Come behind the scenes with us as we give you a look inside the process of hand-making your orders, what's important to us at Lulu + Belle and the values behind what to we do and how we do it.
Our hand-made ethos is important to us and we are constantly striving to do our best to balance what's best for our customers, our makers and our planet.
This is the bit that we secretly enjoy the most ! We strive to make pieces that connect people with the people, memories, moments and places that mean the most to them. We make pieces that are delicate and timeless and that have meaning through the words, symbols, birthstones that our customers choose. We aim to make pieces that can be easily layered and matched with other jewellery so that your collection can be styled in lots of different ways.
We often design and have our own hand-stamping tools made so that we can create thematic designs unique to Lulu + Belle.
All of our jewellery is designed in our sea-side workshop in the rural harbour village of Rush, Co Dublin - with our founder Sandra at the helm of the design process. Our designs are generally kept minimal and easy to wear, so that the personalisation of the pieces can take center stage.
At Lulu + Belle we strive to use the best quality materials, while still keeping our jewellery at an affordable price-point. In our material choices, we opt for slightly more expensive but longer wearing materials like luxury 14kt rolled gold, which is a high quality but budget friendly alternative to solid gold. We choose argentium silver for our silver charms and discs where possible, as this is a finer form or silver and is less likely to tarnish over time. Almost all of the precious metals that we use in our jewellery production are recycled.
All of our scrap metal here at Lulu + Belle is either sent for recycling to be melted down and reused or used in house for sampling and trying new technique and designs ! None of our scrap metal ever goes to waste.
We source as much of our materials as close to home as possible and we work with suppliers who are certified by the Responsible Jewellery Council. The RJC promotes sustainability in business practices. This includes the traceability of materials and the promotion of ethical, human rights and environmental practices in the operation of their businesses.
We hand-make 95% of all of the jewellery and its components in our workshop from raw precious metal sheet and wire. The 5% that isn't hand made and finished in house is done with the help of Irish partners - such as gold plating a small proportion of our components, which is a specialist technique that we don't currently have the equipment to do ourselves.
Your piece passes through a number of maker's hands in our workshop as it journeys through fabrication, personalisation to final polishing.
We use traditional metalsmithing techniques to make our discs, pendants and jewellery components - piercing, punching, soldering, forging, hammering and filing to craft all the tiny components used in our pieces.
We love the old fashioned skill of hand-stamping to personalise your piece of jewellery - every character from pretty blooms, to initials and special symbols is carefully set up, aligned and hand-stamped to make jewellery to tell our customers' stories.
This is honestly the dirtiest part of the job - our makers hand-polish each disc, pendant and component to a bright shiny finish - ready to be worn and loved by you.
Putting it all together - our makers put the finishing touches to your piece - closing jump-rings, wire-wrapping bracelets and birthstone charms and giving everything a final polish before it's passed over for checking and packaging.
Lastly but very importantly your jewellery goes to our packing station - where it is enveloped in our pretty rose gold gift-boxes, which are lovely enough to keep and store your jewellery in. We have chosen a gift box supplier who is FSC certified - meaning materials come from sustainably management forestry. Every gift-box includes a care card, printed here in Ireland on recycled paper - with tips on how to keep your pieces shiny and bright.
For gift wrapped orders, we use a beautiful pearl finished gift wrap made from recycled paper and finish if off with our gorgeous Lulu + Belle rose gold ribbon. Our gift wrap supplier is committed to sustainability and has teamed up with Offset Earth to plant a tree for every order they receive !
We keep the rest of our packaging as minimal as possible, to reduce our environmental impact and your order is popped in a padded mailer with a single piece of recycled tissue to protect the gift box. It's important to us to create as little waste as possible.
In general our pieces are made and dispatched within 2 - 3 working days of receiving your order. Our solid gold pieces have a longer lead time as they must be sent for hallmarking to the assay office. Our making times depend on our order volume which increase significantly at peak times of the year like Christmas. We strongly recommend allowing extra time for your order to made at peak times.
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We are currently seeking jewellery makers both full-time and part-time to join our team for the months of October, November and December in our workshop in Rush, North Co. Dublin. The ideal candidate will have the following skills: