About The JQ Brum

Welcome to the Jewellery Quarter, Birmingham!

If you're a first time visitor to our website, we are an online department store that aims to showcase and celebrate the independent jewellers and designer makers of Birmingham's historic Jewellery Quarter. The JQ, as it is known locally, is an industrial area of 1.07 square kilometres (264 acres) in the city centre that is home to Europe’s largest concentration of businesses involved in the jewellery trade. The businesses based here, which range from the individual contemporary designer maker to long established manufacturing firms, produce 40% of all the jewellery made in the UK. 

The area is a thriving creative destination where the factories of long established brands rub shoulders with the workshops of contemporary designer makers, artists' studios and galleries as well as a growing number of bars, restaurants, cafes and residents. The JQ continues to attract jewellery entrepreneurs looking to tap into of the extensive creative ecosystem, find the right people with highly specialised skills that have simply vanished elsewhere and become part of a collaborative and creative community with a long history of innovation and design excellence.

We offer for purchase online small collections from handpicked designer makers and jewellers based in the JQ with all their pieces strictly made in Birmingham, ensuring the quality of both craft and material that has been the cornerstone of the Jewellery Quarter for over 150 years.

 

We want to work with smaller businesses to create a window onto the quarter and the people who work here. At the heart of our project is telling the stories of the Jewellery Quarter and what makes the area a creative and historic destination that's unique. Every business has a story to tell, and this is where we want to tell it. It is for this reason that we are the JQ Brum or simply the Jewellery Quarter Birmingham - we didn't want to create a new identity for our department store that would take attention away from the brands we wish to champion and their inextricable association with the JQ itself. Celebrating the Jewellery Quarter means celebrating its businesses and vice versa because the Jewellery Quarter without the Jewellery is less than half the place that it is.

If you're a jewellery business based in the JQ we'd love to hear from you and would welcome you to the site. If you're a visitor looking for something for yourself or a gift for a loved one, we hope that you discover more about the Jewellery Quarter and enjoy a far more personal online shopping experience as you get to know the people who will have hand made your purchase for you. 

Much like the quarter itself, it is our hope that our website constantly evolves to showcase more of the Jewellery Quarter community as well as the history, architecture, museums, artists, bars, restaurants, cafes, clubs, parks, places to see and things to do in the JQ. 

Community

The JQ community extends far beyond the jewellers and designer makers. The area is home to a number of professional services including architects and consultants, a thriving dining scene and a creative cluster of artists and craftspeople. Numerous community organisations, social enterprises, the best place to drink in Britain and the world's best gin bar call the Jewellery Quarter home. Here are just a few of them:

1000 TRADES

Named for the city's sobriquet and located in a former badge factory, 1000 Trades is an independent neighbourhood bar, kitchen and the Guardian's 'best place to drink' 2019.

Home to the best Sunday roast in the city (accompanied by live jazz), the community pub champions all forms of craft over three floors of their nineteenth century building, which was originally built as a jewellery workshop but whose later history is celebrated with an ever-growing wall of badges. The owner, John, even received a letter recently from a man asking whether the badge factory that he remembered from his youth there was still in operation. John replied to the letter outlining the fate of the factory and its rebirth as a pub, kindly enclosing a 1000 trades pin badge for the author.

Inside the pub you'll find craft beer and natural wine, a rotating fantastic food, local artists' artwork showcased throughout the building and all to a soundtrack prepared in partnership with Birmingham’s music community. 1000 trades play host to numerous meet-ups, neighbourhood events, live music, Slow Food Birmingham, a small borrowing library and Ikigai, a top floor cocktail bar by Luke Bensley inspired by Japan's Izakaya culture. 

Although limited as to these kinds of activities right now, you can see the kinds of things that we hope we will be able to get back to doing soon.

SLOW FOOD BIRMINGHAM

The global Slow Food movement is working to reconnect people to where their food comes from and inspire an active interest in local food production. Slow Food Birmingham volunteers bring farm to fork by enabling you shop from the best local, seasonal produce.

 

Based out of the Brum Slow Food Hub at 1000 Trades, Kate and the team champion local food and aim to better connect people with the food they eat through local food projects, educational events, and shared meals. Much of what we eat arrives at our table as the result of the wasteful and carbon intensive global supply chains that major supermarkets operate. Slow Food offers a tastier and more sustainable alternative that supports the local economy and is kinder to the planet as well as working closely with groups who redistribute surplus food in the city so that everyone can have access to fresh, healthy and good quality food.

You can browse a number of local producers and food businesses on the website, many of which are based in Birmingham and the wider West Midlands area, and add the items you'd like to order to the basket as you would with any online store. You'll then receive an email with your collection time between 6pm and 8pm for the weekly collection on Wednesdays. 

It is the team's ambition to grow awareness of the movement and create hubs across the city, providing alternatives to the big supermarkets that dominate the high street. If you'd like to be involved, (we're a friendly and jovial bunch) please get in touch here.

THE HIVE 

The Hive is a community hub in the Jewellery Quarter's former New Standard Works with an award-winning organic café and bakery, craft workshops, exhibitions and event spaces. In 2017 Argent College established a micro farm on the rooftop to provide produce for the college kitchen and Hive Café

Students of the college grow seasonal, organic-biodynamic food crops, herbs and flowers as part of their integrated Seed-to-Table curriculum. They are involved in each process; growing, harvesting, preparation and cooking. Each year the micro farm produces hundreds of kilos of vegetable and herbs just a few steps away, compared to the hundreds and sometimes thousands of food miles travelled by what we are used to purchasing in supermarkets.

Artist Community

EAZYL

Eazyl is more than just another online art marketplace. They believe in a fairer, more transparent art world, so artists pay just £5 a month to be able to upload and sell as much work as they like! This means that unlike other sites, Eazyl don’t have to charge commission fees. As a result, buyers are able pay artists directly for their work, and artists get paid in full for it. John Sewell and the team are based in the JQ and are proud to call this city their home as well as supporting a number of local artists and giving their work a digital home.

You can find them on instagram, twitter and facebook @eazyl_art. Keep an eye out, though... as Eazyl are currently working on some exciting developments to the platform which will be launching in June 2021!

MADE ON THE CANAL

Thomas Parry is an architectural illustrator living and working on the Birmingham canals. Taking inspiration from the ever changing skyline of the city, its industrial heritage and the marriage of nature and the man made canal system. With an eye for detail, Thomas's clean, crisp line drawings bring hidden elements into view, such as the ornate patterns found on Victorian architecture and the decorative motifs of humans and animals that look down from Art Deco buildings that would otherwise be out of sight from ground level. You can find Thomas' work online and on instagram @madeonthecanal

Thomas has worked with theJQbrum to create a series of cards to be included in every order placed through the website. Each card features an illustration of a well known Jewellery Quarter landmark and some information about it.

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