When I see a ring like this, my heart starts beating a little faster.
So imagine how I felt when I went to the Sutra booth at the Couture show — drooling!!
Founded in 2008 by Arpita Navlakha and her husband, Divyanshu, this Houston-based line has gained a huge following around the globe. Sutra, which means “collection of sacred verses” in Sanskrit, is an ornate, colorful line which they describe as “chicly gothic.”
Arpita was born into a family of jewelers, and has truly been surrounded by jewels her whole life. (Lucky girl!) She is completely inspired by the stones themselves. Sure to design pieces that are stunning from every angle, I’ve never seen a collection with so many stones that truly light up from the inside. Don’t you think these earrings just glow?
And I think the richness of this multiple colored diamond ring is fantastic.
Sutra’s line, “…embodies opulent sophistication with the perfect hint of avant-garde modernism.” There’s definitely an element of Art Deco and Edwardian influence, as well as a little rocker chic, as shown in these earrings and ring.
Sutra’s jewels were the perfect companion to Jessica Alba’s fuchsia gown at the 2nd Annual Baby2Baby Gala.
I also think Vanessa Hudgens’ long diamond fish earrings were just the right choice with her bejeweled dress.
You can find Sutra Jewels at retailers around the country, including one of my faves, Fragments in NYC.
I know that when you see images from a runway show or a photo shoot in the latest issue of Vogue, you may say to yourself, “Who would ever wear that in real life? I know I certainly wouldn’t!” Well that’s true. These looks are not meant for the average person to walk down Main Street in. The way these images are very useful, though, is to extrapolate what trends and themes will actually appear in your local stores.
Take for instance, this over-the-top floral necklace that was seen on the runway at the Giambattista Valli show.
Well he wasn’t the only designer showing floral jewelry, so I am not surprised that we’re starting to see it coming up roses everywhere from Bergdorf Goodman to Kohl’s.
Here’s a more toned down version by Martine Ali that has a similar effect, yet is more user friendly.
And here’s J.Crew’s take on the floral trend. I think J. Crew really does a great job at offering beautiful jewelry at a more accessible price point.
Alexis Bittar expertly combines color with this floral brooch. This pansy comes in three colors, too!
Forever 21 is always on-trend, and their jewelry is extremely affordable. Here’s a cool filagree bracelet that looks much more expensive than it is.
This Kevia ring (sold at Fragments in NYC) has a little bit of rocker edge to it, don’t you think? The smoky quartz and cubic zirconia create an edgy flower.
Here are a pair of clean, modern floral dangling earrings designed by Patrick Irla. I think these would look great as an everyday look or for a special evening out on the town.
If flowers are your thing, you can see that there’s a veritable bouquet just waiting for you out there in the stores. Happy shopping!
While I don’t have a tattoo, I can certainly appreciate some of the amazing ink I’ve seen on my friends (Leslee’s whole back is covered!) and on random people on the street. Jewelry designer Catherine Angiel takes it a step further. Her tattoo-inspired jewelry line is the epitome of rocker chic.
Catherine was born and raised in New York City. Music (drumming in particular) is in her soul, she loves the “grit” of the city, and she loved being part of the underground music scene. Graffiti, rock n’ roll and tattoos are what inspired her in creating her line, which is famous for its use of black diamonds and precious metals. She opened her Greenich Village store in 1993, the same year that she also appeared on the cover of Newsweek magazine. (An interesting side note: Catherine is the one who coined the term “commitment rings!” How cool is that?!)
As she states, “My vibe is all about breaking the rules; whether it’s in my music, my jewelry, or my life. I’ve always been a renegade.” No doubt! And her cool jewelry line lives true to that vibe. This bracelet was the first piece I tried on. I could envision it as a tattoo around someone’s upper arm, but for me, this was the perfect way to sport the look.
I took this image from her website. Being deathly afraid of spiders, it’s probably good I didn’t see it in person. But again, I can appreciate her use of white diamonds and black spinel beads.
Every piece in the line is hand-crafted right in her NYC workshop. Catherine talked about how she loves the relationship between stones and metal. She feels that stones actually “choose” the metal that they’ll be in harmony with. I like that thought process, and I think the stones in these rings made great choices!
She has a men’s line as well. These cufflinks would be perfect on the right guy!
