High Wide and Handsome In Hatton Gardens
Signet ring specialists Rebus have made a short hop to a spacious new Hatton Garden home
Article by Rupert Watkins Photography by Andy Barnham
Still in its Hatton Garden spiritual home, Rebus Signet Rings have moved into spacious and elegant new digs. Chatting with owner Emmet Smith, the past two years have seen a gratifying surge in interest and custom beating a path to his door. People increasingly want the individual and personal touch, especially when investing in such lifelong accessory. Whilst the classic oval gold signet ring has remained by far and away the most popular, Emmet says he’s seen a lot more clients opting for precious stones such as cornelian or onyx.
Rebus new home gives Emmet and his team the space to properly sit down with their clients and talk through the almost limitless possibilities available to them. Their glass sided consultation area is airy with natural light and space to show off the team’s books on heraldry and other bespoke designs they’ve done. Quirky and fun chairs and tables found off online auctions furnish the room, “I wanted our new shop to be relaxed and engaging” Emmet comments. One of his team of engravers works on the shop floor to allow visitors the chance to see the sheer, painstaking work take place in front of them.
Signet rings are no longer just for one’s family crest (should you be lucky enough to have one), Emmet remarks ever more people come wanting something meaningful, something that will spark that special memory for ever more when they glance at their ring finger. An increasing number of people are also wanting signet rings as wedding gifts with an engraved symbol that is significant to both people, “we had a gay couple in here recently” Emmet recalls, “they both had had the same tattoo in the past and that special link, that symbol was the design they wanted translated onto their rings.”
As well as Rebus, Emmet also continues to run the RH Wilkins engraving business. The firm still does the engraving for the All England Tennis Club and the FA Cup. Recently, he worked on a second reproduction of the America’s Cup. Yachting’s most coveted prize, the ornate Victorian claret jug was, “a very time consuming job on top of everything else” he recalls with a smile, the silversmith sending the various parts of the jug onto Emmet as they were created.
Those wanting something a little different should also investigate Rebus’ latest offerings; the firm has introduced Keeper Rings. Originally conceived by the wife of George III they are shaped to sit alongside and to complement an existing ring. There is also a range of sterling silver or gold pendants for those who do not like wearing a ring but wish to have an example of the stunning engraving (both surface and seal methods are available) found at this Hatton Garden firm.
Enquires: Rebus, 67 – 69 Leather Street, Hatton Garden, London E1N 7TJ / 0207 4055188 / www.rebussignetrings.co.uk/