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Did you know that the colour green was celebrated and considered sacred in India during Mughal times? ...

It's not every day that I get invited to a high jewellery event, let alone a private one.  So, when I received an invitation to view Van Cleef & Arpels' Time, Nature, Love exhibition at the Palazzo Real in Milan, I was on the next plane. The last time I was in Milan, I was a curious 20-year-old art history student. My sole mission back then was to see Leonardo's Last Supper in Santa Maria delle Grazie. I will never forget standing in front of the fresco in complete awe, gazing at Jesus and His Disciples at His final meal. The mural had faded quite a bit, but I was spellbound. The painting was on my list of places to revisit, and I was excited to see what it looked like after its 20-year restoration. However, little did I know that you have to pre-book tickets in advance and the next...

For many of us, including me, grey skies and the permanent mist that clings to my hair and clothes that hangs over me like a dark...

Tiara of Downton Abbey - Part 2. In the 2019 movie, did you know that three other tiaras featured in the film are the real deal?...

Queen Elizabeth II repica jewels appear in Downton Abbey's 2019 movie! To say that I was more than excited when I heard that Downton Abbey was making its way to the silver screen is an understatement....

The grandeur of ancient Egypt is evident in their jewellery. Egypt had the resources. There was gold, emeralds, turquoise, cornelian and faience....

The oldest emerald mines are located in the Wadi Valley of Sikait which is about halfway between Luxor on the Nile River...

Jewellery is very personal and speaks to people differently. I enjoy communicating through my creations, as each piece has a story and my hope is that my designs speak to you. To that end I am thrilled to share with you my brand new website. The website now displays the “Fine Jewellery Collection” as well as the more affordable line “Mara by Mara”. The new website also features a brand new and exciting Homeware/Lifestyle section, and last, but not least, my regular blogs. Many of my design inspirations come from nature or from architectural elements. Dazzling colourful gems - pink sapphires, olive green peridot, purple amethysts and silvery moonstones play an important role in my work, and I allow the stones to speak for themselves. The colourful cabochons set in the Aqua Ring or the whimsical opal broaches are examples of what I mean. But I also place a high priority on functionality...

A very warm welcome to my new website and to the wonderful world of gems and jewellery. For as long as I can remember, I have been fascinated by  gemstones and jewellery. I have my mother to thank for this passion as it was her jewellery box that lured me into this world of constant discovery. She had a beautiful silver jewellery box that was covered in amethyst beads. The exterior was just as gorgeous as the jewellery that was kept under lock and key. My mother’s taste was simple and elegant. During the day, she wore her large cultured pearl studs and her diamond engagement ring. If she was going out to lunch, she would wear a gem-set brooch or a strand of south sea pearls. Her evening jewels were classic and subtle. To me, she was pure elegance.  My father also liked jewels and he often surprised her with his own...

Much of the diamond jewellery that I see is mounted, which makes grading them challenging. In July, I enrolled in a week long course offered by the National Association of Jewellers and taught by the renowned Eric Emms. Understanding that mounts can affect a diamond’s colour and that claws can easily hide a flaw can seriously affect the value if graded incorrectly. Despite my years at Sotheby’s looking at mounted and unmounted diamonds, it’s always good to go back to the basics. With just a loupe and a microscope to reconfirm my findings, the days were filled with looking at simulants, fracture filled and actual diamonds. Several times I surprised myself by discovering inconspicuous drill holes. Often included diamonds are laser drilled to better their colour. I think I can confidently identify a fracture filled diamond by its “purple flash”, another method used to make diamonds whiter. There are so...

Two years ago I visited Winchester Cathedral and was inspired by it’s grandeur and beauty. As I travelled throughout England, I noticed most churches and cathedrals share many similarities, particularly the shape within the windows. The quatrefoil motif is simple and universal. It gave me the idea to create a collection using that motif. Faith is something that everyone can have regardless of beliefs or religious background. I wanted to create a design that anyone can wear and believe that they too can carry an element of faith with them wherever they go. The collection comprises of pendants, earrings and bracelets either in silver or 18k gold vermeil. Each quatrefoil is able to move creating an individual and distinctive look. The concept of moving parts brings a new dimension to jewellery that I hope will appeal to a wider audience. ...