Chongo and Wells Silver
About the designer
We’re a small, very small and we like it that way.
Chongo and Wells was founded by Ali Wells and named after her faithful hound Chongo.
A student of Art and Design, Ali left her formal education knowing she wanted to design. However she was never exactly sure what it was that she wanted to focus on. Ali is a firm believer that you can do anything you put your mind to and ‘Chongo and Wells’ is testament to that.
Having followed her heart to Africa she decided to take the last 10 years worth of business know-how, a giant leap of faith and a head first dive into the world of jewellery design and manufacture. She will tell you it was one of the scariest yet best decisions she ever made.
Ali has no formal silver or gold smith training, everything that she produces is the product of self teaching. She will honestly admit that its amazing what you can teach yourself to do with a bit of help from the internet, some experienced friends and the drive to believe that you can do it. The rest is time, refinement and the ability to keep going, even when it’s hard and you think its no longer worth it.
How We Work
We believe that every person who walks through our door – or in a world dominated by internet shopping – anyone who lands on our page is as unique as the jewelry we design for them.
We understand that when it comes to bespoke jewelry, selecting the right jeweler to work with can be a somewhat daunting task.
So with this in mind we have made it our mission to take the stress away. We’re really big on getting to know our clients. Whether it’s a four hour lunch or a video Skype call. We enjoy taking the time to make sure we understand exactly what our clients want. Getting to know our clients simply makes the experience that much more enjoyable. Once we are certain we’re all talking the same language, the sketch books come out and we get working.
In the beginning we hand sketch a few ideas for the pieces, then send them to the client for review and feed back. Tweaking until they are really happy with the designs. Once everything is signed off we wander down to our little workshop where, somewhat excitedly, we break out the tools and slowly breathe life into the lines on the pages. The time line is very much down to what the client wants us to make. We never have and have no intention of missing a deadline, in fact we like to deliver early.
What can we make?
We’re glad you asked. What we can make is limited only by imagination and of course that pesky budget.
Our work is often gifted to friends and loved ones for birthdays, anniversaries or random gifts. Christmas presents are popular occasions for bespoke jewellery. Every now and again a cheeky little self gift makes it in there too! Our tails wag when we get to be involved in special occasions, we love creating engagement rings, it’s something about the element of surprise that really gets us excited.
With weddings our work is normally gifted to the Maid of Honour, the Bridesmaids, Mother of the Bride, Mother of the Groom and the Flower Girls. We are always happy to come up with something for the Grooms Men and we have been known to design silver favours for all the guests. It’s all down to the client and their needs.
We believe that bespoke jewelry pieces are special, they represent moments that will remain etched in memories which is really the reason that we enjoy creating them in the first place.
Bespoke jewelry, that must be expensive?
At Chongo and Wells we are all too well aware of the fact that gifting is expensive no matter who you are. With this in mind we pride ourselves on being well adapted to working within realistic budgets. Before we even put pen to paper we ask that our clients give us their budget, whether that’s 100 Rand a piece or 20,000 Rand a piece. Doing this let’s us work together with the client and avoid any nasty budget denting surprises.
I gladly accept returns and exchanges however I can only accept them on items that have not been customised to your style i.e items with stamped messages, dates, GPS locations.
Just contact me within: 14 days of delivery
Ship items back to me within: 30 days of delivery
I don't accept cancellations
But please contact me if you have any problems with your order.
Because of the nature of these items, unless they arrive damaged or defective, I can't accept returns for:
- Custom or personalised orders
Conditions of return:
Buyers are responsible for return shipping costs. If the item is not returned in its original condition, the buyer is responsible for any loss in value.
I will only use your shipping and billing address, and contact information
- To communicate with you about your order
- To fulfill your order
- For legal reasons (like paying taxes)