Alumni businesses you can support this Christmas

With Christmas just around the corner, now might be a good time to start thinking about what to give to your nearest and dearest. And what better gift to give than one that supports BCU’s finest graduates? Here are some alumni-owned independents that you can get behind this festive season.

Posted 03 December 2021


Thinking of gifting a little bling? Good news! Our School of Jewellery and School of Art have a track-record of producing some seriously talented graduates looking to sell their wares.

Hellcat Jewellery is ran by Design Crafts alumna, Jo Herriots, and is based right here in the Jewellery Quarter.

Her wares are inspired by all things macabre and is made using the finest materials the jewellery quarter has to offer. Think gothic skull rings, anatomical heart necklaces, and even memorial jewellery.

Kiya Coralles eponymous brand is the work of Jewellery alumni, Kiya.

She sources inspiration from ancient South American art and architecture, using geometry, pattern and symbolism to shape her pieces, the sun being a central element in many of her designs as a nod to the Inca sun god, Inti.

For something fun and colourful, look no further than Abbie Gaiger.

Her jewellery is based on symmetry and patterns in mathematics, but there’s nothing formulaic about her work. You can pick up some of her trademark dip-dyed acrylic pieces from around £20.

If your recipient is a believer in the slow fashion movement and wants something handmade that’s eco, ethical and green, Mikaela Lyons Jewellery could have something to offer them.

Mikaela uses traditional methods and ancient techniques to craft beautiful pieces from 24ct gold vermeil, all hallmarked on the doorstep in Birmingham’s historic Jewellery Quarter.

Award winning Goldsmith Roxanna Moznabi is the driving force behind Moznabi, a Persian fine jewellery specialist creating pieces influenced by the artistic and romantic cultural history of Persian designs, motifs and architecture.

Fashion and accessories

Get decked out in some of the trendiest threads and accessories the city has to offer, thanks to our Fashion, Textiles, Architecture, and Illustration alumni.

Connies World (formerly Lint and Thread) is full of colourful embroidered goods.

Her designs (all embroidered in Connie’s home studio and on sustainable garments made solely using renewable wind and solar green energy) feature tonnes of cute emojis, or you can even get a bespoke personalised pet portrait on a garment of your choice. Cool eh?

Making accessories for those every day adventures are Cora and Spink.

Here you’ll find backpacks, utility bags, laptop cases and wallets that are not only incredibly cool but also incredibly environmentally friendly – they’re biodegradable, 100% vegan and made from re-cycled cotton.

Best part? Prices start from £15, so you can be an alumni-supporting-fashion-forward-eco-warrior without breaking the bank.

Next up are Birmingham Stationery, created by Amrit and Muhammad that met while studying Architecture here. Their stationery intends to foster everyday creativity, for notes and sketches that make up big ideas.

They source premium materials from all around the world and manufacture their books by hand in-house.

Their gorgeous nature-inspired print notebooks (which are sourced from premium materials from all around the world and made by hand in-house) are perfect for the chic stationery lover in your life, or alternatively they have a great set of greetings cards for those with a dry sense of humour.


There’s no greater joy than receiving a beautifully crafted bouquet, and Bloom Collective seriously know how to deliver.

Their insta-worthy arrangements will surely thrill any bloom-lover, but you can also get in touch for bespoke projects, wedding flowers, wreaths and more.

Brum Botanicum's creative flower designs are equally as stunning. They even offer seasonal workshops to make your own table centre pieces and wreaths if you fancy having a go yourself.

To add a little colour to your home, Morgan Grice Illustration can offer plenty of fun and unique prints. A pigeon riding a pizza-wheeled unicycle? Check. Mythical Russian fairy tale forest scene? Got it. A watercolour Victorian era ghost looming on Shrewsbury train station platform? No problem. 

Fancy changing up your samey IKEA furniture or home accessories? 

Digwood are the people for you. Whether it's a bespoke industrial piece you're after or you need help restoring your family heirlooms, they can lend a hand.

Stick a bow on it…

Where would a good present be without a card and some fun wrapping to go with it? Foxy Lemon is ran by Illustration Alumna Pheobe Munger, who interned with Moonpig during her time with us.

Her site features plenty of funny cards and gift wrap with illustrational memes of all your favourite shows and celebrities; Kim K, Line of Duty, RuPaul, and The Office, to name but a few.

Using Pheobe’s products to add your gift’s finishing touches is sure to be the icing on the Christmas cake.