Last week I had the honor of attending the Project Glimmer luncheon, and I was so pleased to run into local jewelry designer, Ashley Berman, of Ashley Morgan Designs. (If you missed my previous article about her, then click here to catch up.) We were talking about business, and she told me how her custom work has really been taking off. With her creativity, I was not surprised to hear this.
I welcome Ashley as a guest writer this week, where she shares one of her latest custom creations. Enjoy the article!
It all began with a dress. The dress was an elegant one: designed by Carolina Herrera, it was whimsical in design, with detailed lace set in garden-inspired patterns. When I was approached to make a necklace and earring set for this outfit — which was destined for a wedding — I was immediately inspired. I found myself intrigued by the intricate lace patterns, and sketched an elaborate collar necklace composed of medallions that had four separate designs; each reflected an element of the design of the dress.
I chose my favorite for the matching drop earrings. After pulling different themes and motifs from the dress, I customized the neckline to fit the dress exactly. I talked with my client about what she hoped the necklace and earring set would represent; I learned that she was attending her eldest daughter’s wedding, and that she wanted these pieces to be a celebration of her, the event, and what it symbolized. We chose blush pink sapphires as the stone that would stud the necklace: these represented the little girl she had raised into a lovely young woman, now all grown up.
The next step was to finalize the details. For any custom project, a computerized CAD is required to cement the crucial elements. After my client had seen the sketch of her lovely necklace and earrings, a CAD was made. This was then shown to my client, who happily approved what she saw. With the CAD and details confirmed, the project was ready to begin!
Production of the necklace involved carving each tiny element of the necklace and earrings out of wax, and then casting the medallions individually. Every rose gold swirl, vine, star, and cross-hatch had to be formed expertly and exactly. Then the many sparkling sapphires were added, in their hues of blush-pink. We wanted the necklace to exude a warmth and a glow, to give the impression of a natural garden preserved in gold and precious gems. This feel was achieved through the combination of rose gold and blush-pink sapphires.
The final result was more enchanting then we could have dreamed. A symphony of pink and rose hues, the necklace lays elegantly against the collarbone. The earrings seem to twinkle as they dangle, a perfect match for the necklace. A true joy from start to finish, this necklace is without a doubt one of a kind. Contact me today to begin your own custom project–experience the joy and satisfaction of bespoke fine jewelry created specifically to suit you.
(This article originally appeared on Ashley’s website.)
There was a lot of buzz on the show floor about Adam Foster this year. It was the first time this St. Louis jewelry designer was showing at the Couture Show, and as soon as I saw the jewelry in his cases, I knew what the buzz was all about! As a graduate in metalsmithing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Adam started his business from scratch about 15 years ago. He began by making bespoke pieces for private clients. This bespoke collection is one of this three aesthetics in his line. (We’ll get to the other two in a bit.)
I was honestly blown away by the craftsmanship, the attention to detail, and the use of stones in his work. The first ring I want to show you is this one, featuring reverse carved mother of pearl. Have you ever seen anything like it? It’s simply mesmerizing.
The comment in my notebook about this 32 carat sugarloaf moonstone ring is, “Holy shit!” I think that about sums it up.
I felt like royalty when I put on this one…
Surely the person who dons this panther brooch crafted from hand carved obsidian and bedecked with white and black diamonds will be making a personal style statement!
Take note of the feather headdress the panther is wearing. Feathers are in fact the inspiration for “Plume,” another of Adam’s three aesthetics. Spending time in the country on weekends and going pheasant hunting in the winter inspired Adam to create very unique pieces with this motif. He was wearing a fab feather brooch when I met him at the show.
The feather detail on this ring, all hand crafted, takes the piece to a whole new level.
The third aesthetic in Adam’s line is “Constellation,” and it’s in this group that I found something I’d love to have in my personal jewelry collection. Inspired by the ceilings in Italy, Adam translates the celestial heavens into wearable art. I’m pretty obsessed with these Constellation bracelets.
This behind the scenes look at the making of a piece in this collection really gives you an appreciation of the meticulous work that goes into each piece. I think it’s awesome that everything from design to manufacturing all takes place at the same address.
This Constellation band would certainly add some pizazz to one’s jewelry collection. Would you wear it on its own or perhaps stack another band or two with it?
I’m so excited to have met Adam and gotten a first-hand look at his unique line. Take note, readers, as this is a name that you’re going to be hearing more of — I just know it!