Meghan Markle may have stepped out at Wimbledon to watch her friend, Serena Williams, but all eyes were on the petite charm draped around her neck.
The 18-karat solid gold ‘A’ necklace was a handmade creation by Emma Swann, who gifted the piece of jewellery to the royal following Archie’s birth in May.
Since the Duchess was photographed wearing the personalised charm a week ago, Swann’s business, Verse Fine Jewellery, has felt the ‘Meghan Markle effect’.
“My website has crashed twice,” Swann told The CEO Magazine . “We’ve definitely noticed a huge influx in international orders, which has been fantastic.
“We’ve done very well since our Love Letters collection was launched, but we’ve since had a huge spike in international orders. It’s very exciting to know that people as far away as Ireland, Scotland, Switzerland and America, are finding out about a Sydney-based Australian brand.
“The Love Letters collection has been very popular for business.”
The jeweller gifted the necklace to Meghan to congratulate her on the birth of her son but never expected her to wear the piece.
“I just hoped that she would see that it was a beautifully made piece of jewellery, and might think it was sweet that it had Archie’s initial on it,” she says.
Swann, who trained at London’s prestigious Central Saint Martins, has spent her life surrounded by creative influences, for her mother is a jewellery restorer and her father is an art dealer.
It’s her mother’s specialty of restoring Victorian jewellery that inspired her to launch her personalised collections.
“The collection is based on the idea of future heirlooms – pieces you’d want to pass down to your daughter or your son,” Emma Swann
“The Victorian period was all about sentimental jewellery,” Swann told The CEO Magazine. “Lockets with pieces of hair to remember someone by, photos of people in lockets, engraved lockets, birthstones spelling out names or messages – it’s that whole concept of keepsake or memento jewellery.”
The 18-karat solid gold creations are handmade by Swann’s small team in Sydney, Australia, and take seven working days to complete. Each piece is unique because it is crafted by hand, not machine, and made to order.
“They look simple but they’re actually technically very challenging to make, and they do take a long time because we melt the gold,” Swann says. “We don’t cast, we make them by hand, just for you, so it makes them very special.”
Creating pieces on request means Verse Fine Jewellery has very little waste from unsold stock.
The business melts a lot of vintage 18-karat gold as well as Fairmined gold and sources GIA-certified diamonds. Not only are the materials quality driven, but Swann personally checks every piece before it leaves the workshop.
“It’s going that little step further than just sending something out to someone in a box – they’re monogrammed with gold initials, so it harps back to Victorian times when the boxes were hand engraved,” Swann says. “The collection is based on the idea of future heirlooms – pieces you’d want to pass down to your daughter or your son.
“That’s the sentiment behind the collection. It’s very much based on pieces you’ll have forever.”