Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue.” We all know the old rhyme that tells us the necessary pieces of a bridal outfit. More often than not, one of these traditional requirements is met through the jewelry adorning the bride-to-be. Some may choose to have blue stones in their necklaces, to repair a family heirloom, or to create something new and unique for their special day. For Mark London, of Mark London Design, he is all too familiar with custom jewelry and the importance it can hold with his clients.
London has been in the jewelry business for 50 years and began his work in Brentwood four years ago. It started in Santa Cruz, when he was 19 years old. “There was always an artist inside of me as a young person,” London recalled in an interview. “Instead of getting a job, I found a bead store that was for sale. I sold beads and findings to make jewelry.” While running this business, a man eventually came in who introduced London to casting. Being enthralled and enamoured by this specialized line of work, young London began to read books, take classes, and learn more about casting, stone setting, and jewelry design. In the long run, he spent most of his career where he was raised, hosting his first store in Napa, California.
Back to the present, London now employs computer-aided design, which often helps him create designs with the customer right next to him. Despite the 6,000 individuals currently on his mailing list, he usually works between two to 12 clients at one time. Even more so, he prides himself on his ability to design and create jewelry that is unique to the customer with whom he is working. “I try not to follow trends,” he explained, “I try to make things that are a little different and interesting. For my customers, I try to tailor things to their personality, even if we are starting with something that they saw previously.” The benefit of unique, personalized jewelry design is one of the many positive characteristics to be seen in Mark London Design.
When asked further about current trends for jewelry design, London articulated that, “So much of the jewelry that is popular and promoted heavily by companies that market on a larger scale has a strong reliance on retro designs and pieces that were popular between the 1920s and 1930s styles. These are combined with what we would consider contemporary arcs and open work.” Taking into consideration the current trends, as well as the personality and characteristics of the client with whom London is working, he designs and creates jewelry that best meets client needs. Rather than going to a store that mass produces the same piece, custom jewelry poses the advantage of a unique, special look on a special day.
Due to the expertise of London, he was asked to share any advice that he would have for individuals looking into buying jewelry in this marital season. He said, “Importantly, if you have some time to do a little research, especially if you’re buying diamonds, you want to understand something about how diamonds are rated, sold, and priced, and what the competitive rates are. If you are interested in buying what is available now — lab-grown diamonds or naturally mined diamonds — I advise my customers to make sure they know where their stones are coming from so they can feel confident about what they are buying.” For individuals who care more about the ethical implication of the diamonds they are purchasing, this advice is particularly important to keep in mind when making decisions about their jewelry.
If an individual is interested in getting in contact with Mark London Designs, they can text or email him at (514) 850-4653 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Ideally, one should begin meeting with London three months in advance or longer. However, if the project and design were simple enough, he could create something in a shorter time period. On top of the unique designs, London mentioned, “I always make sure that my customers are happy with the piece if I have designed it for them.” This means that for a bride-to-be in this wedding season, what matters most for this custom jewelry maker is that everything be as the client needs it to be. This can stand as reassurance for people as they make their wedding plans.