Gurugram-based bespoke jewellery designer Neety Singh, known for the handcrafted pieces began her eponymous label after a sold-out exhibition in Singapore, followed by similar successes in New York, Washington DC, and London. Today, she caters to women of today – from young brides, to mothers, to anyone who appreciates fine design and individuality.A navrattan choker with a single pendant is a modern piece from the Ambreen collection by Neety Singh Jewellery
One look at your new collection Ambreen, and one sees modern, wearable pieces. What did you have in mind while working on it – during this pandemic?
The year 2020 has been nothing short of an epiphany with the ‘new normal’ in place. We have unlearnt certain behavioural patterns, broken away from habits, and have had the time to hear our inner voice and discover our truth. We recognized the shackles of everyday life and routines and have looked towards a future which is liberating, untethered and limitless – like the sky, like the ‘Ambreen’. That is Ambreen for me. It represents a potpourri of colours, shapes, cuts, and aesthetic sensibilities to create a spectacle that combines old-world charm with 21st-century values. We have thoughtfully given an understated tone to our design boards so that they are apt for intimate gatherings. Ambreen is all about nurturing a connection with oneself and doing things that are self-empowering. It is about adorning oneself with jewellery that brings out the best version of oneself and confidently embracing one's authenticity in the world.A modern navrattan necklace and bracelet from the Ambreen collection by Neety Singh Jewellery
There is a lot of colour – and many of the pieces have a pop of pink, orange, and green – have you used enamelling in some of the pieces?
We have thoroughly crafted all our pieces by engaging in rich traditional jewellery techniques like partash, jadau, and meenakari, and used an amalgamation of fine gemstones like polkis, diamonds, rubies, and sapphires. The colours are intrinsic to our collection and add character to every piece. They are a part of our ethos and define our signature navrattan jewellery pieces as well. For example, we have moulded the fundamentals of traditional navaratnas and have made several pieces that align perfectly with the ideology of a 21st-century woman. We have incorporated colour tones like orange (coral) and turquoise (phiroza) that emanate a feminine and festive vibe. I have also designed chokers and baalas with little pearls hangings on it to combine old-world charm with an edgy feel. India is culturally a rich country where different traditions are followed and are kept alive. Our aim is to keep reviving Indian craft and techniques and promote it on a global platform through our jewellery.Gold, ruby, emerald, and pearl jhumkis by Neety Singh Jewellery
You started off with a collection in gold – is this your most important material – and what would you say is your forte?
The entire world’s economy had to bear the brunt of Covid-19. The luxury market was adversely hit too. Looking at the current scenario, clients want to be doubly sure before undertaking a huge monetary investment. I have noticed a conscious shift in almost all the industries where people are aiming to invest in areas where they could seek financial security and stability in the longer run. With this thought, gold jewellery has emerged as one of the preferred options. This is because jewellery comes with a return value. I design jewellery in 16 k, 18 k, and 22 k which fit perfectly for every occasion, is classic and timeless, and has a return value too. Gold jewellery has a regal, antique touch to it and our forte is to carve a niche in the urban context. This makes our pieces eclectic and versatile.Pearl and polk chand baalis by Neety Singh Jewellery
We have seen your pieces in polki/jadau and kundan for bridal also – what is it in the work of Rajasthani kaarigars that inspires you?
Jewellery designing, for me, is a beautiful form of art which represents India's deep-rooted traditions. Through its intricacy, it weaves beautiful narratives of the past. The idea is to interlace the modern India perspective with its old-world charm and keep the tradition and technique of jewellery-making alive. The finesse and detailing of Rajasthani kaarigars' hand work is unmatched and par excellence. It makes each and every piece unique and extraordinary.Jewellery designer Neety Singh
You are based in Gurugram – do your kaarigars work inhouse – are they from Delhi and surrounding areas?
Yes, our workshop operates in Jaipur and we have a community of kaarigars in Chandni Chowk. It is like a close-knit family now as they have been associated with the brand for the past 12 years now.Pearls and coloured gemstones in a long necklace by Neety Singh
Where do you like to source your gemstones from – having studied gemology – what are the best places to get the right gemstones?
