Milan-born, London-based jewellery designer Vanessa uses jewellery as a canvas to tell the highs and lows of her life story. There is gentleness at times, a harsher reality at others. Drawing together memories from less idyllic moments, she crafts precious grenades, guns, bats and scorpions. It’s a story with an intense duality. But the journey she portrays is always her own – a tale of love, despite shattered dreams along the way.
Artists often paint the picture of their personal human experience through their body of work. Third generation jeweller Vanessa does the same with her jewellery. A romantic at heart, she sometimes feels more like an empowered modern-day warrior. A trained gemologist who honed her expertise at Pederzani Jewellery, her family business founded in Milan in 1947, and then at Christie’s and Sotheby’s, before striking out on her own. Vanessa exercises a unique approach. Her passion for colour in gemstones far surpasses her fears of imperfections. She is at ease working with a diamond packed with inclusions if the stone’s resounding beauty and colour are the right fit for the jewel.
The Pederzani name brings with it the kudos of three generations of an Italian family who have served as jewellers to European industrialists, royalty and celebrities. Today, Vanessa sources her gemstones direct from mines in Brazil, Colombia, Thailand and India, teaming them with gold and sometimes silver. Her clients, mostly women treating themselves, range from lovers of edgy design to those seeking something more elegant and classic, be they fashion moguls, sports stars, members of the aristocracy or the exclusive St Moritz Corviglia Ski Club, who invited Vanessa to design a 75th anniversary pin, following in the footsteps of fellow Corviglia guest designer Emilio Pucci.