Diamonds may be a girl’s best friend but for Amreen Iqbal, they’re part of her family. The daughter of Firoz Merchant, Founder and Chairman of Pure Gold Group has been designing her own jewellery for as long as she can remember, and joined the family business after graduation – with several diamond-grading and jewellery-designing qualifications to her name – eventually becoming Director of Corporate Communications.
Her bespoke jewellery brand – Piece of You – was born in 2017 after she made herself a bespoke momento to celebrate the birth of third child, and wanted to share her personalised and customised creations pcrafted in 18-carat gold and diamonds with the world.
Coming from the Pure Gold dynasty, did you feel that starting your own jewellery brand was your destiny?
Yes absolutely – as they say, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Entrepreneurship is definitely in my blood – and of course the jewellery aspect is the cherry on top. Diamonds and designing is all I know and all I want to know.
What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned from your father?
Can I be very cliché and say ‘everything’? Honestly, I am who I am, Piece of You is where it is purely and only because of every single lesson I have learnt from my father. He has taught is not only business skills and ethics but also life lessons from being hardworking to humble.
What are the points of difference in your businesses? What are the similarities?
The biggest similarity is the ethos that both businesses share is customers first, and give it your all. Tangibly speaking, both business have the same raw material sources and the same manufacturing facilities. The difference between both businesses is that Piece of You is largely personalised and customised from bespoke orders while Pure Gold jewellery is largely stock-based and available for immediate purchase to all.
Where did you see the gap in the market in order to start Pieces of You?
To be very honest, I didn’t start Piece of You because I saw a gap in the market – I started it because I have immense passion for designing and a love for all things personalised. I want to spread the joy I personally feel when I would make special pieces for myself, my friends and my family with more women.
Why do you think people are craving more bespoke jewellery?
Buying gold from Piece of You is not only an investment in one of the top safe havens of the world, I have always felt Piece of You is an emotion – not only jewellery. After a turbulent 2020, now more than ever people are yearning to express their feelings to their loved ones, and what better way than in the form of ‘everyday jewellery with meaning’?
Why have you decided to sell Pieces of You on Instagram and via pop-ups than having traditional bricks-and-mortar stores?
I truly believe the core of my business is giving peole what they want as opposed to displaying what I have. I want to be able to give people the platform to tell their story through jewellery in the way they want – from the momento, the colour of gold, and the size, to budget. With an online platform, all this and much more is possible.
Where does Pieces of You stand on sustainability?
We are strong believers in sustainability and care of the environment. I personally believe very strongly in treating people the way you want to be treated and the same applies to our Mother Earth and business too. I believe if you love your business and are ethical in all aspects of it – from raw-material sourcing and manufacturing to selling – your business will love you back.
How have you sustained the business during the pandemic?
Like all businesses large and small, I have learned lessons across the board, from working life to family. I have become even more compassionate towards our team members for their hard work, and I have become even more understanding of our customers’ requirements and budgetary constraints. I had always worked on razor-thin margins because Piece of You is my dream, my passion, not a commercial entity. The pandemic has made this belief stronger than ever, so now I’m even more passionate about giving every customer an opportunity to keep their memories and moments close to their hearts.
What are your best-sellers?
Our best-sellers include name necklaces and huggie earrings, however our most popular pioneering concepts are our two initials rings and our Roman numeral date ring which people have cherished from the day they were both launched over four years ago.
What’s next for your business?
More personalisation, more unique ways to tell your story, more one-of-a-kind jewellery to express your emotions, which all leads to spreading more smiles across the glob through more of our shining jewels.
What advice do you have for future entrepreneurs?
Don’t be afrid to start and once you’ve started, understand that patience and mistakes are key elements of success. To be successful, you have to have your heart in business and business in your heart.
Photos: Instagram and supplied