In the studio

in detail ana de costa 09 In the studio

A limited edition Asprey’s tea set from the 20’s, a guillouche enamel hand held mirror by Mappin and Webb and a handpainted teapot from China are just some of the unique artefacts that fill jewellery designer, Ana De Costa‘s east London studio. Her passion for collecting was ignited by her father, who travelled the globe, bringing back an exotic object from every place he visited. From him, she learnt to appreciate craftsmanship, luxury and design and it is these qualities that are inherent her work. Having re-launched the ‘House of Ana de Costa’ with a collection based on motifs from Henna designs we talk to Ana about the new direction for the brand.

Tell us about how you got into jewellery design.

I have always been attracted to beautiful things. The fascination began when I was a child. I used to sit with my grandmother and she would take me through her old jewellery boxes. Whilst studying art and design for my a-levels, I became fascinated by decoration and surface patterns. A visiting lecturer saw my work and suggested I try jewellery design for my final project. It was the defining moment in my journey, and I went on to study jewellery design at Central St Martins in the early 2000’s.

in detail ana de costa 06 In the studio

After graduating from Central St Martins you worked for Shaun Leane – what influence has he had on you and your work?

Shaun is a dear friend, mentor and supporter. He inspired me to think big and network like crazy! He taught me, that to stand out from the crowd, you have to create a niche aesthetic that you ‘own’. The way Shaun conducts himself in business had a huge impact on me – he is always professional, respectful and conducts himself with an air of grace.

in detail ana de costa 13 In the studio

in detail ana de costa 02 In the studio

in detail ana de costa 14 In the studio

You have just re-launced and rebranded the company. What inspired the new direction and what was the concept behind the design?

We relaunched “Ana de Costa” as “The House of Ana de Costa” to educate our clientele about our heritage. It also enables us to branch out into creating objet d’art under the umbrella of “The House’. For the branding we incorporated my father’s family crest. It looks quiet regal and denotes my linage, whilst working perfectly with the unique visual identity of the brand.

in detail ana de costa 10 In the studio

in detail ana de costa 12 In the studio

Describe the brand in three words

Avant garde, luxurious and timeless.

in detail ana de costa 01 In the studio

in detail ana de costa 07 In the studio

You have an amazing collection of antique furniture and objects, what is your most treasured item?

This was a passion ignited by my father. He travelled the world when I was a child and used to bring back exotic presents for my mother. I purchase a special item from everywhere I travel, be it pearls and Tahitian mono oil from French Polynesia or a beautifully decorated tea pot from China. Every piece I own tells a story and holds special memories but my most treasured item is a tiny mother of pearl bible which I found in a flea market in Rio, Brazil. It is almost 200 years old!

in detail ana de costa 04 In the studio

What was the inspiration behind your latest collection?

‘Spiritual Henna’ is inspired by henna designs typically worn by Asian brides on their hands, feet and arms. Its is also inspired by some of Gandhi’s most powerful quotes such as ‘we must be the change we wish to see in the world.’

in detail ana de costa 05 In the studio

in detail ana de costa 03 In the studio

Do you design with anyone particular in mind?

I design predominantly for women. My clients range from women in their early 20′s to women in their 70′s. The thing these women have in common, is an understanding of luxury and a appreciation for beautiful objects.

in detail ana de costa 15 In the studio

in detail ana de costa 16 In the studio

How do you describe the way you style the jewellery you wear?

I have an 18-month old baby so anything that dangles or is remotely sharp is a no go at the moment! I am currently wearing a stunning pair of 1ct natural Colombian emerald studs which I made for myself as a post baby gift. I also wear my diamond engagement ring, my signet ring featuring my fathers crest and two gold bangles in rose and yellow gold. I sleep in all my jewellery, it never comes off – not even during childbirth!

in detail ana de costa 18 In the studio

What’s next?

I am launching a special capsule collection of limited edition pieces this summer. The pieces will feature pearls of the highest quality that I sourced in Bora Bora and Tahiti.


Three Onion Fried Rice

Three Onion Fried Rice | @naturallyella

If you were to watch me cook, you might be amazed that half the recipes on this site ever get written down. I’m a whirlwind that creates a mess, doesn’t measure, and can never stick to a recipe. When it comes to cooking certain items (let’s say, grains), I hardly follow instructions and found the method of “boiling until just about done, letting sit for 5, and the draining” to be perfect for just about every grain. The perfect rice? I got that. I’ve gotten to the point where I boil a pot of water, toss as much rice as I see fit in, and let it go while I work on other things. Then I keep leftover rice for meals throughout the week, like this fried rice.

This recipe is another adaption from The Easy Vegetarian Kitchen. While I love every recipe in the book, it’s definitely the lunch section that gets used most often in my house. These meals are often quick and no fuss. This particular version is actually from the ‘winter’ adaption but I seem to always have random onions rambling around in my drawer (that if left alone for too long, grow sprouts!)

See the Recipe and Giveaway.

The post Three Onion Fried Rice appeared first on Naturally Ella.


Bruce Jenner: The Interview

At the end of Diane Sawyer’s interview with Bruce Jenner*, Sawyer referred to one of Jenner’s post-Olympian books, in which he wrote that everyone should have a one-sentence mission statement. Sawyer said Bruce defined his mission statement now as “to provide understanding and tolerance toward people.” Well, Bruce can pat himself on the back because […]


Dr. Oz Admits Weight Loss Supplements Are “Flawed” With “Lots of Fraud”

Dr. Oz on the Today Show

Quoting Oz: This is a flawed area with lots of fraud, both in the research and in products. And we no longer talk about them.

The post Dr. Oz Admits Weight Loss Supplements Are “Flawed” With “Lots of Fraud” appeared first on A Black Girl’s Guide To Weight Loss.