Cult jewellery designer’s renovated atelier plays with reflection
Hannah Martin’s studio and atelier space in Farringdon puts a luxurious spin on a brutalist aesthetic
British jewellery designer Hannah Martin is no stranger to London’s Hatton Garden; she has occupied studio and atelier space on the edge of London’s traditional jewellery quarter since 2008. But after a year of introspection, Martin has rebranded and recalibrated her collections, and designed a new premises in Farringdon.
Entered via an anonymous gated alleyway, a ground-floor entrance hall opens into her retail and exhibition rooms. Extensive renovations, which began early last year, saw the old building stripped back to its bare brick walls and wooden beams. Says Martin, ‘We’ve rebuilt almost everything, but worked hard to capture the essence of the brand in the process.’ Known for her androgynous jewellery that harvests motifs from punk and rock ’n’ roll, Martin creates edgy and graphic pieces, handcrafted in precious metals and gems.
‘We wanted the mood to be really beautiful but not in a hard way,’ she says. A poured concrete floor is offset with clay-plastered walls flecked with mica powder, a soft, reflective material that gives the surface a tactile, gentle sheen. Four large showcases, inspired by the sculptures of Richard Serra, dominate the space, with bases welded together by a friend and left in the rain to rust and patinate to a soft orange. ‘They’re a great interruption of the volume, but crucially they’re on casters, so we can move them around,’ says Martin. ‘I wanted the flexibility to be able to throw a gig, or host a fancy dinner, or collaborate with a photographer and hang pictures on the walls; it should feel like a gallery, too.’
If an environment must echo the aesthetics of its owner, then Martin has achieved just this, successfully treading the fine line between a brutalist, industrial oeuvre and cosseting luxurious space. §