Updated: Aug 15
Ami Doshi Shah is an Award-winning jewelry designer originating from Kenya and trained in the UK, her creations are beautifully merging Kenya’s timeless beauty with a global aesthetic. Her decision to become a jewellery designer was made during the later stages of her university studies. She graduated at the tender age of 21, and felt she was much younger to start her own brand.
Ami is a third-generation Kenyan whose family originally came from India. According to her, the value of jewellery in both cultures is really significant. In Indian culture, jewellery is often an asset given to a bride on her wedding day, however, when looking at Kenyan culture, jewellery is seen as more talismanic and signifying rites of passage. Ami thinks that all of these components kind of fit together in the work she does. Many of her designs and creations include a variety of natural minerals and materials. Her inspiration is derived from Kenya's natural, yet complex beauty, hence her work with Kenyan resources.
One of her most interesting and major collections titled 'Salt of The Earth', looks at both the destructive and beneficial properties of salt. The project started off as a postcolonial tale, and used one material to illustrate very different aspects of colonialism. The collection features hessian and leather materials that have been placed in a hyper- concentrated salt solution to create crystallised salt objects. Other pieces used in the creation undergo processes of patination, where a solution of cupric nitrate and salt is applied in layers over brass to almost create a second type of eroded skin.
It is noteworthy that the "Salt of the Earth" collection debuted at the London Fashion Week, as part of the International Fashion Showcase. Among the 16 designers chosen to showcase their work, Ami was the only jewellery designer selected.
Ami has her own brand named "I AM I", and her studio where she exhibit her beautiful pieces. Her works have been worn by the likes of Theresa May, exhibited in London Fashion Week, and have graced the pages of British Vogue.