Commissioning a piece of custom-designed jewelry can be a daunting proposition. But it needn’t be, as countless Pièces Uniques customers have discovered. We recently spoke with several recent customers, each of whom worked with Pièces Uniques Founder and Creative Director Sandrine Munoz to design an entirely new piece of heirloom-quality jewelry.
Before they discuss a commission, many customers presume that custom jewelry is prohibitively expensive. ” Not true “, says Sandrine.
“ Pièces Uniques is a jewelry-design studio with a retail presence “, she explains. “ Original designs are the very reason we exist. Working with customers on entirely new designs is a refreshing change, and inspires some wonderful ideas. It causes us to think in ways we otherwise might not have. Considering all we get out of the process, it makes sense for us to encourage commissions by keeping them as affordable as possible “.
So what inspires customers to design their own jewelry? Custom jewelry makes a wonderful gift, but many customers work with Pièces Uniques to design jewelry expressly for themselves. Just as often, they work with Pièces Uniques to re-imagine inherited or gifted jewelry that no longer suits its intended purpose.
One such customer, Anjalie Astrup, had been considering a purchase to celebrate an upcoming milestone birthday, but ready-made options left her a bit cold. “ Coming from Sri Lanka “, she recalls, “ where jewelry is typically custom-made or inherited, I was missing the personalised jewelry experience. “. A morning stroll with her daughter down Oslo’s Riddervods gate led her to Pièces Uniques “ and a fun and interesting conversation with its talented designer, Sandrine “.
By the end of that first chat, she had dreamed up a plan to celebrate her birthday with a unique cocktail ring featuring gemstones originally set in a pair of earrings given to her by her in-laws. Her idea: a ring inspired by the dramatic Sri Lankan scorpion orchid.
“ I provided Sandrine a photograph “, she remembers, “ and we had a few meetings where we discussed the design and how we would incorporate the precious stones. I received sketches of the ring in 3D format. We discussed some tweaks before I was presented with a final sketch, and I received the ring shortly after returning to Oslo from vacationing “.
Another customer, Sigrid Glastad Laugen, had received a thoughtful birthday present from her family in the form of a bracelet that fit neither her wrist nor her style.
“ I wanted to honour the gift I was given by not just letting it sit in its box, but by making something else from the beautiful gemstones. As it was a gift for me, I wanted to make a piece for me “.
After several previous purchases from Pièces Uniques, “ when I decided to alter the bracelet, there was never any doubt in my mind as to whom I would go to “.
An assessment of the bracelet’s gemstones showed them to be of exceptional quality. That began “ a long process, as it should be “, during which Sigrid and Sandrine considered a wide variety of options before drafting designs for a pair of earrings that fit Sigrid’s personal style and existing collection.
Along the way, Sigrid learned quite a bit about matching gemstones perfectly to their settings, and was reminded that “ it is a process to create beautiful jewelry; it should not be rushed “.
The resulting pair of cocktail earrings adds several types of gemstone to the ones drawn from the original bracelet. “ I absolutely love my new earrings “, says Sigrid. “ I also showed them to my family who bought me the bracelet, and they thought they were lovely “.
Our first customer, Anjalie, was similarly pleased. “ Custom jewelry is very close to my heart “, she reflects. “ In my view, it is how the experience of buying jewelry should be “.
“ I was delighted to discover the custom jewelry experience at Pièces Uniques and the involvement and in-depth knowledge of Sandrine. I love the ring very much. It is a combination of my heritage and inheritance “.