Sunday, 26 June 2011

'Murder, She Wrote' re-imagined by Stephen Webster

The neon lighting of the launch party for Webster's new collection. [Image via Stephen Webster].

The original 'Murder, She Wrote' heroine, Angela Lansbury, who was somehow overlooked as a model for this venture. [Image via IMDB].

A stunning example of the new range - a double-ringed bloody dagger, wielded by perfectly manicured hands. [Image via King Jewellers].

The first promotional glimpse, with model Daisy Lowe. Photographed by Mat Collishaw. [Image via Professional Jeweller].

A vastly repeated daytime crime serial is perhaps not the obvious inspirational choice for new jewellery lines, so it may come as a surprise that the highly successful Stephen Webster has named his latest collection 'Murder, She Wrote'. Taking the elements of intrigue and 'a cup of tea in the countryside', but in a 'tongue-in-cheek' way, as the jewellery designer explained, this is definitely something to be excited about. You might even consider a life on the wrong side of the law to get your hands on these pieces, as seen in the third and fourth images above. There is a sexiness to the collection that moves it away from the doldrums of television which the Angela Lansbury-led program may evoke. This is particularly clear in the choice of brand ambassador - Daisy Lowe, the British model of the moment who has a vintage silhouette but a very modern life in the public eye. She is the perfect choice for this campaign, featured gazing into the middle ground of a dark scene from a railway carriage (note the beautifully reflected train station roof in the top of the frame). Photographed by Mat Collishaw, who is a very talented artist and also the ex-partner of Tracey Emin, there is an extra injection of Britishness here, as well as the obvious but tastefully portrayed undertones of love, revenge and seduction.

In the jewellery itself, I think there is a clear link between the almost emblematic designs and the iconography of films such as Snow White. In the next year we are due to enjoy two more mature re-workings of that classic story, exploring the character of the woodcutter who was ordered to murder Snow White, under the direction of the wicked Queen. Without wishing to suggest that Webster was inspired by Disney, I think that the old fairytale behind the film may have been an influence. We also see poison and fruit cropping up in his other pieces, so for me there is at least a subconscious thematic link that he has produced for his customers. I look forward to seeing the adverts in the press and learning more about the background of this sumptuous collection, from the blood-soaked dagger to the bold and arresting title. It's criminally good.

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