ABOUT STONELEIGH COLLECTIVE
Revitalising fine jewellery with for now and forever pieces, Stoneleigh Collective is about the personal expression: to be worn singularly as minimal simplicity, or as multiples in stacked, and layered adornment. Harnessing timeless materials of precious and semi-precious stones cast in 10 to 18-carat gold, the pieces are handmade by artisans in India, Japan and Vietnam and designed in Australia.
The debut collection features semi-precious stones in cabochon cuts and delicate diamonds and pearls, designed to be worn exclusively, or layered with each other.
“This is about the beauty of stones, precious or semi-precious,” says designer Vanessa Wong who has had over two decades experience in design and jewellery.
A chance meeting with a mystic in India – who advised her to wear an emerald at all times for good luck – led Stoneleigh Collective’s creator Vanessa Wong to re-visit her first love of jewellery design. “I fell in love with the beauty of stones, and I wanted to create something wearable,” she says.
It has been over two decades since Vanessa first had begun to make jewellery; her first collection was made from glass beads and found glass that was worn from the sea and sand, scavenged from the shores in Papua New Guinea, her childhood home. “I loved to layer different lengths and colours for my outfits,” Vanessa remembers. “I love the simple expressions of jewellery and adornment”
Initially made for herself, the pieces caught the sight of a fashion editor at Vogue Australia in the 1990s and resulted in special-order requests for editorials, and retail stockists around Australia. “And here we are, back where I started, 20 years later!” says Vanessa of the hiatus. “I was wanting to wear multiple large precious or semi-precious stones, so a collection was born around my desire to wear and stack rings featuring large stones.”
“The creation of a collection for me is so collaborative,” she says, describing the pleasures of working alongside gem traders. “One stone leads to another, and then an idea forms – inspiration comes from conversations and words, that translate into a tangible piece to hold and to wear.”