Austen & Blake is a new concept in jewellery we designed the name and brand identity for in the Spring of 2018.

The idea behind it was very exciting: throughout history, "bespoke" has conjured up images of superlative luxury, and superlative prices. Here was a company whose business plan showed that – with the help of new production technology – bespoke jewellery could actually be offered at a better price than ready-made jewellery, because you don't have to sink all your capital into stock and inventory.

The big challenge was that the modern shopper just isn't used to the idea of walking into a store, putting money down on something, and waiting a week for it to be ready.

Our solution was to reframe the act of waiting. Waiting doesn't have to be perceived as waiting, if the user gets to do something useful during that time.

Think, for example, of the time an elevator takes to send you from the ground floor of a building to a meeting you're about to have on the 50th floor. This waiting time is easily made useful by putting a mirror inside the elevator, which allows you to straighten your tie or do your make-up before the meeting.

In a similar vein, we presented the brand as the metaphorical mirror to assess your life with in its key moments. The big steps in your life are moments you need to consider carefully if you're going to be successful.

Imagine, for example, proposing to your girlfriend or boyfriend: the time you wait for the engagement ring to be ready is an opportunity to work out what you should improve about yourself in order to increase your chances of getting a "yes".

For this reason, the brand was named Austen & Blake. Jane Austen and William Blake are the yin and yang of British Romantic literature. Jane Austen is known for depicting female heroines who take control over their life with strong will and determination. William Blake, on the other hand, depicts a life that opens up to curiosity and improvisation coming in like a breath of fresh air. Both values are necessary for life to be both fulfilling and exciting.