbican Art Centre

Silk Street, London EC2Y 8DS, United Kingdom

Ticket: Admission free

Times: Daily 12 noon – 8pm

Here is Shelby ‘s work:

Shelby Fitzpatrick

Manifest Lookbook



Jelka Quintelier, Black Lune

DJG member Shelby Fitzpatrick interviews new designer Jelka Quintelier, of ‘Black Lune‘.


SF: How did you get into jewellery design?

JQ: I was always creating and making when I was a child. Growing up with my mom being a kindergarten teacher I was always doing all sorts of crafts. When I was a teenager I absolutely loved cutting up my clothes and remaking them. Then I got into sewing classes and actually learned how to make my own clothes. All through college I thought I would either study architecture or fashion design. But after college I got introduced to the contemporary fine art world and this shook things up a little for me. I went on to study art jewellery design in Antwerp. What I didn’t realise at first is that my dad’s profession must have played a role as well. He is a dental technician and at an early age I was making pieces in wax that he would then cast for me in metal.

Jewellery encompasses everything I am passionate about: art and design, body and sculpture, the use of different materials and the link with fashion.

I still don’t see myself as a traditional jewellery designer. I like creating bigger sculptural pieces and interior installations as well as the occasional fashion garment for editorial shoots.

jelka quintelier 3

SF: What do you enjoy most about creating?

JQ: The anticipation! The start of a new piece. When I am still in the testing and experimenting stage and everything is still possible. I love that I can constantly evolve my work and that there will always be a next step in the process. There will always be a new idea, that’s what keeps it exciting.

SF: Tell us a little bit more about your design process.

JQ: I use two different work processes when I design the laser-cut rubber jewellery. The first one involves a lot of photography. When I come across interesting or striking images in the city I generally takes photo’s and then make them into my own patterns by printing them in black and white and cutting them up. The second method is about making a 2D cut out pattern have the impression of a 3D piece when worn on the body. This basically means a lot of experimenting and paper cuts before I get to a final design.

SF: What inspired you for your multi-functional work?

JQ: My graduation project at the Royal College of Art was inspired by the phenomenon of the urban nomad and the fact that more and more people tend to live in several places. We seem to move between places, cities and countries but we still like to carry our personal objects with us to contain a sense of self. In the past precious jewellery would have been the first thing you would take with you when moving just because it had a lot of value, both emotional and financial. I wanted to give jewellery an extra function so that you would be able to wear a sense of home. My designs intermediate between the territory of portable objects and adornment. By rethinking the notion of wearability I was able to create a necklace that carries an apple or a plant, but also is a necklace that turns into a bag. At the moment I am working on a chair necklace.

SF: What’s next for you?

JQ: I am showing at Top Drawer in January with a new section called Fashion First. This will be my first big trade fair. Hopefully I will be exhibiting at Milan Design Week in April with a bit more focus on my interior installations. I am creating test pieces at the moment.

SF: What are you expecting from showing at the Barbican with DJG?

JQ: It is a great opportunity to show my work to a new audience again. The Barbican Centre is a very vibrant venue that attracts a wide public. My work is quite niche and it is somewhat difficult to figure out who my customer is. It will be interesting to see who dares to wear my pieces!

SF: One third of our DJG members are originally from countries outside the U.K. This mix of backgrounds and cultures is unintentionally reflected in our selection of outstanding graduates. It is interesting to learn just what has attracted these graduates to study in the U.K.

JQ: My main reason to come to the U.K. was the Royal College of Art and because London is such a culturally buzzing and interesting place to live. I never intended to actually stay in London, but when I decided to start my own creative business, doing this in London was an obvious choice. I got the opportunity of being part of the Hothouse 4 program with the Crafts Council after graduating and this set things in motion. I feel that In England, and especially in London, there is a lot of support available for young creative entrepreneurs. The competition in London is great and there are so many amazing designers, but it’s just that aspect which makes me want to work hard and push forward.

 You can see and buy Jelka’s jewellery at the Designer Jewellers Group stand in the Barbican, London, now until 27th December.

Summer at the Barbican

Well our summer show is up and running, so we thought we’d give you a quick glimpse of some of the wonderful new work we’ve got in the Barbican right now.

Jill Newbrook

This gorgeous gold plated sterling silver pendant  (£175) is part of a timeless new collection by Jill Newbrook.

Jane Moore

Jane Moore has some great new – often whimsical – enamelled pieces on display, including this fish brooch (£200).

Shelby Fitzpatrick

Shelby Fitzpatrick has wowed us again, with a collection of amazingly vibrant and colourful perspex necklaces, including this one (£80).

The sales desk is open from 12 midday till 8pm every day from now until 1st June: we look forward to seeing you!

Bola Lyon

Introducing the first of our six carefully selected New Designers for 2013: Bola Lyon.

Bola is a graduate of the University for the Creative Arts at Rochester, Kent, and is interviewed here about her work by DJG member Shelby Fitzpatrick. 

Bola Lyon

S.F. Your work combines interesting materials. How did you decide to develop this range?

B.L. The range developed out of a fixation with texture, I’d experimented with marking and manipulating metal. The tactile nature of porcelain allowed for a much finer and deeper texture, which freed me to explore the silver elements in a more decorative and structural way.

Bola a

S.F. Have you had past experience with porcelain?

B.L. Yes, I’ve dabbled with clay since childhood. My mother was a ceramicist, clay was always available. I first used porcelain about 8 years ago. When I recently started to look at bones for inspiration, it seemed the perfect material to replicate not only the colour of bone but its delicate qualities.

Bola 2Bola 3

S.F. The imagery you reference is unusual for jewellery. What triggered these choices?

B.L. I’ve always been intrigued with anatomy, the amazing continually changing patterns of veins and the intricate fibrous meshes within bone. It is unusual inspiration for jewellery but I try to reinterpret the imagery to highlight the hidden beauty and capture the fragility within the structures.

Bola: piece modelled

S.F. Looking at your exploration of the structure of bones, one wonders if you have studied biology.

B.L. I have a keen interest. I didn’t study it in the conventional sense but visiting exhibitions such as the Hunterian collection at the Royal College of Surgeons and ‘Inside Out’ at the Science museum, I’ve been able to appreciate the specimens from an artistic point of view. It is something I would like to pursue.

Bola's shelf at the Barbican

S.F. I could see you collaborating with a scientist to find common ground.  Does this appeal?

B.L. Yes definitely, if the opportunity arose. I was amazed to find a jeweller growing bone with scientists. There are amazing medical and technological advances at the moment, it would be really interesting to see what could happen and get a deeper understanding of anatomical structures.

You can see and buy Bola’s work now, in the Barbican, London, until 1st January.

DJG at Made London, The Design and Craft Fair- This coming week!


We are proud to say we are part of this fantastic show, held last year for the first time to great acclaim- a show who’s reputation grows, and promises to only get better. Made London showcases the very best and most original makers, exhibiting the highest quality in contemporary craft and design. It opens it’s doors again this coming week, from Thursday evening…

We will be showing together as a sub- group of twelve members in the beautiful venue that is the Sir John Soanes Church, downstairs in the very atmospheric Crypt.

Our group consists of: An Alleweireldt, Annie Ruthven-Taggart, Catherine Hills, Christina Hirst, Christine Kaltoft, Emma Farquaharson, Shelby Fitzpatrick, Harriet St Leger, Misun Won, Tom Mc Dowell, Ute Sanne, and Sarah Macrae.

Also showing independently of the group elsewhere in the building, are members, Jane Moore, Petra Bishai and Li-Chu Wu, and Associate member Henrietta Fernandez.

241 ticket offers are still available through the Made London website: