About Gemmeus - Nicky Wade

Handcrafted classical and revival jewellery design by Nicky Wade, professional Designer/Maker. This is a true insight into the treasure chests of our Ancestors, from Roman, Viking, Saxon, Specialising in Medieval and Tudor Jewellery design plus Georgian, Art Nouveau and Art Deco. A valuable resource for historical enthusiasts, Heritage establishments, Craft and Design Boutiques and for anyone who appreciates British craftsmanship. Handmade by Nicky Wade in the beautiful county of Suffolk.

 

 

 

 I have been an historical re-enactor since 1994 at Kentwell Hall, Long Melford in Suffolk.  

 

 

 

 I came in to making historical jewellery from an unusual direction. When I was little, I was often taken to antique fairs and developed an interested in antique silver. Not until my family moved to Suffolk in 1999 did I start to think about how the pieces were made.

For sometime I didn’t have the means or the space to explore silversmithing and at this stage never thought I would ever become a jewellery designer and maker.
While in Kentwell, during the Tudor re-enactment in 2005, I first picked up the silversmith’s fret saw and realised from that moment I was hooked!
After the event I found a silver jewellery making evening course in the local college run by Ian Goldsmith (yes his real name!).
It was 2 hours a week on a Monday night and was very full. I attended for a term and learnt to cut, shape, solder and in doing so, created my first ring.
After that, students were open to choose what they wanted to make next and I chose to mix my love of history with Jewellery and decided on medieval design dated from 1490’.
On nearing It’s completion I wanted to learn how to set stones, but Ian was unable to give me the time during the lessons so I taught myself. Through trial and error I made a small pieces set with cabochon gemstones.
During the next couple of years I continued to attend Ian’s own new evening classes for hints, tips and general guidance and also attending West Dean College for weekend short courses in silversmithing and enamelling. I experimented with different historical designs with encouragement and challenges from family and friends in Kentwell Hall.
In 2007 I set up Gemmeus Historical Jewellery and began attending local craft fairs while working full time in an office.
In 2010 I made the break from the office and turned the business full time!