International Jewellery London’s annual KickStart initiative is aimed at emerging UK designers looking to take their business to the next level.
10 up-and-coming design talents have been selected by the National Association of Jewellers (NAJ) and IJL to have the unique opportunity to showcase their jewellery at IJL 2016 on a group stand in the prestigious Design Gallery.
Here, we meet 2016 KickStarter Charlotte Scott Moncrieff, whose business CF Concept is on route to become the next big Scandi-cool brand…
Q: If you had to describe your brand in three words which words would you choose?
CSM: Scandinavian, Contemporary, Classic
Q: How did you get started in the jewellery industry?
CSM: I have always been interested in the creative world – art, photography, literature, film etc. I studied sculpture in Florence and worked on pieces from full length to busts but being surrounded by so many jewellers in the city I was intrigued and gradually minimised the sculpting and started working with wax and casting. For me it was a natural progression and a fluid process.
Q: Can you explain a little bit more about your design style, your key collection(s) and the type of customer you are designing for?
CSM: I try to incorporate a Danish design ethos into all of my collections and also integrate inspiration from my travels. The latest collection Serac – meaning ‘a pinnacle or ridge of ice on the surface of a glacier’ sought to bring the majestic icebergs of Greenland to life, with solid gold paying tribute to the grandeur of these natural beauties and diamonds reflecting their brilliance and tenacity.
I design for people who are curious and engender a sense of adventure and fun. My collections are modern; streamline with an edge which allows for delicate/subtle additions to an outfit but they can also be layered and paired to create a more emphatic look – everyone can create their own individual look.
Q: What are the most challenging aspects of launching and growing a new brand in 2016?
CSM: There are a lot of aspects to growing a business – so I would say that it’s the sheer amount of work involved that can be a challenge especially when you’re operating as a one-man band! I am passionate about driving CF Concept forward so I do love the challenges. Next up – making the IJL journey as productive and positive as possible!
Q: If you had a mentor in the jewellery industry what would you ask them?
I would love to ask them what makes their brand run and tick – is it there one particular thing they focus on or is it a culmination of many things? In the short term which aspect should I tackle first?
Q: What are you most looking forward to about exhibiting at IJL 2016 and what do you hope to achieve?
CSM: I am really excited to introduce my collections to such a wide industry audience – everyone who attends the show are interested in jewellery in one form or another. IJL’s Kickstarter provides an amazing platform with a great reach for new designers so making the most of that support and encouragement is the aim.
I hope to get the press excited about CF Concept and to attract the interest of buyers who would be willing to take on the brand. So until September I’ll be in full work mode to make sure I deliver the best brand experience possible.
Q: Are there any types of retailers or stockists in particular that you are trying to attract?
CSM: I would love to spread the CF Concept brand far and wide with reputable stockists – from large shops to smaller boutiques. Finding a department store in London to get behind CF Concept would be a dream – the city where it all happens – where CF is designed and made.