Design Crush: Inside a Jewellery Designer’s Beachy-Cool Studio
Melanie Auld’s Vancouver space is crafted to provide plenty of inspiration in and of itself.
When jewellery designer Melanie Auld first took over her 900-square-foot split-level office space in Vancouver’s South Granville neighbourhood, it was dark, dingy and depressing—not in line with her company’s sophisticated, feminine brand. So the natural solution was to wipe the slate clean…or, at least, clean-ish. “I tend to like an open, blank white space because I feel like it gives me room to be creative,” says Auld. “But I don’t like a boring blank white space.”
Known for her delicate and minimalist gem-centric pieces, Auld kept the reno as simple as her jewellery designs while pulling in different textures, greenery and soft pastels to elevate the office where she runs the majority of her wholesale and Canadian operations. One prime example: the whitewashed cedar wall in the entryway, which satisfies Auld’s need for a calm, minimal colour palette but also subtly references the tile kitchenette backsplash with its herringbone pattern.
As a designer, Auld naturally has an eye for style, so putting together the interior design of the space was very much instinctive for her. “I like to bring in things that are telling and mean something,” says Auld. “The brand is very influenced by travel. So all of our wall art and everything like that has a very vacation vibe”—right down to the “wish you were here” neon sign by Endeavour Neon and the beaded turquoise lamps that have us dreaming of white sand beaches. Desert-cool cacti appear in both the artwork and in real life next to a pair of rattan chairs.
An abstract-print wallpaper from Eskayel is the first thing clients see when they enter the studio, but stay long enough and subtler details will start to reveal themselves, like the seven-foot-long porcelain mala bead necklace made by Jolinda Linden mounted on the entryway wall. Fans of Auld’s might recognize the evil eye from the gallery wall as a recurring theme in her jewellery; the same can be said for the rose-gold detailing on the kitchenette cabinetry.
Not everything is deliberately coordinated, but the common factor these elements share is that they strike a chord with Auld. “If the pieces that you chose are really true to you and who you are, then I feel like they end up pulling everything together because it makes sense to you,” she explains. “I think lots of people aren’t confident in liking what they like and going for it…but I’m fine with it.”