Adorning Pacific bodies

Adorn Pacific

By Kite Pareti

Fijian warriors holding tiki torches and performing meke dances at night are some of Sandy Lyons’ best memories of the Arts Village.

“I grew up in the Arts Village in its heyday, and there was such a good vibe. My parents had a shop here, and my primary school was located here as well, just around the corner from my shop,” she said.

“I’ve watched the Arts Village kind of deteriorate over the last few years. And I think it’s a good thing that some money is being put into it now. It’ll be a draw card to the local people and tourists as well. And it’ll only mean good things for everyone in Pacific Harbour,” she said of the recent partnership between Yatu Lau and the Damodar Group of Companies to renovate the centre.

Today, Sandy is the owner of Adorn Pacific, a small jewellery shop she started eight years ago at the Arts Village after pursuing studies in fashion design in Australia.

Sandy Lyons, founder of Adorn Pacific

“I was in Sydney for a while to study. But as soon as I had my daughter, I knew I wanted her to grow up exactly the same way that I grew up in Pacific Harbour, by the beaches, near the waterfalls, and dinghy fishing in the rivers. I wanted her to experience that magical way of growing up,” she said.

At Adorn Pacific, you’ll find many authentic island-themed rings, necklaces, anklets, bracelets in gold and silver, that are handcrafted on-site. The price ranges from FJ$35 to FJ$15,000.

“Every piece of jewellery has a tag on it with the information about the metals or the mediums that are used. You can have a walk around the shop, pick anything, and try it on. Or you can ask me anything about how a piece is made. I really want to keep the whole business open and transparent,” explained Sandy.

Colourful pearls are the centrepiece of most jewellery items. She sources them locally from Civa Fiji Pearls in Taveuni. “All our pearls are Fijian saltwater pearls, and we get hundreds and hundreds of pearls from their harvests twice a year. And we have a whole group of die-hard customers who wait for these harvests,” said Sandy.

“They’ll often come in before I have even unpacked the pearls, and we will open the pearls together, and look at the pearls, and get really excited about the colours and shapes that come out, and then decide what to make together,” she added.

Adorn Pacific also collaborates with Hotglass Fiji. “Alice [Hill] of Hotglass Fiji is very well known. I approached her and asked if she could make much smaller pieces of glass that we could then drill and set on metals and make them wearable. We’ve been doing that for a few years now, so glass is a big component of the business as well,” said Sandy.

“I want to make something new every day,” the dedicated entrepreneur said.

“I don’t think of it [Adorn Pacific] as a business. I think of it as a creative outlet. I make whatever I feel like making. I try to push my own boundaries and challenge myself in the mediums that I use, and I think it just flows from there. I think people see that I love to do what I do. And I take a lot of pride in it,” she said.

“This year, we introduced resin as a new medium,” she said. One special request involved making a matching necklace set for a mother and father as a forever keepsake. “It was very important for the couple to keep the umbilical cord of their newborn child. We dried it out in the sun and then set it in resin. It was the first time I’d ever made it, so they trusted me, which was really nice. The whole process took about a week, and it turned out perfectly,” she said.

“These sorts of requests are what keep me going besides my own ideas,” she added.

Most customers, Sandy says, are based in Fiji, Australia, New Zealand, and the United States.

“We’ve had customers who arrive in Fiji, catch a taxi from Nadi to Pacific Harbour, just to have a chat with me about what to make, and then return in another taxi to their hotel, which is amazing and I’m so grateful,” she said.

With a few hundred dollars and a couple of samples, Adorn Pacific has grown to what it is today, with over 2,000 products listed online and 35 stockists around the country.

“We have a team of five who keep Adorn Pacific running. And it’s exciting to me to watch it grow. It’s never plateaued. It’s always evolving into something else. And I always have a plan ahead. Whether it’s a week or months ahead, I’m always thinking how to make Adorn Pacific better and bigger, and reach a larger audience, and maybe introduce a new metal or new gemstones. It’s like my baby so I want to see it grow,” said Sandy.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

To top

Please register first to be able to create Bookmarks.
Registration is free and creating Bookmarks is free as well.

Note: Your password will be generated automatically and sent to your email address.