Established in London in 1735 and commissioned by Frederick, then Prince of Wales, in the same year, Garrard is the longest serving jeweller in the world. A fruitful relationship of service to the British royal family and other royals around the world ensued. Garrard was appointed the official Crown Jeweller in 1843 by Queen Victoria, and has created tiaras, necklaces, brooches and other spectacular pieces, including the Duchess of Cambridge’s sapphire engagement ring.
In the year 1735 Garrard founder and master silversmith George Wickes opened his store on Panton Street in London’s West End; today the Garrard store is located in Mayfair, at 24 Albemarle Street. Queen Mary’s consort crown was made here in 1911, and Garrard jewellery is still handcrafted at the Albemarle Street studio.
Sara Prentice has been Garrard’s creative director since 2012. After graduating from the University of Creative Arts with a degree in jewellery design, she spent years perfecting her craft before joining the Garrard team. With the aid of modern technology and a new vision, she has enabled the brand to achieve great commercial success. The Garrard relationship between the old and the new, the heritage and the pioneering, have become the definition of its jewellery design. Although today’s machinery and techniques have brought greater precision, many of Garrard’s original methods are still used.
As well as creating tiaras for queens and princesses, Garrard is known for making the engagement ring that Prince William presented to Catherine Middleton, now the Duchess of Cambridge. Originally created for Lady Diana Spencer for her engagement to Prince Charles, the ring features a Ceylon sapphire surrounded by 14 solitaire diamonds. The design was inspired by a brooch given by Prince Albert to Queen Victoria on their wedding day and the ring, now a family heirloom, is one of the most famous engagement rings of all time.