There are few things as restorative to the female psyche as a spot of retail therapy, particularly in the current Leeds campus atmosphere ridden with pre-exam stress and post-presentation trauma.
In comes ZONEgirl, a fresh entrepreneurial venture founded by LSE student of Politics & Philosophy Natasha Zone. Her eponymous range of handcrafted jewellery sourced directly from Israel is fun, vibrant and just what the ladies of Leeds ordered as we start the annual countdown to summer holidays and sunnier surroundings.
ZONEgirl began last September, when people started commenting on her personal jewellery after returning from a holiday in Israel, business-minded Natasha thought she’d bring a little bit of Israel back to the UK and build on the compliments she’d received on her personal style.
What started as visits to Israeli markets and jewellery boutiques in search of bespoke, one-of-a-kind items to gift to her friends back in England soon turned into everyone and their mother getting in contact to request their own original pieces. Word of mouth spread fast, creating a buzz on social networking sites turning a tidy profit as more and more girls started making purchases, often in bulk.
Dainty, minimalist Hamza hands and stars in sky blues, baby pinks and pearlescent whites on delicate silver chains are her bestsellers, and easy on the student pocket at only £10 each, whilst rich, colourful gem stacking rings that have been likened to Monica Vinader’s iconic line are also customer favourites, priced at £27-£30. Traditional Israeli evil eye bracelets in a chic gold setting are £29, or if you’re making the pilgrimage to student capital Ibiza this summer, look no further than her multicoloured neon plaited bracelets in every rainbow colour, at only £6.50
Taking inspiration from the likes of Theo Fennell and Hermés, real-life ZONEgirl Natasha hopes to further develop her brand by branching out into leather jewellery and accessories for men, and has already patented the name for her forthcoming male collection – you guessed it: ZONEboy. Get in touch with Natasha via her Twitter and Instagram, @thisisZONEgirl, or by email, firstname.lastname@example.org.