Cape-based jewelry designer, Gillian Lawrence is the founder of Lorne, a unique jewelry line composed of bold, yet playful pieces that come across as wearable art. Since its launch in 2016, Lorne has gathered a strong following that is attracted to its whimsical signature style of characters, faces, and curves rendered in metal earring formats such as brass, copper and bronze alloy.
The creation of Lorne was a natural progression. As a student, Gillian's brother suggested she study jewelry-making, and from there, her love for the craft grew as she found the freedom to play and discover her own style when designing collections. She never forced the growth of her new label and has been known for her sporadic limited edition jewelry drops.
Gillian credits her life in Cape Town, South Africa as a conduit for inspiration in her design process. "The art culture is so alive and progressive that boundaries are constantly being pushed to produce unique creative endeavors," says Gillian. "Design freedom was encouraged from the very beginning thanks to the open-mindedness of forward-thinking markets.
She is able to make a combination of showpieces, experimental pieces and easy wear pieces without restrictions, and the workspace she shares with 12 other designers adds to the energy of inspiration that is generally felt around the city.
Below, Gillian shares with The Folklore her top favorite places around Cape Town that are sure to indulge your food and artistic cravings amongst others.
What are your favorite restaurants in Cape Town?
There are so many! My top picks would be the following though as they provide a unique experience:
1. Scarpetta as it's a cozy, character-filled Italian restaurant in Woodstock. It's family owned and the chef is delightful and full of vibrancy. What I love is that they carry a secret menu that the chef tells you to trust and it's so good! It offers multiple courses, a surprise after surprise... You pretty much dine until you're loosening your belt!
2. Maria's is a Greek restaurant set in Dunkley Square Gardens. The square is surrounded by bars, coffee shops, wellness and yoga studios and tattoo parlours. It's got a nice little community vibe and feels like a quiet little escape from the city. Maria's is always filled with the light treble of chatting and has a cosy fireplace for the winter and trees to sit under in the summer.
3. Moveable Feast is a restaurant/bar situated on Kloof Nek Rd. They serve from steak to seafood, and they carry casual dining options or if you simply want drinks you can go to the bar. They also have one off live events. Usually, most people go to have a bite then they start partying and go bar hopping from there.
What beaches are the most special to you?
Bakoven and Bali Beach are both sweet little escapes from the big Clifton beaches. They're quiet and private with stacks of rocky nooks to explore and seashells to pick up.
What art galleries do you most regularly visit?
What are the best hiking trails to see the spectacular views of Cape Town?
We're spoiled for choice here! Cape Point Nature Reserve is a lovely place to start with. You can spend a day hiking different trails or hire a cottage for the weekend and stretch out the adventure. There are rock pools, caves and wrecks scattered throughout. Then Silvermine and Kirstenbosch gardens are both great for a hike and picnic. There's of course Table Mountain. I'd recommend taking the cable car up and then going for a walk along Maclear Beacon and come down via Skeleton Gorge Trail. Finally, a nice and quick one that I frequently do is along the Lion's Head, where there's beautiful scenic views.
Cape Point Nature Reserve
What is your favorite neighborhood to hang out in?
I mostly hang out in the Central Business District and its surrounding areas, where I live. There's always something happening around there so it's a perfect mixture of nightlife, art culture and dining out!
Central Business District
Written by: Christine Noumba Um