Creativity and authenticity are a few of the many basic fundamentals on which I run my brand. We, at Neety Singh Jewellery, always strive to go an extra mile to ensure that our clients get the best experience with us. We therefore make sure that we source our materials from the countries and places that are blessed with gemstones in an organic manner. Countries like Thailand, Hong Kong, and Sri Lanka are enriched with high-quality gemstones and we source ours from there. In India, we get our gemstones from Mumbai and Jaipur, which are lauded as one of the best hubs of sourcing gemstones.Delicate filigree work and pearl earrings from the Ambreen collection by Neety Singh Jewellery
There is also an element of filigree work in your new collection – which is not that common in India – what inspired you to do this – and what filigree work are you most inspired by?
I have been an avid traveller since childhood. I have an Air Force background and have the experience of working with cabin crew as well. I understand the pulse of young women. My travels across India and abroad developed my natural instincts to gauge the taste and aspiration of the urban Indian woman. I became intuitive about their aesthetics and their comfort when it came to spending. I recall that every time I visited a place in India or abroad, I used to get immersed in its rich history, culture, and beautiful architecture. Everything narrated its authentic story. These deeply rooted tales gave me the perspective to incorporate intricate and minute detailing in my work, keeping in mind the preferences of modern women. I also believe that luxury and style should not be limited only to a select few, hence I try to make my collection accessible.Pearls, enamel, and emerald set from the Ambreen collection by Neety Singh Jewellery
Everything today is about the ‘new normal’. What, according to you, would be a few go-to pieces that modern women should gravitate to, in this post-pandemic world, both for a glamorous evening, a day event, and a wedding?
I truly believe that Covid-19 has transformed the way we perceive things and act in our daily lives. Events, functions, and weddings are getting more personalized and intimate. Investing in modern heirloom jewellery would be a good idea as its understated elegance is extraordinary. In my opinion, a choker or statement polki earrings can lift a simple outfit and add a traditional and regal touch to it. It is an amalgamation of the old-world charm of India and its new modern aesthetics.Navrattan medallion by Neety Singh Jewellery from her Ambreen Collection
Are young people bored with traditional jewellery – and what are some of the ways that you have reinvented some pieces – for example the black cord choker with the gold pendant, or the bangles and bracelets?
Neety Singh Jewellery's muse is a 21st-century woman who chooses and creates her path. This is reflected through our jewellery pieces as well. For example, our yellow gold hoops, stretchable sutlera necklace is perfect for young modern Indian women. We work with traditional jewellery, and set it up in a modern context. It represents the versatility of our jewellery where our navrattan medallion or our equanimity pendants can be paired up with denim, for example. Our polkis are uniquely associated with pearls and such collaborations are done keeping in mind the extraordinary women of the 21st century.
Lifestyle Insider is a kind of junction point, connecting people with diverse interests that touch on the more luxurious aspects of lifestyle – fashion, design, travel, food and spirits, art, watches and jewellery, cars, yachts, and aviation, and technology. People today don’t fit into boxes and categories. In our individual ways, we are interested in diverse themes, products, and the challenges that face our world today. You will judge how well this effort of mine caters to your passions and proclivities.
Lifestyle Insider is a showcase of all that is beautiful and luxe. Behind every creation, is a designer, chef, entrepreneur, or a design maison. I have delved into my own appreciation for objetsde luxe that I have admired over the years – be it a love of fashion from the world’s top Parisian and Italian fashion maisons and their ’90s muses, or the care that goes into sari and Indian textile collections in my own family. Growing up on four continents, as the daughter of a former Indian Ambassador, I’ve seen a remarkable array of historic places and met a myriad people. My aim is to bring my world view into this website, a curation of what I find particularly stunning, unique, and newsworthy.
It’s an exciting time for brands all over the world. With change comes opportunity. With the global ‘reset’ and uncertainty on many fronts, there is a chance to write a new script. Let’s be those pioneers.
A bit about me:
A luxury and fashion journalist with 25 years of experience in publishing and magazine journalism, I have edited some of India’s top fashion and luxury magazines. I got my BA in Comparative Literature from UC Berkeley, and went on to receive my Master’s in English and French from the University of Strasbourg, France. I have also studied German and Film. I live in Gurugram, India, and look forward to once again exploring our world with a new-found freedom.
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