Meet the gemmologist: Matthew Weldon on antique engagement rings and TikTok

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Get to know Matthew Weldon, gemmologist and owner of Courtville of Courtville Antique & Vintage Jewellers in Dublin

In partnership with Courtville.

In a world of fast fashion and transience, Matthew Weldon is getting the message across that antique jewellery is not only rare and unique, but also sustainable and accessible. Matthew, who trained in gemmology with the GIA (Gemmological Institute of America), is a specialist in antique and vintage jewellery, which informs everything he does at his antique jewellery store Courtville.

Following and placement in Digicel in Jamaica, Matthew went to KPMG and trained as a chartered accountant. However, with antique jewellery in his blood (his great grandfather was in the same trade in the 1890s and was, interestingly, also an accountant) on qualifiying as an ACA Matthew joined the family business before starting his own journey when he took the reins of Courtville three years later. The rest as they say is history.

With a degree in marketing from TUD (then DIT), Matthew certainly understands the importance of delivering a message to people in a format that suits them.

“Sometimes the medium of the message is as important as the message,” says Matthew. When the lockdown at the end of 2020 happened he decided that the business had to adapt. “We weren’t going to be waiting this one out, so we made a list of things we could do in the current trading conditions.”

So a TikTok account was started, a calendar of live videos on Instagram was published and a podcast began. These different elements served to illuminate a previously inaccessible antique jewellery market to a burgeoning, enthusiastic, ethically-conscious younger demographic who value authenticity, originality and uniqueness.

“Antique and vintage jewellery, in particular engagement rings, are perfect for someone who wants a unique, ethical and beautiful ring,” he says.

“When it comes to jewellery – especially engagement rings – it is all about the one piece that is totally unique to you. Jewellery is a shortcut for a set of values, so while you might have to research a bit more and try on a few extra antique rings that capture your personality and represent your relationship, the extra leg work is well worth it.”

Research appears to be key and Matthew’s podcast, Gem Pursuit, is certainly worth a listen for those considering a vintage or antique engagement ring.

With approximately 8,000 couples ‘popping the question’ this December, it is a message well worth getting across.

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