Whether it is by fate or by happy accident, Laura Bailey and Sheherazade Goldsmith have created something truly special with Loquet London. There is an undeniable allure to their meticulously crafted charms, a unique luxury jewellery concept that puts customers at the forefront of their own stories.
While coming from different fields and backgrounds, both Laura and Sheherazade share not only the same passion, but also put the same inherent value into the art of story-telling often lost today. In conversation with both Laura and Sheherazade, long-term friends, mothers, and creative counterparts; we discover how their bustling business started with a heartfelt gift from Sheherazade’s son — and how their vision for the future is grounded by the stories and emotions of the present.
You both come from different backgrounds, with Laura coming from a successful modelling career, and Sheherazade a renowned environmentalist and columnist. How did you two meet?
Laura: We are old friends, our paths crossed throughout our twenties until our lives became happily intertwined via mutual friends, and now our children too. We are very close, but also very different. I absolutely admire Sheherazade, as both a mother and an entrepreneur. Her loyalty and drive are such a powerful force and I trust her implicitly, both personally and professionally.
What is the dynamic like between you two? How do you incorporate your individual passions into your business?
Laura: Our diverse passions fuse into our business — from art, travel, and to fashion. We have different strengths, Sheherazade is the business head and Loquet London is a full-time job. My work life is more scattered as I work across different fields, but together we compliment and support each other.
Sheherazade: Laura’s diverse breadth of knowledge, that comes from her many multi-layered experiences, helps formulate Loquet’s creative narrative — from our website, look books, packaging, and design. She has a natural instinct when it comes to expressing a concept visually, and a seamless ease with words. She is also a champion girlfriend — truly ardent about her friendships! She is always there, whatever, whenever, and, however.
What inspired you to start Loquet London, and why did you decide to focus on the locket in particular?
Laura: Sheherazade had the initial idea, and after a few months of brainstorming, we were finally ready to collaborate. The original loquet is at the heart of our brand — bespoke, emotional, and romantic.
Sheherazade: It all started with a gift from my son — it was something that wasn’t exactly a loquet, but you could see inside it. It was an idea about something that I would have liked to have myself. Together with Laura, we turned this into a really unique concept. The collection has developed expediently since our initial brainstorms — but the original loquet remains at the heart of our brand.
What is the philosophy behind Loquet London? How important is story-telling to the ethos of your brand?
Laura: Story-telling is key. We have both always loved the idea of jewellery as code — both nostalgic and empowering, and also personally meaningful to the wearer — lucky charms as love notes.
You often cite established jeweller, Michael Ventura, as a constant creative collaborator for Loquet London. In what ways has he influenced your brand?
Sheherazade: Michael has been a jeweller for over 40 years — his experience and knowledge regarding the mechanisms and materials involved in the craft has really helped us develop a product with a design that is unique to Loquet London.
Alexa Chung, Brie Larson, and Julia Roberts are just some of Loquet London’s many devotees. Who do you think is the ideal Loquet woman?
Laura: We have been so lucky in terms of support and customers since starting Loquet London, but I think that there is no ideal Loquet woman as each story each piece, and each gift should be magical. From a new mother, to a goddaughter's first Loquet ~ all women (and some men too)! can embody the Loquet dream.
No two loquets are ever the same, with clients able to fully customise your pieces. Tell us about your own Loquet London pieces, what charms have you chosen for yourselves?
Laura: I wear half a dozen Loquet charm earrings, my favourites being the tiny stars and kisses, along with my old favourite diamond hoops. My own personal loquet has always held a T and an L in it, which is dedicated to my kids, an envelope for love letters, as well as a rainbow and shooting star.
Sheherazade: The charm rings worn across my hands, either in pairs or with our sapphire coloured rings, are always joyful. My loquet is a medium heart worn on a spherical diamond chain (my dream chain) with my children’s birthstones — a ruby, a diamond, and an amethyst. There is also a tiny piece of quartz in there, a piece that my son picked up from a mountain we climbed in Alaska.
In what ways has your business changed since launching Loquet London in 2013?
Laura: Our business has changed in every way imaginable! We are now sold in our favourite stores in the world, from Colette Paris to Saks Fifth Avenue. Our website and shoot concepts are constantly evolving; and most importantly, our trademark styles have become widely recognised
and cherished. We also celebrated our first pop-up store on Elizabeth Street.
Sheherazade: Loquet is a story — so it keeps evolving. The evolution of the collection is key for us. We recently launched a collection of playful rings — each one keeping true to our concept, but also adding colour and diversity.
What can we expect from Loquet London in 2017? Any new exciting projects or collaborations?
Laura: We are looking at some collaboration ideas. I personally love the idea of working our charm story into stationery, as well as developing some new products. We are also striving to ensure that our website and online marketing remains ahead of the curve as that will always be our first store and home.
Sheherazade: The next step is a permanent space in London, with an atelier where people can come and create their own pieces. As ever, our customer is their own designer and will have the opportunity to create something completely unique — it is their story.
Words by Hannah Tan