Jewelry designers don’t have the kind of Fashion Week spectacles their counterparts in the clothing arena participate in seasonally to show their creations. In jewelry, there is just one event every year that attracts some of the best talent on the planet. It’s the Couture Show in Las Vegas.
While it’s not open to the public, there are ways to see it or at least parts of it on Instagram. Follow the Couture Show account and the hashtag #showyourcouture. The best jewelry editors from major magazines or a handful of bloggers including yours truly as well as GemGossip.com, Katerina Perez, Jewelry News Network and Diamonds in the Library. You can also see and shop jewelry from Couture in the live daily trunk shows that will be posted on Moda Operandi beginning Saturday, June 3.
Beyond the see-now-buy-now event from Moda, there is lots of news to report form the show. Dozens of designers are presenting their work at Couture for the first time this year. In fact, I have heard there are as many as 70 new names on the roster. There are also an amazing array of established designers. While it is hard—let’s say impossible—to narrow down the list of talent, I decided to do a tight edit of 6 emerging designers debuting at the show who have already been featured on TheAdventurine.
Classics with a twist
What’s in a name? Well for Kirsty Stone, the designer behind the Retrouvaí collection, it’s everything. Pronounced Reh-tro-v-eye, the name is derived from the French proverb retrouvailles that expresses the pleasure of reconnecting with someone from one’s past. Kirsty came up with her own spin on the term to capture the vintage vibe and joyful spirit of her newly minted jewelry line. The name also expresses the eternality of jewelry to Kirsty, “I want the pieces to have at least nine lives and be passed down from one generation to the next.” Her eclectic collection includes signet rings, stylish pendant necklaces and romantic gemset earrings.
Madonna is a fan of this new collection and you should be too
One of the first celebrities to wear Sarah Hendler’s signature spear earrings was none other than Madonna. Next, the undisputed style star of Awards Season, Ruth Negga wore a custom pair of Sarah’s Shirley spear earrings set with Gemfields emeralds to the Santa Barbara International Film Festival in February. These are extraordinary celebrity credits for anyone—and I mean anyone—much less for a designer who only launched her line last year. Manufactured in Los Angeles, Sarah’s work is made in homage to both her grandmothers love of jewelry but there is nothing old fashioned about it. The line has extraordinary style and spunk.
KARMA EL KALIL
Good vibes and on point trends
While Karma’s jewelry has been on high profile people—including Kim Kardashian (seen the Saint necklace above) and Angelina Jolie—she remains as low key as her spiritual name. And, yes, Karma is her given name. Up until now, the contemplative designer, who divides her time between homes in Brooklyn and Beirut where her work is manufactured, has imbued her focus in minimalist jewels with graphic details and lots of negative spaces. For her new collection named Echo, Karma has introduced more ornate and detailed motifs in fresh silhouettes that check all the right style boxes of the season including shoulder dusters earrings, convertible designs and matching sets
Chic Talismans with Layered Meanings
Generally speaking, charms have a pretty straight forward message. For example, a four-leaf clover equals good luck. There is nothing simple, however, about the amulets Beth Bugdaycay has created for Foundrae. The multiple ancient motifs on each of the five ‘Chapters’ of the collection—Strength, Karma, Dream, Protection and Wholeness—even require a bit of interpretation (see a guide here). “For me the symbols identify cherished beliefs or reminders of what we may want to improve upon in our lives,” explains Beth. “I feel that sometimes people need symbols to start thinking about these things.” The symbols are presented in irresistible cigar band and signet rings as well as pendant necklaces.
French fine jewelry that looks forward and back
Elie Top launched his eponymous fine line in January of last year. The talented Frenchman, who was responsible for the jewelry at Lanvin for 15-years, named his first collection Mécaniques Célestes. Top told The New York Times “Each piece is made up of articulated compartments and interlocking cages that open and close, so the piece reveals itself gradually to show a centerpiece set with pavé diamonds, like a sparkling sun.” While there is a 1920s or 30s vintage vibe to the jewelry, the modern technique of three-dimensional printing was used in the manufacturing process. The designer has a magnificent salon in Paris located at 17 Rue Saint-Honoré. A nice selection of Elie Top jewelry can be seen online at matchesfashion.com.
Diamonds for the future
Repossi isn’t technically an “emerging” talent. The French firm was founded in 1920. It has a boutique on Place Vendôme recently redesigned by Rem Koolhaas. LVMH is an investor in the company. Yet, in spite of all of that, designer Gaia Repossi manages to make work that pushes the envelope of diamond jewelry designs so far out there, it feels as independent as any emerging talent. She evolves her ear cuff every season. Her diamond rings are breathtaking. And her classic Berbère ring is one of the most influential jewels of the last several years.