Philippa Holland reconstructs the ancient and natural worlds into timeless jewellery
Notting Hill-based jewellery designer Philippa Holland started her astounding career in 2003 just after she had finished the History of Jewellery course at Sotheby’s.
This jewellery designer researches and travels a great deal to collect and study specimens for her work, but living relatively close to both London and The Savernake Forest in Wiltshire has its perks. “I have travelled to a great number of places with wonderful nature. However, what is English remains so strongly etched in my spirit that I find it hard to do much else.”
“My style developed over time, working with craftsmen and trying different techniques.” Holland uses an effective process where pieces are electro-formed and then cast. “I use a technique that ceramist Bernard Palissy coined ‘casting from life’. It means that all the tiniest of details, the veins on the wings of a moth or the legs of a beetle become part of the piece.” It is this precision and uniqueness of Holland’s work that entices so many different customers: “I would say the jewellery is directed more at individuality than a particular group or trend.”
The above image is of Holland’s Bat Skull Necklace. Nature, flowers and insects especially, have been used in jewellery for many years, but this piece, amongst many others, is stunningly original. “The bat skull came from the Darwinian theory that humans are evolved from bats. If you look at their wings and see the skeleton – it is the same as our hands. The skulls look like small human skulls. And there is something nostalgic and child-like about the sycamore pods, but they also seem to represent the joining of two and the beauty of their flight.”
Judging from her collections, Holland seems to be a countryside girl through and through. Her connection with nature spurs an element of open-mindedness that comes across deeply in her designs. “I strive to be as courageous as possible in life, to push the boundaries of personal limitations and fear. Of going beyond social conditioning.” The fact that there is no limit to the level of beauty and inspiration one can gain from the English countryside implies that there will be a great deal more work of this nature to look forward to from Philippa Holland.
Holland recently did a collaboration with David Morris, creating a bold collection that strode away from her more recognizable styles. “Working with David Morris was amazing. It’s every girl’s dream to have a pallet of diamonds to work with!” Hopefully this stunning collaboration will be one of many. With patrons such as Claudia Schiffer, Sienna Miller and Sophie Dahl, we have no doubt that Holland’s work will catch the eye of even more people, from celebrities to other designers.
Holland has just launched her new e-commerce website you can see here, so now anyone can peruse and purchase her fine jewellery online from anywhere in the world.