About The Brand

MΛRY JEΛN is a South African brand of fine, handmade jewellery inspired by the beauty and simplicity of the bold, geometric patterns and meaningful symbols found throughout – and unique to – the African continent. With our studio based in Johannesburg, each and every meticulously created, and thoughtfully researched MΛRY JEΛN piece is concept-driven. Each collection is the culmination of curiosity and craft, a collaboration of simplicity and symbolism, and a study in rich compositions that inform delicate design. If work is love made visible then MΛRY JEΛN is love for mixed metals and African-sourced gemstones made wearable. Strong lines and bold geometry meet meticulous fabrication, making each piece equal parts effortless and exquisite, as understated for everyday as ‘statement’ for a special occasion. Each piece is a story, a nod to this continent and the tales its symbols tell. It’s about more than shapes and angles and materials, it’s about attention to detail, respect for a narrative and creating timeless pieces that merge style with substance.

 

“It’s about creating wearable art that I love and then sharing these pieces with the world in the hope that the inspiration and joy I find within the African Continent  transcends into every piece, becoming one of its wearer’s most treasured possessions.” – MΛRY JEΛN Founder, Mary-Jean Treloar

Our team

Mary Jean
LEAD DESIGNER MANUFACTURE

Tennia
APPRENTICE JEWELLER MANUFACTURE

Kae
Bench Jeweller manufacture

The Designer

MΛRY JEΛN founder and designer, Mary Jean Treloar grew up with a “curious mind, creative hands and a love of geology.” While learning how to set a gemstone handpicked from the African soil – during one of her many geological explorations with her father –into Sterling silver, Mary-Jean unearthed a spark for jewellery design and manufacture. It remained simply a spark, a hobby she dabbled in while she completed a BSc degree in Interior Architecture at Pretoria University, relief managed a prestigious 5-star luxury Safari lodge and put her qualification to work in the Corporate Architecture industry. Inevitably, the spark ‘became a wild fire that she couldn’t ignore’. So, she stopped ignoring it and embraced it wholeheartedly, completing a short beginners’ course in Jewellery – ‘to learn the basics’ – before embarking on a self-taught journey of design and manufacture that affords her the opportunity to learn, design and create truly handcrafted jewellery everyday.

The Adinkra Collection

Inspired by the visual symbols found largely in West Africa, originally created by the Ashanti, Mary-Jean brings you its debut collection – The Adinkra Collection. A fusion of West African culture and South African craftsmanship, The Adinkra Collection borrows from traditional design to bring you handcrafted pieces that are as meaningful as they are beautiful. Why Adinkra? While Adinkra symbols, extensively used in fabrics and pottery, have a decorative function, it’s the inherent storytelling ability of each symbol that struck a chord with Mary-Jean. Adinkra symbols are as much about patterns as they are about proverbs, as much about composition as they are about concepts – embodying evocative messages that talk to traditional wisdom, aspects of the environment and of life. Each and every Adinkra symbol has a distinct meaning much like each and every MΛRY JEΛN piece has a unique tale to tell, making this West African aesthetic the ideal muse for the first MΛRY JEΛN collection.