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About Us

Portrait of Lily Blanche
Lily Blanche in the 1920s

The Lily Blanche story beings on the windswept Island of Skye in the Inner Hebrides, where I spent childhood holidays with my grandmother, Lily Blanche Sheridan. It was here, playing on the shore of the loch, opposite my grandmother’s white-washed croft, that I first came across real pearls washed up on the rocks. And my imagination was fired.

My grandmother encouraged and inspired my creativity. She is the motivation behind everything we do here in the Lily Blanche Studio. Many of our designs are inspired by the pieces in her jewel box.

Born in 1903, Lily Blanche lived an extraordinary life, travelling thousands of miles with four small children, bringing them up in India in the 1930s.

Lily Blanche and her family in India
With her family in India

Returning to Britain, at the outbreak of WWII, her home near Portsmouth took a direct hit in the blitz and she and her family relocated to Scotland where she fell in love with the landscape.

Lily Blanche was a fantastic cook and a highly creative person who embroidered, stitched, knitted, and crocheted to a professional standard. I have fond childhood memories of exploring her island home, full of beautiful and exotic pieces from her travels.

Lily Blanche at cottage in Skye
Her cottage on Skye

After studying archaeology at Edinburgh University, where I specialised in ancient jewellery and metalwork techniques, I started experimenting with my own designs.

There is rarely a single inspiration for a piece of jewellery. Ideas come together. But running through all the Lily Blanche collections are the themes of sentiment and meaning, of celebrating life and expressing love.

Jewellery connects us with the past in an individual and intimate way. Inheriting jewellery is such a humbling thing. A piece can be worn every day by women of different generations. It takes on the patina of the life of the wearer. It will be smoothed and worn to fit them. When it comes down the generations to you, it is already pre-loaded with meaning and love. We aim to create the heirlooms of tomorrow from the conversation pieces of today.

We use only precious metals, real gemstones and pearls in our pieces. Our jewellery is made in our studio in Stirling and we also collaborate with small teams of artisans in the UK and abroad for specialist techniques. These are all people we know personally, and the collaborations have often developed from personal friendships.

Gillian and her husband in Skye
Gillian Crawford and her husband on Skye

I am interested in jewellery which tells a story and I love creating pieces which reflect the individuality and creativity of my customers. Here we specialise in lockets and other personalised pieces. Many of our collections, such as the Memory Keeper Lockets or Magical Charms, open to reveal a hidden secret. Personalised for you, every single piece that leaves the studio is unique.

We take vintage jewellery designs and give them a modern twist by combining them with outstanding 21st century design and cutting-edge photography and engraving technology. But our service and relationship with our customers is every bit as important as the finished items.

Join us on this journey and help inspire our next collections by joining our Facebook Group. We can’t wait to connect with you.

Gillian x

Designer & Founder of Lily Blanche