By now you have probably realised that I love a story of female empowerment. Fearless women who break boundaries to make their dreams possible inspire me more than anything.
I also love jewellery. Costume jewellery, fine jewellery, diamonds, precious stones and cheap little keepsakes that have huge sentimental value. I hope to one day have an extensive jewellery collection that I can pass on to my daughters and granddaughters (if I’m lucky enough to have any).
And the inspiring (but often untold) story of Swedish silversmith Vivianna Torun Bülow-Hübe combines my love of strong women with my passion for jewellery…
Vivianna Torun Bülow-Hübe
Born in 1927, Vivianna Torun was the first female silversmith to gain international acclaim. At the age of 21 she left Sweden for France, and became heavily involved in the Parisian art scene – counting Picasso, Matisse and the jazz singer Billie Holiday as friends.
Vivianna started collaborating with Georg Jensen is 1967, and she work with the Danish design house right up until her death, in 2004. Her designs were famed for their linear, fluid and sculptural aesthetic. And, despite her high-profile clientele, Vivianna’s goal was always to create “anti-status” jewellery.
That design sensibility has stood the test of time. It’s now been 50 years since Vivianna Torun started collaborating with Georg Jensen, and her jewellery collections remain as popular as ever.
You can learn more about Vivianna Torun Bülow-Hübe – and view all of her work for Georg Jensen – here.
HOW TO START A JEWELLERY COLLECTION:
The first thing you need to ask yourself when building a fine jewellery collection is this: who is your jewellery icon, Elizabeth Taylor or Beyoncé Knowles?
If Liz is your gal then you need to embark on multiple love affairs with wealthy men. I have absolutely no experience in this area, so I would suggest looking elsewhere for any practical advice.
But if Beyoncé is your jewellery icon you’ve come to the right place. After all, it was Queen Bey who famously sang, “I buy my own diamonds and I buy my own rings”. (Side note: I’m sure Elizabeth Taylor also bought much of her own jewellery. But for the sake of this argument lets stick to pop culture clichés).
How to be Beyoncé (AKA How to Bankroll Your Own Jewellery Collection): You may have noticed one slight flaw in this Beyoncé plan… Beyoncé can buy her own diamonds and her own rings because she’s been a multi-millionaire since her late teens/early twenties. The vast majority of us have sadly not had that experience.
But, here’s the thing… The Georg Jensen Torun collection (created by Vivianna Torun) is actually quite accessible.
The Torun rings and bangles are the perfect pieces to start your fine jewellery collection with. They’re cool, timeless and meaningful (the interlocking design symbolises strength).
Starting at £150 for a sterling silver ring, rounding out at £395 for a sterling silver bangle with gold detailing, and peaking at £3,400 for a gold bangle with diamonds, the Torun collection caters to both new and established jewellery collectors. It truly is the “anti-status” jewellery that Vivianna Torun set out to craft!
Unsurprisingly, the gold bangle with diamonds is my favourite piece in the collection. It’s naturally out of the question. But saving up to purchase the sterling silver bangle or one of the rings is an achievable goal. And it’s a lovely way to celebrate an achievement or mark a milestone – all on your own dime!
Were you familiar with Vivianna Torun Bülow-Hübe’s incredible story? And are you a fan of the pieces Vivianna created at Georg Jensen? Which designs are your favourites? Leave a comment below to have your say…
Photos by Victoria Metaxas