World Cup Style

Now that the Brazil 2014 World Cup is in full swing, there has been a lot of fashion talk surrounding the kits and the players; noted in The Guardian as the 'the most fashionable World Cup ever'. We thought it would be fun to model up some football pendants.

Base on the Atlas pendant which was inspired by the myth of the eponymous Titan with the weight of the world on his shoulders, Atlas is inside the sphere to represent the concept of restriction within the mind and the way a weight on our shoulders may in fact be more of a mental limit than a reality.

For the football pendant we wanted to take the pattern traditionally associated with the football shape, known as a spherical polyhedron. This style of football takes the pattern of regular pentagons and regular hexagons to create the spherical polyhedron, but it is more spherical due to the pressure of the air inside and the elasticity of the ball. It was introduced to the World Cup in 1970. In 2006, the iconic design was superseded by alternative patterns.

The front of the design would consist of the badge or flag for each club embossed into a shield. The above image showing the England three lions. We also tried out some variations using Enamelling to highlight the colour in the countries team emblem.

Each day of the World Cup we'll be posting the scheduled matches over on our twitter page @saxonsofoxford We want to know your thoughts on our football pendants. Would you wear a piece of jewellery to show your team colours? If we have enough interest in them we will bring out a limited edition collection #worldcuppendant

Christmas Gift Guide

With Christmas gift shopping in full swing, we thought we would put together a gift guide showing what we’re hoping for in our stocking this year, focusing on British small businesses and products made in UK. It’s definitely a great bonus that by buying any of these for a loved one you will also be supporting small business too!

 

Brit-Stitch

With an interesting back story including a Milk Man, Brit Stitch have got some lovely leather pieces which we think would make some beautiful gifts, especially as they come in a multitude of colours, helping you to tailor them to the person you’re gifting.

Love Umbrellas

These pretty heart-shaped umbrellas will brighten up even the rainiest of days. They have a beautiful collection of bridal umbrellas which you can customise too.

 

Whisk Hampers

Who doesn’t love settling down with a gin and tonic during an evening before dinner? A great way to unwind, and in this case, a lovely gift set for an appreciator of gin.

Daines & Hathaway

A luxury gift for a man who likes the finer things in life. You could even buy him a nice bottle of his favourite tipple to go inside.

Emma J Shipley

All of the scarves designed by Emma J Shipley are stunning, and we particularly like the bright colours of this one, a high quality special present, which we are sure many would be thrilled to receive.

Stow London

It’s so nice to be able to store your jewellery in a luxury roll when travelling, and these buttery leather ones come in a range of great bright colours.

The Oxford Socks Company

A fellow Oxford-based brand, these brightly coloured socks come beautifully packaged in individual boxes and we think that they would make perfect stocking fillers. No longer is the gift of socks a boring one.

Clements & Church

After a recent photoshoot with Clements and Church, we fell for their flamboyant ties and pocket squares which go perfectly with their slightly ostentatious tailoring. Their ties make the perfect gift for someone who wants to spice up their wardrobe.

Sara Smith

Enjoy the pleasure of drinking tea in style with these delicate English bone china tea cups from Sara Smith. A great gift for the tea lover.

Saxons of Oxford

This special gift is perfect for day-to-day wear made from 925 sterling silver. You can choose from a huge variety of coloured braided leather straps to match your style.

 

You can also tweet your british christmas gift ideas to @SaxonsofOxford and let us know your thoughts on our gift guide too!

 

The Microscopic Creation of ‘The Man in a Cage’

The Man in a Cage pendant is our signature statement piece, mirco-machined from a solid block of 925 sterling silver and completed with an impeccable high polish finish and intricacy.  Exuberating pride, strength and independence, wearing this pendant is guaranteed to get you noticed.

The Man in a Cage began its long journey in 2009, but had existed for longer in idea and sketch form for some time before then.  So why did it take over 4 years to come to fruition?  The answers lies in the Saxons of Oxford ethos and the way in which a seemingly impossible concept is pursued until the dream is realised.  The Man In a Cage is the embodiment of this ethos and the story of its creation symbolises the elements we strive for in all of our pieces.

The Man in a Cage is typical of any intricate piece of jewellery in that the process of its creation involved a number of trials and tribulations. The desired precision and underlying quality meant that many imperfect prototypes did not make the final grade.  However, this is where the typical process ends for Man in a Cage, as its design was a complex blend of digital precision, blending with a modern manufacturing process and more than a little old fashioned workmanship.

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The digital complexity of the design process involved a great deal of precision, time and effort.

Ultimately the numerous imperfect prototypes left us wanting a process that would achieve our desired level of intricacy and finish and our quest led us to micro-machining from a solid block of silver.  This process enabled us to focus on the details of the pendant without having to make compromises inherent with traditional casting methods.

A wireframe model of Man in a Cage

The main aspect of micro machining which appealed was the way in which computers and software could visualise the best way to create our designs and use a multi-axis drill to mill the block of silver to the desired result in extreme microscopic detail.

One part of the finished Man in a Cage, which best highlights the minute detail required are the fingers of the figure himself. The digital design process had taken time to move the 21 joints in the hand to the required position to make it as realistic as possible, particularly as seen below, where the hand is gripping part of the cage.

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finger man in a cage.jpg

Micro machining gave us the ability to translate the intricate details of the Man in a Cage into reality, with individual fingers and ribs visible on the figure.

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Jewellery Week's 'Treasure'

To mark the end of Jewellery Week, we decided to take a trip to Treasure, the fantastic London Jewellery Exhibition located at the beautiful setting of Somerset House in The Strand, London. 

 

The exhibition, organised by the East London Design Show, is designed to allow visitors to discover and learn more about up and coming jewellers, new materials and different inspirations. The numerous galleries – spread over two floors - covered fashion, design, fine jewellery, Essence (the more ethical designs) and Emerge (where visitors could discover new jewellers' talents).

One particular designer who stood out for us was Alan Ardiff, whose interesting pieces move in line with the wearer’s head movement. A very simple idea which produces very effective jewellery and pushes the realms of the traditional. The designs by Modular Minds are based on the ‘flat pack’ concept – each piece can be flattened for easy packaging and then opened to wear. Finally, we loved the attention Jessica De Lotz pays to individuality within the intricate designs through the use of personalised wax seal stamp designs, ensuring each creation is completely unique.

It was great to see so much talent under one roof!

We will be displaying the Illustrious and Insider collections alongside unveiling our third, Fusion at the International Jewellery London Show in September this year. Let the planning begin…!

 

Our Baselworld Highlights

Last month we went over to Switzerland to visit Baselworld. As it was our first time visiting the event we knew of course that it would be a great experience but we really didn’t know what to expect.

 

Drawn to all styles of design and how they work together, we really were blown away in Basel and knew that we had to share some of our highlights here. There were so many stunning, eye-catching things from watches and jewellery to cars and fantastic architecture and these are just a few.

The Citizen booth was extremely surreal with thousands of suspended watch mechanism frames creating a really magical experience for visitors.

Very little needs to be said here other than that this dress was simply stunning. Beautiful craftsmanship.

Eberhard & Co showed an old Alfa Romeo racecar alongside a new collection of watches named after the famed Tazio Nuvolari. It’s amazing that this brand manages to fit such detail into their designs and we really liked the antique finishes.

 

In the manufacturing hall it was great to see such innovation portrayed through the interesting rapid prototyping manufacturers.

 

Just a fantastic, artistic way to present patents and so many. 

The Baselworld convention centre itself was a stunning piece of architecture and a real focal point in itself, created by Herzog and DeMeuron.