Five South African designers of celestial (and earthly) bling

Encompassing crowns, blades and naturally inspired textures, here's a look at some of the jewellery designers among the 40 talented Emerging Creatives of 2015.

Every year the Design Indaba Expo floor sparkles with the handiwork of South Africa’s most exciting jewellery designers.

This year a number of the Design Indaba Emerging Creatives are showcasing their jewellery ranges. Each designer has their own particular aesthetic, method and distinct interpretation of luxury design. Although the work of these jewellery designers has a strong African essence, they also bring to their designs some international inspiration: Michelle Liao spent her early years in Taiwan, and both Karien van Langelaar and Anine Roos pursued further studies in Italy after graduating from South African universities.

Here is a sample of the work they'll be bringing to Design Indaba Expo 2015:

Anine Roos

Jeweller Anine Roos holds an honours degree in visual arts from the University of Stellenbosch, as well as a master's degree in luxury design from Creative Academy in Milan. Her label Paper Dolls is a proudly South African brand that showcases how jewellery can bring together beautiful craftsmanship and well considered design. Jeweller Anine Roos creates pieces that celebrate the journey she has made from conceptual artworks to luxury design. Roos uses a range of both traditional and modern techniques to create distinctive sculptural pieces in pastel painted copper, fine silver and rose gold.

Nicola Hemmes

Nicola Hemmes has a background in graphic design and photography and studied silversmithing at Constantia Waldorf School in Cape Town. Her jewellery company, APIS ATELIER, creates chunky bracelets, necklaces, rings and earrings in silver or bronze sculpted from an eclectic mix of cast coral, leather, driftwood, pebbles, shells and beautiful semi-precious stones. Hemmes is currently working on raw gemstone bronze rings and cuffs, each with a remarkable contrast of smooth polished metal with rough, jagged semi-precious stone. The pieces are sophisticated yet grounded with strong natural elements.

Karien van Langelaar

After completing her BA degree in Visual Arts, Creative Jewellery and Metal Techniques at Stellenbosch University in 2012, Karien van Langelaar spent three months doing an intensive jewellery course at Alchimia Contemporary Jewellery School in Florence, Italy. Van Langelaar’s work explores the conceptual idea of nature’s unpredictable happenings in the human body, manifested as abnormal growths within and around each of her delicate pieces. At Design Indaba Expo 2015 Van Langelaar will be showcasing one-off pieces, including sterling silver earrings in the form of casted seeds, decorated with gold leaf and oxidising techniques, and pieces with flush settings of black diamonds and garnets.

Lloyd Matthew Moodley

Lloyd Matthew Moodley’s fascination with making things by hand led him to knife making and leather work, which soon developed into making tools for blacksmithing and creating wrought iron jewellery. Moodley creates pieces that are usable and “ready for work” and will be showcasing his knives and tools, as well as jewellery and accessories, at Design Indaba Expo 2015. A graduate of Jewellery Design and Manufacture at the Durban University of Technology, Moodley was a finalist in the 2012 AngloGold Ashanti gold design competition.

Michelle Liao

Michelle Liao graduated from the Ruth Prowse School of Art with a degree in Jewellery Design and Manufacturing in 2014. She moved to South Africa from Taiwan in the early 90s and the pieces she creates for her company, Michl Contemporary Fine Jewellery, are inspired by contemporary African aesthetics infused with her strong Asian cultural heritage. Liao creates traditional jewellery using precious and semi-precious metals, while also incorporating unusual found objects: Scooby wire, paper and resin. Her current range, This is My Africa (TIMA), showcases the delicate balance between traditional craft and contemporary transformation. The repetition of circular shapes and simple lines dominates the overall aesthetics of the range.