I work with traditional jewellery and set it up in a modern context,” says Gurgaon-based gemologist and jewellery designer Neety Singh, calling it her signature style. Indeed, old world charm spins a versatile sheen in a glinting array of majestic, multi-layered polki rani haars, slender gold hoops, a stretchable satlada necklace, eclectic naths, navratan medallions and equanimity pendants crafted in 16k, 18k and 24k gold.
“Ours is a culturally rich country where different traditions have always thrived. I want to popularise ancient techniques in jewellery-making, and at the same time, make my designs appealing for the 21st-century woman across the globe,” she says.
Singh believes that restyling or remodelling an inherited piece is a reflection of roots. “It brings along an emotional quotient that elevates its importance further. Then it becomes our responsibility to value and protect what we have rather than collect what we do not require. Call it conscious consumption,” she adds. Which is why she counts her grandmother’s 100-year-old navratan choker as her most precious possession.
“I love soaking up the story behind every emotional treasure—as deeply rooted tales make me bring in minute detailing,” says Singh, having converted old bangles into hoops, chokers into bracelets, having herself worn kaanphools for an occasion, and then re-worn them as a choker, with a kaanphool shaped into a choker medallion, and another into an oversized ring.
While gold and South Sea pearls are timeless styles, the pandemic has revised perspectives with personalised, intimate weddings, she says. Newer combinations of precious and semi-precious are finding acceptance in every millennial’s vanity box.
“Jewellery of the future is going to be an amalgamation of futurism and nostalgia. Slow, classic, minimalistic, in unique combinations and vibrant contrasts of gemstones assembled together. For instance, coral, most expensive and rare, yet semi precious, when combined with yellow gold, becomes an elevated essential. Turquoise combined with polki is wearable art,” she explains.
With the rise in smaller gatherings, cosy comfort and simple elegance have emerged on top. In keeping with this trend, Singh also confesses to giving an understated tone to her design board. She has also been recreating pieces on request or as desired.