Who is Shaun Leane?
Shaun Leane is an award winning jewellery designer who has a breadth of knowledge and experience in the jewellery industry that spans over 35 years. He is known for redefining the standard of British jewellery design, combining unique innovation with exquisite craftsmanship. The inventive collections of Shaun Leane, as well as his unconventional twist, have labelled his work as ground-breaking and iconic.
Responsible for creating a whole new genre of jewellery, Shaun Leane has broken entrenched traditions throughout his career and has brought a fresh, dynamic spirit to his romantic statement pieces. His ideals of technical perfection and creative freedom have blended together to form jewellery that is underlined with meaning, sentiment and love, linking to the original history and heritage of jewellery.
Shaun Leane is also well-known for his time working as a goldsmith, when he began a high-profile collaboration and close bond with Alexander McQueen. Discover more about award-winning designer Alexander Mcqueen here! The sculptural, provocative catwalk pieces that were created became a milestone in the art of couture jewellery. His significant design legacy has also led to further collaborations with Daphne Guiness, Nick Knight, Boucheron, Damien Hirst and more, propelling Shaun Leane to global recognition.
The powerful, emotive, and touching beauty of Shaun Leane's jewellery is everlasting, his ground-breaking reasoning and desire for innovation still relevant to this very day. He is the creator of some of the most renowned and recognisable pieces of the 21st Century, with his brand becoming a four-time winner of the UK Jewellery Designer of the Year Award.
What is the history of Shaun Leane?
From a very young age, Shaun Leane knew that he wanted to work within fashion. Leaving school at the age of 15, he was encouraged to accept a traditional apprenticeship in London’s Hatton Garden, with a company who created high-end, beautiful pieces for the jewellers on Bond Street. Throughout this exceptional opportunity, Shaun Leane vigorously trained, forming a deep love for the dramatic and emotive poetic meaning of jewellery. This proved to be very effective and rewarding in regards to his later career, as the traditional mastery of century-old techniques that he came to know and love allowed him to work with, as well as challenge these traditions.
Developing a love for jewellery design
Shaun Leane attended Kingsway Princeton College, where he took a Foundation Course in jewellery design and making. He stated that it was here that he particularly fell in love with the process of crafting and the idea that a piece of jewellery will remain and be treasured forever. Shaun Leane became devoted to jewellery design and making, and even at college, he began to explore the different possibilities of design technique so that he could continually push the boundaries of his design. The beauty of seeing something that he himself, had designed and envisioned to being formed by his own hands really touched him. He went on to use this as a vessel showcasing his vivid imagination.
The beginning of Shaun Leane
In the early 1990s, Shaun Leane met Alexander McQueen, with whom he collaborated with for the next 18 years of his career. Together, they produced a unique body of designs that are now considered to be valuable landmarks in the history of jewellery design and contemporary body sculpture. In celebration of their creative partnership, a retrospective catwalk event was staged at the V&A in 2001, infused with a combination of their uniquely liberating, romantic and dynamic energy.
In 1999, Shaun Leane founded his own eponymous label; a company producing jewellery collections alongside large-scale fashion pieces that combined traditional craftsmanship with modern design, as well as computer-aided design techniques. Today, Shaun Leane’s work is on permanent display in museums and galleries all over the world, and is also worn by some of the most discerning collectors. Yet, it doesn’t stop there! He continues to create distinctive, show-stopping collections, as well as stand-out pieces that are worn by royalty. Shaun Leane has truly worked to become one of the best UK jewellery designers in history.
What makes Shaun Leane stand out?
Shaun Leane stands out for his ambition to create something new, precious and eternal. Linking strongly back to his roots within traditional jewellery manufacture, he believes in designing beautiful pieces with longevity, whilst remaining distinctive and timelessly elegant
His fine jewellery collections distil a singular vision - invest now, and wear everyday. The idea of creating a contemporary, new genre of jewellery that connects with the emotive meaning and history of jewellery, breaking free from long-established traditions to come up with designs relevant to today’s world, really resonates with him. This separates Shaun Leane from other designers, as his unique, stand-out vision allows him to constantly push the boundaries of luxury jewellery design to create pieces that display modern romance and desire.
