Marcia Lanyon has announced her retirement and the winding down of her eponymous gem-dealing company 42 years after its establishment.
With a career which began in London’s Hatton Garden, Lanyon worked for the gemstone dealer George Lindley Ltd and was responsible for stock and grading gemstones.
In the evenings she studied for her Fellowship of the Gemmological Association, which she was awarded with distinction in 1969. In the following year, she attained the association’s diamond certificate.
In 1970 Lanyon joined the business of jewellery designer and goldsmith John Donald, where
her responsibilities included sourcing stones. In 1972 she moved to Hong Kong and wrote and taught an FGA Diploma course, alongside other gemmology courses.
Some of her students have gone on to become luminaries of the gem and jewellery business and she was acknowledged at a 2008 ceremony as the founder of gemmology education in Hong Kong.
Her work in Hong Kong included consulting for the Hong Kong Tourist Association and led to
the start of her stone-trading enterprise.
Following her return to London in 1975, Marcia developed Marcia Lanyon Ltd alongside making necklaces and selling these direct to the public at Covent Garden market and through major stores such as Liberty.
By 1985 the company had three staff working from the ground floor of her house. It moved to
freehold office premises in Hammersmith in 2001, by which time there were six staff. In 2017
the company manages over 14,000 lines of stock, using a computer-based stock coding system.
The company regularly visits the UK’s leading art colleges, introducing future designers
and makers to the opportunities offered by coloured gemstones.
Lanyon has been closely involved in education during her career with the mentorship of young designer/makers for the Prince’s Trust and her sponsorship of prizes for the use of coloured stones in jewellery.
In 1993 she became a Freeman of the Goldsmiths’ Company and from 1998 to 2003 was on the National Committee of the British Jewellery Association.
In 1983 Marcia Lanyon was the only stone dealer at the IJL and will be taking part in this year’s event as the company’s 35th consecutive showing at stand E101.
The company will be winding down after IJL until the end of the year. There will be
offers on end of stock lines available in the company’s email newsletter and in store.
Lanyon plans to spend her retirement “relaxing, playing with her grandchildren and travelling the world.”