30 November 2019

Ruth Tomlinson Launches a Unique Collection With Gemfields’ Zambian Emeralds

Launching this November is a brand-new, truly unique collection by cutting-edge designer Ruth Tomlinson in collaboration with Gemfields, the world’s leading supplier of coloured gemstones.

Renowned for celebrating unconventional beauty and spotlighting the individuality of each hand-selected gem, Tomlinson has long been drawn to the Earth’s most unique and natural treasures. She was compelled to explore this narrative further, after a chance encounter with Gemfields’ emeralds. The resulting limited-edition collection, entitled JARDIN, features exquisite Gemfields’ emeralds, which Tomlinson selected for their otherworldly inclusions. Occurring naturally within the mineral composition of the gem, this “garden of inclusions” makes each one entirely individual.   What do you love most about emeralds? Emeralds are typically known for their vivid tones, but the beauty for me is actually in the paler or included varieties, which are much less celebrated, but in my opinion, even more striking. I’m always fascinated by the heritage of gemstones. I find that the older or rarer they are, the more I’m drawn to them. The inclusions make each gem completely unique, created at a moment in time, in a particular place, never to be repeated – truly magical.   Why are responsibly sourced gemstones important to you? In every facet of the brand, we’re attempting to be as responsible as we can be, using recycled gold, sourcing antique diamonds and gemstones, rather than new ones, and championing the repurposing of old jewellery into new, which we do a lot through personal commissions. Our gemstone-sourcing plays a huge part in all of this: the provenance of a gemstone is something we demand to know, as do our clients. Gemfields are renowned for their transparency, which makes working with them such a pleasure. It’s essential that we share these values with every partner we work with.   How did this collection come about? I’ve always found beauty and romance in the story of gemstones and the inner world within them. When I heard about the Gemfields VOID exhibition with Dan Tobin Smith earlier this year, which used video and sound to magnify the tiny microcosms within gemstones, I was hooked. I reached out to Gemfields to discuss how I could design a collection which would celebrate the perfectly imperfect inclusions within their gemstones. Emeralds spoke to me more than rubies; that was just instinctive, and when I stumbled across the emerald with subtle peppered inclusions, I knew I’d found something special to work with. My jewels always take form at the bench: for me, there’s huge pleasure and value in letting the idea flow from there, in letting the gemstone guide the way. With this collection, the emeralds had to take centre stage. I worked hard to ensure the settings allowed plenty of light to reflect the incredible inclusions within. More unusually for us, I decided to use a mix of yellow and white gold to add contrast to the deep green, and then a flourish of diamonds to finish.