Inspired by a Moroccan Oasis

Colour, colour, colour! Gorgeously rich shades of lapis blue, lemon yellow, turquoise and a medley of greens!

Majorelle gardens
Colour in the Majorelle Gardens, Marrakech.

Back in February, I spent a rejuvenating week in Marrakech. On a particularly sunny day, we visited the magnificent tropical gardens which were created in the 1920s by the artist Jacques Majorelle. Majorelle was to become one of the most important plant collectors of his time and he financed plant expeditions, imported rare varieties and corresponded with other collectors and botanical gardens around the world. The resulting garden features an incredible juxtaposition of plants of differing textures and heights: cacti; palms; succulents and water lilies and lotus to name but a few. However, what really sets the garden apart is the vivid blue he used to paint his studio, the fountains, garden pots and pergolas. This intense blue was inspired by the same shade he had seen in his travels to the High Atlas Mountains. He also incorporated the rich red pigment characteristic of Marrakech on pot surfaces and walkways. When Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Berge acquired the gardens, they introduced a rich lemon yellow into the garden palette.

New jewellery designs by Natasha Caughey
Jewellery designs inspired by the Majorelle gardens.

A visit to the souks in Marrakech resulted in the purchase of lapis lazuli beads along with some interesting carnelian shapes and shells. Upon my return to the UK, I set about designing the new collection. Lapis lazuli features heavily, along with carnelian, amazonite, turquoise and citrine. The shells have added a summer holiday feel to the earring collection. As with the inspiration behind my summer collection last year, I still feel drawn to ancient jewellery. I have employed the timeless art of sand casting to create solid silver ‘vessel’ shapes which have a pleasing weightiness to them. I like the idea that they could have been made 2000 years ago. Similarly, with the carnelian ‘arrow-head’ beads I bought in Morocco – they feel time-worn. I chose to emphasise this quality by echoing the shapes in silver and texturing them with an old rusty hammer. Here are some of the resulting pieces:

Jewellery by Natasha Caughey
Pieces from Auricula’s new jewellery collection Summer 2019

The pieces are all unique, timeless and very wearable. Why not add a touch of Moroccan colour to your jewellery collection this summer? All of these pieces are listed on the website.