Sunday Supplement: In Conversation with Claire Hibon

For this weeks Sunday Supplement, we caught up with Claire, founder and maker at Claire Hibon Jewellery.

We’d love to hear about your journey to launching Claire Hibon Jewellery – how did it all begin?

I have a background in art and fashion, and my interest for jewellery really hooked me whilst traveling in Australia in 2013 where I started drawing pieces for a Sydney based jewellery brand. That’s when everything started. I decided to move to London in 2015, where I enrolled in evening jewellery classes to learn the making. During the day, I was working for jewellery brands, but I wasn’t always involved in the creative side of things. Although it gave me the opportunity to learn all the aspects of running a jewellery business, I felt sometimes unfulfilled and I was craving for expressing my ideas and my creativity. I left my job just before the first lockdown in 2020, which was a huge risk, but I have no regrets as it allowed me to start working on my collection. After years working with designers, I have developed a certain expertise which gave me the tools and confidence to start developing my own little brand.

 

What inspired you to start a sustainable jewellery brand?

Working in the industry for many years, I saw how dirty and inconsiderate this industry can be. I wanted to create beautiful and quality jewellery while considering the people and the environment. I wanted people to feel guilt free when purchasing the pieces and to raise awareness to consumers about the real value of jewellery. I am always considerate with my purchases, the way I eat and my way of living. It was essential that the brand would be in line with my values.

 

What is the inspiration behind your designs?

I wanted to propose an alternative to fast fashion by creating a beautiful and ethical jewellery brand with durable and timeless pieces with nature as its core of inspiration and with a low impact on the environment.

 

Do you have any advice would you give to someone just starting out on building their own brand?

I think it’s essential to define your values early on and a clear aesthetic and identity to the brand. I also think it’s important to not isolate yourself and learn from other designer’s experiences and to never hesitate to ask questions and advices. And finally, it’s essential to be willing to take risks, we learn from our experiences and mistakes. 


What’s been your proudest moments so far?

I am definitely proud of having being able to do everything myself, from creating the branding, designing, making the pieces, pricing, there is huge sense of achievement. It’s extremely rewarding in that sense.


Have you come up against any hurdles in launching a sustainable brand? 

I don’t feel like I had any big issues creating a sustainable brand, it’s just a matter of finding the right people and suppliers to work with. It definitely involves more research but, I enjoyed every single bit of it. It was fascinating to go through this process.


What makes you feel optimistic about our planet’s future?

I feel like the new generation is a lot more aware. For example, I read last week that the mining industry in Australia is struggling with hiring the younger generation as young people don’t want to be involved in bad practice against the environment. 


Which podcast is top of your list at the moment?

I have been listening to The Diary of a CEO recently, Happy Place and Saturn Returns. I love listening to podcasts, it brings me a sense of calm and I love hearing about people’s experiences.