In 2017, she founded Clare Blatherwick FGA DGA, a business designed to offer her clients an alternative to the High Street for all of their jewellery needs. This highly personalised approach involves meeting with clients in the comfort of their own home, office or bank and ensures complete privacy, the highest level of discretion and is designed to make the whole process, whether it is an insurance valuation, the designing of a bespoke piece of jewellery or searching for that perfect antique or modern jewel, enjoyable, easy and hassle-free.
Clare has experience of working in jewellery for an international auction house, within high end jewellery retail, and also for an international gemstone dealer.
Most recently, she spent ten years as the Head of Jewellery for Bonhams, Scotland. This role involved sourcing pieces for auction to be sold throughout the world as well as in Scotland, and advising sellers, collectors and buyers around the globe. In this role, she has spent time in Asia, the USA, South Africa, and various European countries. This exposure to the international jewellery market, coupled with her previous experience, ensures Clare is in a unique position in Scotland, and can offer clients a service that is as much professional, as it is personal.
Clare started her jewellery career in London, where she worked for several years for an international gemstone dealer in the heart of the UK's diamond and gemstone industry in Hatton Garden. During this period, she serviced the gemstone needs of a wide range of manufacturers and designers in London and the rest of the country. She handled an enormous variety of gemstones and developed an understanding of rarity, value and desirability as well as the importance of the cut of a gemstone. This time also allowed Clare the opportunity to see, in action, the workshops of some of the most internationally renowned jewellers, spending time with cutters, designers, mounters, setters and retailers, giving Clare a real insight into the importance and wonder of truly fine crafstmanship and a real understanding of how jewellery is made and traded.
Whilst working in London, Clare completed her FGA - the Gemmology Diploma at The Gemmological Association of Great Britain (now known as Gem-A) which provided a technical understanding of gemstones, their imitations and treatments. Learn more about this prestigious two-part qualification here and here.
But the lure of Scotland was great. Having previously graduated with an honours degree in Art History and Modern History from the University of St Andrews, Clare was keen to return and so made the decision to leave Hatton Garden and head north of the border. Upon her return, she worked for eight years for one of Scotland's most prestigious retailers of antique jewellery, becoming manager and gaining enormous experience in helping clients looking for the finest pieces of jewellery. During this period, she completed her DGA - the Diamond Diploma at The Gemmological Association of Great Britain. You can learn more about this prestigious qualification here.
From there, she went on to work for a world renowned Royal Warrant holding retail jeweller, based in Edinburgh. They offered Clare another perspective in dealing with clients who seek the finest goods, principally in modern or bespoke pieces, and also understanding the importance of emotion when it comes to jewellery and what it means to an individual at that moment in their life.
Clare has frequently been asked to give talks to private and jewellery trade groups on jewellery and its history, both in this country and overseas. In 2019, Clare became a member of The National Association of Jewellers, as well as Deputy Chair of the Scottish Gemmological Association. 2020 saw her become a Founder Specialist Member of the Jewellery Valuers Association as well as a JVA Registered ValuerR and be invited onto the committee.
"I was in need of someone to do what I thought was the impossible - transform the setting on my engagement ring without actually making it look like a transformation (I wanted my ring to still look and feel the same). The finished product was just beautiful. My diamond was now a very subtle but stunning tulip setting, revised from the rather impractical 4 prong setting that kept breaking. I cannot explain how happy I was with the finished result. Absolutely delighted. Thank you Clare. "
"I'm holding you entirely responsible for my walking into lamposts as I will be too busy admiring my beautiful new ring!! Thank you - I absolutely love it. I am over the moon it all worked out and feel like the luckiest lady in the land."
"Clare is one of the most highly regarded and best known faces in the jewellery profession in Scotland. We've benefited from her expert advice over the years when acquiring key pieces - advice delivered with the utmost discretion and knowledge of the market. It's always a pleasure to work with Clare and enjoy her good humour, passion for jewellery and artistic flair."
"We were introduced to Clare after a lecture she gave in which her expert knowledge and enthusiasm for her subject was evident. We were so impressed by her we sought her assistance in sourcing a large, emerald cut diamond and suggested a budget. She took an appropriate amount of time and found exactly what we were after. This was the first of a variety of auction purchases Clare has assisted with, from £1,000 to several hundred thousand pounds. Clare's advice on quality, price and resale desirability has been exemplary."
"Clare recently came to the Royal Scots Club to do a talk on Famous Women Jewellery Collectors as part of our annual Afternoon Tea event. I had some wonderful feedback from the members who said how interesting the talk was and how much they enjoyed looking at all the dazzling images. Clare’s lecture was well thought out, she kept our members entertained and she was a pleasure to work with."
"I approached Clare to help with an old ring I had sitting in a box which had been damaged and rarely worn to enquire about the possibility of either repairing or selling it on. Clare was fantastic throughout the process and kept me fully informed via email. After I decided the best option was to sell it Clare put me in touch with an auction house in London where she knew we would get the best auction price and we certainly weren’t disappointed. I would definitely recommend Clare for any jewellery sales and hope to be back to her as a buying customer one day."
"I just wanted to write you a note to say how very much I adore the pendant and chain, it has really beaten all my expectations on how beautiful it could be. It was wasted as a ring! You’ve been an absolute pleasure to work with, and thank you for putting up with my tardy email replies and delayed phone calls. Thank you very much again."
"Clare, I wanted to thank you for all your great work in commissioning Peter's signet ring. I really appreciated the time you took to ensure that we got the correct crest and your advice and expertise on the style, size and fit was really very much appreciated. And all done in secret squirrel fashion so that it was a surprise for his birthday! As you know he's really delighted with the result. Thanks again."