Astley Clarke Ladies’ Day at Banks Lyon

Astley Clarke

As one of only a handful of Astley Clarke stockists in the North West, we were delighted to welcome our VIP guests to an invitation-only event at our Lancaster showroom on July 12th and an all-day event at our Kendal store on July 14th.  The delicious cupcakes provided by Julie Higgs of Hilltop Cakery and an abundance of sparkle and flowers set the scene perfectly for this quintessentially British jewellery brand that celebrates the modern British woman.

Founded in London in 2007, the award-winning Astley Clarke brand is flying the flag for British jewellery. Renowned for its stunning, affordable luxury pieces and a motto that urges women to “Go precious every day”, it was the perfect partner for our Astley Clarke Ladies’ events at our Lancaster and Kendal stores this July.

In a competitive industry, Bec Astley Clarke has succeeded where many have failed in creating an iconic range of jewellery that combines luxury and affordability with a contemporary approach.

Appointing a Creative Director in 2009 to work from a newly-acquired Design Studio enabled the transition from a multi-brand online retailer to an exclusively own-brand powerhouse with an international reach that generated £4.4m in the financial year 2017.

Perhaps as intriguing as the jewellery itself, the history and values of Astley Clarke are reflected in the design of the pieces, with the natural world being a recurring inspiration, drawing on the fact that Astley Clarke’s grandfather was a geneticist who combined his work with a love of butterflies to help develop a cure for Rhesus disease. The moth design incorporated into the Phototaxis collection was modelled by Georgia May Jagger, who not only represents the brand’s intelligent and modern image, but whose grandmother also suffered from the affliction that Sir Cyril Astley Clarke helped find the cure for.

Bec Astley Clarke is herself somewhat of a revolutionary. Spotting a gap in the market for fashionable, modern demi-fine jewellery at affordable prices, the masters-educated Astley Clarke drew on her wealth of ecommerce experience to set up the business from her dining room, to ultimately become the industry’s first multi-channel British luxury jewellery brand.

Additionally, Astley Clarke jewellery is aimed at women as the purchaser of the pieces – a deviation from the norm where marketing traditionally targets men to buy such items for their significant others – which is why it was the perfect choice for our Ladies’ afternoon. Tapping into the demand by modern women to treat themselves to fine, fashionable jewellery that can be worn every day, Astley Clarke actively encourages today’s woman not to relegate favourite pieces to a coveted jewellery box that is only opened on special occasions.

Indeed, one of the things that sets Astley Clarke pieces apart is the relaxed informality at the heart of the design, combining beautiful craftsmanship with an accessible style which makes the range as perfectly wearable with jeans and a shirt as with an evening dress.

The Amazonite Wishbone Bracelet from the Biography range is an ideal example, bringing the notion of a friendship bracelet into a grown-up world that adds a touch of relaxed glamour to any outfit. Boasting semi-precious, hand-cut amazonite gemstones threaded throughout an 18-carat, yellow gold-plated sterling silver bracelet provides the perfect base for the current ‘layering’ trend. The sapphire pave wishbone, symbolising hope, is beautifully set off by the signature star-set lapis lazuli and makes for a stunning, personal gift with additional charms available to add a further unique element.

Equally popular ranges include the Cosmos collection – again picking up on the theme of all things natural – with matching pieces available to suit any occasion. The striking pendant design is centred around the concept of an infinity of diamonds symbolically surpassing an eternity. Set in 14-carat rose gold for a contemporary twist, this unique pendant can be teamed with matching earrings and bracelet for a sophisticated, yet delicate look.

The affordable nature of Astley Clarke makes these pieces not only ideal gifts but very easy to mix and match, and a perfect reflection of an independent, refined style. It is therefore of no surprise that brand ambassadors include Alexa Chung and Cara DeLavigne.

We are proud to stock a wide range of products from this flagship British brand that is rapidly becoming an icon in itself – with Birthstone pieces a particular favourite. The Astley Clarke Ladies’ event provided an opportunity for our lucky guests to try on and buy some of our collection, with extra special pieces brought by Pip from Astley Clarke especially for the occasion.

They were great events that provided a chance for like-minded ladies to get together and look at some beautiful jewellery, designed to inspire and empower women. Bec Astley Clarke’s suggestion that “Life is too short not to enjoy the finer things as much as we can – what’s the point in owning something designed to keep for a lifetime and only wearing it once or twice?” provides the perfect excuse, if ever we needed one, to indeed go precious every day.