You can instantly tell how important family is to Asha Haywood (aka @thejewellerswife). She talks passionately about everyone from her parents to her husband...
“Sometimes I wonder how I got so lucky to get parents like mine. They have dedicated their lives to my sister and I and we are both so grateful for their love, friendship and support. They have taught me unconditional love and through their actions I’m reminded daily to be selfless. Mum has also taught me how to cook – we both love cooking and are always sharing recipes. We love going out to lunch or dinner and trying to recreate the recipes,” says Sydney-based Haywood. The glamorous wife of jewellery designer Nicholas Haywood has always been focused on family and now works alongside her husband, heading up the marketing of Nicholas Haywood Jewellery Concierge.
A mother of two – Sierra and Hudson – Christmas is a very special time for Haywood and her family. “It’s a festival of eating, drinking, family and fun by the pool. We spend Christmas Day and Boxing Day at my parents’ house in Kangaroo Point, which is open to whoever can make it. We often stay there with the kids for a few days to extend the family fun as long as possible,” she says.
It’s no surprise that there’s also always plenty of exquisite jewellery involved. When it comes to gifting over the festive season, Haywood says: “You can’t go wrong with a classic piece from our extensive collection of ready-to-wear fine jewellery. Our NHJC Signature Collection is designed to form the foundation of a woman’s fine jewellery collection – classic everyday pieces that include diamond studs, right hand bands, tennis bracelets and classic pendants. Each piece is designed and hand crafted in our Sydney studio using the highest quality diamonds. Over the years I have been so lucky receiving different foundation pieces to mark special occasions in my life.” This year she has her eyes on the stunning statement rings from the ready-to-wear collection. “I am also secretly hoping for one of our new NHJC Official personalised signet rings,” she says, smiling.
Nicholas Haywood Jewellery Concierge was founded back in 2010 by Nicholas who had spent over 15 years working with Australia’s leading jewellers. The bespoke pieces are designed and manufactured in house and clients are invited to come and see their pieces of jewellery being crafted, which is where the concept of the ‘Jewellery Concierge’ was born. As well as offering an extensive range of ready-to-wear fine jewellery, NHJC offers a bespoke service that focuses on personalisation and working to design and create a unique piece as a collaboration with the client.
We visited Haywood and her family in their Kangaroo Point family retreat to see how they spend Christmas, find out what’s on the menu, how motherhood has changed her life and what it’s like working with family.
SHOP: Nicholas wears NHJC Barbed Wire Rose Gold Bangle, $6,500, and NHJC Official Rose Gold Signet Ring, $1,880. Asha wears NHJC Diamond Bangles, from $3,200, and NHJC Pavé Diamond Hoops 2.06CT, $5,500.
How would you describe yourself in three words?
Loving, determined and loyal.
What has motherhood taught you?
Patience and a depth of love I don’t think I ever would have understood until having my babies.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Don’t be in a rush. Enjoy the journey.
So far, what has been the most challenging part of motherhood?
Definitely dealing with children’s changing emotions (happy, sad, angry, frustrated, happy again and that’s all in an hour). I am a Libran and balance is something I need to feel good. Navigating the ups and downs, staying calm and helping to keep the balance are things I work on daily.
Growing up, did you always love fashion?
I always liked to look nice and loved shopping (something I get from my mum). I have my staple pieces and accessorise with jewellery, shoes and handbags.
SHOP: NHJC Diamond Riviere Necklace P.O.A
Jewellery designer Nicholas Haywood with son Hudson.
What are your key wardrobe essentials?
Ksubi denim shorts, white bassike t-shirts or boyfriend Mr Shirts, statement tops (Zimmermann are my favourite) and my Balmain black blazer that makes any outfit feel amazing!
What’s the best style advice you’ve ever been given?
Wear what makes you feel good and wear it with confidence.
What does the menu look like on Christmas Day?
Christmas Day is always Christmas meats, salads including my late nan’s potato salad and desert is my pop’s famous fruit salad, plus my aunty’s rocky road. Boxing day is always left overs and fresh seafood.
Nicholas and Asha Haywood with their children Sierra and Hudson.
SHOP: Asha wears NHJC Two Row Shared Claw Ring, $6,500. NHJC White Gold Tennis Bracelet 3.22cts, $8,800. On Christmas bauble: NHJC Pavé Rose Gold Diamond Bangle 0.84ct, $4,000. NHJC Shared Claw Diamond Bangle, $14,500.
What about styling the tabletop – what are the ingredients of a great tabletop?
I love fresh flowers! Luckily my very good friends are florists and make decorating the table easy. I also love linen and a good quality bon bon.
What do you wear on Christmas Day?
I love a good jumpsuit. They are comfy, easy to wear and allow me to move about playing with the kids and having a great time! I got this beautiful gold jumpsuit from Spell & The Gypsy Collective when we were in Byron Bay recently, which is perfect for Christmas celebrations.
Did your career change after you became a mother?
Before babies I worked for my very good friend’s business Nearly Nude. Managing the marketing and online sales (as well as anything that was required). It was the best few years – we had a ball and I learnt so much! About six months after having Sierra I was very keen to work again and use my skills in our family business. Although working from home with a small baby had its challenges, I feel lucky that I had the opportunity to do so and not have to leave Sierra.
How would you describe Nicholas Haywood Jewellery Concierge?
We’re a dynamic family business with a focus on amazing quality. Nicholas is so passionate about what he does – he lives and breathes it and it shows with his client relationships and the exquisite quality pieces he designs.
SHOP: Anya wears NHJC Circular Diamond Pendant, $2,450. Asha wears NHJC Rose Gold Diamond Curved Bar Necklace, $2,500.
What’s it like working with your family?
Not long after starting our business I had Sierra and was busy navigating being a first time mum then shortly after we fell pregnant with Hudson. It was a huge job for Nicholas to build a jewellery business from nothing but passion and he does it everyday with a smile on his face. I love now that I am able to help him (doing the marketing among other things) and that we are working on this great venture together.
Do you think your children will one day join the business?
We hope so, leaving a legacy for our children is what drives us everyday.
What makes the brand so unique?
I think Nicholas’s passion. His dedication to quality and the relationship he has with his clients. He genuinely loves what he does!
Can you tell us about how the pieces are made?
Our bespoke pieces are designed and manufactured in house. Which clients love as they can come and see their pieces of jewellery being crafted if they like. The bespoke creation starts with a consultation or two with Nicholas to design the piece, then it is off to our amazing jeweller, diamond setter and polishers who Nicholas has hand selected for their decades of experience in their craft.
Do you focus on or follow trends?
For our ready-to-wear collection we are inspired by international trends, but mainly it is made up of designs that Nicholas and I love and would love to wear ourselves!
How do you juggle motherhood with work?
For me, I find the less work I can do during the day when the kids are around the better it is for everyone. My role in the business is quite creative and I would find it hard to focus with the kids around. Plus our children are so little and they still need me a lot during the day. I try to dedicate the early part of the week to the kids and the house work (and work on the business before they wake in the morning or after they go to bed if I need too). Later in the week on their daycare days, I can totally focus on the business. It’s a juggle!
What kind of role model do you want to be for your children?
I want to teach them to be kind, thoughtful of others and to be resilient. Life is a balance of ups and downs and if I can teach them to stay calm and positive I think that will be a great start.