Here’s an image from her website that really captures the whole look and feel of the line. It’s artistic, edgy, rocker chic, fashion-forward, and likely much cooler than I am.
While she describes herself as a “bad ass jewelry designer,” Catherine is also a big animal activist, and loves to garden and cook. I know I’ll never forget that sparkle she had in her eyes when talking to me about her life story and her jewelry line. If you’re inspired to see more of her collection, you can find it at her store in NYC, Neiman Marcus in SF, Fragments in NYC and Montaigne Market in Paris.
I remember the first time I visited Fragments in SoHo in NYC. It was like stepping into this amazingly huge jewelry box with such exquisitely curated collections, that I didn’t know where to start looking (and trying on) first! Well unfortunately it’s been quite some time since I’ve been back in the Big Apple, but I’m thrilled with the new and improved website that Fragments just launched this past week.
While I’ve certainly spent countless hours on jewelry websites, I have to say that this site is oh, so, much more than your average bear! As Danielle Gadi, their PR gal told me, “It’s a jewelry journey.” Well said. It’s shopping, it’s educational, and it’s very on-trend.
As I explored the site, I first went through the different designers. Instead of just showing the lines (and they do carry both fashion and fine jewelry), they had pictures of the designers, information about them, and short interviews that really give you an insight into the creative forces behind the jewelry you’re looking at. I always think that getting to know a designer really makes their jewelry more personal. I love knowing random facts like what their guilty pleasure is, and what piece of jewelry they never take off!
The next section that really grabbed me was Janet’s Jewelry Box. Janet, the founder and CEO of the company, uses this forum to show her top picks each season, based on different themes and trends. In this first edition, she starts where she should — with the basics that you should have in your jewelry box. I can’t wait to see what her next batch of picks are!
Two pages on the site that I will be sure to keep up with are Trend Watch and Style Spotlight. Currently, they’re featuring Maria Duenas Jacobs, who’s the senior accessories editor at Glamour magazine. I love finding out some quirky things about her, as well as see what jewelry she’s currently obsessing over. (because I am NOT the only jewelry-obsessed girl in the world…)
There’s also more than just jewelry on this site. There’s a section on events going on around the city, and a whole section dedicated to art. How cool is that? On my next visit, I can literally use the site as a mini travel guide! And finally, I have to mention the kick-ass glossary they include. You can get definitions of everything from jasper to toggle clasps. I know that I learned a few things from perusing it!
Thanks for letting me wax poetic about this updated website. I’m just so happy that I can really get my “Fragments Fix” even though I’m on the opposite coast. Hope you enjoy it as well!
One of the coolest parts of attending the Couture jewelry show was meeting designers from all over the globe. Case and point…meeting Lene from Copenhagen, Denmark, and learning about her “magical” line, Vibe’s, the likes of which I’d truly never seen before!
The Vibe’s studio and shop are located in a quaint two-story terra-cotta colored building built back in 1750. One of the key selling points to Lene was the antique safe from 1820. No, this safe is not used for securing jewelry. In fact, it would be useless considering it has a huge hole in the back of it from a robbery back in the “olden days.” No…Lene uses the safe to store her port wine, which she enjoys sharing with special customers. Love that!
So back to the jewelry…the Vibe’s line is inspired by the fairy tales of Hans Christen Andersen. When you think of these tales, you envision fairies dancing, mystical animals moving through the enchanted forest, and other whimsical creatures. This is exactly what you’ll find in her designs. Check out the exquisite detail in this ring, from the little insect to the tiny sea shell!
And here are some more examples of her rings. Notice the raw, yet carefully curated beauty in each creation.
You’ll notice a variety of pearls in her line, from baroque South Sea to Keshi to freshwater. Combined with other gems and brushed 18K gold, the result is quite stunning. Each time you look at her pieces, you’ll notice more and more detail.
I think part of the reason Lene has such a vivid, fantastical imagination is that she treasures children and appreciates how they see the world. In fact, she always travels with drawings by her 4 1/2 and 7 1/2 year old children.
Personally, I would love to visit her shop in Copenhagen one day. But luckily, I can still see her work in person at one my FAVE jewelry stores in the USA, Fragments in New York City. This store is definitely a must-see on your next trip to the Big Apple!