Lustre is the brainchild of two friends based in Singapore. Their jewellery is instantly appealing to anyone in their right mind (yup I bought three pieces within the first five minutes of meeting them): semi-precious stone at affordable prices. And by affordable, I mean really affordable. Not, “I’m so rich, this is really cheap, honestly” – we are talking prices starting from $50.
Sick of over-priced “plastic tat” that won’t stand the test of time, both Mitali and Anaita have contacts in India and are able to buy stones more or less at source, at extremely good prices. Their current stock includes jewellery made in India, China, Thailand and Turkey but regardless of where the manufacturing takes place, most of the semi-precious stones tend to be mined, cut and polished in India.
They are clearly very good business women; either that or they are the only people on the planet who aren’t making massive mark ups, instead preferring to shift stock fairly fast.
I bought three of their Pomellato-style stacking rings in amethyst, green amethyst and citrine, set in silver and gold-dipped, for $50 each. Sure, I will need to get them re-dipped from time to time (which is not expensive to do – if you need a recommendation on where to get this done, leave a comment at the end of this post) but at that price, and for dress rings, who cares?
As well as having a presence at most of the big hotel fairs, they also hold daily auctions on their Facebook page which acts as their shop window and is run with a startling efficiency. ‘Like’ their page and throughout the day pictures of what they are selling (usually one offs) will pop up in your newsfeed. If you want to snap it up – write back SOLD, pronto, along with your email address.
There are usually around four Facebook sales a day. This was one (above) from last week that I managed – just – to resist. They were chalcedony with simulated diamonds, set in pure silver and selling for $185; one pair only.
Their range is actually more way out that traditional, although I seem to be drawn, inexplicably, to their more trad creations.
I caught up with them at a fair they did recently at the Hilton, where my lovely friend CGB bought these:
They are raw agate druzy earrings and look a million dollars (but only cost $85). If she told me they’d been commissioned for her in Milan (her regular hangout when she’s not living in Sing), I’d believe her. They look weighty, original and expensive and I love how the stones are off-set by the purposefully rough, uneven gold casing (actually not gold but 22 karat gold plated brass alloy).
I’m hugely relieved they don’t just sell their stuff on Facebook, although useful if you have a proper job (note to self, must try and get one of those). The truth is, writing on their wall to buy jewellery, no matter how well priced, doesn’t really appeal to me.
Firstly, I don’t always want people to know how much, or how little, I spend on things I love but generally don’t need (by people I really mean Husband). And secondly, it’s nice to touch, hold, feel and try what you are about to buy, as well as see the pretty impressive level of workmanship that’s gone in to each piece.
I suppose it’s to deal with people like me that the Lustrous gals do do a hell of a lot of fairs. They reckon about 20 a year.
By no means just limited to rings and earrings – although you can see where my weakness lies – they make bracelets and necklaces too. Here are two of my favourites.
This fringed necklace (above) is stunning and its handcrafted dome contains rubelite, green onyx and cubic zirconia with cultured pearls and green onyx making up the fringing. It is priced at $225. (More please! I would like to buy two; they have currently sold out.)
I also love this double cuff pictured below – also available as a single cuff – made from a mixture of raw, uncut and polished black and white agate set in gold plated bronze ($185). It’s available in masses of different colours.
Their Facebook page is littered with images that really bring their designs to life. The red carnelian necklace and earrings, below, look particularly fabulous when seen in context:
(Priced at $175 and $65; both set in silver)
Lustre’s upcoming schedule of fairs is as follows:
Sept 26 – VMall Singapore Swimming Club
Oct 1-2 – Hilton Fair
Oct 18 – IWA Diwali Fair
Nov 12-13 – Hilton Fair (TBC)
Nov 26-27 – Fancy Fair Orchard Hotel
Dec 3-4 – Hilton Fair (TBC)
Dec 5-6 – Raffles Town Club
During the months of January February and June through August, they typically sell from home, by private appointment.
Lustre’s Facebook page is: www.facebook.com/LustreSingapore
**This post was sponsored by Lustre**