Bolou Fine Jewellery takes its design cues from individual precious gemstones, expertly creating bespoke, ethical pieces to last generations
When sellers of precious gemstones and jewels travel to Denmark, their first port of call is usually Bolou Fine Jewellery in the Copenhagen suburb of Charlottenlund. That is because the team at Bolou like to take the rarest and most unusual gems available. When Bolou’s designers and artisans see a special gemstone, they are inspired to create the perfect setting. This results in unique pieces crafted by expert jewellers that demonstrate a signature design style, combining intricacy with fluidity of movement.
“The quality of work they produce is very rare,” says CEO Anne Louise W Blichfeldt Winther. “Everything is designed by hand, and we do all kinds of projects, from alterations of existing pieces to creating huge new pieces that can cost hundreds of thousands of pounds. When we buy special jewels, pearls and stones, we put them in the vault and have a series of design meetings and conversations, until just the right design is sparked by these beautiful gems. That inspiration can come from anywhere – travel, nature, all sorts of things.”
Bolou Fine Jewellery was founded in 2006 by Bolette Louise Sig Mathiasen, a gemmologist, goldsmith, pearl and diamond grader, and designer. She bought the shop from her mentor and built a team of expert goldsmiths, designers and diamond setters. She also expanded the shop, which now occupies what used to be three premises. As well as offering bespoke pieces and one-of-a-kind creations, there are commercial collections available online and with selected partners.
The custom-made pieces really let the team’s creativity flourish. These are pieces that include partnerships with, among others, Danish museums, art fairs and high-end restaurants, along with numerous commissions from private clients. “We have clients all around the world, in London, the US, China, Monaco and, of course, Scandinavia,” says Anne Louise. “Our artisans can make anything, and the projects we get range from very personal engagement rings for footballers to parures for private jewellery collectors. We have created lockets for racehorse owners in which, for example, they place a piece of tail hair after their favourite horse has passed. We’ve made amazing heart lockets with white and pink diamonds.”
Bolou is committed to being as sustainable as possible throughout its supply chain, given the challenges of an industry that still relies upon mining. By executing so much work in house, the company retains control over the process, and the team has established very close relationships with trusted vendors so it is confident of the provenance of its raw materials. It uses recycled gold, jewels are certified conflict free, natural and untreated, and the company supports several charities, often related to children’s health and wellbeing.
But it is the work that really separates Bolou from its peers. Anne Louise highlights the attention spent on every aspect of design, with almost as much thought, design and care spent on the reverse of jewellery pieces as on the parts that people see. Almost all pieces are forged rather than cast, a process that takes much more time and skill but produces faultless, durable work. It is this method, as well as the artistry of the design and execution, that enables Bolou to make its promise that this jewellery will be “treasured for generations”.
“There is a natural ceiling to how many pieces we can do, limited by our desire to remain true to our core and our dedication to the highest quality and the best craftsmanship,” says Anne Louise. “Our projects can take a very long time from design to completion, but our artisans can do anything, from tiaras to signet rings, from basic work to the most intricate. Everything they do is special.”