Spotlight On: Vanessa Ree
Vanessa comes to jewellery after nearly 20 years in the creative advertising industry. Part of her decision to leave behind a successful career in advertising came from the desire to slow down and consciously enjoy what is important in her life - her family.
“We really only have our kids on loan for a short time and I want to be a meaningful part of their stories”.
She retrained as a goldsmith, learning her skills at both NCAD and then the School of Jewellery, Ireland under the tutelage of Paul Coyne. Based on her belief that "style" is a language without words, she creates concept jewellery designed to empower and complement the wearer's unique style.
“I design jewellery not just for its aesthetic, but because I believe in the power of what 'meaningful' can hold for people. Much like a tattoo, my pieces symbolise a personal meaning for the wearer, one from which they can draw strength and feel like they are wearing something that is not only beautiful, but reflects their personality.”
Using her skills to start and grow her jewellery business affords her a better work life balance. Plus she gets to do something she loves. That said, the job is pretty full on!
Vanessa launched her jewellery brand 'Vanessa Ree' in early 2020, on the cusp of the pandemic, but that hasn’t stopped her. In fact her business has gone from strength to strength and her next step is to exhibit her work at the prestigious Florence Biennale in 2023. She's especially excited about this as she lived in Tuscany for a few years in her youth, so it feels a bit like coming home.
Vanessa likes to start her day early, typically heading into the studio at 6, with a worthy cup of coffee in hand - made by hand just like my jewellery. As you can tell from her photography, she loves colour - even down to the colourful coffee pot that brightens her mornings!
"I love the quiet and clarity of the morning and I can get loads done. Immersed in my studio, surrounded by my tools and the colourful pictures we’ve collected on our travels, I always have music or podcasts playing to either help me concentrate and focus, get lost in the zone."
She splits her week up by task, but her favourite days are those she spends designing and experimenting. "I have so many ideas in my head, getting them out of there and into a 3D iteration of jewellery is definitely what I love most".
Afternoons and evenings are dedicated to family and friends. On the weekends you’ll likely find her sailing Shannon One Designs on Lough Ree (yes, that is the inspiration for her business name!). Besides running her jewellery business and raising her family, Vanessa is also co-authoring a book about this majestic hand-built Shannon One Design, a traditional vessel sailed on the Shannon - slow down you said?
Come get to know Vanessa’s gorgeous work in person.