Guy Robertson, jewellery designer at Boodles, tells us where he finds inspiration.

Guy Robertson is a jewellery designer at Boodles, a family business founded in 1798. Guy works on both bespoke commissions and on its seasonal collections. We catch up with Guy as London Fashion Week draws to a close.

How and when did you first realise you wanted to become a jewellery designer?

I always wanted to design and jewellery was the direction I chose as it incorporates all the disciplines I love: sculpture, fashion, architecture. My father trained as an engineer and he always jokes that jewellery design is engineering on a smaller scale.

What’s the most rewarding aspect of your job?

I will never get tired of a client seeing a finished commission for the first time and loving it.

And the most challenging?

It’s all challenging but the most challenging aspect is creating and visualising a 3-D object which doesn't exist yet. Once I have this in my head, putting it onto paper becomes easier.

Tell us a bit about the process from conception to the finished product – how does a piece of jewellery get made?

It varies especially between stock pieces and bespoke commissions. In terms of conception and inspiration, I always look in very different places, although, for me, the library is indispensable. Other random influences can crop up though; I once found the inspiration for a ring whilst watching Disney's Fantasia... you just never know.

When I have finalised a design and it has been approved for construction, I work on the technical drawings and sit with each craftsman that will be involved in the piece’s creation so we can talk through any last minute concerns they may have. There are the most amazingly skilled craftsmen in the UK and I always feel very lucky to have the opportunity to work with them. It usually takes four to six weeks for a piece to be handmade although a very complex piece can take anything up to six months.

What advice would you give to those wanting to get into jewellery design – any dos and don’ts?

For me, Central St Martins was invaluable. It taught me so much about the industry and made me really critique who I am as a designer. Also work very hard, be persistent but not stubborn and get a thick hide. The jewellery industry is also TINY so be aware that everyone knows everyone!

How do you interact with the web? Is it a big part of your life?

I have to admit that I am a bit of a Facebook status addict. I think it's my version of a blog. In terms of more serious things, I regularly gather information from the web: blogs, editorials, news, research. It’s a cliche but it is a tool we would now find very hard to live without.

I shop for convenience online not for pleasure and personally, I don't think that will ever change.

Have you ever considered starting a blog?

I’m quite a private person so I don’t think I would enjoy it. I embarrass myself enough with my Facebook Status posts. I do, however, read a lot of blogs: Design Spotter, Jack and Jil, The Cut London, Lucy will show you… Google reader is an incredible invention.

How about apps – do you use them a lot? Any favourites?

I love Hailo, the cab app that has saved me so many times. It’s like cheating when trying to find a cab in the rain. The Style.com app is brilliant during the fashion weeks, Boris Bike app - best thing during the summer, courier apps, currency converters and Vintage Sonic The Hedgehog games are a must!

We know you have an iPad… How do you use this as a work tool?

It’s an incredible tool that makes a 2D design a bit more interactive, zooming in on minute details. Being able to flip things round makes a design more accessible. It’s also brilliant for being able to show clients a range of previous work without having to carry portfolios around.

Technology wise – is there anything our readers should know about? Any current trends that help you design?

I’m quite old school in that I don't use 3D CAD. I mainly work by hand and then use Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop to create presentation designs although I did get shown a brilliant Rhino app the other day that can display Rhino and other 3D files on your iPhone and iPad interactively.

Are there any tips you can give our readers when choosing jewellery?

Buy jewellery you love. There is fantastic stunning jewellery out there that is exquisitely designed as well as being a great investment. This is something we always aim to achieve at Boodles.

Professionally – do you have any aspirations yet to be achieved?

One of my pieces was purchased by a hero of mine last year. I can't say who it was but it was an amazing moment. As long as I still have the opportunity to continue to design work I feel proud of and other people appreciate, that’s all that matters

Tell us about your dream job…

Designing jewellery is what I've always aspired to do but if I didn't do this, I would have loved to be an athlete or a gymnast maybe. I used to do gymnastics and am still quite sporty so maybe I missed my calling as a circus performer.

And finally… If you were speaking to yourself as a nineteen year old, what advice would you give yourself?

Stop dying your hair, keep working hard, always be yourself and smile in public.

Interview by Alice Kahrmann February 2012