Edith Robinson with her husband Nelson Dawson.

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She ditched her previous medium in favour of the Arts and Crafts revival and a metalworking studio and an enamelling furnace in an upper floor of the family home in Chelsea.

The Architectural Review of 1896 reported: “They have almost re-secured that magnificent and lasting vermilion which has been the despair of craftsmen. Their blue, too, is rich-toned, opulent, and velvety; their green transparent and subdued; and they have obtained a peculiarly fine, granulated medium, which holds the colour at the full with a sense of bloom and brimmingness that reminds one of a gem... It is this effect of opalescence, above all else, above even the singleness and purity of colour, that makes the Dawson enamels so subtle and charming.”

During the busiest years they employed up to 20 craftsmen (in 1900 they exhibited 125 pieces of jewellery at The Fine Art Society in Bond Street) although ill heath forced Edith to give up enamelling during the First World War.


One of Dawson's creations, this pendant of a cicada made £1100 at Kinghams.

Dawson jewellery is not commonplace on the market but a good example was offered by Morton-on-the-Marsh firm Kinghams (23% buyer’s premium) on June 18. Worked in silver with a figaro link chain suspending a pendant of a cicada, it took £1100.