Meet Meghan Griffiths - the founder and designer of Angharad Studio. Taking inspiration from her Welsh heritage and her global travels, she designs jewellery that is unapologetically her. Come with us as we delve into what makes her brand so unique.
q: What inspired you to start your own brand last year?
a: I had spent the previous year learning how to make jewellery in NYC (the really old school way, all by hand with some pretty ancient tools) and it was during my first few weeks in the city where I knew I’d return home and start my business. I think NYC’s energy and innovative outlook on life makes you dream big, and the city will always have a really special place in my heart for this reason.
q: Your Welsh roots are a huge part of the identity of your brand - what is it you’d like to share with the world?
a: Every time I feel like I’m getting overwhelmed with design thoughts and ideas, I’m always so grateful to have a point of reference that allows me to go back to the drawing board and find my way again. I think it’s always useful to have some strong roots in order to simplify your process and ensure your aesthetic and brand identity don’t become disjointed.
q: What’s your favourite piece of text from The Mabinogion?
a: The ‘Dream of Maxen’ really moved me. The text is just so beautifully written and really transports you to another world. The Dream involves ‘journeys through beautiful valleys, rugged land and youths with chaplets of ruddy gold bound to their hair, whereon were sparkling jewels of rubies.’ He dreams of a world that is fairly boujee and I just thought that the creative imaginations apparent in the book is just so cool. It’s important to keep stories like these alive even if it’s through other mediums like designing jewellery. This piece of text has also inspired my next collection which is dropping in March.
q: Can you tell us a bit about your creative process - how does it go from design to final product?
a: I always start with the book, reading a few passages and then just writing down some words. Each time I read it I always warm to different parts of it depending on my current frame of mind and the places I’ve recently been. Then I throw other aesthetics into the melting pot, like my favourite artist at the time/places I’ve been. From here I start making each piece from wax or drawing. And then as weeks go by these designs start to come to life one by one. All my materials are sourced and produced by hand in London, a very conscious decision as I am able to have a direct relationship with my suppliers which gives my business efficiency and full transparency.
q: Why is storytelling such a huge part of your brand?
a: The Mabinogion made me realise the importance of story-telling as means of understanding history and its people but on the other hand as a way of fulfilment and entertainment. I believe that jewellery has the capacity to be of a similar value in the way that a ring bought now will have the most special and unique narrative in three generations time. On the other hand I love how stories are created just for pleasure and felt that I also wanted to created pieces that were aesthetically beautiful and that people just really wanted to wear to feel good in.
q: How has living in so many multi-cultural cities influenced you as a designer?
a: On a personal level, you learn so much about yourself when you're moving around different cities. I think this has been such a blessing when creating a brand as I think it’s a lot easier to create a cohesive identity when you are in tune and understand yourself. I really owe the people I have met along the way too, the conversations I’ve had and the inspirational people that I have in my life. Having been able to encounter a multitude of different ways of thinking and doing, it’s this exposure that allows you to find out how you can work in the way that's right for you.
q: Where do you hope to take Angharad Studio in the coming years?
a: Now that Angharad is out in the world, I hope to continue to grow and reach more people yet ensuring that the handcrafted and sustainable approach remains strong. I’ve just finalised my first few pieces of Angharad Studio homeware which will be dropping in March too, I am definitely looking to challenge myself and see what other spaces I can work my metal in! But most importantly I hope to grow my business in a way that prioritises sustainable practices and inspires other businesses working in a similar field to do the same thing.
Knowing oneself and where you belong is very important when creating a cohesive identity for your brand. Meghan Griffiths from Angharad Studio has had the priviledge of travelling and living in multiple international cities, absorbing the various cultures and diversity that exists. She combines that with her strong Welsh roots and the beautiful, poetic texts from the Mabinogion, to create unique pieces of jewellery that tell never-before-heard stories.
Not often enough do brands embrace their cultural identities and want to share stories through their designs, which is why we admire Meghan so much for this. You can really visualise the poems, especially the 'Dream of Maxen' and the beautiful Welsh landscape that inspired some of her jewellery - the valleys, the rugged land... Oh how we long to go visit some of these places! Her pieces are truely unapologetically authentic.
We are very excited indeed to have Angharad Studio on board and we can't wait to show you her new collection in March!