Pretty designs and a strong determination made designer a NexGem.

Who has made it into the Professional Jeweller Hot 100 2012 in association with The Company of Master Jewellers and supported by gold partner Ti Sento won’t be unveiled until September 4, so until then we are looking back to the leading lights of the jewellery industry who made it into the Hot 100 2011. Today is the turn of London-based jewellery designer Laura Gravestock whose pretty, feminine designs have made her a firm favourite with consumers and press, and as a result a Sawrovksi NexGem. 

In the past 12 months Laura Gravestock has blossomed as a jewellery designer. She has progressed from a designer-maker working from home to a member of the famous Cockpits Arts family, catching retailers’ eyes with her intricate, feminine jewellery designs.


Laura has worked hard to get the attention of the jewellery industry and although she had a “lightbulb moment” about wanting to become a jewellery designer, she has made her path rather than stumbled across it.

That lightbulb moment came when Laura watched a jeweller creating a piece of glass and silver jewellery at a craft fair. She was working in fashion at the time but was unsatisfied by her retail career and decided she wanted to become a self-employed jewellery designer.

Laura took herself off to City Lit in London for a series of night classes to learn how to make jewellery and then offered up her services for free at Cockpit Arts, working for other jewellers. “I used my time there to get as much information as I possibly could and it gave me a good grounding in not just the practical skills, but also the business skills,” she explains.

In September last year, by which point she had already secured two stockists, Laura made a conscious effort to start pushing her designs by attending IJL. Then, when Professional Jeweller launched its competition to win a stand at London Jewellery Week selling show Treasure, Laura made the shortlist and won a stand, securing eight new stockists as a result.

Laura now hopes to take part in Stateside trade shows and says she is ready let her ambitions lead her to success.

This interview was taken from the Professional Jeweller Hot 100 2011. This year’s list and photographs will be unveiled at an exclusive invite-only party at The Freemason’s Hall in London on September 4. To find out how you can get tickets email event director