Rosie Wolfenden and Harriet Vine have made a big name for themselves over the last thirteen years as Co Founders and designers of cult jewellery brand Tatty Devine, creating the most unique, fun and clever pieces made from often from perspex, but also wood, veneer, leather and enamel.
Their designs are featured around the clock in magazines such as Vogue, Grazia, Elle, Cosmopolitan… and stand firm as one of United Kingdoms most original and exciting brands.
As it’s coming up to Christmas, I thought I might also mention their fab “How to make jewellery with Tatty Devine” book – a really good idea for any crafty, jewellery loving people in your life. It’s 125 pages of creative inspiration and shows you how to transform any object into a new accessory and, what you will need to get started. At £12.99 I think it’s a very good price ! It’s on my list ! You will also find on their website that they sell stitching patterns and run jewellery making workshops too.
When you met at College, did you hit it off straight away ?
At Chelsea the year was split into 4 groups over 2 floors, Harriet and I were in different groups on different floors, so it look a while for us to become friends. In the second year the roof fell in on where I was living, I’d heard that Harriet had a spare room so I rang her up. Once I’d moved in we hit it of straight away.
You opened your first boutique on Brick Lane, thirteen years ago – did you know even then how loved and popular your brand would become ?
We had no idea ! We were just having so much fun and our criteria was to have a good time, make original things ( we just didn’t want to look like everyone else ) and not get ‘proper jobs’. We’ve stuck to all these things, although it could be argued that we now have proper jobs !
I can spot a ‘Tatty Devine’ piece a mile off.. what would you say makes your jewellery so unique and distinctive ?
I think its a few things, the first being that our techniques are unique to us as we have created and developed them, that we never want to go for the obvious – so I think there is always an unusualness to our jewellery and we like to think our jewellery is of the highest quality – which makes it stand out.
Do you have a current best seller ?
Other than the perennial name necklace we have been selling out of fox brooches and the Arrgh Necklace has been doing very well.
You have collaborated with lots of creative people so far, who would you love to work with next ?
We’d love to work with Grayson Perry.
Where do you get your inspiration for new designs and how far ahead do you work on new seasonal pieces ?
We’re currently finishing off AW13, so for the non seasonal collections we tend to work3-6 months ahead.
Are you music fans ? If so, what do you like to listen to when designing ?
We love music, it’s always been central to what we do. When we’re designing we listen to whatever we are currently into, although there are always old favourites like Belle and Sebastian, Electrelane or ESG.
As well as making your products, you also run jewellery making workshops and sell a “How to make jewellery” book – what inspired this ?
We’ve always done events to celebrate Tatty Devine and get involved with the customer. Our customers just love anything experiential and at heart we are all about DIY so we thought it would be fantastic to do a book with making ideas and to support this with workshops to give people the chance to make some of the pieces with the Tatty team.
With your jewellery stocking in over 300 stores worldwide as well as your own, how do you make it all happen ?
We’ve got a team of 30 people that make it all happen. Harriet and I design and oversee everything, but then we have people making, packing, doing the admin, working in the shop and workshops, doing the press and marketing, the accounts, the customer care and someone to look after our wholesale customers and attend trade shows.
What do you love most about being designers and having your own business ?
The freedom to do what we want to do and the joy of making people happy with our jewellery.
What are your career highlights to date ?
Opening our shop in Covent Garden, the pop up in Selfridges and working with people like Rob Ryan, Gilbert and George and Tate.
Can you offer advice to anyone reading this who has a unique brand idea but doesn’t know where to start ?
Start small, let it develop organically and put all your energy and enthusiasm into it. Most importantly have faith in your idea and in yourself.
What can we expect next from Tatty Devine? Personally, I can’t wait…. :)
So much, 2013 is going to be a very exciting year.
Do you have a favourite Tatty Devine design ? Please do leave me a comment below and spill the beans… ? :)
All images copyright Tatty Devine 2012.
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