Tell us about yourself, what drew you to jewellery?

I am a third year fine art student at Central Saint Martins; jewelry design became my hobby and I started to sell my designs to family and friends. I was interested in creating my own pieces because a lot of designs I had in mind were not accessible to me. The brand, named Marilyn’s Wake, grew from there: it has been a long process but definitely something I’m excited to share.

About your collection – where do you draw your inspiration?

From my own personal style mainly; I have tried to create pieces that I feel I wouldn’t be able to find anywhere else. Also, I always have my friends in mind when I think of a piece: we all have very different styles but I am always inspired by them and their fashion sense. I am heavily inspired by literally anything: architecture, fine art, photography, other jewellery designs, films. I am a cinema lover – particularly 90’s movies and film noir. The Addams Family is my favorite film and various pieces from my collection are inspired by the characters signature styles. I also am surrounded by people at UNI that are all about fashion: everyone always looks really cool and different.

What are your favorite materials?

Leather, ribbon and suede are what I work with at the moment, but I also am working with quartz and agate, I’m very into stones. In my future collections I will be experimenting with various materials, so it’s difficult to say really what my favorites are, as I have yet to try out so many, but do enjoy working in leather, I think it makes a statement.

Did you have a specific kind of woman in mind?

I think that when it comes to the type of clientele I envision in Marilyn’s Wake, I always imagine them as being bold with a strong sense of confidence (about themselves and their styles). Living in the current climate we are spoiled with choices when it comes to choose what we dress ourselves in, it almost makes things too complicated – I actually stress out about what to wear especially on a night out! So when I think of a specific type of woman who would wear MW, the main thing I have in my mind is her confidence and mindset: you have to be confident enough to pair your outfit up with a statement, if you are not fashion minded this is a difficult thing to do.

Who would you most like to see wearing your jewelry?

Obviously any designer would want too see their collection worn by some big names, GiGi, Rihanna, Cara or even Emily Ratajowkski. I could go on, but I actually would love to see my collection worn by some women who are not so much in the public eye, like Jodie Comer or Kaya Scodelario – two of my favorite actresses – I can see them in the brand, as MW is a British brand, it would be cool to see some British girls wear the pieces!

How do you define luxury?

I think there is a misconception when people describe luxury: it is a word that is used a lot and sometimes it can put people off a brand because they associate it with expense, but luxury items in my opinion are products not only concentrate on aesthetics but rather on quality.

Name two style icons you admire.

Hayley Baldwin – I really like Hayley’s style: ripped jeans and hoodies. Some of the stuff she wears are really cool; the over the knee-boots with a t-shirt or hoodie is for me the ‘perfect outfit’, I like oversized clothing and printed t-shirts/ jumpers.

Courtney love – fishnets and tutus together are a perfect combo for me! I love to dress that way (anything ripped too). She wears a lot of lace and silk together – which I like – and she never looks like she tries too hard: she has the ‘just got out of bed look’, which I have a lot myself!! Her recent collaboration with Nasty Gal has some really cool dresses.

What’s your vision for the future of your brand?

As this is the first collection, I have many aspirations for the future of my brand. I am hoping to experiment with materials and am currently designing a collection of finer jewellery – which I hope to launch at the end of next year. In the long term, I am concentrating on really pushing the advertising to ensure the brand maintains decent exposure.


Interview of Lillie Hand, Marilyn’s Wake’s creator by Alicia Barnet.

Instagram: @marilynswake

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