Interview: Roannta Dalrymple-Jeweller

Roannta Dalrymple-Jeweler


“I intend to make your favourite piece of jewelry.” – Roannta Dalrymple

When/how did you start making jewelry?

I started in 2010 but it became a business in 2012. I was unemployed after I did my Masters, I was out of a job for about a year. I had dreads at that time and I wanted hair jewelry and when I priced them online they were something ridiculous like 80US. I said “I can do this”. I got myself a spool of wire, a hammer, and some beads.  So I did the hair jewelry and maybe a pair of earrings for myself. Then I got a job, and then lost that job, and was at home doing absolutely nothing. I think I started to get a little depressed.

So just to find something to do I was making jewelry. I made a few rings for people because they asked but I was very much focused on a career and getting “a good job”.

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And then UWI (University of the West Indies) had their Orientation Village so I had my jewelry on sale there. At this time I had a tonne of stock that I was doing absolutely nothing with and one of the girls who shared the tent with me at the Orientation Village messaged me a few days after. She said she wanted to do another market. I thought “Why not?” I ended up at the market and it was like the worst market ever, but I would credit that chance meeting and ending up at that market for where the business is now. Those events gave me the zeal to start thinking about it as a business.


What does Tautology mean?

Tautology is one of my favourite words. It`s actually a math concept. But it defines circular logic. It`s putting something new into an equation and the equation remains the same even with the new elements added. An example of a tautological statement is that the woman is a widow. All widows are women so that`s circular logic. I like it because a lot of my jewelry is very geometry based.

“How do I boil this very complex piece of geometry down to the barest essentials of jewelry.”

What inspires you?

I do a lot of research into what is trending in the fashion world, especially in terms of colour. But a lot of things that inspire me would just be the things in my environment. I then go to what`s happening art wise. That`s where most of my jewelry inspiration really comes from. I look at a lot of geometric art, I look at alot of water colour art. I think one of my stronger talents as a jeweller is my work with colour. So I`m very good at matching and combining colours that won`t normally “go together”. The first thing I do every year when I`m starting a collection is look at the pantone colour of the year. Inspiration also comes from a lot of the abstract work I see. A lot of tattoo work is very abstract now so I look at that a lot too. And then there`s just the barrier of “What can I do with that”?  Then I have to kind of work within the constraints of that in terms of how do I get streamlined lines from this or how do I boil this very complex piece of geometry down to the barest essentials of jewelry.

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What is the hardest part of what you do?

The hardest part of this right now is that my ideas aren`t limited by my skillset, but what I am able to accomplish is limited by my skillset. So I think of what I want to make but I can`t always make it because I don`t have the skill for it yet.

Do you have a favourite piece of jewelry you`ve done?

I do. There is a collar I did last year, that is square,  like a bib. My favourite piece of all time.


What are you trying to achieve with your designs?

I am going for a classically minimalist aesthetic. I really want something that while still being outstanding and being very very different, is appealing to everyone because it`s very easy to wear. So I want people to have pieces that are unique but that are at the same time so streamlined and so seamless that they can be worn with almost anything. I intend to make your favourite piece of jewelry.

“I intend to make your favourite piece of jewelry.”


Check out more of the designer`s work here: Tautology Design Studio

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