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6 June 2006
Meet a cult jeweller.
WILLIAM LLEWELLYN GRIFFITHS, JEWELLER: Someone once said it was romance with a hint danger. I'd never like to be classed as middle of the road or mainstream. All my designs would always be pretty much out there.
JOSIE TAYLOR, REPORTER: The weird and wonderful work of William Llewellyn Griffiths has its roots in childhood fantasy.
WILLIAM LLEWELLYN GRIFFITHS: Inspired by pirates and I've always been a bit obsessed with sailing ships when I was a kid, and stuff.
JOSIE TAYLOR: The cult jeweller and former punk rocker forged his reputation in the underground music and fashion worlds of London.
But in search of a change of pace, Llewellyn Griffiths has re-established himself in Melbourne, in a studio in Fitzroy. He hopes the city's burgeoning reputation as a rock and roll and fashion centre will boost his following in Australia.
WILLIAM LLEWELLYN GRIFFITHS: I've drawn pictures of this in my head. I started making jewellery aged 17. I was actually quite disappointed in it. It was standing at a lathe all day, making wedding rings, but I kept at it for a few years, but then I went off and made my own designs. These are some of my more high profile clients: Marilyn Manson, Maxim, from The Prodigy, Billy Idol, Ali G, I've got Dave Navarro. His manager approached me and commissioned me to make a walking stick for him. It was after he'd come off his motorbike about 15 years ago, I think.
JOSIE TAYLOR: Along with celebrity clients, Llewellyn Griffiths' creations have caught the eye of high fashion watchers.
You've got a Gothic, alternative style, or is that too much of a label for you?
WILLIAM LLEWELLYN GRIFFITHS: Yes, I don't really like being labelled Gothic, but I have to admit that a lot of the pieces are quite Gothic-looking. It's probably because I'm more inspired by the Gothic architecture and I love old buildings, old cathedrals and stuff.
This was made in wax and it's been moulded and there's a mould line on there, all around there, where the rubber mould has joined together, and I'm just filing it out. Then I will get a bit of sandpaper and go over it again with a finer sandpaper and then polish it, polish it on a polishing motor, and then set the stones in it and polish it again.
JOSIE TAYLOR: Along with his partner, musician Wendy Rule, Llewellyn Griffiths is now about to embark on a worldwide selling trip. He's hoping to see more of his designs gracing international catwalks in the future.
†middle of the road
Middle of the road is conventional, standard or mainstream.
Example: Her style of dress is just middle of the road.
Something that is out there is experimental and unusual.
Example: Their style is really out there.
Cult describes something that is liked by a particular group of people, often a small group of people. Itís not something that everyone likes.
someone who makes jewellery
Punk rockers are people who play punk rock - a kind of cult musical style.
Heís a former punk rocker, someone who used to play in punk rock band.
†forged his reputation
He forged, or made, his reputation in the underground music and fashion worlds of London. His reputation is his good name - people in the underground music and fashion worlds first started to like his work.
Underground here means not part of normal society. Underground music is music that is cult - itís not listened to by most people. Itís usually new and experimental music.
Draw is the past participle of the irregular verb draw. Follow the link below to find out more and to listen to some examples.
more information: draw
To keep at something is to continue with or to persevere.
Example: You should keep at your studies.
You may hear and see the phrasal verb keep at in the past tense and past participle form kept at because find is an irregular verb. Follow the link below to find out more about the verb keep.
To go off is to leave the place you were in order to do something.
Example: I have to go off to work soon.
For more meanings of the phrasal verb go off, follow the link below to our language library.
more information: go off
Here made is the past tense of the irregular verb make. Follow the link below to find out more and to listen to some examples.
more information: make
To come off a motorbike is to have an accident.
Example: He came off at over a hundred kilometres an hour.
For more meanings of the phrasal verb come off, follow the link below to our language library.
more information: come off
Celebrities are famous people.
†caught the eye of
attracted the attention
Example: Her performance caught the eye of the producer.
High fashion is the very best fashion, the most expensive fashion.
Alternative here has a similar meaning to underground. She means itís not a common, popular style.
Cathedrals are large, important churches.
To go over something is to examine it carefully and make the necessary changes.
Example: I think you neeed to go over your essay and make sure there are no mistakes.
For more meanings of the phrasal verb go over, follow the link below to our language library.
more information: go over
To be about to do something is to be going to do it immediately.
Example: I'm about to go to bed.