Any guy that can post a “Show Me Your Rings” photo on Instagram and have better-looking hands than some women, is a winner in my book! That’s why Ismael Khan, you can call him Ish, has been racking up followers and customers over on Instagram (you can follow him @IshyAntiques) and finding his jewels landing in so many collectors’ jewelry boxes (including mine). His attitude about antique jewelry and making sure customers come first is apparent. It is easy to spot his dynamic prices, which are set to sell items and allow people to build a collection, rather than go bankrupt. Ish’s room for profit is very minimal, and he genuinely believes that jewelry should be accessible for everyone! The 24-year-old states, “It’s a great feeling to help people add pieces which they thought might have been out of reach for them!” He also takes risks with old pieces of jewelry and parts, and turns them into more wearable pieces of jewelry–like rings and necklaces. He says, “I was happy to take on the risks of anything going awry during the conversion process, such as a stone breaking or cracking, or the whole thing collapsing due to dodgy old unseen repairs, because that was better than the pieces being kept in a vault and not enjoyed by anyone.” You can’t find that same attitude anywhere else–it is almost as rare as a red diamond!
Ishy Antiques began just last year and is currently a side project for Ish and one he is very passionate about. He first started out with a collection of just a few pieces of jewelry and had the idea of selling all of them in hopes of buying something bigger and better! He visited a local auction house called Wellers in Guildford (which those two photos with loads of rings on his hands are from there) to consign his items, where he learned more than he ever imagined and ended up enchanted by the thrill of bidding at auction, which convinced him to pursue this further. After his first auction experience he left with more items than he ended up selling, but lucky for him he found his calling!
By starting out very small–as in finding things for friends and family only–his side business Ishy Antiques began to grow and grow. Like a snowball, it has turned into what it is today. With a newly launched collaboration with Jewellery Hannah, also a favorite amongst us antique jewelry lovers in the Instagram community, he hardly had many pieces left for the actual launch date (which was this past weekend) because of high demand. Incredible rings are still left–like a heart-shaped moonstone surrounded by rubies and several super cute gemstone clusters. I was eyeing up the navy blue enamel star ring set with the craziest Old Mine cut diamond you could imagine! Little did I know it had a twin and a big brother–the pieces were a suite, with the ring I ended up with already being a finished item. The others were just stars without a purpose–until now! Jewellery Hannah did what she does best and turned them into wonderful rings that didn’t last long on Etsy.
Regarding the collaboration, Ish says, “I really admire Hannah’s work which is always really fun and high quality so I approached her to see if she was up for collaborating as a one-off special project. We talked a lot on Instagram and I was keen to keep any work I do within the Instagram community. I sent off my ideas but let her have free reign and complete control over any design decisions because I trusted anything she made would be great. It helped that I wasn’t under any time constraints or deadlines which made the whole process a really fun experience. Conversions are only a small part of Hannah’s business, so doing all these pieces together as a collaboration – and as a collection – was a really satisfying project for us both.”
To view the whole collection along with Ishy Antiques’ Etsy shop, click here.