By Åse Anderson
One of Germany's oldest jewellers, Wellendorff places fine craftsmanship at its core and is proud to fly the Made in Germany flag. Expert goldsmiths at the Wellendorff headquarters create each piece of jewellery, which is then signed with the logo of a diamond-crowned W.
Now in its fourth generation as a family run business, Wellendorff jewellery has been based in the town of Pforzheim for over 120 years. Known as the Golden City or Goldstadt, Pforzheim has been at the centre of Germany's thriving watch and jewellery industry since 1767 when the town's overlord set up a factory in the local orphanage.
The jeweller is perhaps best known for its iconic rope necklace, crafted out of soft, pliable gold. A best-seller for almost 40 years, it was created by Hanspeter Wellendorff in the 1970s after his wife Eva asked him to make a necklace that was "as smooth as silk". Available in white or yellow gold and in four different sizes, a single rope necklace requires around 160 metres of gold threads to complete.
Another iconic piece is the Wellendorff spinning ring, which is made up of at least four individual rings linked together in a way that allows them to rotate freely. The rings also feature colourful layers of cold enamel applied in up to three layers between the engraved patterns.
The new Wellendorff Genuine Delight collection brings together gold with diamonds, mother-of-pearl and coloured enamel to create a collection that dances with joy. The rings feature a circle of spinning diamonds nestled between two enamel rings in a choice of seven different colours, while the bracelet features the iconic Wellendorff ropes and comes with three different options of diamonds, white or coloured enamel.
Today, Wellendorff jewellery is sold all over the world, but the company is very proud of its 121-year connection to Pforzheim and has no plans to uproot its manufacturing. "It is our deepest conviction and belief that the quality and uniqueness of Wellendorff jewellery depends directly upon the entire value chain here in our headquarters in Pforzheim," says Christoph Wellendorff. "Each and every day, together with our specialists in the workshop, we guarantee this perfection and precision that could never be replicated in another location under different management."
He also praises the "outstanding infrastructure" available in Pforzheim thanks to the town's 250-year history of jewellery and watchmaking. Not only is Pforzheim home to numerous gold and silver refineries and tooling ships, it also houses a goldsmiths' school with a worldwide reputation, the School of Design at Pforzheim University, the Institute of Jewellery Technology and the only jewellery museum of its kind in the world.