Rionore, the early years

Rionore’s fascinating journey producing avant-garde fine jewellery began over 50 years ago in traditional 1960s Ireland.

Charismatic Irish business man Sir Basil Goulding joined forces with one of the world’s largest mining companies, Rio Tinto, to create a progressive luxury jewellery brand; all design and production was carried out in-house on the banks of the River Nore in picturesque Kilkenny.

The name marries Rio Tinto with the River Nore to create, in a play of words, the “River of Gold”. It benefited from advice and training from the renowned designer-maker Rudolf Heltzel. Rionore had a flagship store in Brown Thomas and another close to the Seat of Government in Dublin.

It also had close ties with the trail-blazing Kilkenny Design Workshops (KDW); Sir Goulding sat on the board of the KDW, and for several years occupied the role of Chairperson. Other prominent figures involved included artists Louis le Brocquy, Patrick Scott and Oisín Kelly.

Rionore was a prolific jewellery house in the 60s, 70s and 80s, selling to the rich and famous. Under Rudolf Heltzel it received accolades including ‘one of the world’s greatest gem houses’ and ‘one of the world’s greatest silversmiths’.

Today Rionore is proudly designing for a new cosmopolitan Ireland and is expanding to share its passion for jewellery with the rest of the world.

Kilkenny Design Workshops.