The SIT & WONDER founder embraces a minimal aesthetic with eclectic accents.

| By Rachael Thompson | Home tours

Jeweller Emily Ko’s Sydney Home Is as Simple and Chic as Her Designs

The SIT & WONDER founder embraces a minimal aesthetic with eclectic accents.

Welcome to The Makers. Each week, we celebrate innovators, artisans, and crafters of all types by taking you on a private tour of their creative spaces. For this instalment, we tour jewelry designer and SIT & WONDER founder, Emily Ko's relaxed Sydney home and studio.

From a young age, Emily Ko knew she wanted to work in a creative field. However, like many artistic types, she was steered away from this journey and encouraged to undertake a seemingly more stable career path. After completing commerce at university, she went on to work as a financial analyst/accountant. "It wasn’t until a couple of years into that career that I decided to switch gears and follow my passion of starting my own jewelry business," she shares with Bed Threads Journal. Now, Emily has pursued her creative dream by designing fine jewelry which she has successfully turned into a thriving and fulfilling full-time job.

Emily embraced the sentiment “if I never do this, I’ll always sit and wonder…” when she kickstarted her brand SIT & WONDER. The idea was born out of a desire to create premium, yet accessible fine jewelry to design lovers. These classic, dainty pieces, are crafted in precious metals of sterling silver, gold, and a selection of gemstones. "I’ve always loved making things and am naturally a DIY-er, so this translates to everything in my life," she says.

Sustainable practices are important to Emily, who has ensured her company has carbon neutral shipping, 100% recyclable packaging made from FSC® certified materials, and that recycled metals are used throughout production. All of the jewels used are responsibly sourced and manufactured in house by trusted partners who are certified members of the Responsible Jewellery Council.

Much like her jewelry, a minimal yet chic aesthetic pervades Emily's home in Sydney. The success of the home's predominantly neutral palette lies in the various textures and patterns utilised throughout. A white linen sofa, fossil stone coffee table, leather seat cushions, and a patterned rug, create a nice mix of textures and interest in the light-filled living area. "I feel like decorating your home is a never-ending project and I like to be really considerate about what I add to my home, so every piece is something I absolutely love and cherish."

The primary bedroom is simple and elegant. Warm terracotta tones in the linen, Em McLeod prints, and jewelry dish, culminate to create a unified and stylish space. "I’ve made a very conscious effort to make it my peaceful sanctuary where I unwind at the end of the day," she says.

We spoke to Emily about her career transition, her creative process, and her brand's upcoming jewelry launch.

Shop Emily Ko's home edit.

Hi Emily! This series is called The Makers. What is it that you make?

I design and create dainty fine jewelry in solid gold and sterling silver.

How does the act of “making” relate to your personality and who you are?

I’ve always loved making things and am naturally a DIY-er, so this translates to everything in my life. I like to understand how things are constructed and I also love trying to make new things. My home is filled with DIY projects.

Tell us about your career journey to date. Did you always know you wanted to pursue this line of work?

When I was younger, I always wanted to be in a creative career like fashion design. However, I was encouraged by my parents to pursue something more ‘practical’ (in their eyes), so I studied commerce at university and started my career as a financial analyst/ CPA. It wasn’t until a couple of years into that career that I decided to switch gears and follow my passion of starting my own jewelry business.

Talk us through your creative process. Where do you start?

I don’t have a structured creative process as I usually come across shapes, ideas, and colours when I’m not intentionally trying to, and I jot them down into a note on my phone. When I’m ready to start designing new pieces, I’ll take those ideas and start to expand on them – also considering current trends and what our customers have resonated with in past designs.

What’s been the most challenging lesson learnt so far in your career?

The most difficult thing I’ve found is how to continually grow, scale, and adapt the business. You will be constantly facing changes that you may or may not anticipate e.g. fluctuating metal prices, increasing costs, disruptions to supply chains, and not to mention a global pandemic.

What’s been the best thing that’s happened to you since you started your career?

Sometimes we receive personal and heartfelt messages from customers that are completely unsolicited. Whenever I read these messages, it is the most rewarding feeling. Jewellery is such a personal thing, it’s supposed to be precious, emotional, sentimental, and hold memories for the owner, so it means everything to hear my customers tell their stories and know that my jewellery has been an important part of them.

Do you have a single piece of advice you’d give to your younger self or someone looking to pursue a similar line of work?

Don’t give up. Change, adapt, learn, and keep trying new things.

Now, the home stuff. How long have you lived in your home?

Nearly 8 years.

How did you initially know this was the space for you?

I had been house hunting for nearly a year before finding this space. It was a very competitive market and a really lucky find in my ideal neighbourhood. It ticked nearly all of my boxes so I knew we had to move quickly on it.

Did you do any renovations or make any big changes after moving in?

The only big changes were renovating the bathrooms and adding an outdoor deck in the back. We also did a lot of smaller cosmetic things like painting, filling gaps, replacing blinds etc.

What was the thought process behind the way you’ve styled the interior?

My husband and I both like a simple minimal aesthetic, so I’m glad we were aligned on that. I’d also describe my style as ‘Scandi-boho’ because I like my space to be clean and neutral with a few bohemian accents thrown in.

What are your favorite pieces in the home?

I love my white linen couch and my fossil stone coffee table which has a shell with a pearl as the base.

Do you have any special décor pieces you’re looking to add?

I feel like I need a large shell bowl to add to my dining table as it’s a bit stark. I’ve also been eyeing the beautiful Bitossi Home Fasano Plate in Blue.

Which is your favorite room in the house?

My bedroom. I’ve made a very conscious effort to make it my peaceful sanctuary where I unwind at the end of the day.

For more from Emily follow her @msemilyko and @sitandwonderjewels

Photography by Benito Martin. Styling by Sami Simper.

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