Getty Images/Michael Stillwell
Back when Hayley Jones, the founder of the Welsh jewelry brand love spells, was in the process of creating her small business, she decided to make a bet: she came across the contact details of Kate Middleton’s stylist and sent her an e-mail. “Even though I wasn’t sure if it was okay or not,” she says. GTC, “I was like, ‘I’ll give it a try.'” It worked. According to Jones, the stylist came back to her and asked for two pairs of earrings, and a week later Kate walked out wearing one of her $104 Alia gold hoops in Wales.
That was two years ago, and since then the Duchess of Cambridge has added a few more delicate pieces to her collection: a $145 double chain necklace and another pair for $66 gold hoop earrings which she has worn several times over the past month, most recently in Belize during her eight-day overseas tour with William in the Caribbean.
The past few years have been whirlwind to say the least, says the Welsh designer, and the “Kate Effect” has certainly kicked in for her business. “It’s completely surreal. Kate has really helped put the business on the map,” she notes. “I’ve had a lot of customers – a lot from the United States and a lot from Japan, Peru, Hong Kong, countries that I never imagined I would know for the brand.”
But while the buzz-worthy business has only made waves in recent years, Jones’ story actually began in 2016, when she decided to quit her job as a project photographer and pursue a career. in designing affordable demi-fine jewelry that was also ethically and sustainably made. “I started making and selling my own jewelry on Etsy and loved it and knew it was what I wanted to do,” she recalls. Since then, she’s had to turn to her sister-in-law for help as the brand has grown tremendously with not only Kate wearing her trinkets, but Kendall Jenner as well.
When it came to creating unique pieces, Jones wanted to design with the intention that customers could wear them for all types of occasions. Explains Jones, “[It’s] a sort of circular fashion idea – everyday jewelry that you can wear all the time. “Maybe that’s why the Duchess of Cambridge has gravitated towards the gold trinkets on the royal jewelry she’s hoarded time and time again. Although she’s ‘not entirely sure’ if that’s the case , there’s one thing the humble Jones is certain of: how grateful she is for Kate and the impact she had on Spells of Love.”It was absolutely amazing,” she says of the success.” I still can’t believe it.”
What about the other pieces she would like to see Kate wear? It’s hard to choose because ‘she looks good in everything,’ Jones jokes, before adding that she thinks the brand is new pearl drop hoops will best suit the king. We’ll just have to wait and see if she does or not, but for now, Jones adds, “I’m really honored that she has [chosen] to carry me.”
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