What are the Shaun Leane designs inspired by?
As a designer, Shaun Leane is always searching for inspiration. He takes his inspiration from what is all around him, a huge influence being the fragility, strength and organic forms and details of nature. This is due to the fact that he feels as if all of these characteristics allow nature to be beautifully portrayed and preserved within an array of metals and gemstones.
Art, fashion and architecture are also elements that feed into Shaun Leane’s designs, originating from his love of these aspects from a very young age. He also finds the sentiment and romance within literature and poetry to be very inspiring, reflecting this idealism in each and every collection and combining traditional jewellery craftsmanship with avant-garde ideas. Shaun Leane's designs all explore recurring themes of linear shapes, twisting forms, flowing movement, softness and elegant curves. They display a classy yet show-stopping appearance.
What materials does Shaun Leane use, and where are they sourced?
Shaun Leane uses an array of materials from diamonds to crystal, and platinum to aluminium and sliver, always basing his choices on which material will complement the design, and help to enhance the concept of the piece.
This array of materials utlilised means that Shaun Leane pieces are available at a range of prices points from as little as £65 to hundreds of thousands for unique, bespoke items.
This basis extends to the fact that Shaun Leane only sells jewellery that is made with precious and semi-precious gemstones, ensuring high-quality and beauty across his collections.
All of Shaun Leane’s diamonds are from traceable sources, using conflict-free stones that are part of the Kimberley Process, who are committed to removing conflict diamonds from the global supply chain.
What are the most well-known Shaun Leane designs?
The Shaun Leane best sellers include designs such as the Talon, Claw and Hook Earrings, and the Thorn Ring, all of which display a unique, unmatched, modern look and style. The top collections are Cherry Blossom, Fine Jewellery, Serpent’s Trace and Rose Thorn, which continue to rise in popularity, containing award-winning pieces.
Who wears Shaun Leane’s designs?
Shaun Leane is renowned for creating some of the most highly admired jewellery pieces of the 21st Century, becoming one of the most pre-eminent British Jewellery Houses. So, it is no surprise that so many celebrities are choosing to wear his jewellery!
The Shaun Leane Hook Jewellery Collection has been particularly well loved, becoming a frequent part of on-screen and red carpet looks for celebrities such as Emma Watson, Kendal Jenner, Cara Delevigne, and Jodie Comer as 'Villanelle' in the hit series, ‘Killing Eve’.
During the high-profile royal tour, Megan, Duchess of Sussex, was seen wearing Shaun Leane necklaces, rings, earrings and bangles. In 2019, Shaun Leane was also named as Engagement Ring Designer for Princess Beatrice and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi. Read more about how Shaun Leane worked closely with the couple to imagine and craft the design of this exquisite ring.
All that glitters
All that Glitters is set to return to BBC 2 in August 2022. All that Glitters is a competition to find the UK’s most brilliant jeweller. The challenge explores the wildly different styles and aesthetics that can be found across different types of jewellery. Every episode is bursting with science, history, innovation and culture, with contestants challenged with creating an array of jewellery, from pieces inspired by the world’s most famous and coveted pieces, to Ancient Egyptian styles.
The show is hosted by comedian Katherine Ryan, and judged by renowned jewellery designers Shaun Leane and Dinny Hall. Shaun Leane has continued to rise to fame amid his appearance as a judge on All that Glitters, sharing his expert knowledge and excellent know-how throughout the show.
Shaun Leane at Deacons
Browse our online collection of Shaun Leane Jewellery at Deacons! Alternatively, visit our modern, Swindon-based showroom to view the range in person and see all options available to you. Enquire, or alternatively, email us at email@example.com to book a consultation and to talk with one of our experts.