Over the last ten years, Melanie’s original, eponymous line has cemented her as a leading figure in the world of pearl jewellery due to her daring and innovative approach which has seen her slice, drill and facet pearls, fearlessly experimenting with them as a material to great acclaim. Seemingly vulnerable, feminine, yet tough and enduring, the pearl’s symbolic contradictions are juxtaposed throughout each collection with the application of innovative techniques and a surprising use of materials.
In a natural progression from her examination of the pearl, Melanie turned her attention in 2016 to the often overlooked by-product of the pearl industry, mother of pearl. MOP otherwise known as nacre is produced by mollusks as an inner shell layer, it also makes up the outer coating of pearls. It is a strong, resilient and iridescent material that has been used for thousands of years, mainly in the form of inlay. As a material it is more widely used than pearls, however, despite its popularity, it has never reached the pearls symbolic status, something Melanie hopes to change.
Throughout the duration of her practice Melanie’s desire to challenge existing preconceptions has been her driving force, and her work with MOP has been no exception. The deconstruction of age old concepts about her chosen materials and that of traditional jewellery anchors each collection; constantly defying convention. Melanie lifts the pearl and MOP to new domains of art, architecture and high fashion, whilst her pieces retain their quality as wearable and ageless accessories.