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I’ve been on a whimsical journey exploring the importance of early plant hunters and some of the beautiful botanical illustrations made to describe the finds of these explorers and early botanists. This has inspired some new jewellery, which you can find in my all-new collection, Botanica.


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Today I want to show you ‘Cinchona’ (pronounced cin·cho·na [sing-koh-nuh] ). This necklace, earrings and bracelet are named after the Cinchona tree, originally brought to Europe by the great plant hunter Carl Linnaeus. It was a vital source of quinine which was invaluable in the fight against malaria by Europeans as they explorer farther reaches of the world. It was widely held that drinking it daily would prevent malaria, and it was recommended to regularly drink tonic water (which still contains mild traces of quinine)  in the colonies. That certainly made my ears prick up – gin and tonic on the veranda, anyone?!


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I have used rough chalcedony cubes and tiny faceted rhodonite garnets for the earrings and necklace, with blue lace agate squares in the bracelet. Does the translucent effect of the blue stones remind you of strange colour of gin and tonic in the sunshine – or is that just me?

Rachel x

Rachel Lucie Johns

Hi! I'm Rachel, a jewellery designer-maker & nature photographer. My work is inspired by the gorgeous countryside around West Yorkshire & Art Deco design. This blog is where I share my creative life and inspiration. find out more ...


  1. Reply


    19th July 2013

    Those tiny garnets are just beautiful… Love the inspiration for the range of jewellery and think your photographs are wonderful. I couldn’t possibly comment on the G&T however… ;)

    • Reply

      Rachel Lucie Johns

      19th July 2013

      thank you, that’s very kind. Always great to find I seem to have hit the spot – like a nice G&T does. Not that I would know either, of course. It is feeling all rather colonial in this weather, I must say!