Inspired by the natural features of the beautiful Cornish coastline where she grew up, Sandra Austin creates elegant and sublime jewellery pieces that combine an organic feel with the crisp delicacy and robustness of the natural world. Her work is like a breath of fresh sea air. Her hand forged chains with gently decayed, organic elements marry the clean modernity of the catwalk with a whisper of something beautifully ancient.
Sandraʼs love of design and creativity, and a passion for jewellery drew her to study silversmithing & jewellery at Truro College. Graduating in 2013, she has subsequently grown her jewellery business with integrity and passion, remaining in South West Cornwall with its natural beauty inspiring her work.
“To me, a sense of place is vital, so where family roots are firmly set and with the outstanding stretch of over 300 miles of coastline, Cornwall has so much to offer”.
“The rugged rocks on the beaches are continuously being exposed to natural elements, leaving salt water erosions that have many interesting patterns and textures. Life within the rockpools is like a hoard of wild treasure. The discovery of what is found in these colourful aquariums are all inspirational to my work”.
Photography is fundamental to Sandraʼs design development “Observing the photographs helps me to study line and shape in more detail. I sketch from the images, establishing the concept of the design. My drawings are then further developed by model making, which allows for modification of design alternatives, proportion and textural detail, before translating to metal”.
Sandraʼs ʻSilver Stormʼ collection is inspired by the storms that badly hit the small fishing village of Pothleven where she was born.
“Huge waves crashing into the harbour was sending white foam everywhere. It was just like a snow scene.”
To replicate this Sandra experimented with molten silver and saltwater. The organically shaped pieces of silver are then further fabricated creating quirky designs that are versatile, elegant and totally unique.
Sandraʼs recent work also includes creating individual and intricate keepsakes.
”Everyone has a memorable or favourite place that holds personal, special memories. I like to capture these special moments in pieces of jewellery that can be worn close to your heart or simply admired on their own”
ʻOiaʼ the traditional cave house was inspired by a recent holiday in Santorini.
Sandraʼs preferred ways of working include the traditional techniques of forming, raising and forging. These allow her to produce flowing curved lines, giving each piece an organic fluid quality. She considers the aesthetic elements carefully and mainly works with silver, oxidized silver and gold.
“I believe this provides the aesthetics, adding depth and providing each individual piece with its unique identity”.
Sandra works from her studio at home, designing and making bespoke, individual pieces.