Neža Žehelj is a Slovenian jewellery brand named by the artist herself – goldsmith and jewellery designer Neža. She designs unique handcrafted contemporary jewellery within the intersection of art, fashion and design. Her jewellery pieces interpret lost and found stories conceptually plugged into released jewellery collections and one of a kind wearable pieces of art.

Jewellery can be a reminder of a memory, or a person. It can capture a moment in time that you can remember forever. Passing a jewellery piece down from generation to generation has a significant meaning for a family.

Jewellery is also one of the most intimate gifts you can give to someone. Whether it’s an engagement ring from a special person or a child’s first pair of earrings from their mother, jewellery is a great way to show that special someone, you love them. If you take good care of your pieces of jewellery, they can last forever, so owning quality jewellery is a great investment.

photo by Rok Vrečer, ring made by Katja Goljat

We love jewellery because it can be worn for many different reasons and for many different purposes. Jewellery can be both timeless and trendy, classy and edgy, in your face and subtle.


5 QUESTIONS – ENGLISH

1.What is currently the most important goal for your brand?

Expansion to neighboring markets, and restart of physical sales. During this time, the romance of physically buying jewelry was lost and this magic needs to be revived. The most important goal of all is to offer jewelry lovers aesthetically designed, but above all, quality and ethically made jewelry.

2. What is the biggest challenge you are facing right now as a sustainable brand?

Greater visibility and the beginning of the marketing of higher-priced pieces of jewellery, as well as the scope of use of recycled metals. We try to make sure that most of the precious metals and other materials we use to design jewellery are recycled, but this is not always possible at this time.

3. What are the areas where you would still like to improve in terms of sustainability?

As I mentioned, with greater use of recycled metals and the purchase of ethically excavated gemstones. Definitely in packaging. Designed packaging just for our brand, made of paper and recycled plastic. I currently buy EU-made packaging from Germany and Poland.

4. What are consumers supporting with buying from you and what would be your message to them?

Transparency in the manufacture and use of materials that are 90% verifiable. By purchasing our (my) jewelry, they support a local designer and goldsmith, as well as two or more local family workshops (businesses) that are paid a fair price. It is better to invest in less medium or higher-priced pieces of jewelry than cheap ones. Jewelry can also be an investment. We may have less jewelry, but it will be high quality and timeless, we can give it (or leave it behind) to someone over time.

What would be your message to other sustainable brands in the industry.

You need to live with your brand and be a part of it, only then can you be authentic and open to yourself and your customers. It resonates with products and people appreciate it more and more. Above all, it is necessary to know very well what and in what way, you do what you do, because today all the listed words (ethical, recycled, sustainable) can only be labels.

photo by Rok Vrečer, earrings made by Katja Goljat

5 QUESTIONS – SLOVENIAN

Kaj je trenutno najpomembnejši cilj vaše blagovne znamk? 

Širjenje na sosednje trge, ter ponovna fizična prodaja. V tem času smo dobili občutek, da se je romantika fizičnega nakupa nakita izgubila in ta čar je potrebno obuditi. Najpomembnejši cilj izmed vseh, je ljubitejem nakita ponuditi estetsko oblikovan, predvsem pa kvalitetno in etično izdelan nakit. 

Kateri je največji izziv, s katerim se trenutno soočate kot trajnostna blagovna znamka? 

Večja prepoznavnost in pričetek trženja visoko cenovnih kosov nakita, ter obseg uporabe recikliranih kovin. Trudimo se, da je večina plemenitih kovin in drugih materialov, ki jih uporabimo za oblikovanje nakita reciklirana, vendar to zaenkrat ni vedno mogoče. 

Na katerih področjih bi se še vedno radi izboljšali v smislu trajnosti? 

Kot sem že omenila, pri večji uporabi recikliranih kovin in nakupu etično izkopanih dragih kamnov (ethically sourced gemstones). Definitivno pri embalaži. Oblikovano embalažo samo za našo bl. znamko, izdelano iz papirja in reciklirane plastike. Trenutno embalažo, ki je narejena v EU, kupujem iz Nemčije in Poljske. 

Kaj potrošniki podpirajo pri nakupu pri vas in kakšno bi bilo vaše sporočilo zanj? 

Transparentnost pri izdelavi in uporabi materialov, ki so 90 % preverljivi. Z nakupom našega (mojega) nakita, podpirajo lokalnega oblikovalca in izdelovalca, ter hkrati tudi dva ali več lokalnih družinskih delavnic (biznisov), ki so plačani po pravični ceni. Bolje je investirati v manj srednje ali višje cenovnih kosov nakita, kot več cenenih. Nakit je lahko je tudi naložba. Mogoče bomo imeli manj nakita, ampak bo ta kvaliteten in večen, lahko ga bomo čez čas komu podarili ali zapustili. 

Kakšno bi bilo vaše sporočilo drugim trajnostnim blagovnim znamkam. 

S svojo blagovno znamko je potrebno živeti in biti del nje, le tako si lahko avtentičen, ter odkrit do sebe in svojih strank. To resonira z izdelki in vedno več ljudi to ceni. Predvsem je potrebno zelo dobro vedeti, kaj in na kakšen način delaš, kar delaš, ker danes so vse naštete besede (ethical, recycled, sustainable) lahko samo etikete. 

Previously “5 questions” were answered by : Mila Vert, Goodwill, and Montreet

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