Vanessa Chilton, Zoe Benyon and Kate Pelham Burn launched Robinson Pelham in 1996. The trio spent the brand’s first decade tucked away in a secluded Pimlico Mews crafting bespoke pieces for a roster of high-profile clients, before introducing a full collection in 2006.
Three years ago, the established house revamped their concept, relaunching under the same moniker, but with a fresh, contemporary attitude to design. Today the brand cleverly navigates the segue between forward-thinking creator and heritage jeweller. The team behind the collection told us more.
When you re-launched the brand – what was the new concept?
We wanted to lead women into colourful, modern, wearable jewellery. Previously we worked solely on commissions, but there were so many different pieces we wanted to design that we started to release collections. Then the collections needed a showcase – hence the boutique. Suddenly we were in a world of creativity rather than being restricted to reactive designs.
It’s been three years since you opened your boutique – how has this affected the brand?
Our client base has grown hugely – some come to see the collections, some to commission pieces and others with open minds. Being able to inspire the client by letting them handle and try on the jewellery broadens their design horizons – the colour in the boutique is contagious.
In Detail is all about empowering women – which inspiring women have worn your jewels?
A wide cross-section – from Rita Ora to Judi Dench, and the Duchess of Cambridge. Our customers are an extraordinary group of women; independent minded, enthusiastic and imaginative – we want them to choose a piece that suits them and excites them.
Tell us about the inspiration behind the ear wishes collection (above)?
As with so many designers, we are guilty of designing what we want to wear. Our rainbow coloured Orb hoop earrings are bestsellers – the EarWishes are made either as charms that can be worn on the Orb hoops, or as studs. They’re all symbols – arrows for bravery and courage, rainbows for happiness, wings for freedom, cones for determination.
How would each of you describe your jewellery style and do you have any favourite pieces?
We all have different styles, which is reflected in the two parts of the collection – Evoke (classic) and Oxygen (contemporary). Kate’s favourite pieces are from Evoke – the Diamond Tala bangle and the Pyrus earrings. Vanessa loves Oxygen’s identity necklace with interchangeable bars – especially worn with the Rainbow bar. Zoe’s favourite is also from Oxygen – the Sunset Chevron earrings. We all live in Orb hoops and EarWishes.
What’s next for Robinson Pelham?
Colour, colour, colour. We are expanding in Japan and hopefully in London and the USA. Right now we’re focused on our new summer collections – Streak, Tsar Stars, Rainbow Orbs and EarWish studs.