JADE is a niche jewellery brand that specialises in finding creative inspiration and beauty from around the world and translating it into wearable pieces of art. Internationally sourced raw pearls and semi-precious gems are locally crafted and creatively curated, providing JADE customers with one-of-a-kind jewellery adornments. Much like the meaning of the colourway, JADE stands for balance, peace and authenticity. With three stores, located in Stellenbosch, Franschhoek and Melrose Arch, JADE provides both local and international jewellery enthusiasts with a variety of accessible ready-made and custom pieces, as well as products for wholesale.
Karin Delport’s passion for jewellery and travelling is what lead to the start of the JADE’s success story. After living in China for three years, the family returned to South African soil – Karin with a case of pearls and a hopeful heart. Not long after, she explored wholesale trading with semi-precious stones and opened JADE in 2001. Under the guidance of Karin and her husband, Christoff, the business grew in popularity, strength and character over the years. From the start, daughter, Annemarie showed great interest in the business and together with her eye for detail and hard work, she proved herself the perfect candidate to take over the business.
“We have changed many things from the look of the store to launching new branches, product lines and services. We have evolved over time from a concept of customer-driven designs to one where we are today offering a design-driven offering. We focus on superior customer service through staff training and retention to ensure only the best experience when you interact with any member of the team.” says Annemarie.
Uplifting women in the workplace has always been a big focus for us, and one we are very proud of. “One of the amazing ladies of Jade who has been with us since the first store opened is Pulane Thelajane. Pulane grew up in the Eastern Cape under difficult circumstances in a very poor village and came to Stellenbosch in search of a better life. She started working at JADE as a cleaner, but we could see her ambition, talent and drive from the very start. Back when I was working for my parents, I gave my very first paycheck to her to pay for registration at CPUT. Since then she progressed to jewellery technician, junior designer, warehouse manager and eventually store manager whilst attending her classes as well. I am so incredibly proud to say she has finished her studies in Mechanical Engineering at CPUT. She inspires me more than she knows. We are lucky to not only have Pulane in the JADE ranks but also her sister Mpokoleng and her niece Tubby.” adds Annemarie.
Annemarie and co-owner and husband Rhys have and will always ensure the core of JADE remains untouched, as they are committed to offering a premium product at an accessible price to women who are willing and able to be noticed for their own style. The big statement pieces have a big story behind them and one that owner, Annemarie van Wyk, is very proud of.
Annemarie was diagnosed with breast cancer when she was in her twenties (now 31) and as the Creative Director, she ensured her passion to fight her illness was pushed into the business and designs she was so in love with. “I felt that by designing and wearing big statement pieces, it helped me feel strong and beautiful in a time when I was struggling to feel like a woman” says Annemarie.
With the launch of their revamped Stellenbosch concept store, Annemarie has also launched a new line of statement pieces, her inspiration being: women.
“My passion is people, I get inspired by the women I meet every day, the women who work with me and our everyday struggles. By the women who buy my designs, knowing that each one has their own triumphs and challenges in life. My motivation is to make every woman experience their personal inner and outer beauty by wearing a JADE design. A design of power and sophistication” adds Annemarie.
Their Stellenbosch store has just undergone a gorgeous new revamp and re-opened its doors on the anniversary of their opening in 2006. The new store now offers a beauty bar as well as a rent-to-wear service. The Beauty Bar offers clients the opportunity to have their hair and make-up done at the store, after which they just add their Jade pieces and step out feeling like a million bucks.
In addition, they are celebrating their 7th birthday in Franschhoek this year and their 4th in Johannesburg. They will also be exhibiting in New York in August, Paris in September and Miami in October! “We are incredibly excited about the possibility of launching a range of JADE products in the USA early next year but it is a bit too soon to give any details!“ adds Annemarie.
For more information, please visit www.jade-sa.co.za