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Jeweller Caroline launches gallery in store next door
Caroline Marcus has been working in the family jewellery business since she was “tall enough to stand behind the counter”, she says.
As the fifth generation at Reginald Davis, she has now opened a new chapter in the business’ 80-year history of trading in Oxford’s High Street by starting a new venture in the shop next door.
The Oxford Gallery at 36 High Street is intended as a “place to find hand made, unique and vintage art, jewellery, silverware and gifts.”
Ms Marcus, 26, says its identity will be distinct from the traditional feel of the original shop, which specialises in Georgian and Victorian jewellery and silverware.
She said: “We saw a definite gap, partly because of the increased price of gold and silver.
“If someone wanted to buy a wedding present for £100, which is not an insignificant sum, there wasn’t anything available.
“In the gallery we have lots of other materials as well as vintage Victorian jewellery, pewter, crystal, blown glass and ceramics.
“It is also a much bigger space so there is room for browsing and we can feature larger pieces.
“The windows are huge and the shop is so light and airy.
“Our other shop is very cramped – I love it and it’s very cosy, but the new one is really light.
“We are involved with artists producing contemporary pieces, but with an eye to older styles.
“We have more space for silverware and Victorian, 1920s and 1960s jewellery – things that have a bit of flair to them and we have the space to lay them out for people to look.”
The firm is a family venture, with her father David Marcus being the great-grandson of the founder.
Ms Marcus started helping out from the age of 12 and returned after taking a degree in art history at Goldsmiths College in London, and training in gemology and diamond grading.
She is the driving force behind the gallery and is keen to hear from Oxford painters, jewellers, sculptors and crafters who would like to showcase work.
She added: “I was the one who saw the potential for the gallery and I am managing it. We hope to be another strong and independent presence in the High Street.”
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