One of the (many) things that makes fine jewelry so unique is that a piece’s monetary value is not what makes it so special. It is the story of falling in love with a piece, the attraction to a gemstone, one’s admiration of the artist, the way in which a piece is a reflection of one’s personal style, or the tale of being on the receiving (or self-purchasing!) end of an acquisition, that makes jewelry so uniquely special to the wearer. We tracked down four of our industry’s most respected influencers–women who have more access to jewelry on a daily basis than anyone else in the universe–to hear about their most treasured piece of jewelry, and get some insight as to why the piece is so special to them. (As a disclaimer, “my engagement ring” was not an acceptable answer!)
Jill Newman–Robb Report
One of my favorite pieces of jewelry is my white-and-ruby circular design ring from Taffin by James de Givenchy. I love the simplicity of the design, but in fact, it is quite a technical feat. There is virtually no apparent metal showing so it appears almost like a tattoo of diamond and ruby circles on my finger. It is completely flat – so it is discreet, comfortable and wearable every day.
The ring really reflects my personal style: it is elegant, discreet and timeless. Still, this simple ring attracts so much attention. Hardly a day goes by when someone doesn’t notice it. There is something special about a simple design that is executed so perfectly – it is really a meeting of art, craft, and style. I also tend to love rings over any piece of jewelry because you can look at them all the time. In comparison, once you put on earrings in the morning, you don’t see them again until evening. Lastly, the bonus about this ring is that it was designed by James de Givenchy, a very talented jeweler but also an incredibly charming and kind man. I always smile when I look at this ring! It’s amazing how much pleasure I still get when I see it on my finger. I guess that is the fun of well-made, fine jewelry; it just doesn’t ever get dated or tired.
Jennifer Gandia–Owner, Greenwich Street Jewelers:
My most treasured piece of jewelry is a bracelet my father made for my mother when they first married. It’s a snake that coils around the wrist with an enameled head set with emeralds and diamonds. It was truly a gift of love that he poured many hours into creating for her and I feel that energy and intention every time I wear it.
Without a doubt, the piece I always reach for is my Alice Cicolini Memphis chevron ring. It was love on first sight, and when my husband told me to choose something for my birthday, I immediately went to Alice. As well as being a sucker for stripes and colour, I love jewelry with a secret. Even on the most frustrating of days, the pop of rubies around the top edge always makes me smile. I also love that it’s in rose gold and has a satisfying weight to it. I’m lucky enough to see so much beautiful jewelry every day, and it’s particularly special to wear something by someone you admire. It’s not easy being an independent designer in this day and age, but as well as being completely charming, Alice shows a real commitment to craftsmanship and traditional skills.
Soraya Cayen–Owner, Cayen Collection
My favorite piece of jewelry is my sapphire and diamond platinum cuff by Victor Velyan. Anyone who knows me knows I am a total gemstone hoarder. In my past life as a gem dealer I accumulated some stock and set stones aside just because I love them. About 7 or 8 years ago I put a group of blue sapphires together to give to Victor to create a Couture cuff. The cuff was a challenge for Victor; to create his look in platinum rather than his usual patina was not something he was too excited to do at the time. And it was a challenge for me to let go of some gemstones. As a compromise, I agreed to part with a group of blue Ceylon Sapphires I had set aside because they were specimens from a life span of stone buying, and I had a different and somewhat emotional connection with each of them. The cuff turned out fabulous and it was made available for sale.
I made a point to have that cuff on for every special event we hosted and every special occasion. So much so that the staff would tease me with, “Hey it would be nice if we could show that cuff to an actual customer!” Victor then asked me if he could take the cuff to show on the road, and if I would be willing to allow him to sell it to one very special client, whom I also love. I acquiesced even though I was tortured to part with. He called and said the cuff had sold. I was excited that it sold, but sad and kicking myself for not having kept it for myself.
My husband, Michael, who was part of the ”cuff teasing team,” had a field day torturing me about the entire story which made me even more depressed. The next morning I woke up to my usual cappuccino and a Magdalena breakfast in bed, which Michael treats me to every morning. In the breakfast tray, besides my morning regime, there was also the beautiful Victor Velyan Sapphire and diamond platinum cuff smiling at me!
So what’s YOUR most treasured piece of jewelry?! Email me at Michelle@LastWordComm.com and let me know!